Art Pepper: Smack Up (1960)

 |   |  <1 min read

Art Pepper: Smack Up (1960)

Art Pepper hardly hid his dependency, so he must have been amusingly drawn to the title of this piece by Harold Land.

Pepper had already served time for heroin possesion but after the sessions for the album of this name he would be in and out of San Quentin on almost consecutive terms for a long time.

It would be almost 15 years before he made any kind of serious comeback to jazz -- on methadone maintenance -- and then write his autobiography Straight Life (1980) about jazz, the underworld and the drug life which had hooked him when he was in his 20s.

Often a very cool and controlled player on the bandstand, his life style -- if there was any style to it -- often seemed in direct opposition.

Pepper died in June 1982. He was 56, and in the end it was a stroke which felled him. 

For more oddities, one-offs or songs with an interesting backstory check the massive back-catalogue at From the Vaults.

.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   From the Vaults articles index

Larry Wallis: Police Car (1977)

Larry Wallis: Police Car (1977)

The punk era tossed up -- threw up? -- some real oddities, few more unexpected than Wallis who was no spring chicken in the world of short haired rock'n'roll for angry 18-year olds. He'd been... > Read more

Eartha Kitt: The Heel (1955)

Eartha Kitt: The Heel (1955)

She might not have been the best Catwoman* because she was a little past her best, but the great Eartha Kitt straddled sultry pop, blues-noir and cabaret. She was also in a Faust film by Orson... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE, a documentary series by TONY PALMER (Isolde/Southbound DVD)

ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE, a documentary series by TONY PALMER (Isolde/Southbound DVD)

These days there are any number of documentary flms about music: Ken Burns' Jazz series, Martin Scorsese's series about the blues, country music dealt to in Lost Highway, the excellent History of... > Read more

Misha Alperin: Her First Dance (ECM/Ode)

Misha Alperin: Her First Dance (ECM/Ode)

Someone who puts you on notice is ECM pianist/composer Misha Alperin who lives in that furrowed-brow world between European jazz and contemporary classical music. There are usually few laughs... > Read more