Breathtaking: The Complete Jazz At The Philharmonic on Verve

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Yakov
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Breathtaking: The Complete Jazz At The Philharmonic on Verve

#1 Post by Yakov » Fri Oct 17, 2003 9:32 am

The Complete Jazz At The Philharmonic On Verve, 1944-49 is a ten-disc set that will blow your mind if you get your hands on it. (Expensive, of course, but I found it in the public library!) First, it might be the best-designed box set I've ever seen in my life, with the possible exception of The Complete Ella Fitzgerald Songbooks, another Verve release.

The music on here mostly consists of extended jazz jam sessions, playing mostly blues, "I Got Rhythm" type songs, and other jazz standards. Most tracks are too long for dancing, but there are a few tracks that might find their way into my mixes (including a great five-minute Ella version of "Flyin' Home" with Roy Eldridge, Charlie Parker, Lester Young, Ray Brown, and Buddy Rich :D ) The tracks span the years of the recording ban, so you can hear some music from that time, which is rare. The performances span from boogie-woogie to swing to early bop.

Some of the players are Ray Brown, Nat "King" Cole (spotlighting his piano skills), Roy Eldridge, Ella Fitzgerald, Slim Gaillard (playing the famous Groove Juice Symphony), Tiny Grimes, Bill Harris, Coleman Hawkins, Neal Hefti, Billie Holiday, Illinois Jacquet, J.J. Johnson, Jo Jones, Gene Krupa, Meade Lux Lewis, Charles Mingus, Les Paul, Oscar Peterson, Buddy Rich, Charlie Shavers, Slam Stewart (not with Slim), Dave Tough, Lester Young, and Trummy Young.

The design -- forgive me, I must get back to this -- is amazing. The CDs are in record-style sleeves, with original record cover art on the covers and original record label art on the CDs themselves. Every one is different. There's a 200+ page "booklet" (itself impeccably designed) that contains several essays, a long interview with Norman Granz (the producer of the series), and exhausting discographic detail. And the whole thing is in a slip-top box made out of WOOD and heavy thick plastic.

Anyway, pick it up if you have the scratch.

-yakov

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SpuzBal
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#2 Post by SpuzBal » Sun Oct 19, 2003 5:43 pm

$180 is pretty steep for 10 discs, but it does look awesome.
"In my opinion, out of the ten great guitarists in the world, Django is five of them!" - Rex Stewart

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Yakov
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#3 Post by Yakov » Mon Oct 20, 2003 3:23 pm

well, that's Verve for ya.

I can assure you though that you are getting nearly 800 minutes of music though. those cds are full.

i was listening over the weekend -- there are some awesome freakin' tunes on there. also some great radio commentary.

-yakov

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