Last month Label M released the first two albums from its series “Live” at the Left Bank
. Sessions by Sonny Stitt and Stan Getz were recorded by members of the Left Bank Jazz Society in 1971 and 1975, respectively, at the Famous Ballroom in Baltimore, Maryland. Other artists in the series of weekly live performances include Freddie Hubbard, Jimmy Heath and Cedar Walton, whose albums will be released this month. With the promise of many more albums to come from this delightful series, Label M’s action appears to provide an opportunity for collectors and devotees to pick up those “rare items” we’ve been looking for all these years.
The sound captured from Stan Getz’ live club date is superb. Dave Holland, Jack DeJohnette and Richie Beirach work together with the saxophonist as if they were all born into the same family. Every move, every nuance, every inflection is created to suit the leader’s mood. From slow, cool ballads to fast, hot burners, the quartet swings with overt expression. Getz is at his best, leading with high spirits. The exciting program includes two modern mainstream anthems by Chick Corea, a powerfully-built saga by Ralph Towner, several standards, and an 11-minute untitled piece that we investigators will probably figure out eventually. With a high-flying start, Label M has inaugurated its ”Live” at the Left Bank series with a winner.
Personnel: Stan Getz- tenor saxophone; Richie Beirach- piano; Dave Holland- bass; Jack DeJohnette- drums.