Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Breakin the Ice - Early Years 1 (1934-1935)
Genres: Jazz, Pop
The Great Depression had been grinding away for at least five years; the days of the big swing bands had yet to reveal themselves. While "Fats" Waller had been recording for Victor 12 years, very little of his piano (and p... more »
The Great Depression had been grinding away for at least five years; the days of the big swing bands had yet to reveal themselves. While "Fats" Waller had been recording for Victor 12 years, very little of his piano (and pipe organ) had reached a wide audience. Well, these recordings on The Early Years, Part 1 did precisely that by initiating a new, small ensemble that hit audiences way beyond what the industry characterized as the "race" record market. This little band and these records were the first flowering of what became a bonanza for the starved record market and music fans. Many of the selections were chosen by Eli Oberstein, the pop Victor "A&R" man. Fats intensely disliked some of them, and simply burlesqued the selections in the recording to Victor's horror--and still they turned out to be some of his paramount performances and huge sellers. "Breakin' the Ice" has some of the richest two-fisted stride piano to be found, and "Serenade for a Wealthy Widow" presented Fats a melody that could only be arranged in the same manner as a concerto. No problem. He simply recorded a most harmonically intricate solo chorus, as sophisticated as Gershwin and hot as a college bonfire. A perusal of the rest is so arresting that even the grandest superlatives are inadequate in describing the music. These records, then, were the dawn of an entirely new era that a "pop" music aficionado or jazz fan must not pass up. --Daniel Bartlett Jr.
YOU GOTTA GET THIS ALBUM!
Elizabeth Cohen | New York, NY USA | 09/23/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This was my intro to Fats, and in the week since receiving it as a gift I must've listened to it fifty times! Each song is more wonderful than the last, and you just can't help but dance and grin to every last delicious morsel. Particular gems in this veritable treasure trove include: "Pardon My Love", "I Wish I Were Twins", "Do Me a Favor", and "Then I'll Be Tired of You", to name just a few. I would highly reccomend this album to anyone and everyone...it has spurred me on to add many more of his delicious albums to my collection."
Brilliance At A Consistency Forever Unmatched
Nathan C. Larson | Los Angeles, CA USA | 10/19/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"There is a Midas touch to the work of Fats Waller during the first two years of his Rhythm recordings for RCA that seems to me to be almost unmatched in the history of Jazz. Like Lester Young during the period of the late 30's and very early 40's, and perhaps Charlie Parker in the middle and late 40's, it seems that his every musical utterance was a masterpiece. What can one say about a collection such as this? As large as it is (44 titles), it is so densely packed with great music, that one is left speechless. To give these performances a 5 star rating is like calling an out of the park home run in Yankee Stadium (rest it's soul), a nice hit.
Perhaps most uniquely, Fats utilizes his prodigious musicality completely in the service of fun. Indeed, the great lesson of these performances is that it is possible to have so much fun, until it is profound. Jazz does not get any finer.
Albert Einstein was recorded as saying on the occasion of the death of Mahatma Gandhi, "Future generations will scarcely believe that such a man, in flesh and blood, actually walked this earth." I believe the same thing could be said with complete accuracy about Fats Waller."
Old movie fan | 12/23/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Do you want to hear the definitive version of this Waller classic. Here it is! Love that phrasing!"