Maximum Love
 
It is with bruised heart that we acknowledge the passing of our great
friend and unequalled inspiration, David Maxwell. While many of you

know David chiefly as one of the finest practitioners of
Post-War Chicago blues, he was just as engaging off stage as he was on
it. And while he performed with fellow luminaries such as the great
Otis Spann — the pianist to whom David is most often linked— and had
his praises sung by a Who’s Who chorus, everyone from John Lee Hooker
to Junior Wells and Otis Rush, David was exceedingly humble and
genuinely shrugged off any thoughts of seeking the attention his
genius warranted. It was, thus, perfectly in character for David to
choose to keep his diagnosis of cancer private. He undoubtedly didn’t
want anyone fussing over him, even though he had to give up that
notion the minute anybody ever heard his fingers dance across the 88s
with his unabashed energy, grace and dexterity.
This is surely where David would self-effacingly rebuke us with some
of his legendary dry wit. And because we hear you, David, we will call
upon some of your most eloquent New Orleans jazz stylings and remind
everybody to form a second line and get this jazz funeral kicked into
high gear. David Maxwell’s fingers may been quieted, but his joyous
music is a celebration that will live on. So, cue up those records,
and let’s boogie woogie and raise a toast to our friend.
Your mastery still tickles us, David, and don’t even try to shrug it off!
—Nate Dow, Boston Herald, February 2015
Dmaxregatta

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  • Michael Angelo James

    Michael Angelo James Jamaica Queens, NY

    Sadly, I just learned of David's passing and I want to send out my love and sincerest condolences to the Maxwell family. His sister Judy is a dear friend and jazz colleague and I want to send out a special prayer of comofort to her. David was truly an "unsung" gentle giant who humbly shared his musical gifts. Let us continue to promote his great artistry and his love for great music. Rest in Peace and Rest in Power, David.

    Sadly, I just learned of David's passing and I want to send out my love and sincerest condolences to the Maxwell family. His sister Judy is a dear friend and jazz colleague and I want to send out a special prayer of comofort to her. David was truly an "unsung" gentle giant who humbly shared his musical gifts. Let us continue to promote his great artistry and his love for great music. Rest in Peace and Rest in Power, David.

  • Mike Ojemann

    Mike Ojemann Next Door Neihgbor in Concord

    Many warm spring evenings I would relax out in the back yard and listen to David practice; the intricate and mesmerizing tones drifting over the trees and out into the wildlife refuge that our properties touch. I often wondered if there could be any better jazz pianist on the planet and if the animals could resonate with the complex chords and movements. My guess is that come this spring there will be many who sense a void and will forever long for the music that was such a beautiful part of our world.

    Many warm spring evenings I would relax out in the back yard and listen to David practice; the intricate and mesmerizing tones drifting over the trees and out into the wildlife refuge that our properties touch. I often wondered if there could be any better jazz pianist on the planet and if the animals could resonate with the complex chords and movements. My guess is that come this spring there will be many who sense a void and will forever long for the music that was such a beautiful part of our world.

  • Scott M.

    Scott M.

    Just read this terrible news in the Globe. My heart goes out to Mr. Maxwell's family and fellow musicians. Gladly, I just discovered this amazing musician and caught his show at the Lilypad in early December last year. His playing was truly astounding. He could play seemingly anything on a piano, starting with blues and boogie, some jazz tunes, then went into what he called his "favorite genre of music" when the trio launched into free improv. The whole show was one of the most riveting performances on a piano I have ever witnessed & told everyone I knew about it. The only thing I can say is to mirror his gratitude spoken at the end of his tribute to Otis Spann: "Thank you David, thank you David, thank you David. May your spirit live."

    Just read this terrible news in the Globe. My heart goes out to Mr. Maxwell's family and fellow musicians. Gladly, I just discovered this amazing musician and caught his show at the Lilypad in early December last year. His playing was truly astounding. He could play seemingly anything on a piano, starting with blues and boogie, some jazz tunes, then went into what he called his "favorite genre of music" when the trio launched into free improv. The whole show was one of the most riveting performances on a piano I have ever witnessed & told everyone I knew about it. The only thing I can say is to mirror his gratitude spoken at the end of his tribute to Otis Spann: "Thank you David, thank you David, thank you David. May your spirit live."

  • David Earl

    David Earl Annapolis, MD

    Everyone at Severn Records joins with the entire blues community our most sincere condolences to David's family and friends. We are so thankful to have had the opportunity to capture his incredible playing.

    Everyone at Severn Records joins with the entire blues community our most sincere condolences to David's family and friends. We are so thankful to have had the opportunity to capture his incredible playing.

  • Barbara O'Brien

    Barbara O'Brien Levon Helm Studios - Woodstock, NY

    On behalf of everyone at Levon Helm Studios, our most sincere condolences to Dave's friends & family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. May his music live on.

    On behalf of everyone at Levon Helm Studios, our most sincere condolences to Dave's friends & family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. May his music live on.

  • Joe Spagnolia

    Joe Spagnolia Westport Mass.

    i had the pleasure to meet Dave on more than a few ocassions his playing is unheralded to many who have done as well there was only one of him to go around notmany like him. I will miss hearing him immensely my heart goes out to his family .He was one of the great ones and a tru blue gent. Joe S pagnolia

    i had the pleasure to meet Dave on more than a few ocassions his playing is unheralded to many who have done as well there was only one of him to go around notmany like him. I will miss hearing him immensely my heart goes out to his family .He was one of the great ones and a tru blue gent. Joe S pagnolia

  • Al Copley

    Al Copley Putnam, CT

    When I was a teenager, guys like Dave Maxwell and Ron Levy were onstage with the blues greats I was discovering, and they showed what could be done by a kid from the Northeast who loved the blues, but sometimes felt less than adequate. Otis was a hero of mine too, and I always recognized Dave as the carrier of that torch. Now we all want to be more than we are, but as time wears on, we find what our real strengths are, and Dave Maxwell found his. Chapeau, Max.

    When I was a teenager, guys like Dave Maxwell and Ron Levy were onstage with the blues

    greats I was discovering, and they showed what could be done by a kid from the Northeast

    who loved the blues, but sometimes felt less than adequate.

    Otis was a hero of mine too, and I always recognized Dave as the carrier of that torch. Now

    we all want to be more than we are, but as time wears on, we find what our real strengths

    are, and Dave Maxwell found his.

    Chapeau, Max.

  • Mary Curtin

    Mary Curtin Charlestown, MA

    Such an honor to know David, who for me is still very much alive and kicking ass on the keys! Thank you, David, for the privilege of knowing you!

    Such an honor to know David, who for me is still very much alive and kicking ass on the keys! Thank you, David, for the privilege of knowing you!

  • Alley Stoetzel

    Alley Stoetzel Newton, MA

    Dear David, Thank you so much for taking a chance on me. You gave me a shot. You LISTENED to me. And you let me sing for you. It was truly an honor to stand at the end of your piano. I will always sing “Five Long Years” with the specific phrasing you liked for the line “I was a maid”. And every time I do I will think of you. And I will know you are above the clouds, in the coolest shades of blues, where you’ve earned your spot. Thank you for teaching me, and passing on what the blues meant to you. You’ve made my understanding richer. And I know you passed this on to many, MANY others as well. You accomplished the real dream. Thank you from the bottom of my deep blue heart, Alley

    Dear David,

    Thank you so much for taking a chance on me.

    You gave me a shot.
    You LISTENED to me.
    And you let me sing for you.

    It was truly an honor to stand at the end of your piano.

    I will always sing “Five Long Years” with the specific phrasing you liked for the line “I was a maid”.
    And every time I do I will think of you.
    And I will know you are above the clouds, in the coolest shades of blues, where you’ve earned your spot.

    Thank you for teaching me, and passing on what the blues meant to you.
    You’ve made my understanding richer.

    And I know you passed this on to many, MANY others as well.
    You accomplished the real dream.

    Thank you from the bottom of my deep blue heart,

    Alley

  • Michelle Willson

    Michelle Willson Merrimack, NH

    So sorry to hear of David's passing. Loved his spirit and his soulfulness. I worked with him only a few times - he was always incredibly generous and supportive. When he played at Mai Cramer's service, it was one of the most moving musical moments of my life. I was just thinking today about when I worked at Hollywood Express, back in the early 90's. David used to show up w/ various musicians in tow and they'd disappear into the back office and play or talk or whatever. One day, he showed up w/ a gentleman toting some kind of amazing African horn - Dave had a particularly devilish gleam in his eye - I think he knew what was about to happen. The two of them went in back and shortly thereafter, the most incredible noises started coming out of that office - it sounded like Godzilla vs. Dizzy Gillespie. The customers were totally freaked out - we all laughed and said - don't worry, it's just Dave, doing what he loves to do. My deepest sympathy to you all and to all of us - our loss is Heaven's gain - that band just keeps getting better and better, doesn't it? RIP David - a beautiful life well lived.

    So sorry to hear of David's passing. Loved his spirit and his soulfulness. I worked with him only a few times - he was always incredibly generous and supportive. When he played at Mai Cramer's service, it was one of the most moving musical moments of my life. I was just thinking today about when I worked at Hollywood Express, back in the early 90's. David used to show up w/ various musicians in tow and they'd disappear into the back office and play or talk or whatever.
    One day, he showed up w/ a gentleman toting some kind of amazing African horn - Dave had a particularly devilish gleam in his eye - I think he knew what was about to happen. The two of them went in back and shortly thereafter, the most incredible noises started coming out of that office - it sounded like Godzilla vs. Dizzy Gillespie. The customers were totally freaked out - we all laughed and said - don't worry, it's just Dave, doing what he loves to do. My deepest sympathy to you all and to all of us - our loss is Heaven's gain - that band just keeps getting better and better, doesn't it? RIP David - a beautiful life well lived.