I have been doing a deep-dive lately into the music of pianist Paul Mitchell - searching the web, buying records and scouring liner notes, and reaching out to knowledgeable friends. I hope to write a larger appreciation and post that features his music, but in the mean time I wanted to post a brief appreciation.
Atlanta jazz fans of a certain age know Mitchell because he was a mainstay of the Atlanta jazz scene, beginning in the 1960s at the Playboy Club on Ponce De Leon ave, and for decades at Dante's Down The Hatch, a legendary club in Atlanta that regretably closed in 2013. Last year, Dante's inimitable founded Dante Stephensen passed away marking the end of a storied chapter in Atlanta jazz history. If you have a few minutes, check out this video by jazz journalist J. Scott Fugate that give some history on Dante's and features one of my favorite Atlanta pianists: John Robertson, who was a student of Paul Mitchell.
In-depth information on Michell is hard to come by online, so I hope to interview some people who knew him and loved his music. In the mean time, check out this track by Mitchell, performing Hard Times, a tune that always associated with Ray Charles, but that was apparently written by Mitchell. Excuse the poor video quality; the music shines through. More to come!