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Basie Swings Bennett Sings
Count Basie, Tony Bennett
Basie Swings Bennett Sings
Genres: Blues, Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
  •  Track Listings (12) - Disc #1

Though Bennett's greatest successes came from his relaxed delivery of pop songs, he has more than just an affinity for jazz singing, as his 1999 Bennett Sings Ellington: Hot and Cool has so ably demonstrated. This reissue ...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Count Basie, Tony Bennett
Title: Basie Swings Bennett Sings
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Blue Note Records
Release Date: 5/10/1990
Genres: Blues, Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
Styles: Swing Jazz, Vocal Jazz, Vocal Pop, Classic Vocalists, Traditional Vocal Pop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
Other Editions: Basie Swings / Bennett Sings
UPCs: 077779389926, 0077779389957, 077779389940

Though Bennett's greatest successes came from his relaxed delivery of pop songs, he has more than just an affinity for jazz singing, as his 1999 Bennett Sings Ellington: Hot and Cool has so ably demonstrated. This reissue captures a 1959 meeting between Bennett and Basie, at a time when the pianist's band was at a peak, with a fantastic rhythm section, tight and powerful brass, silky reeds, and skillful arrangers like Neal Hefti, who could make the most of those resources. The Basie band was recording with a variety of singers in the period, from Sammy Davis Jr. to Billy Eckstine, but Bennett may have brought the most enthusiasm to the meeting. A great band singer, he mates perfectly with the horn sections on the up-tempo numbers, whether it's the standard "Chicago" or some obscure show tune. He can make a classic ballad, such as "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face," sound fresh, and like the Basie band, Bennett can swing at any tempo. This CD is a fine companion to In Person!, the contemporaneous Bennett-Basie collaboration done for the singer's label, Columbia. --Stuart Broomer

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CD Reviews

Good album...dubious CD transfer
Comic Online | Washington, DC United States | 01/25/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Ok, so first, the music. While this isn't Bennett's, nor the Basie Band's greatest album, by any means, it's still good. It's not hard swinging, but a light swinging, somewhere between ballads and swingers, suitable to Bennett's vocal style.

But the biggest problem is the CD itself. While the album was recorded in STEREO in 1959, the CD presents all these tracks in MONO. Why? I don't know. I have a handful of these songs on other official Capitol/Blue Note/Roulette CDs, and they are not only in stereo, but the fidelity is much cleaner. (Two are available on Basie's Roulette remasters from 2002, and another is available on Wild, Cool and Swingin'). Perhaps some of the masters were not available. Regardless, it would have been preferable to even press a stereo after-market LP, instead of these inferior mono versions, which aren't even clean-sounding mono.

Anyway, this album is available on a number of 3rd party labels and bootlegs, and they sound shoddy on all of them, too. Most are in mono, but a few are in stereo if you look around. Hopefully, someday Capitol will pull out all the masters for this album, clean them up, and release a decent sounding album in stereo.

Despite my problems with this CD pressing, this IS the best sounding version of this album to get. So, if you MUST own this one, i definitely encourage you to buy this Roulette release, as it is the best sounding of whats available."
Basie swings and so does Bennett...
William E. Adams | 05/16/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Basie actually only appears on two of the 12 tracks, Bennett's long time arranger/pianist Ralph Sharon, is on the remaining 10 trcks, Sharon also is the arranger for this session, though his arrangements were very Basie-ish. Bennett sounds happay as ever to be backed by the Basie Big Band. This is one of Bennett's finest sessions of the 50's, and shows beyond a doubt how great of a jazz singer Tony Bennett is, yes I said JAZZ SINGER, because that's what he is. Highly recommeded CD."
I think this is one of the very best Tony Bennett albums
Lawrance M. Bernabo | The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota | 05/18/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"There are three really great Tony Bennett albums, and this 1958 album originally released on Roulette Records is one of them (for the record, the other two are "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" and "Snowfall: The Tony Bennett Christmas Album"). Ironically, Count Basie did not have all that much of a hand in the album. Yes, it is his orchestra, which certainly sounds great. But Basie only plays the piano on two of the tracks, "Life Is a Song" and "Jeepers Creepers." Bennett's own pianist Ralph Sharon not only plays the piano on the other tracks but did all the charts for these songs as well. Still, these songs are very much done in the Count Basie style, as evidenced on "Strike Up the Band," "Chicago," and "With Plenty of Money and You." You would not think of Bennett as being a jazz singer per se, but he is right at home in front of the Count Basie Orchestra proving he would have been a great band singer if he had been born a decade or two earlier. My favorite track is "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face," a song from the musical "My Fair Lady," which you would have thought was written by Bennett as it is one of those perfect marriages of singer and song. He never sang any song better than this one. This 1990 CD reissue also includes a Neal Hefti ballad, "After Supper," but even with this bonus track the main complaint about this album is that it is only a half-hour long (which is certainly representative of the times)."