The Bebop Shop : Now's The Time: Bud, Bird & Bebop : Dexter Gordon
The 55 tracks on this set span the period 1943-1950 and feature the immense talents of Dexter himself as well as such luminaries as Dizzy Gillespie, Fats Navarro, Ben Webster, Billy Eckstine and Barney Kessel. The 44 pages in the booklet are crammed with rare photos, track information and the story of one of the true giants of jazz. (Proper Records)
Dexter Gordon (1923-1990) was one of the very first bebop tenor saxophonists. By the time he was fifteen, he had already played in bands with Chico Hamilton and Buddy Collette ! He was a member of the Lionel Hampton and Louis Armstrong orchestras in the early forties, joined the Billy Eckstine band and recorded with Charlie Parker in 1945.
Dexter returned to Los Angeles in 1948, and went on to record with Dizzy Gillespie, Bud Powell, Max Roach, Benny Carter, Art Blakey, Fats Navarro, J.J. Johnson, Tadd Dameron, Jimmy Giuffre, and Kenny Clarke, to name just a few. He also began his famous recordings with Wardell Gray.
Dexter Gordon, tenor sax, and Leroy Vinnegar, bass, on all tracks - plus: Carl Perkins, piano; Chuck Thompson, drums; Jimmy Robinson, trumpet (on 3 tracks) - Hollywood, California, November 11 &12, 1955. Bonus tracks: Kenny Drew (p), Lawrence Marable (d). Hollywood, California, September 18, 1955. (Discovery Records) Price: £11.99
Added, as a bonus, are six out of the seven tunes from an interesting session recorded five years earlier (Dexter doesnt play a solo on the missing tune). It presents exactly the same instrumentation of tenor sax, trombone, trumpet and rhythm section, and features such stars as Frank Rosolino and Conte Candoli.
Personnel : Dexter Gordon, tenor sax, on all tracks, with : Richard Boone, trombone; Martin Banks, trumpet; Dolo Coker, piano; Charles Green, bass; Lawrence Marable, drums - Los Angeles, October 13, 1960. On bonus tracks : Frank Rosolino (tb), Conte Candoli (tp), Lou Levy (p), Leroy Vinnegar (b), Stan Levey (d) - Los Angeles, September 27 & 28, 1955. (Discovery Records) Price: £11.99
This Blue Note 80 Vinyl Edition is all-analog, mastered by Kevin Gray from the original master tapes, and pressed on 180g vinyl at Optimal. (Blue Note Records) Price: £23.99
Limited Edition, 180g Pressing. Price: £23.99
The rhythm section features Bud Powell (piano), Pierre Michelot (bass), and Kenny Clarke (drums), a trio that had been playing together for four years before this record date. And, between Gordon's high-octane improvisation that falls between Bop and Swing, Powell's melodic intensity, Clarke's clever accentuation, and Michelot's flawless harmonic support, this album both cooks and simmers with stellar improvisation and interaction: Jazz at its Best.' (Album Leaves, the BIRDpages Record Review)
A BEBOP SHOP MILESTONE- An essential recording for your jazz CD shelf Price: £8.99
Nice compilation of the softer side of Gordon's albums for Blue Note, including gorgeous versions of songs associated with Billie Holiday- an aching You've Changed and I'm A Fool To Want You. I'd urge you to buy the original albums but this is a great sampler for the beginner. Price: £8.99
Listening to this album takes you back to the atmosphere and sound of Jazzhus Montmartre on a random night in the 1960s, engulfing you in Dexter Gordon's enormous aura. Dexter's arrival in Copenhagen had a tremendous impact that left a lasting impression on the Danish jazz scene. He was handsome and well-dressed. His playing was superb, with a giant sound; his introductions and showmanship were unique and captivating. In addition, Dexter felt the Danish mentality was well-suited for playing and enjoying jazz.
It's impossible not to notice Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen on this recording. He was already a virtuoso in 1964, at the age of 18. NHØP was a genius on the contrabass. First and foremost, however, this session is an excellent example of how good it sounds when musicians get to play together every night, week after week. The trio played with Dexter three months throughout the summer to a full house every night. With the great Tete Montoliu the trio was burning behind Dexter. This album is an example of the superior quality of the music that was played at Montmartre during this golden era. (Proper Music) Price: £13.99
Gordon's quartet includes his fellow Americans - the pianist Kenny Drew and drummer Ed Thigpen - alongside the local bassist Mads Vinding. The saxophonist displays his customary relaxed yet intense creativity, as they perform five original compositions by Gordon and the jazz standard "There is No Greater Love" by Isham Jones. (Proper Music) Price: £14.99
Dexter Gordon & Al Cohn, tenor saxophones; Blue Mitchell & Sam Noto, trumpets; Barry Harris, piano; Sam Jones, bass; and Louis Hayes, drums. (Discovery Records) Price: £11.99
Personnel : Dexter Gordon, tenor sax; Woody Shaw, trumpet; Ronnie Mathews, piano; Stafford James, bass; Louis Hayes, drums - Live at the Village Gate, New York, October 25, 1976. On bonus track : Dexter Gordon (ts), Woody Shaw (tp), Milt Jackson (vib), Kirk Lightsey (p), David Eubanks (b), Eddie Gladden (d) - Playboy Jazz Festival, Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles, June 20, 1982. (Discovery Records) Price: £11.99
"The original quartet was at its peak from its first notes to its last gig, as this concert bears out. Dexter is in a joyous and fiery mood, peppering his solos with outrageous quotes from other songs and stretching out. Few recordings by this amazing foursome have surfaced. This concert is a worthy addition to their discography." Michael Cuscuna (Proper Music) Price: £21.99