Chuck IsraelsBassist Chuck Israels on Tom Wilson:

Tom and I became friends while I was a student at MIT in 1954-55. That friendship grew as I became a bass player and transferred to Brandeis in 1955. Throughout my time in the Boston area, I spent countless hours with Tom — playing in jam sessions he organized at the Harvard radio station; working for him and with him on Transition Records; participating in the Donald Byrd recording session (with Horace Silver, Art Blakey, Hank Mobley and Doug Watkins — and repairing the fallen soundpost in Doug’s bass with no tools but a knife and a bent wire coat hanger); talking about girls; hanging out at his home with Beverly and the kids; buying two exotic cars from him — an Armstrong Siddley and an old Citroen Onze Chevaux, neither of which drove worth a damn but looked great; and learning about life. I played on a recording he produced in March 1958 called Hard Driving Jazz — later released on CD on the Colpix label (with Kenny Dorham, John Coltrane, and Louis Hayes). I lost track of Tom when he moved to New York and went on to do all the other things in his career. I will always miss him and think of him with enormous fondness. (He used to call me ‘Chucklet.’) He was a seminal figure in my life. I loved Tom.

August 22, 2013