Monday, 14 July 2014

23. Artie Shaw: An Introduction To Artie Shaw. His Best Recordings 1937-1942

Click here for my original blog post on Artie Shaw.

Artie Shaw is not a name that trips off the layman's tongue in the same way that Benny Goodman or Count Basie do. Yet he was one of the biggest names in the jazz world. He was a consummate musician and professional who hit the heights during the swing era and one who went out in his own terms, hanging up his clarinet for good in 1954. This record reflects some of the best music that he made during the height of his career and when jazz was the most popular music of the day in America.

There are some real gems on this album. Naturally his greatest hit, Begin The Beguine, is represented. It's an unmistakeably good track as is the wonderful Stardust with a stunning trumpet solo from Billy Butterfield. Shaw also gets to demonstrate his chops on that track hitting some wonderful high notes. His brief work with Billie Holiday is represented by the song Any Old Time and Hot Lips Page appears on the fantastic St James Infirmary. 

Like his contemporary Benny Goodman, there is a minefield of greatest hits out there. This is the one to have.

1.Shoot the Likker to Me, John Boy
2. Begin the Beguine
3. Comin' On
4. Back Bay Shuffle
5. Any Old Time
6. Copenhagen
7. Rosalie
8. Carioca
9. Pastel Blue
10. One Foot in the Groove
11. Octoroon
12. Oh, Lady Be Good
13. Frenesi
14. Summit Ridge Drive
15. Temptation
16. Stardust
17. Prelude in C Major
18. Dancing in the Dark
19. It Had to Be You
20. Solid Sam
21. St. James Infirmary, Pts. 1 & 2
22. Hindustan

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