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Two Jims & Zoot (Remastered)

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Customer Reviews

Highly-Crafted Jazz Guitar From a Different Era

Jimmy Raney was easily one of ‘50s era jazz’s most under-appreciated musicians and this record is one of the many examples of his prowess; not only as a guitarist but as a composer. Raney is paired on this date with a then up-and-coming master Jim Hall, and the results are simply wonderful albeit strangely out of place for 1964 (Think Wes Montgomery, Grant Green and even The Beatles for comparison and relevance). Spending the entirety of this album distinguishing Hall’s solos from Raney’s is a delight as Zoot Sims adds some tasty fills for the ride. The track “Move It” stands out as a wonderful trade between the three masters. Still, what will be most intriguing to the academic listener is the writing credits. Just as it was on his classic “A” album, Jimmy Raney composes the majority of the album’s tracks. With “Two Jims…” Raney made an honest effort to incorporate some then-modern elements of bossa nova into his writing. It’s sad that Raney would not record another album until the mid ‘70s following “Two Jims & Zoot.” He’s very much akin to reluctant guitar hero Tal Farlow and his career trajectory. But what separated Raney from the celebrated greats like Farlow, Montgomery, Kessel and Ellis was his all-encompassing musicianship and craftsmanship. This record is a testament to Raney's abilities.

I highly recommend this record for both bebop fans and Raney fans alike.
For further listening, I encourage jazz fans and guitar students to seek out Jimmy Raney’s “A” album for Jimmy Raney’s masterstroke.


Born: October 29, 1925 in Inglewood, CA

Genre: Jazz

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

Throughout his career, Zoot Sims was famous for epitomizing the swinging musician, never playing an inappropriate phrase. He always sounded inspired, and although his style did not change much after the early 1950s, Zoot's enthusiasm and creativity never wavered. Zoot's family was involved in vaudeville, and he played drums and clarinet as a youth. His older brother, Ray Sims, developed into a fine trombonist who sounded like Bill Harris. At age 13, Sims switched permanently to the tenor, and...
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Two Jims & Zoot (Remastered), Zoot Sims
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