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Hadley Caliman (1932-2010)

Floyd Standifer (1928-2007)

Don Lanphere (1928-2003)

These three legendary musicians each served for many years as members of the SRJO. Throughout the orchestra's history, their performances provided the highlights of every concert, radio broadcast and CD recording by the band. Each one brought a unique voice and vision to the band, and served as mentors for all the younger players who shared the stage with them. The immense wealth of knowledge and experience they brought to the band stand, and the living history of jazz that each one represented, has provided the foundation for the SRJO's sound. Every member of the orchestra is honored to have worked along side these giants of jazz, and their spirits live on with all of us.

An SRJO Tribute to Hadley Caliman (1932-2010)


It was with great sadness that our band received the news that our dear friend and band mate, Hadley Caliman, passed away on the morning of September 8th, after a two-year struggle with terminal liver cancer. Trumpeter Thomas Marriott, for many years Hadley's work partner and confidant, took on responsibility for spreading the word of Hadley's passing to the Seattle jazz community, which responded immediately with an outpouring of love and admiration for this pillar of the Northwest jazz scene. Tributes appeared in dozens of publications, including The Seattle Times and The New York Times, and large segments of radio shows throughout the United States were dedicated as retrospectives of his entire career, dating back to his earliest recordings.


Hadley's memorial service was held at Seattle First Baptist Church on Saturday, September 18, followed by a lively reception and jam session at Tula's Jazz Club. Many people loved him, and his death leaves a large hole in all our lives. 


We, the musicians, board, and staff of the Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra, extend our sympathies to Hadley's dear wife Linda, and to all of their family and loved ones. Linda posted the following open letter at the blog site,



"Dear friends and family, I have received so many wonderful cards and emails from you. Thank you so much. I have not been able to respond to most, given the needs of making arrangements, but please know I am so appreciative and will be in touch when things quiet down. In lieu of flowers, you may make contributions to the following: 

The Hadley Caliman Merit Scholarship Fund at Cornish College of the Arts

1000 Lenora Street, 7th Floor

Seattle, WA 98121





The Jazz Foundation of America" Saving jazz and blues, one musician at a time" 

322 West 48th Street, 6th Floor

New York, NY 10036

Again, thank you for your outpouring of love and support."

- Linda Caliman (14 September, 2010)


There were so many wonderful sides to Hadley, it's difficult for us to choose which glowing things to say about him at his passing. He epitomized freedom, joy, intuition, persistence and gratitude. His solos were always a flow of spontaneous expression, and each solo was a new statement reflecting a willingness to trust his own intuition without pre-design about what he should play. He had the freedom and the talent to enter any venture with an open mind about what he could gain from, or bring to it. During the eight years he played in the SRJO, there were numerous great moments on the bandstand when Hadley was tackling something new or outside his usual genre, and he would simply digest the new challenge and think, "OK, what can I bring to this music?" When the SRJO played something previously unknown to Hadley, he brought all his talent to bear on it in order to create a fresh, new musical statement.


Clarence Acox expresses it this way: "It was always a pleasure to play with Hadley, not only because he was a great jazz soloist, but also because we could appreciate the history that came with his every performance. He played with some of the biggest names in jazz."


Hadley loved people, and treated everyone equally---and well. He always expressed in multiple ways how happy he was to be busy and working with people he liked, devoting his energy and time to noble tasks. He took great joy in his work, because through work he accomplished the things that mattered.

Hadley took over the SRJO's lead tenor saxophone chair in 2003, shortly after the passing of Don Lanphere. This was just as he was entering what was his final, formidable period as an artist. Having just retired from his teaching at Cornish, he found himself in possession of many hours that he could devote to practicing all the things for which he had not yet found time. It paid off. Hadley was a great player when he first settled in Seattle, but beginning in 2003, his playing soared.​


Seattle showered love on Hadley during this final period of his life, and we can all be proud of our city for that. He deserved it. The members of the SRJO are immensely grateful that we got to work along side him during those great, productive years in his life. He was an inspiration. Everyone in the band loved Hadley dearly, and his spirit lives on in every note we play.



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