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Montmartre Blues 

Oscar Pettiford

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Album Review

The great bassist Oscar Pettiford spent his last year playing in Europe before his unexpected death on September 8, 1960. Except for four songs cut in August, this CD contains Pettiford's final recordings. Teamed with a young group of Europeans (most impressive is pianist Jan Johansson and trumpeter Allan Botschinsky) who were clearly pleased to be playing with him, Pettiford has a fair amount of solo space on ten numbers with "Willow Weep for Me" being his feature. Five of the tunes are Pettiford originals including the title cut, "Laverne Walk" and his answer to Miles Davis' "So What" which he titled "Why Not? That's What!" This is a fine set of boppish music that makes one wonder what Oscar Pettiford might have accomplished in the 1960s had he lived.

Biography

Born: 30 September 1922 in Okmulgee, OK

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s

Oscar Pettiford was (along with Charles Mingus) the top bassist of the 1945-1960 period, and the successor to the late Jimmy Blanton. In addition, he was the first major jazz soloist on the cello. A bop pioneer, it would have been very interesting to hear what Pettiford would have done during the avant-garde '60s if he had not died unexpectedly in 1960. After starting on piano, Pettiford switched to bass when he was 14 and played in a family band. He played with Charlie Barnet's band in 1942 as one...
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Montmartre Blues , Oscar Pettiford
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