Town Hall, New York City, June 22, 1945

Town Hall, New York City, June 22, 1945

by Dizzy Gillespie


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Drawn from seven 12-inch acetate disks discovered in a Massachusetts thrift shop, this 40-minute concert by trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie, alto saxophonist Charlie Parker, pianist Al Haig, bassist Curley Russell, and drummer Max Roach -- then a steadily working quintet at the Three Deuces Club on Manhattan’s famed 52nd Street -- is the earliest in-person document of bebop’s early efflorescence. No serious student of jazz should be without it. For one thing, Parker and Gillespie, whose innovations in phrasing and harmony remain crucial to modern jazz vocabulary, are in brilliant form, breathing as one on the lightning unisons and stretching out with lucid fire on seven-minute versions of such modernist signposts as " Bebop,” “Night in Tunisia,” “Groovin’ High,” and “Salt Peanuts." For another, the recording quality is superbly present, sonically surpassing any other live Parker-Gillespie recording or, for that matter, any studio recording by either musician until the ‘50s. Unlike many contemporary dates, the rhythm section comes through as more than a whisper: You can hear Al Haig’s pithy comping and witty solos on a good piano, the surgical precision of Max Roach’s crackling cymbal strokes, his assertive bass drum, and the way he weaves together the components of his drumkit to design the rhythms. Remember, this is 1945! At the end, emcee "Symphony" Sid Torin brings out drum legend Big Sid Catlett, who uncorks an inventive three-minute solo on Tadd Dameron’s “Hot House.” The music sounds fresh and devoid of cliché; this is a major find, every bit as important as the rediscovered Monk-Coltrane Carnegie Hall concert from 12 years later that became a 2005 bestseller.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/21/2005
Label: Uptown Jazz
UPC: 0026198275129
catalogNumber: 2751

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