Arthur Gunter, a seemingly obscure blues singer will never be forgotten because he holds a unique place in American pop history. His first recording, 'Baby Let's Play House' in 1954 for Excello Records of Nashville became one of the first recordings by Elvis Presley. This is the first time both sides of his Excello singles have been collected together in chronological order and the quality of these sessions are all exciting and typical of the kind of blues popular in the south.
Listen to the sounds of Arthur Gunter and wonder at the impression it must have had on the young Elvis Presley - stunning by all accounts. This collection is a must for blues and R&B fans.
This single CD from 1998 has all of the music from boogie-woogie pianist Meade Lux Lewis' two Verve LPs of 1954-1955. The earlier date is a set of duets with drummer Louie Bellson, while the later session finds Lewis accompanied by bassist Red Callender and drummer Jo Jones. The packaging is perfect, and with 76-and-a-half minutes of playing, the amount of music is generous. The only problem is that there is a definite sameness to the 14 selections (which mostly clock in between four and seven minutes), the majority of which are medium-tempo blues romps. None of the melodies (all Lewis originals) are at all memorable. The romping momentum of the music overall is difficult to resist, but it is advisable to listen to this set in small doses.
Dave Brubeck (piano) began his Columbia Records association on a second album of material that his quartet had cut during its spring of 1954 tour of North American college campuses, Paul and Dave's Jazz Interwoven (1954) being the first. Joining Brubeck are Paul Desmond (alto sax), Bob Bates (bass), and Joe Dodge (drums), whose support of Brubeck is uniformly flawless, ultimately producing what many consider as the most memorable music in the artist's cannon. "Balcony Rock" commences the platter from sides documented at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor…