Named for alto saxophonist and jazz pioneer Charlie "Bird" Parker who dubbed it "The Jazz Corner of the World," Birdland opened on December 15th 1949. For 60 years it has been home to jazz legends, from Parker, John Coltrane Duke Ellington and Count Basie to Oscar Peterson, Hank Jones, Diana Krall and everyone in between.
The original 52nd street location was a cultural barometer and meeting place, inspiring the songs "Birdland" and "Lullabye of Birdland," and serving as a regular haunt for celebrities and cultural figures. The modern incarnation is a state of the art nightclub featuring award winning Southern and Cajun cuisine, first rate sound and lighting and a who's who of contemporary musical artists, 7 nights a week.
Gianni Valenti is the owner/operator of Birdland Jazz, located on West 44th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues in New York City, and he joins us to tell us more about the club.