Melba's Tune – Melba Liston
Melba Liston wrote this lush ballad for alto saxophonist Ernie Henry, and he plays it like it is an American standard.
January 31, 1926 – April 23, 1999
A prodigious musical talent, Melba Liston learned piano at age six in her hometown of Kansas City, Missouri. By eight, she had already taken up trombone and was talented enough at it to play solos on the local radio. When her family moved cross-country to Los Angeles, she began studying with Alma Hightower and playing in local youth bands. Melba soon outgrew children's music programs; at the age of 16, she parted ways with her musical mentor and joined the musicians' union to become a professional. Though she was young, she quickly secured a regular gig at the Los Angeles Lincoln Theater, an opportunity that allowed her to begin composing and arranging for some of the local talent. Read more...