Jazz bassist, producer, composer, electronic music pioneer: Malcolm Cecil has quietly had about as varied and storied a music career as one could quietly have. He won a Grammy for engineering on Stevie Wonder’s greatest record, Innervisions. His innovative duo Tonto’s Expanding Head Band made what is widely considered to be essential early electronic music, and was, in a bizarre turn, recently referenced on TBS’ popular show People of Earth.
Cecil was principal bassist with the BBC Radio Orchestra, and was resident bassist at London’s Ronnie Scott Jazz Club, where he performed and recorded albums with Stan Getz, J. J. Johnson, Johnny Griffin and Roland Kirk. He has also collaborated with such artists as Quincy Jones, Bobby Womack, the Isley Brothers, Billy Preston, Gil Scott-Heron, Weather Report, Stephen Stills, the Doobie Brothers, Dave Mason, Little Feat, Joan Baez and Steve Hillage.
Columbia-Greene Community College hosts a celebration of Malcolm Cecil’s 80th birthday on Saturday, April 29 at 7:30 p.m. in its Arts Center Theater. The performing ensemble includes Cecil and other jazz royalty: the legendary Dave Holland (bass), Marvin “Bugalu” Smith (master percussion), Patricia Dalton (vocals), George DeLeon (tenor sax), John Esposito (keyboards), Ron Petrides (guitar), José Cuevas (drums), Charlie Apicella (guitar) and Amy Bateman (violin).
Admission costs $20 for the general public and $18 for students and senior citizens. Tickets are available at the Greenport campus and the Greene County Council on the Arts in Catskill. Columbia-Greene is located on Route 23 in Greenport, one mile east of the Rip Van Winkle Bridge. For more information, call (518) 822-2006 or visit www.mycommunitycollege.com.