Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
An indispensable album by a great musician
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is the second in a 15-CD series from Media 7 in France that promises to give us the complete recorded works of Wardell Gray. While it duplicates material on the out-of-stock ONE FOR PREZ CD, the sound quality seems even better and besides providing excellent liner notes, it offers the takes for each performance consecutively so that you can see the development toward the master take. The beauty of it is that ALL the takes are masterful and complete, and the only exception still gives you a minute and a half of furious, brilliant playing by Wardell. It's remarkable to think that this is Wardell Gray's first session as a leader. Imagine Sonny Rollins producing SAXOPHONE COLOSSUS or John Coltrane GIANT STEPS on their first time out. As Dexter Gordon has said, Wardell is "a beautiful player." Here you hear him at his best: as fluid and smooth as Lester Young, but dancing like a jazz Fred Astaire, full of fire and poetry, and on his interpretation of "The Man I Love" the creator of a song of his own simply haunted by the Gershwin melody. Almost as wonderful as Wardell's playing is the work of Dodo Marmarosa on piano. The dynamic rapport between these two on all sixteen tracks is truly remarkable.Dodo's playing on "The Man I Love" makes you think he's been temporarily possessed by the spirit of Franz Schubert.For the three versions of that song alone, this would be an album to cherish. It has to be one of the most beautiful performances in recorded jazz. How sad--that these sides never appeared in the States in Wardell's all too brief lifetime. This is an indispensable work by a musician who may have been the most gifted tenor man of his time. The thirteen remaining CDs will undoubtedly make the "may have been" seem unnecessary."
LIKE ALL IN THE MASTERS OF JAZZ SERIES
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Cannot disagree with the other reviewer. Wardell Gray, though little-known, played a swinging form of jazz. And more need to know of him if they are keen on the development of styles. This music swings and all in this group make it happen.I must add that this disc, and its companions in the Masters of Jazz series produced by the French outfit Media 7, deserves 5 stars. For the best in retrospective collections of the greatest artists in jazz, this French label is the one. Each one of its productions merits 5 stars[cinq etoiles, so to speak]."