Live at Carnegie Hall: 1938 Complete

Live at Carnegie Hall: 1938 Complete

by Benny Goodman


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Benny Goodman's appearance at Carnegie Hall in 1938, the first time a jazz orchestra performed at the hallowed site, may be the most famous concert in jazz history, but that didn't stop the infamously self-absorbed Goodman from forgetting for over a decade that he had been given a recording of the show. When it was brought to his attention again in 1950 and subsequently released, the Carnegie Hall recording became a huge bestseller. The present reissue of the historic recording adds more to our understanding and enjoyment of this major event: After ferreting around for years, jazz archivist Phil Schapp found additional music that had been edited from the original release. The famous highpoints remain as electric as ever: Harry James's big-and-brassy trumpet solos; Gene Krupa's flamboyant drumming, the Goodman trio and quartet features with pianist Teddy Wilson and vibraphonist Lionel Hampton, band pianist Jess Stacy's spontaneous, fascinating improvisation on "Sing, Sing, Sing", spirited renditions of the band's 1930's hits. Goodman was also wise in bringing in some favorite players from the Duke Ellington and Count Basie bands. There are stunning moments that spotlight his musical guests: Johnny Hodges's soprano saxophone melody reading and baritone saxophonist Harry Carney's solo on the lovely "Blue Reverie," Buck Clayton's jaunty trumpet improvisation, Count Basie's waste-free piano statement and Lester Young's thrilling, complex solo from the jam session number, "Honeysuckle Rose," and trumpeter Bobby Hackett's career-making homage to Bix Beiderbecke on "I'm Coming Virginia." Schapp may have given us a bit too much in returning the dead air of stage setups and other unnecessary between-numbers business, but the musical treats he unearthed -- an additional Clayton chorus and Carney and Green solos on "Honey Suckle Rose," as well as Goodman band versions of signature tunes "Sometimes I'm Happy" and "If Dreams Come True," give us a fuller picture of a historic event that maintains its immediacy to this day.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/02/1999
Label: Sony
UPC: 0074646514320
catalogNumber: 65143
Rank: 1392

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Live at Carnegie Hall: 1938 Complete 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you have been waiting for a great remastering of this classic concert, save your money and keep waiting. More clicks, pops, and hiss than the Columbia release of about ten years ago. Too bad!
Guest More than 1 year ago
So it has a few pops, clicks and some hiss on the silent sections. So what, this is how a 65+ year old recording sounds. It's not synthesised so as to have perfect new sound; it's the original! I just wish I could have been there.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This concert defined the swing era. Most of the best known jazz soloists were in this concert with Benny Goodman leading. The sound quality was taken from original recordings but not synthesized. The trade-off is some scratchiness in the sound, but no loss of nuances in the musician's renderings. I enjoyed it immensely.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In 1938, when the Swing Era was riding high on the music charts and making great strides within the ranks of the jazz scene, Benny Goodman's all-star live extravaganza he gave at Carnegie Hall made music history and brought 'swing' to multidimensional heights when it was presented on radio to a wide audience--and released on record in 1950. Featuring an all-star line-up including Lionel Hampton, Gene Krupa, Count Basie, Lester Young, Teddy Wilson and Buck Clayton, the live performances features some of his greatest hits he made for RCA Records, including Sometimes I'm Happy, Blue Room, the outrageous Life Goes To The Party, Blue Skies, Avalon and their 10 minute-plus showstopping live version of Sing! Sing! Sing!, Goodman's signature song. What is even ironic about Benny Goodman At Carnegie Hall is that it also features several special live performances, including The King Of Swing's 17-minute reindition of Honeysuckle Rose, several tracks with his quartet (featuring a winning live version of Stompin' At The Savoy) and his brief special revue that celebrates 20 years of jazz. I first heard Benny Goodman At Carnegie Hall when it first came out on CD in 1986, but when the live performance was digitally-remastered and restored on it's 2-hour plus 2-CD Set, it sounds much greater and clearer than it have since it was first heard at Carnegie Hall and on radio in 1938. It is a celebrated landmark historic acheivement for jazz that will always stand the tests of time and be admired by listeners for ages. A Timeless Spectacle!