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Verve Jazz Masters 2: Count Basie

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Album Review

Verve Jazz Masters 2 focuses upon the music made by Count Basie and his orchestra between January 1952 and April 1962 (with most of the material dating from the year 1956), drawn from the Mercury, Clef, and Verve albums Count Basie and His Orchestra Collates, The Band of Distinction, April in Paris, The Swinging Count!, Basie Rides Again!, Count Basie at Newport, and Lil' Ol' Groovemaker After scaling his ensembles down during a period of widespread postwar big-band dissolution, Basie put together a powerful team that essentially reinvented the big-band format at a time when Duke Ellington was accomplishing similar triumphs in his own manner. Champion participants include Joe Newman, Charlie Shavers, Thad Jones, Frank Foster, Frank Wess, Lockjaw Davis, Lester Young, Paul Quinichette, Jimmy Rushing, and Joe Williams. This is a magnificent sampler of great big-band jazz from Basie's third decade as a leader. It closes with a smokin' nine-minute jam on the "One O'Clock Jump" recorded live at the Newport Jazz Festival on July 7, 1957. A good solid dose for those who don't possess Mosaic's Complete Clef/Verve Count Basie Fifties Studio Recordings.

Customer Reviews

One O'Clock Jump

The whole album is great, but I bought it just for its version of One O'Clock Jump... and very worth it. By far, the best I have heard!


Born: August 22, 1904 in Red Bank, NJ

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s

Count Basie was among the most important bandleaders of the swing era. With the exception of a brief period in the early '50s, he led a big band from 1935 until his death almost 50 years later, and the band continued to perform after he died. Basie's orchestra was characterized by a light, swinging rhythm section that he led from the piano, lively ensemble work, and generous soloing. Basie was not a composer like Duke Ellington or an important soloist like Benny Goodman. His instrument was his band,...
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