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A Night in Tunisia: The Very Best of Dizzy Gillespie

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All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Many arguments can be made as to which cuts constitute the "very best" of Dizzy Gillespie. These 14 cuts can certainly be argued for in making a solid case for the great trumpeter, bandleader, and composer. These tracks, all of which were cut for RCA between February of 1946 and July of 1949, still sound vital and progressive in the 21st century. The set kicks off with the title tune, featuring Diz with Don Byas, Milt Jackson, Al Haig, Ray Brown, J.C. Heard, and Bill DeArango. Clocking in at just over three minutes, the advanced harmonics and rhythmic invention is still startling. Thelonious Monk's "52nd Street Theme" and the Charlie Parker/Diz "Anthropology" are also ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Many arguments can be made as to which cuts constitute the "very best" of Dizzy Gillespie. These 14 cuts can certainly be argued for in making a solid case for the great trumpeter, bandleader, and composer. These tracks, all of which were cut for RCA between February of 1946 and July of 1949, still sound vital and progressive in the 21st century. The set kicks off with the title tune, featuring Diz with Don Byas, Milt Jackson, Al Haig, Ray Brown, J.C. Heard, and Bill DeArango. Clocking in at just over three minutes, the advanced harmonics and rhythmic invention is still startling. Thelonious Monk's "52nd Street Theme" and the Charlie Parker/Diz "Anthropology" are also included from this session. Check out DeArango's guitar solo on this last cut; it's blazing yet fluid and deeply bluesy. There are many big-band sides on this platter as well. There are three from an August 1947 session that feature James Moody, Cecil Payne, John Lewis, Jackson, Brown, and one, "Stay on It," arranged by Tadd Dameron, the cut's composer. "Two Bass Hit" is another excellent selection from this session. The big band changed a bit in December of 1947 when Al McKibbon, Chano Pozo, and Kenny Clarke entered the ranks -- check the cut "Algo Bueno (Woody 'n You)" for the new rhythmic intensity this band displayed. From the same session listeners also get "Oop-Pop-A-Da," with Kenny Hagood and Diz sharing scat vocals to add not only something humorous but also innovative to the mix (the pair appear on another tune from a later session -- eight days later to be exact -- entitled "Ool-Ya-Koo"). "Cubana Bop" -- with killer chanting from Pozo -- and "Cubana Be" (both arranged by George Russell) are also included. "Guarachi Guaro," a Diz tune with Gerald Wilson arranging (SabĂș MartĂ­nez plays congas with Joe Harris, Ernie Henry appears on alto, and Budd Johnson plays tenor), comes from December of 1948. The final tune is a bona fide jazz classic updated for the bop era. Lester Young's "Jumpin' with Symphony Sid" was recorded in July of 1949 and features Yusef Lateef, Charles Greenlea, Al Gibson, and conguero Vince Guerra. So while it can be argued to the death about what the very best of Dizzy Gillespie actually is, there is no debate concerning the sheer excellence of these tracks and how they represented a small but important slice of Gillespie's development as both a student of and innovator in jazz. The Legacy issue also gets high marks for fine sound throughout.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/1/2006
  • Label: Rca
  • UPC: 828768486627
  • Catalog Number: 84866

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 A Night in Tunisia (3:09)
  2. 2 52nd Street Theme (3:07)
  3. 3 Anthropology (2:40)
  4. 4 Oop-Pop-A-Da (3:14)
  5. 5 Two Bass Hit (2:49)
  6. 6 Stay on It (3:15)
  7. 7 Algo Bueno (Woody 'N You) (3:01)
  8. 8 Cubana Be (2:42)
  9. 9 Cubana Bop (3:19)
  10. 10 Manteca (3:09)
  11. 11 Good Bait (2:49)
  12. 12 Ool-Ya-Koo (2:53)
  13. 13 Guarachi Guaro (3:14)
  14. 14 Jumpin' with Symphony Sid (3:05)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Dizzy Gillespie Primary Artist, Trumpet, Vocals
Benny Bailey Trumpet
Al Haig Piano
Ernie Henry Alto Saxophone
Milt Jackson Vibes
Budd Johnson Tenor Saxophone
Cecil Payne Baritone Saxophone
Willie Cook Trumpet
Bill DeArango Guitar
Big Nick Nicholas Tenor Saxophone
Al McKibbon Bass
Yusef Lateef Tenor Saxophone
Taswell Baird Trombone
Ray Brown Bass
John Brown Alto Saxophone
Don Byas Tenor Saxophone
Kenny Clarke Drums
Andy Duryea Trombone
James Forman Piano
Joe Gayles Tenor Saxophone
Kenny "Pancho" Hagood Vocals
Joe Harris Conga, Drums
J.C. Heard Drums
Sam Hurt Trombone
Ted Kelly Trombone
Sabu Martinez Bongos
William Shepherd Trombone
Teddy Stewart Drums
Jesse Tarrant Trombone
Elmon Wright Trumpet
Raymond Orr Trumpet
Lammar Wright Jr. Trumpet
Charles Greenlea Trombone
Matthew McKay Trumpet
John Collins Guitar
John Richard Lewis Piano
Howard Glover "Johnny" Johnson Alto Saxophone
James Moody Sextet Tenor Saxophone
Technical Credits
Count Basie Composer
Tadd Dameron Composer
Gil Fuller Arranger, Composer
Dizzy Gillespie Composer
Gerald Wilson Arranger
Lester Young Composer
Chano Pozo Composer
George Russell Arranger
Thelonious Monk Composer
Frank Paparelli Composer
Charlie Parker Composer
Howard Fritzson Art Direction
Babs Brown Composer
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