Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Les Paul Trio|
Jazz Collector Edition
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Rock, Broadway & Vocalists
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MORE of Les!
Larry LaBallister | Traverse City, MI USATraverse City, MI United Stat | 02/24/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Well, for the price of this CD, I could have bought a Burger, Fries, and a Coke but...I'm glad I didn't. This CD rocks, which is ironic considering the price. If you are a guitar player, or a fan of guitar music this disc is sure to be a welcome addition to your collection.
The 21 cuts are circa 1947, which means the recordings are pre-Gibson Les Paul model guitar. Since he's playing a jazz box, his tone is really warm and smooth, compared to the brighter tone of his later solid body work,(1950's - 60's) but his sense of humor and wicked licks are here nonetheless.
In fact, the CD is an excellent, equally mixed collection of slow sultry tunes, medium paced bops, and flat-out, high-speed ripping. The significance is that many of Les' CD's are not specifically aimed at appreciating his mastery of the instrument, but instead are fixated in content either on his association with Mary Ford, or his inventive marvels like multi-tracking and echo. As a result, much of Les' pure technique winds-up being buried and taking a back seat to either Mary's vocals, or his own signal processing.
Even worse, some manufacturers are releasing discs entitled "Guitar Wizard" for example, that are cleverly using the title as a marketing gimmick only, and with no intent to include tracks that showcase Les' incredible fretting agility and monster technique.
Not the case here though.
Don't get me wrong, I really like the other stuff he has done, but there is just so damn much of it, and hardly any CD's exist to the contrary that prove "Les is More" - without the multi-tracking or signal processing.
I do know that he is known for his "new sound", and it is a wonderful part of music history, but by fixating ONLY on that, record companies have shorted us the pleasure of enjoying Les as the phenomenal guitarist that he truly is, in his purest form. Personally I believe that a collection CD featuring Les' best guitar work is not only badly needed, but actually OWED to him, considering what he has done for the electric guitar specifically, and the music industry in general.
Whether or not you like his music, one fact remains...
This is the man that "discovered electricity" for guitar players, and multi-track recording for the record industry.
Until someone releases something worthy, this CD is an excellent, excellent effort.
My hat's off to it's manufacturer (Laserlight) and am hoping for more...
Genius is intimidating!
Brother Ray | Boston, MA | 09/10/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"For a mere mortal it is hard to understand how one person can have such far reaching and significant impact on popular culture and even communication in general. Les Paul certainly had it. Eight track recording, overdubs, the capital building echo chambers, guitar design would be enough to make someone famous. But then, he plays fabulous jazz guitar. He played with the masters, Christian, Reinhardt, et al, and he absorbed their style along with his own take on a melody. Every guitar student should listen to this, if only to hear the original Les before the overdubs figured heavily into his work. This collection has well scrubbed sound using the CEDARS system to remove snap, crackle and pop."
Treasure trove of scintillating miniatures
Samuel Chell | Kenosha,, WI United States | 11/16/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I never appreciated the superb musicianship of Les Paul until picking up this bargain-priced collection of 20 dazzling performances by the "Wizard of Waukesha." Now it finally begins to make sense that one of his early, formative influences was no less than Art Tatum.
Within each of these 2-3 minute masterpieces Les manages to impress as a solo guitar master as well as a tasteful, expressive musician and an ensemble player of the first order. There's no electronic trickery on these recordings from 1947--simply a level of artistry and flawless execution that's all the more striking because of the limited space given each player to say his piece. The tempos include a couple of ballads and medium tempos along with the predominantly up-tempo tunes.
No less impressive than the solos is the inventiveness of the compositions and the glittering tightness of the ensemble playing. Much of the time Les is heard playing blazingly fast melodic lines in harmony with a nameless piano virtuoso who is on the same level as Les if not even more fluent and imaginative. In fact, the single downside of this collection is the absence of dates, musicians' names, and all other potentially useful information about the recordings (some research suggests that the pianist is Paul Smith).
Admittedly, Les frequently resorts to "canned licks" rather than risking extemporaneous improvisation on the chords (the pianist is usually given the more adventurous role). Nevertheless, this is challenging, exhilarating music, full of surprises and played to perfection."