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Ken Burns Jazz
     

Ken Burns Jazz

4.0 1
by Count Basie
 
Only an orchestra with as rich and storied a history as Count Basie's could be labeled, in its pre and postwar embodiments, the Old and New Testament bands. But that's how long and strong jazz's greatest dance unit played for crowds the world over.The legend began in Kansas City in 1935, when Basie inherited Bennie Moten's gang and began to add swinging talent from

Overview

Only an orchestra with as rich and storied a history as Count Basie's could be labeled, in its pre and postwar embodiments, the Old and New Testament bands. But that's how long and strong jazz's greatest dance unit played for crowds the world over.The legend began in Kansas City in 1935, when Basie inherited Bennie Moten's gang and began to add swinging talent from the region. He then brought it to New York, expanded it further, and within no time saw it rise to the top of the big-band world. Its rebirth in the Fifties was a miracle, as virtually every other big band had dissolved for good. Its infectious beat was a constant, while a new stable of writers made it even more successful in the LP era than it had been before.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide
With cooperation from the Verve and Columbia Legacy catalogs, the Ken Burns Jazz series on CD individually spotlights the musical excellence of 22 jazz originators whose careers and influence are explored in Burns' PBS documentary Jazz. The selections representing Count Basie open with an early-1932 recording from Bennie Moten's Kansas City Orchestra immediately after Basie joined them (eventually taking the helm from Moten). The set jumps ahead five years to the summer of 1937, highlighting several Decca sides including the classic Basie lineup with tenor saxophonist Lester Young on "One O'Clock Jump," "Jumpin' at the Woodside," "Doggin' Around," and "Cherokee," the two parts of the latter assembled together. The '40s are represented by only two tracks, the 1941-vintage "Goin' to Chicago" and "9:20 Special," both from the Columbia/OKeh library. The second half of the '40s were lean times for the band, which ended the decade temporarily paired down due to economics and a change in musical taste, and it wasn't until the early to mid-'50s that the orchestra gained momentum again, particularly in the wake of 1955's April in Paris on Verve and the Atomic Mr. Basie album on Roulette. Five sides from that decade finish out this set, culminating with "Lil' Darlin'" from Atomic Mr. Basie. It's impossible to sum up the history of Basie on a single disc -- after all, the man recorded for more than 50 years (starting when Rudy Vallee was the new popular music heartthrob) and was still working amid the ascendancy of MTV and acts like Culture Club. Still, some of Basie's highlights represented on Ken Burns Jazz should help novice listeners interested enough to continue searching out more material. There is nothing here for the aficionado, although the fresh remastering represents a sonic upgrade over the sound of earlier Basie compilations. It will come as no surprise to veteran listeners, however, that "Goin' to Chicago" from the Columbia/OKeh archive is the noisiest track here; whatever Columbia did with some of those masters, they didn't preserve them properly. ~ Al Campbell & Bruce Eder

Product Details

Release Date:
11/07/2000
Label:
Polygram Records
UPC:
0731454909020
catalogNumber:
549090
Rank:
13726

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Count Basie   Primary Artist
Buck Clayton   Trumpet
Harry Edison   Trumpet
Freddie Green   Guitar
Helen Humes   Vocals
Jo Jones   Drums
Thad Jones   Trumpet
Joe Newman   Trumpet
Marshall Royal   Alto Saxophone
Ben Webster   Tenor Saxophone
Lester Young   Tenor Saxophone
Eddie Barefield   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Benny Morton   Trombone
Joe Wilder   Trumpet,Flugelhorn
Walter Page   Bass
Leroy Berry   Guitar
Henderson Chambers   Trombone
Henry Coker   Trombone
Eddie Durham   Guitar,Trombone
Ernie Wilkins   Alto Saxophone
Herschel Evans   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Charlie Fowlkes   Baritone Saxophone
George Hunt   Trombone
Gus Johnson   Drums
Reunald Jones   Trumpet
Joe Keyes   Trumpet
Dan Minor   Trombone
Hot Lips Page   Trumpet
Sonny Payne   Drums
Benny Powell   Trombone
Dee Stewart   Trumpet
Earle Warren   Alto Saxophone
Jack Washington   Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Frank Wess   Tenor Saxophone
Dicky Wells   Trombone
Ed Lewis   Trumpet
Bob Moore   Trumpet

Technical Credits

Memphis Slim   Composer
Count Basie   Composer
Harry Edison   Composer
Benny Goodman   Composer
Freddie Green   Composer
Bennie Moten   Composer
Jimmy Rushing   Composer
Eddie Barefield   Composer
Neal Hefti   Composer
Jimmy Mundy   Arranger
Edgar Sampson   Composer
Buster Smith   Arranger
Don Redman   Arranger
Peter Chatman   Composer
Eddie Durham   Composer
Herschel Evans   Composer
Frank Foster   Composer
Manny Kurtz   Composer
Burton Lane   Composer
Jerry Livingston   Composer
Edgar Battle   Composer
Ralph Freed   Composer
Mack David   Composer
Donald Wolf   Composer

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Ken Burns Jazz 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
NooAwlinsGuy More than 1 year ago
As with all Ken Burns' material, there is historical perspective included in the selection of tracks. The best part of this collection is that the tracks are in chronological order and one can hear a progression in the development of Count Basie. Overall, a worthy addition to anyone's collection.