This DVD highlights the advantages perfectly: there are loads of camera angles, and the cutting between long views and close ups of Jamal's facial expressions and hand gestures to the others, Heard's fingering and Israel's cymbals really adds to the live jazz experience.
A sorely underexposed figure and a major influence on Miles Davis, pianist Ahmad Jamal isn't generally ranked among the all-time giants of jazz, but he impressed fellow musicians and record buyers alike with his innovative, minimalist approach.
Sarah Vaughan was an American jazz singer, described by music critic Scott Yanow as having "one of the most wondrous voices of the 20th century." Nicknamed "Sassy" and "The Divine One", Sarah Vaughan was a Grammy Award winner. The National Endowment for the Arts bestowed upon her its "highest honor in jazz", the NEA Jazz Masters Award, in 1989. Recordings of Sarah Vaughan were inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame, which is a special Grammy award established in 1973 to honor recordings that are at least twenty-five years old, and that have "qualitative or historical significance."
The complete memorable recordings made by Billie Holiday in 1956-57 backed by a small group including Ben Webster, Harry Edison, Jimmy Rowles and Barney Kessel. A complete Holiday set recorded at Newport during the same period has been added as a bonus. Includes 16-page booklet.
Harry Connick, Jr.'s vocals perfectly fit the moods throughout the 1989 Billy Crystal film When Harry Met Sally. This soundtrack album (which stands apart from the movie) was a big hit and a major step forward for the young pianist-vocalist, although it appears to have been the high point of his career. Connick warmly sings such numbers as "It Had to Be You," "Our Love Is Here to Stay," "But Not for Me," and "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off," while usually accompanied by bassist Benjamin Wolfe, drummer Jeff "Tain" Watts, and a big band. Frank Wess' warm tenor makes a brief appearance on "Our Love Is Here to Stay." In addition, there are a few melodic instrumentals, including some solo Connick piano on "Winter Wonderland" and "Autumn in New York." Highly recommended.
Tenor saxophonist Joe Henderson's most famous recordings are his early Blue Notes and his more recent Verves, but in between he recorded exclusively for Milestone and, although Henderson was in consistently fine form in the diverse settings, he was somewhat neglected during his middle years. This massive eight-CD set contains all of the music from Henderson's dozen Milestone LPs, plus a duet with altoist Lee Konitz and his guest appearances with singer Flora Purim and cornetist Nat Adderley. The music ranges from Blue Note-style hard bop and modal explorations to fusion and '70s funk, with important contributions made by trumpeters Mike Lawrence, Woody Shaw, and Luis Gasca, trombonist Grachan Moncur III, and keyboardists Kenny Barron, Don Friedman, Joe Zawinul, Herbie Hancock, George Cables, Alice Coltrane, Mark Levine, and George Duke, among others.
Under the watchful eye of famed producer Michael Cuscuna, this nine-CD set serves as a compilation of Stitt's 1950s and 1960s Roost LPs. This release also features a 28-page booklet consisting of comprehensively annotated liners. Moreover, the record label does its best to convey the artistic element via a series of black-and-white photos of Stitt and his sidemen amid anecdotes by many of the late saxophonist's affiliates. Interestingly enough, seven of the original LPs did not list personnel. In some instances, guesses were made, although most of these tracks are well-documented, thanks to the producer's diligence and painstaking research. Artists such as drummer Roy Haynes, bassist/composer Charles Mingus, and pianist Harold Maber represent but a few of Stitt's accompanists.