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Album Review

Guitarist Barney Kessel, bassist Ray Brown, and drummer Shelly Manne were dubbed "the Poll Winners" when they swept the Down Beat, Metronome, and Playboy polls during 1956-1957. They recorded several albums together and this CD reissue features the pianoless trio playing a variety of material, some of it a little odd (including "Volare," "Custard Puff," "When the Red, Red Robin Comes Bob, Bob Bobbin' Along," and "The Merry-Go-Round Broke Down"). This is a good outing, particularly for bop guitarist Barney Kessel.

Customer Reviews

one of the greats

I am a huge guitar fan, however fairly new to jazz. To be honest a lot of it bores me, but the stuff that's great is great. Barney Kessels playing is fantastic! Shelly and Ray are great also. If Your a long time jazz fan you most likely have this or have heard of it. If your new this is a great place to start, this isn't senseless "look at how many notes I can Play" these are great songs with great melodies. Barney is one of the giants of guitar for a very good reason...!

It's great!

This album is great! Buy it! It sounds like something you would hear on the TV show Frasier or in some upscale urban breakfast coffee joint.

I listen to it many times.

Wrong Review

The official review is for the 1959 album "The Poll Winners Ride Again!" rather than the 1957 album "The Poll Winners". Yes, the original is better than the sequel.


Born: October 17, 1923 in Muskogee, OK

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

One of the finest guitarists to emerge after the death of Charlie Christian, Barney Kessel was a reliable bop soloist throughout his career. He played with a big band fronted by Chico Marx (1943), was fortunate enough to appear in the classic jazz short Jammin' the Blues (1944), and then worked with the big bands of Charlie Barnet (1944-1945) and Artie Shaw (1945); he also recorded with Shaw's Gramercy Five. Kessel became a busy studio musician in Los Angeles, but was always in demand for jazz records....
Full Bio