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Complete Recordings

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Album Review

Most of Charlie Shavers' recordings from the 1954-1964 period have been reissued on five single CDs by the Lone Hill Jazz label. The virtuoso trumpeter was at the peak of his powers during this period but his recordings were made for small labels and he was greatly overshadowed by quite a few other brassmen. Complete Recordings, Vol. 2 has the complete contents of the LPs Memorial and Here Comes Charlie, plus three numbers from his Charlie Shavers at Le Crazy Horse Saloon album. The focus is almost entirely on Shavers' horn, for he is in the spotlight throughout while backed by pianist Ray Bryant (who is very much in a supportive role), bassist Aaron Bell, and drummer Roy Burns. Shavers takes quite a few spectacular solos and, although the performances are mostly very concise (nearly all of the selections are under three-minutes long), the trumpeter makes every note count during the consistently exciting program.


Born: August 03, 1917 in New York, NY

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s

Charlie Shavers was one of the great trumpeters to emerge during the swing era, a virtuoso with an open-minded and extroverted style along with a strong sense of humor. He originally played piano and banjo before switching to trumpet, and he developed very quickly. In 1935, he was with Tiny Bradshaw's band and two years later he joined Lucky Millinder's big band. Soon afterward he became a key member of John Kirby's Sextet where he showed his versatility by mostly playing crisp solos while muted....
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