Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
New Oscar Pettiford Sextet
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Would you believe it? Mingus and Pettiford together!
J. M Heumann | Houston, TX United States | 12/31/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've been looking for the CD of these recordings for ages! The original five cuts were issued on a 10" LP of this title by Debut Records, which was owned by Charlie Mingus and Max Roach. When Fantasy bought Debut, two more cuts with Pettiford's European sidemen were added, and the music was issued as "My Little Cello." Now these classics have been packaged on CD with four numbers from 1949 featuring Red Rodney, Al Cohn, and Serge Chaloff.
All together, I'd call this the definitive collection of Pettiford's composing and performance. (This can't be said of other Pettiford recordings: "Montmartre Blues" is so derivative and cliched as to be almost unlistenable.) We get Pettiford on cello, Pettiford on bass, four superb Pettiford compositions, and the exceptional performances of Mingus (bass), Walter Bishop (piano), Phil Urso (tenor), and Louis Hjulmand (vibes).
There are some problems with this issue, though. For one thing, the notes list Hjulmand and pianist Jan Johansson as additional personnel for the 29 December 1953 New York recording session. In fact, these two musicians appear in trio with Pettiford on "Fru Bruel" and "I Succumb to Temptation"; the session evidently dates from 1959. This is evidence that the "remastering" may not go back to the original Debut session tapes, but to the Fantasy recording master. Nonetheless, we get to hear Mingus yelling encouragement to Phil Urso on "Jack the Fieldstalker."
Where Debut/Fantasy came up with the four "bonus tracks" from 1949 is anybody's guess. The music is good, not great. Al Cohn's tenor is especially entertaining. But the recording quality is not good. "Chasin' the Bass" has particularly noticeable recording hiss. In all, the four cuts say something about how jazz was going at that time, but not where it was going. For that, we have to return to the 1953 session and listen closely to Mingus and Bishop."