Art Tatum-Ben Webster: The Album [Essential Jazz Classics]

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
The only album-length collaboration between pianist Art Tatum and tenor saxophonist Ben Webster (accompanied by a rhythm section of Red Callender, bass, and Bill Douglass, drums) was this September 11, 1956, session under the auspices of Norman Granz's Verve Records label. (It was also Tatum's last recording session before his death.) Granz probably suggested the repertoire of standards by the likes of Kern and Hammerstein, Rodgers & Hart, and Cole Porter, but the melodies, of course, only provide a framework. On each track, Tatum leads things off, with Callender and Douglass coming in discreetly (and low in the mix). Then, at a certain point, Webster appears in ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
The only album-length collaboration between pianist Art Tatum and tenor saxophonist Ben Webster (accompanied by a rhythm section of Red Callender, bass, and Bill Douglass, drums) was this September 11, 1956, session under the auspices of Norman Granz's Verve Records label. (It was also Tatum's last recording session before his death.) Granz probably suggested the repertoire of standards by the likes of Kern and Hammerstein, Rodgers & Hart, and Cole Porter, but the melodies, of course, only provide a framework. On each track, Tatum leads things off, with Callender and Douglass coming in discreetly (and low in the mix). Then, at a certain point, Webster appears in the foreground, playing comparatively few notes and sticking much more to the melody than his partner. This is a good approach, since Tatum never subsides to simple comping; he just keeps soloing away under Webster's rich tenor tones until Webster stops playing, and then keeps on to the end. So, although this is billed as a group effort, it's not a group of equals or really one in which the players are cooperating with each other. Tatum might as well be playing solo, since he takes very little account of what's happening around him. Granz makes it work by varying the volume of the different instruments in the mix, and the result is a fascinating study in contrasts.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/27/2006
  • Label: Essential Jazz Class
  • EAN: 8436028694037
  • Catalog Number: 55403
  • Sales rank: 39,065

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Art Tatum Primary Artist, Piano, Soloist
Ben Webster Tenor Saxophone
Red Callender Bass
Bill Douglass Drums
Technical Credits
Count Basie Liner Notes
Ben Webster Author
Richard Rodgers Composer
Jerome Kern Composer
Oscar Hammerstein II Composer
Lorenz Hart Composer
Cole Porter Composer
Leo Robin Composer
Richard A. Whiting Composer
Guy Wood Composer
Newell Chase Composer
Charles Boldt Liner Notes
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