Deep in a Dream: The Long Night of Chet Baker

By James Gavin

This first significant biography of the main romanticized icon in jazz thrillingly recounts his wild journey. From his emergence within the 1950s--when an uncannily attractive younger guy from Oklahoma seemed at the West Coast to turn into, likely in a single day, the prince of "cool" jazz--until his violent, drug-related loss of life in Amsterdam in 1988, Chet Baker lived a lifestyles that has develop into an American delusion. the following, drawing on hundreds and hundreds of interviews and formerly untapped resources, James Gavin supplies a hair-raising account of the trumpeter's darkish journey.

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Chettie wasn’t a great deal attracted to ladies then,” proven Bob Neel. “They’d gravitate to him, yet he used to be generally scuffling with them off. He didn’t appear to care approximately whatever other than enjoying his horn. ” Baker used to be definitely able to treating girls like playthings, as he proved while he drove to Santa Barbara with Sheldon, Hamel, and Neel for a inn gig. After paintings, Sheldon and Baker stayed in a single day on the domestic in their pal invoice Perkins, a tender tenor participant. There they encountered the female friend of Gene Roland, a Stan Kenton arranger. Roland was once referred to as a voracious pot smoker and intercourse fiend, and his female friend matched him within the latter classification, as Sheldon figured out while she became up in his bed room. “She was once up there in Santa Barbara for a few cause, so i began fucking her,” he defined. “Chettie got here in, and that i moved down and he begun fucking her. It was once so darkish, I don’t comprehend if she even knew the adaptation. Now Chet used to fuck ’em actual quickly, like a rabbit. i believe he suggestion this used to be genuine horny. He didn’t have an idea approximately intercourse, fairly. He complete up, and that i begun fucking her back. She was once a chum for all times after that. ” In , at a Sunday-afternoon jam consultation on the Lighthouse, a Hermosa seashore jazz membership, Baker stuck the lustful eye of Charlaine Souder, a twentyyear-old who lived along with her mom and dad in Lynwood, simply south of L. A. He later defined her as a slim, “sharp-looking blonde, well-built and extremely selfassured,” who had “been round. ” Busty and competitive, Charlaine had a style for musicians, and she or he set her points of interest on Baker. “I imagine all that used to be anything of a problem for Chet,” acknowledged Whitlock. “He used to be most likely used to extra passivity in ladies. ” The trumpeter received her a drink, then she took him for a journey in her father’s new Buick. quickly they have been parked atop Palos Verdes, a middle of the night mecca for amorous younger undefined. “We had this funny story in excessive school,” acknowledged Bernie Fleischer, “that Palos Verdes was once getting smaller each day simply because men stored going up and knocking off a section. ” Baker’s thoughts of Charlaine have been not often romantic. “She enjoyed being screwed and that i enjoyed screwing her,” he bragged. “Once in entrance of her apartment in Lynwood we made it 9 instances in 3 hours. ” He took her all over the place, flaunting her like a brand new set of wheels. in response to Charlie Davidson, a dressmaker from Cambridge, Massachusetts, who started a protracted friendship with Baker in , the trumpeter’s notion of class leaned towards redneck than hipster. “I comprehend he had an image in his head of the best jazz Gavi_0679442871_6p_01_r1_Gavi_0679442871_6p_01_r1. qxd 4/25/11 4:09 PM web page forty two four 2 ·   J A M E S G A V I N musician on the earth, who pulls up in a pleasant automobile, a stunning chick will get out, he walks in, she sits down entrance whereas he performs. ” Baker and his new “chick” grew to become inseparable, yet that they had little to percentage in addition to intercourse. sincerely Baker used to be no Prince fascinating; a few discovered him downright menacing. “Here was once this saintly-looking son of a bitch,” stated Davidson, “but you furthermore may knew that correct in the back of that used to be a beautiful risky little bastard.

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