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 Fuller Up The Dead Musician Directory 
 
     Sal Salvador 
     Sal Salvador 
      September 22, 1999 
      Age 73   
 Cancer    
OBITUARY 
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OBITUARY 
        
STAMFORD, Conn. (AP) - Sal Salvador, a guitarist who performed with some top  
jazz musicians, died of cancer on Sept. 22. He was 73.

Born as Silvio Smiraglia, Salvador taught himself how to play guitar and became known as a be-bop improviser. 

He performed with Stan Kenton, Bill Evans, Phil Woods and other jazz greats.

From 1970 until recently, Salvador taught jazz at the University of Bridgeport and Western Connecticut State University. He also gave private lessons in New York City. 

    
      Bebop Guitarist, Jazz Educator Sal Salvador Dies At 73

Sal Salvador, the guitarist whose over fifty-year career included important stints with Stan Kenton, as well as top university music posts, died Sept. 22 in Stamford, Conn. He was 73 and had been stricken with cancer. 

Salvador was one of the distinctive voices in bebop guitar, playing gentle, legato lines that had a vocal-like expressiveness and were emblematic of a new era of freedom for jazz guitarist. His years of performance and recording served Salvador well when he wrote and published his widely-used jazz guitar instruction books, as well as when he embarked on his second career as a jazz educator at Connecticut institutions the University of Bridgeport and Western Connecticut State University. 

"He was the first guy we heard playing the bebop triplet," says saxophonist Phil Woods, who'd known Salvador since the 1940s. "He was cutting-edge, that's where we all wanted to go in those halcyon days." 

Sal Salvador was born Silvio Smiraglia in Monson, Mass., in 1925, the son of a delicatessen owner. He became fascinated with the jazz guitar as a teenager after hearing Charlie Christian albums. Soon thereafter, he started to play in jazz groups in neighboring Springfield, Mass., with such like-minded friends as Woods and drummer Joe Morello, who would also go on to greater jazz fame. 

In the late 1940s, Salvador moved to New York and played for vibraphonist Terry Gibbs and the quartet of guitarist Mundell Lowe. The next year, Salvador became a staff musician for Columbia Records, backing such pop stars as Rosemary Clooney and Marlene Dietrich. In 1952, Salvador was hired by bandleader/arranger Stan Kenton as a soloist and would remain there for eighteen months. While with Kenton, Salvador was featured in the innovative composition "Invention For Guitar And Trumpet" (with Maynard Ferguson), which was used on the soundtrack to the 1955 MGM film Blackboard Jungle. 

Salvador's first solo recording was Sal Salvador Quintet for Capitol in 1953. The following year, he recorded Kenton Presents Sal Salvador, which featured Morello and pianist/vibist Eddie Costa. Salvador's 1958 Decca release Colors In Sound was followed by the formation of his big band, the Colors In Sound Orchestra, which toured until the mid-1960s. After that, he worked as an accompanist for such singers as Tony Bennett, Julie London, Robert Goulet, Steve Lawrence & Eydie Gorme, and Johnny Mathis. 

In 1970, Salvador re-joined the Kenton Orchestra for a series of clinic dates under the aegis of the Stan Kenton Summer Band/Jazz Camp. As education played a greater role in Salvador's life, he ultimately rose to head the jazz guitar departments at the University Of Bridgeport and Western Connecticut State University. He also taught privately in New York. His guitar instruction books, published by Mel Bay, have become standard texts for students of jazz guitar. They include Sal Salvador's Single String Studies, Sal Salvador's Complete Guitar Method and Scale System, and Sal Salvador's Chord Embellishment and Substitution Book. 

In the early 1970s, Salvador played in a guitar duo with Alan Hanlon, and by the end of the decade had returned to recording, with albums for such labels as Bee Hive, JazzMania, and Stash. In 1992, Salvador formed the new group Crystal Image, which was featured on a series of Stash albums. In recent years, Salvador had renewed his partnership with Lowe, performing guitar duets at jazz festival dates. 

"I loved him dearly," says Woods, "We remained very close, right until the end. I'll always remember him as being my mentor. He was the guy who said, 'Yeah, you can play, come to New York.' That meant a great deal. He was a dear, dear friend from my hometown." 

Sal Salvador is survived by his wife Catherine D. Smiraglia, daughter Lorinda, and sons Daniel and Barry Smiraglia, as well as two grandchildren. 

                                              -- Drew Wheeler

 
 
         
 
 
 
       
 

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All-Music Guide
 
       A versatile guitarist and recent head of the guitar department at the  University of Bridgeport, Sal Salvador has been a capable soloist  and accompanist since the late '40s. His single string style, shaped  by his early interest in the music of Charlie Christian, has been   augmented by extensive studies of guitar technique. Salvador's  years of research, playing and analysis eventually led to his writing  guitar methodology books, among them "Sal Salvador's Chord Method  for Guitar" and "Sal Salvador's Single String Studies for Guitar" in the  '50s and '60s. He became interested in jazz during his teens, and   began playing professionally in Springfield, Mass in 1945. He worked  with Terry Gibbs and Mundell Lowe in New York at the end of the '40s,   then joined Stan Kenton's orchestra in 1952. Salvador worked with Kenton  until the end of 1953, and appeared on the New Concepts of Artistry in Rhythm album. He led bebop bands featuring Eddie Costa and Phil   Woods. Salvador was featured in the film Jazz On A Summer's Day   and headed a big band in the late '50s and early '60s. He worked in a guitar duo with Alan Hanlon in the early '70s, and began recording  again as a leader later in the decade. He reformed his big band in the  '80s, and was named to his position at the University of Bridgeport.  Salvador has led recordings through the years for Blue Note (1953),  Capitol, Bethlehem, Decca, Jazz Unlimited, Dauntless (1963), Bee  Hive, GP, and Stash. -- Ron Wynn, All-Music Guide

 

 

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 LINKS
  
 

Sal Salvador: Juicy Lucy
Sal Salvador Home Page
Sal profile
classicjazzguitar.com

http://www.guylj.fsnet.co.uk/JazzGuitarists/SalSalvador/

 
 
 

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