You Don't Know Jack: Chapter Two

Not So Modern Drummer continues to feature the true-life adventures of Jack Scarangella in our new ongoing series.­­


It happened at the RCA Studios in New York City one day…

Walking along with my friend John we saw drum cases emblazoned with “The Buddy Rich Orchestra” on their sides. Excited as always when anything ‘Buddy’ came into view. John, his voice filled with excitement said: You know Buddy…Lets go in. I said yeah, but this is a recording studio, we can’t just walk in there.  John, ever persistent finally convinced me to enter the famed RCA building.

I was only fifteen, but knew Buddy since first meeting him when I was eleven years old. Yet, this was totally different…A Buddy Rich recording session. When we arrived at the front desk…John says, Jack is a friend of Buddy Rich and he wants to see him. The security guard says:  I'm sorry, but it's a closed session. John would not give up, he says to the guard – “call up and say Jack Scarangella is here and wants to see Buddy”. By this time I’m getting both nervous and embarrassed. Luckily, the guard called up and said, “There’s a kid here in the lobby named Jack Scarangella who says he knows Buddy Rich”. After a slight pause, the guard hands me the phone – I hear, come up it’s on the third floor…”Take a seat and be very quiet”. I said, yes sir, absolutely. John and I were so incredibly excited to watch Buddy record. We got to the third floor…It was a huge studio. We walked in with amazement looking at the instruments, microphones, and amps with Buddy's drums right in the middle of it all. The producer tells us we can sit in the chairs right in front of Buddy’s drums and the entire band…John and I are freaking out. Some of the musicians start coming in and it was very cool to see them break out their horns. Then, the great Candido arrives…

Continued in Chapter 3

Matt Guitar Murphy has died… One of the friends who filled my heart and soul in life, Matt was a hero in so many ways to so many people. He mentored many thousands…While also bringing joy to millions. We soared to the highest heights together… Matt will always live on in my mind.

Rest in Peace Chairman

Love, Jackie


Matt “Guitar” Murphy, who spent seven decades playing the blues – From recording with Muddy Waters to performing as a member of The Blues Brothers – Died on June 15th at the age 88.