Bucky Pizzarelli: Challis In Wonderland
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Bucky Pizzarelli salutes arranger Bill Challis, who was responsible for many of the most important charts played by the Jean Goldkette Orchestra and Paul Whiteman's Orchestra, along with helping transcribe the handful of compositions by legendary cornetist Bix Beiderbecke. In his eighties at the time of these sessions, the seven-string guitarist shows no signs of slowing down, joined by bassist Jerry Bruno and on a few tracks adding his son John on guitar or a swinging string quartet led by the talented young violinist Aaron Weinstein with string arrangements by Dick Lieb. Most of the repertoire includes music of the '20s and '30s, with two exceptions. Pizzarelli's original "Challis in Wonderland" is a lush, laid-back ballad saluting the arranger performed as a guitar duet, while Bob Haggart's timeless ballad "What's New" has long been a part of the leader's repertoire. Zez Confrey (the novelty pianist and composer of "Kitten on the Keys") penned the obscure "Romanza," played as an intimate father/son duet. The trio's intricate reading of Beiderbecke's "In the Dark" is a lyrical masterpiece. Pizzarelli is buoyed by the strings in his breezy, toe-tapping rendition of Beiderbecke's "Davenport Blues," while the cornetist's "In a Mist" has long been a brilliant, expected solo feature for the guitarist at jazz parties. Weinstein switches to mandolin for a swinging setting of "Oh Baby" with the leader and Bruno. These rewarding sessions by Bucky Pizzarelli provide ample proof that the master guitarist keeps the spirits of Bix Beiderbecke and Bill Challis very much alive.
Born: January 9, 1926 in Paterson, NJ
Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s
Top Albums and Songs by Bucky Pizzarelli
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||Triste||Passion Guitars||6:01||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Meditation||Passion Guitars||5:31||$0.99||View In iTunes|