Sound of Redemption: The Frank Morgan Story

Oct 25, 2014

(NC Heiken, United States, 2014, 84 min)

Film subject Ed Reed in attendance!
Film introduction and hosted Q&A by jazz journalist Robin Lloyd!
Sponsored by KPLU 88.5!

Frank Morgan was a prodigal alto sax player who, like so many of his fellow musicians of the era, saw his career plagued by drug addiction. What sets Frank apart is not just his exceptionally beautiful, classic alto playing, but also the amazing fact that he survived 30 years of revolving door incarceration and drug abuse, and went on to a much heralded comeback career in the last 22 years of his life. Frank's story is one of brilliant promise in his youth, a journey through the depths of hell and redemption through his art.

The years Frank spent in San Quentin State Prison were significant because there were so many great musicians “in residence” there that the far-sighted warden of the time allowed them to form a big band, known as The San Quentin All Stars. People came from all around the Bay Area to hear them play. Frank refined his skills as a musician in the company of the other great players serving time for narcotics related charges.

Once free, Frank Morgan proselytized against drugs and played music that moved the critics and public alike. Decades after the release of his first solo album, Frank became a star at last. His true love, artist Rosalinda Kolb, helped him come back and stay straight. In 2007, he met the young Grace Kelly, a saxophone prodigy. With no children of his own, he saw in her his legacy. He introduced her to the public at his gigs, and gave her all he could of his wisdom and love in the last months of his life. Frank Morgan passed away in late 2007.

  • Join us after the screening for a Q&A with film subject Ed Reed, hosted by Robin Lloyd of KPLU 88.5!

Robin Lloyd has been presenting jazz on public radio since 1977, for the past 15 years at KPLU-FM in Seattle. She has also taught broadcasting classes and frequently hosts live music events in clubs and on concert stages throughout Western Washington. Robin is a proud member of the Jazz Journalists Association and the Jazz Education Network.

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