Sunday, February 24, 2008

Louie Bellson & Pearl Bailey take Leonard Feather's 'Blindfold Test', 1953

Jazz journalist and historian Leonard Feather's 'Blindfold Test' was a regular feature in the pages of Downbeat and other music magazines for many years, beginning in the latter half of the 1940's.

Musicians were 'blindly' made to listen to a piece of music unknown to them, and then solicited for their comments.

Very often, simply being able to identify the mystery artist was of less importance than reading the blindfolded performer's evaluation of the music they were hearing.

(Click on image to ENLARGE to readable dimensions in a new window ⬇)

This article ran in the April 22nd, 1953 issue of Downbeat Magazine.

Jazz drummer Louie Bellson and singer-actress Pearl Bailey had been married in London the previous November.

Their marriage lasted almost 40 years, until Pearl Bailey's death in 1990.

See also:
- A 1959 blindfold test conducted with John Coltrane, archived at Downbeat.Com
(Enter 'blindfold test' in their search window for more 'test' results, including Miles Davis, Ornette Coleman, Charlie Mingus and others)

- Some background on the blindfold test at a Dutch jazz site: Keep Swinging

- Leonard Feather bio at AllMusic.Com

- Official website: The Leonard Feather Scrapbooks & Music Catalog

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