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The Key Sessions 1931 - 1937 CD D

Bunny Berigan

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Album Review

As if to make his best-known piece, "I Can't Get Started," particularly ironic, Bunny Berigan's heavy drinking and fast-paced lifestyle cut his life short in 1942 when he was only 33 years old, and all told, the swing trumpeter's recorded legacy doesn't even span a decade. Still, his incredible range on the instrument and his always beautiful tone have given him a deserved spot as one of the greatest trumpet players in the history of jazz. This five-disc, 124-track box from Britain's JSP Records collects Berigan's early work as a prized sideman through his later efforts as a bandleader, and includes sides from the Parlophone, Vocalion, and Brunswick labels, in effect duplicating the seven-disc Mosaic Records box set. The essentials are all here, including sessions with Bing Crosby, Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, the Boswell Sisters, Artie Shaw, Eddie Condon, Gene Krupa, Joe Venuti, and many others.

Biography

Born: 02 November 1908 in Hilbert, WI

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '30s, '40s

Bunny Berigan enjoyed a relatively brief period of fame, lasting from 1931 through 1939 — for the first half of those eight years a rapidly rising name within the music business, and for the second as a star before the public, featured in the bands he played in and leading his own outfit. And from 1935 through 1939, he was regarded as the top trumpeter in jazz (with his main competition being Louis Armstrong and Roy Eldridge). Yet despite the brevity of his career and his all-too-short life,...
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