Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence

Trevor Lawrence played with the Paul Butterfield Blues Band at Woodstock and I’ve tried to do a little piece on each of the performers at that famed festival.

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence
Paul-Butterfield, Gene Dinwiddie, Trevor Lawrence, & Steve-Madio

I try not to be too lazy about gathering some biographical information about each performer, but I could not do a better description of Trevor Lawrence than what appears at his Facebook page, so that is exactly where I’ve selected the following. Be ready to be impressed!

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence

Some list!

The Sax-Man for, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, The Rolling Stones, The Butterfield Blues Band at Woodstock, B. B. King, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, Fats Domino, Harry Nilsson, The Pointer Sisters, Carly Simon, Martha Reeves, Etta James, John Mayall, Ace, Goldie Zelkowitz, Roberta Flack, Bonnie Raitt, Leo Sayer, Country Joe McDonald, Mongo Santamaria, King Curtis, Syreeta Wright, Chuck Rainey, Jackie Lomax, Howard Tate, Lightnin’ Rod, The Rocky Horror Show, Andrew Gold, Melissa Manchester, Van McCoy, and many more. . .

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence

Roots

Trevor Lawrence started playing the Saxophone when he was 11 years old. He was exposed to Music Theory and Harmony, when he was about 13 years old, by his next door neighbor Sol Moore. Moore, who happened to be an accomplished Music Arranger and Baritone Sax. player with the “Les Hite Band”, and Graduate of the Schillinger System of Musical Composition, used by George Gershwin, became his music Mentor. This mentoring intrigued and inspired him, as he continued taking Music Lessons privately, and playing in the School Band, while attending public school in Brooklyn, New York. 

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence

Arranger/Composer

Trevor’s musical accomplishments continued to grow as he developed his skills as an Arranger / Composer for records and later television, and movies. After moving to Los Angeles, CA., he expanded his musical involvement to Record Producing and Songwriting. On the cutting-edge of developing and writing songs with artists, Trevor created such hits as, “I’m So Excited”, “Could I Be Dreaming”, with the Pointer Sisters and “All the Way Down” for Etta James. The theme song for the popular Jackie Gleason and Richard Pryor Film, “The Toy”, “I Just Wanna Be Your Friend” sung by the great Jeffery Osborne. Trevor was also The Composer and the Music Supervisor for the Sidney Poitier film “To Sir With Love II”, and has Produced and Directed the TV shows “Live From The Club” on BETJAZZ and “B In Tune TV” distributed by Viacom. 

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence

Films

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrnce


Trevor Lawrence is known for songs in the Hit Films, Transformers, Working Girl, Happy Go Lucky, Summer Lovers, Working Trash and Vacation, to name a few.

Combining his musical talent, experience and knowledge, Trevor continues to move into the entertainment world of today by applying his talents to Playing the Saxophone, Producing Records, Developing Television Shows, Movies, and creating CG for the Visual Interpretations seen in Modern Media .

Trevor enjoys an artistry that generates a lifetime of musical vision and innovation.

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence

Credit list

And if that’s not impressive enough and you still have time, check out his AllMusic credit list.

Here is a video of a great conversation that Trevor Lawrence explains his love of music and how hard it is to learn to play with someone, not just by yourself.

Saxophonist Trevor Lawrence

Quill Phil Thayer

Quill Phil Thayer

Quill Phil Thayer
Promo photo of Quill’s appearance on The Dave Garroway Show, two months before Woodstock. Left to right: Jon Cole, Roger North, Dave Garroway, Norman Rogers, Phil Thayer, and Dan Cole.

Phil Thayer played both keyboard and sax for the band Quill, the band that opened day 2–August 16, 1969–of the Woodstock Music and Art Fair. Since day 2 was the first day of rock music that weekend, Quill lays claim to the first rock act at Woodstock.

Unfortunately, that gold coin is only a Woodstock footnote. As as unfortunately,  so is Phil Thayer.

Quill Phil Thayer

Life-changing?

Of the “million” people around Bethel that weekend, my guess is that the event did not drastically change their lives. Yes, they could forever claim the first-hand experience of an historic event, but an historic event only to those who wanted to listen.

Put in perspective, we were not in Gettysburg in July 1863; on the USS Arizona on December 7, 1941. Such horribly historic events changed the lives of all Americans whether they wanted them changed or not. Woodstock was a great wet weekend of music, but did not change the lives of all Americans.

As I’ve found when doing the other short bios for Woodstock’s performers, while many did continue in music, there were those who had never intended that music would be their lifetime path or those for whom life pushed them off the musical path.

Perhaps there were some for whom it was what it was and life went on. 1979, 1994, and 2019 are just years, not anniversaries.

Quill Phil Thayer

Boston-based

Quill Phil Thayer

Quill came out of Boston.  Brothers Jon and Dan Cole were the founders of the band. Their management, Ray Paret and his partner, David Jenks, “introduced the Coles to three musicians …keyboardist Phil Thayer, guitarist Norm Rogers, and prodigious drummer Roger North. Recognition came quickly. By the summer of 1967, the band was gigging steadily.” [Boston.com article]

The band’s reputation grew with their own gigs and as they opened for bigger and bigger acts like The Jeff Beck Group, The Who, The Kinks, Janis Joplin, Velvet Underground.

Quill Phil Thayer

A December 1968 Scene magazine article stated that “It is not almost time for Quill. they deserve to succeed not only here but in every mind and acre in the country. Their success will go a long way forward dispelling the cynical distrust so many show toward the “system” inherent in the music business, because Quill is a group founded on honest musical expression instead of plastic promotional vagaries.”

The same piece applauded Norm Rogers (the band’s guitarist) and Thayer for their contribution “to the most amazing simulation of electronic music in Quill’s live performances.”

Quill Phil Thayer

Woodstock

Fate did seem to smile upon Quill when they received an invite to Woodstock.

They got to rub their elbows (and other joints I suppose) with the bigger names that weekend as well as names like Carlos Santana whose Woodstock bump would be bigger than any other band.

“Festival organizer Michael Lang remembers Quill as a “soft-rock’’ band, chosen for the goodwill tour because they played “rather benign rock and roll.’’  [ibid]

Quill Phil Thayer

1.1 albums

Quill Phil Thayer

Quill did not make the movie. Quill did not make the album despite the fact that Cotillion Records, the company that released the famous 3-disc set, had also signed Quill and released their album in 1970.

Less than rave reviews led to Jon’s departure and although the band recorded a second album, Cotillion did not release it.

According to a WoodsTALK blog entry by Bethel Woods Museum director Wade Lawrence, Phil Thayer dropped out of sight after Quill broke up and is presumed to be living in Florida.

Having said that, it seems that Phil may have played saxophone with the Allman Brothers at a Swathmore, PA concert on May 2, 1970 suggesting he continued at least for a time.

And there is a Facebook page for a Phil Thayer who lives in Casselberry, Florida. Of his friends, there is an Amanda Cole listed who is the daughter of Jon Cole (or Dan?).

Quill Phil Thayer

Together

AND…back in late May 2018, some of the Quill band got together for the first time in 49 years at the Dancing Cat Saloon, nearby the original Woodstock festival site. Among them was Phil Thayer. I think he is the middle person with one of the Cole brothers on the left and Roger North on the right.

Quill Phil Thayer

Quill Phil Thayer

Lumbee Defeat KKK

Lumbee Defeat KKK

January 18, 1956
Battle of Hayes Pond

Following the 1954 Supreme Court decision of Brown v Board of Education, the KKK rededicated itself to keeping whites and non-whites separated. Grand Dragon James W. “Catfish” Cole led the South Carolina-based Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.

Lumbee Defeat KKK

Lumbee Tribe

Lumbee Defeat KKK

From the Lumbee Tribe site:  In 1885, the tribe was recognized as Indian by the State of North Carolina. The tribe has sought full federal recognition from the United States Government since 1888. In 1956, Congress passed the Lumbee Act, which recognized the tribe as Indian. However, the Act withheld the full benefits of federal recognition from the tribe.

Cole decided to use that federal recognition to rile up North Carolina whites telling them that the recognition would lead to the Lumbee as whites and intermixing with “real” whites.

Lumbee Defeat KKK

Cross burnings

From the Black Then site: January 13, 1958; led by Cole,  Klansmen burned a cross on the lawn of a Lumbee woman in the town of St. Pauls, North Carolina as “a warning” because she was dating a white man. Emboldened, he gave a strong speech denouncing the “loose morals” of Lumbee women and warning that “venereal disease” could be spread to the white population by their noted promiscuity. The Klan then struck at Lumbee men, burning a cross at a tavern frequented by the Lumbee. Cole denounced the Lumbee men as “lazy, drunken and prone to criminal activity.” The Klan then burned a cross on the lawn of a Lumbee family who had moved into a white neighborhood as a final warning for the Lumbee to remain in “their” areas.

Lumbee Defeat KKK

Rally

Lumbee Defeat KKK

On January 18, 1958, Cole, sensing success, organized a rally near Maxton, NC in a field near Hayes Pond thinking hundreds of supporters would arrive.

Approximately 50 to 100 came, but before the cross burning could begin, over 500 Lumbee attacked the Klan with rocks, sticks, and guns. The Klan fled. Four Klan members were wounded.

From Charlotte ActionThe state patrol, who had been waiting about a mile away, moved in when gunfire broke out. Sheriff McLeod, who later said he didn’t want to be accused of defending the Klan by showing up early, helped find lost Klansmen in the bushes and directed them out of Robeson County. He also booked one Klansman for public drunkenness — the only arrest that night.

Charlie Warriax and World War II veteran Simeon Oxendine were shown wrapped in it in Life magazine photos.

Lumbee Defeat KKK

Victory

Lumbee Defeat KKK

The Lumbee celebrated and two of them, Charlie Warriax and World War II veteran Simeon Oxendine, wrapped themselves in the KKK banner.  Life magazine had a picture of the two as well as other photos.

From the North Carolina Museum of History: Later arrested for inciting a riot, Cole appeared before Lacy Maynor, the sole Indian judge in Robeson County. The Klan leader was convicted and sentenced to a year in prison. 

On March 25, 1959, the North Carolina Supreme Court upheld the lower court’s decision.

Lumbee Defeat KKK

Malvina Reynolds

Malvina Reynolds wrote “The Battle of Maxton Field” and included it on her 1967 album, “Malvina Reynolds Sings the Truth.”

The lyrics to the song include:

The headlights shone, the Klansmen stood
In circle brave and fine,
When suddenly a whoop was heard
That curdled every spine,
An Indian youth with steely eyes, 
Sauntered in alone, 
He calmly drew his shootin’ iron
And conked the microphone.

Another shot, the lights went out,
There was a moment’s hush, 
Then a hundred thousand Lumbee boys
Came screaming from the brush. 
Well, maybe not a million quite,
But surely more than four, 
And the Klansmen shook from head to foot
And headed for the door.

Lumbee Defeat KKK

Legacy

Cole died in a traffic accident in July 1967.

On July 5, 2018, after asking permission of the tribe,  students from the University of North Carolina Pembroke erected an historical marker in Maxton, North Carolina, to commemorate the battle.

The Lumbee Tribe has still not received full tribal recognition from the federal government.

Lumbee Defeat KKK