Der Tod von Arnie Lawrence berührt viele in der New Yorker Musikerszene. Sein (nicht minder begabter und liebenswürdiger) Sohn Erik hat folgende e-Mail an Fans und Freunde seines Vaters veröffentlicht:
It is with great reverence that I share the news that my father, Arnie Lawrence, has passed from this earth Friday, April 22nd, 2005 near his home in Israel after a brief illness. A master saxophonist and legendary teacher, he put his heart and soul into his music, into teaching and gave a large piece of it to anyone who needed it. His accomplishments go far beyond what my meager mind can express on this or any day. His career spanned from sitting at the feet of Ben Webster to „rock and roll guru“ and honorary member of many bands, including Blues Traveler and Spin Doctors. He created the New School Jazz program, and an even further reaching program in Israel, bringing Jews and Arabs together through music. We are all his children and his message of love and creativity will continue to grow.
I remember Pops telling me that Ben Webster advised „You’re only as good as your rhythm section“ when he was 16 years old. I can’t tell you how many rhythm section players have told me they never played as well as they played with him.
Oddly, I heard the news of his passing just before entering a recording studio in Brooklyn, near where he was born. I was playing his old King alto, we were to play a traditional African funeral march. When I finally got myself together to walk into the studio there were two framed album covers on the wall, chosen because the engineer’s girlfriend liked the ’60’s style artwork. My father had played on both of them. I figured perhaps I was doing just what I was supposed to be doing.
Talk has begun for a memorial service in at St Peter’s Church in NYC on July 10th, his next birthay at 7pm and the establishment of a scholarship fund in his name. Please feel free to forward this email to any of his friends around the globe. (…)
May peace and music be with you always.
Außerdem organisiert Aaron Comess im Moment einen Arnie Lawrence Tribute Jam, der am kommenden Montag in der legendären Nightingale Bar in NYC stattfinden soll.
Photo by Paul LaRaia, taken from the official Spin Doctors website.