Ford L. "Buck" Washington (piano)
(1) Jasbo Brown Blues and Summertime from Porgy and Bess
(2) Embraceable You
On July 11, 1942, Ford L. “Buck” Washington went to a small storefront recording studio in Hollywood called the Sound Workshop and cut a two-sided acetate disc of a solo piano medley of the “Jasbo Brown Blues” and “Summertime” from Porgy and Bess. The two-fold significance of the gesture is unmistakable: Buck wanted to capture for posterity his rendition of the music which he was supposed to introduce seven years earlier on Broadway; and he also wanted to pay homage to George Gershwin by recording it on the five-year anniversary of his death. The reduction of Buck’s role in the opera to a minor singing part (Mingo) had been the result of director Rouben Mamoulian cutting the Jasbo Brown sequence down to a handful of bars during the opera’s tryout in Boston. The recording was, therefore, additionally intended to document for posterity the fact that Buck was the composer’s choice to play the role of Jasbo Brown.
Listen to the music of Buck Washington.
Jasbo Brown Blues and Summertime from Porgy and Bess