See our Best of Detroit 2020 winners.

Ernie Krivda - Blues for Pekar 

Outside jazz tribute to a comics hero

click to enlarge 1168329.jpg

Ernie Krivda - Blues for Pekar

Cleveland tenor man Ernie Krivda is an underrated colossus, a mean swinger, a jubilantly, unabashedly, exultantly old-school tell-a-story type of improviser. Cannonball was something of a mentor, while Krivda, in turn, became a mentor to the younger Clevelander Joe Lovano. And despite time in L.A. (with Quincy Jones) and in New York City (where he began his much-lauded work for Inner City in the '80s), he's spent most of his career in his hometown. His numerous jazz-scribe admirers include Cleveland's most famous, the late Harvey Pekar; in an issue of his American Splendor comic book, he judged Krivda as "one of the best jazz tenor sax men in the world." With this mostly standards disc — plus the title track and one other original — Krivda lives up to Pekar's estimation. He gets a spirited assist from trumpeters Sean Jones and Dominick Farinacci plus the estimable Detroit Connection rhythm section of Renell Gonsalves (drums), Marion Hayden (bass) and Claude Black (piano). In fact, the chance to hear the sooooo underrecorded near-octogenarian Black is worth the price of a second copy (to give away and spread the word).


We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

October 28, 2020

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In Detroit