I Called Him Morgan | Kasper Collin | Sweden, United States, 2016

Film - Documentary | April 7 | 6:30 p.m. |  Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive

 Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive

Discovered by Dizzy Gillespie and an MVP of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers ensemble, Lee Morgan was a key player in New York’s 1960s “hard-bop” scene—a trumpeter with a beautifully supple, expressive sound, a dapper prodigy who had played with John Coltrane by his late teens and gained the admiration of his peers by his early twenties. It was inevitable he’d eventually cross paths with Helen More, a self-proclaimed “sharp” woman whose apartment on 53rd Street was a hospitable hot spot for hungry jazz musicians.

Gathering together archival footage, stills, testimonials from legends like Wayne Shorter and Billy Harper, and a 1996 interview with Helen conducted a month before her death, Swedish documentarian Kasper Collin (My Name Is Albert Ayler) traces the duo’s individual histories and tries to unravel the mystery behind her impulsive act that fateful night. The movie also draws an incredible you-are-there portrait of the era’s after-hours jazz scene, from the hectic recording-studio sessions to the smoky Manhattan stages where these musical pioneers chased a sound.

 General admission: $15; BAMPFA members, SFFILM members, UC Berkeley students: $13; Non–UC Berkeley students, 65+, disabled persons: $14. BAMPFA’s second-feature discount does not apply to this program. Tickets are nonrefundable and may not be ex CineVouchers may not be redeemed in person at BAMPFA. Onsite ticket sales are subject to limited availability.

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