Three Chet Baker Clips - JazzWax

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June 20, 2011


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jp gelbon

the 1964 pianist René Uetreger is still alive and playing- very well- I saw him performing last year. The bassist luigi trussardi is still playing too, I saw him a couple of years ago with the great Barry Harris in Paris.

Bill Kirchner

1) The Rome clip is somehow flopped. Both the tenor player's and bassist's hands are reversed.

2) The Torino clip also features the great Swedish baritone player Lars Gullin (1928-76), who like Baker (and for similar reasons) was ultimately ill-fated.

3) The "So What" clip is a half-step sharp.

Mike Harris

Great horn-solos from the young Chet---a treat to hear!

Larry Kart

Check out on YouTube the clips from Chet's 1987 Tokyo concert, with pianist Harold Danko, bassist Hein van de Geyn, and drummer John Engels. As much as I like early Chet, he was (contrary to much received opinion) arguably at his best in his final decade. Top notch, too, are the albums "Diane" (with Paul Bley) and "Chet's Choice" (with Philip Catherine), both on Steeplechase from 1985.


Larry is right! Chet is in much better form on the Tokyo clips than on those above (better a/v quality as well). He also benefits from a regular band instead of pickup groups (note the tentative ending on the Rome clip for example.) The 2 cd set of "Chet Baker in Tokyo" (from which these clips come) is one of his very best, as is the "Chet's Choice" album. (Of course Chet was very erratic, so there are good and bad albums from all periods.)

Bill Kirchner

Re Larry Kart's excellent suggestion, go here:

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  • Marc Myers writes regularly for The Wall Street Journal and is author of "Anatomy of a Song" (Grove) and "Why Jazz Happened." Founded in 2007, JazzWax is a two-time winner of the Jazz Journalists Association's best blog award.

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