Herb Ellis is heard in performance in two separate German nightclubs during a 1998 tour of Europe, accompanied by harmonica player Hendrik Meurkens, young bassist Chris Berger, and drummer Chuck Redd. The seasoned guitarist is in top form, with Meurkens proving to be a good foil for him, though the latter man also proves himself to be a virtuoso on his instrument (comparable to Toots Thielemans). The selections…
Peterson redefined the jazz trio by bringing musicianship of all three members to the highest level. The definitive trio with Ray Brown and Herb Ellis was, in his own words, "the most stimulating" and productive setting for public performances as well as in studio recordings. In the early 1950s, Peterson began performing with Ray Brown and Charlie Smith as the Oscar Peterson Trio.
Oscar Peterson's trio with Ray Brown and Herb Ellis lasted from 1953 to 1959 and is well documented on records, but the appearance in 2003 of this previously unreleased 1958 concert at the Orpheum Theatre in Vancouver is welcome news to the pianist's fans. Buoyed by a receptive audience and always in the mood to play to the best of their abilities, the musicians outdo themselves throughout the set. ~ AllMusic
Arriving in New York in 1945, on his first day in town Ray Brown met and played with Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, and Bud Powell. He was hired by Gillespie for his small groups and his big band; "One Bass Hit" and "Two Bass Hit" were early features, and he can be seen with Dizzy Gillespie in the 1947 film Jiving in Bebop. Although not a soloist on the level of an Oscar Pettiford, Brown's quick reflexes and ability to accompany soloists in a swinging fashion put him near the top of his field. After playing with Jazz at the Philharmonic, he married Ella Fitzgerald (their marriage only lasted during 1948-1952), and for a time led his own trio to back the singer.,.
The second Great Guitars album features guitarists Charlie Byrd, Barney Kessel, and Herb Ellis matching wits and generally inspiring each other throughout this studio set. The trio, along with bassist Joe Byrd and drummer Wayne Philips, are heard together on four numbers (best are "Undecided" and Ellis' "H & B Guitar Boogie"; Ellis and Kessel duet on "Down Home Blues"; Byrd has two features to himself; and a medley combines together short versions of "Benny's Bugle & and "Latin Groove" with the typically exuberant "Charlie's Blues" A fine all-around effort.
The second Concord album was recorded the day after the first with the same lineup: guitarists Herb Ellis and Joe Pass, bassist Ray Brown and drummer Jake Hanna. Pass would sign with Pablo but Ellis would be a fixture on the Concord label throughout the 1970s. If anything, the guitarists' rematch was a bit stronger than their first due to material better suited for jamming including "In a Mellotone," a speedy "Seven Come Eleven," "Perdido" and "Concord Blues." Although Pass would soon be recognized as a giant, Ellis battles him to a draw on this frequently exciting bop-oriented date, which has been reissued on CD.
The very first release by the Concord label was a quartet set featuring guitarists Herb Ellis and Joe Pass, bassist Ray Brown, and drummer Jake Hanna. Ellis and Pass (the latter was just beginning to be discovered) always made for a perfectly complementary team, constantly challenging each other. The boppish music (which mixes together standards with "originals" based on the blues and a standard) is quite enjoyable with the more memorable tunes including "Look for the Silver Lining," "Honeysuckle Rose," "Georgia," "Good News Blues," and "Bad News Blues." This was a strong start for what would become the definitive mainstream jazz label.