Oakland, New York, Los Angeles, New York
This chapter looks at Bley's first few years in New York. She was most likely eighteen years old when she arrived in the city but it is not clear exactly when Bley first got there. New to the city, she slept temporarily in Grand Central Station and then paid for an inexpensive hotel room near Times Square. She then began working at the jazz clubs Basin Street and Birdland. Shortly after turning twenty-one, during the summer of 1957, she officially changed her name to Carla Borg and started composing regularly. Carla Bley was further encouraged by musicians in Los Angeles. But perhaps most important, her encounter with Charlie Haden marked the start of a lifelong friendship, one that has resulted in some of the most innovative recordings ever made by large jazz ensembles, namely, the Liberation Music Orchestra projects beginning in 1969.
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