Various Artists: Newport Jazz Festival-50th Anniversary Volume 2 (2004)
The second volume of this 50th Anniversary compilation presents several jam session-type tracks in the '50s, '60s and '70s, and in the second half female jazz vocalists in small combo settings. This disc acts as a bridge between the trad jazz and post-war swing artists as well as the big bands of Basie and Ellington, as presented on disc one, and the bebop artists who are showcased on disc three.
The Buck Clayton All-Stars with Clayton, J.J. Johnson and Coleman Hawkins in the front line rip through a Clayton original "Newport Jump" in 1956. A rare opportunity to hear Billy Strayhorn as pianist with Ben Webster on the classic "Chelsea Bridge," ably supported by Oscar Peterford and Sonny Greer, comes next during the 1958 Festival. Moving to 1963, the Newport "House" Band gets an extended eleven minute version of "Undecided," which features the trumpets of Clark Terry and Howard McGhee and the tenors of Coleman Hawkins and Zoot Sims, backed by a rhythm section of Joe Zawinul, Wendell Marshall and Roy Haynes. The final jam occurs ten years later when the Festival was moved to Carnegie Hall and features a fourteen minute romp of "Avalon" which includes Roy Eldridge, Al Grey, Lockjaw Davis, Joe Pass, Tommy Flanagan, Keter Betts and Freddie Waits.
Female vocalists are well represented in this volume. Billie Holiday's performance of "Lover Come Back to Me" in 1957 with Mal Waldron, Joe Benjamin and Jo Jones is done effectively. One of the highlights of the documentary film Jazz On A Summer's Day was watching Dinah Washington perform. The audio of her performance in 1958 singing "Back Water Blues" with an all star group comprised of Blue Mitchell, Melba Liston Harold Ousley, Sahib Shihab,Wynton Kelly, Paul West and Max Roach is a highlight. Ella Fitzgerald appears in two formats, singing "Good Morning Heartache" with Joe Pass and the Tommy Flangan Trio, and then on "I've Got A Crush On You" in duet with pianist Ellis Larkins. Both of these were recorded at the 1973 Carnegie Hall Festival site. Mahalia Jackson closes this disc with her version of "I'm Going To Live The Life I Sing About In My Song" from 1958. Although she cannot be considered as a jazz vocalist, her spirituality more than makes up for that.
Track Listing: Newport Jump, Chelsea Bridge, Undecided, Avalon, Lover Come Back to Me, Back Water Blues, Good Morning Heartache, I've Got A Crush on You, I'm Going to Live the Life I Sing About In My Song.
Personnel: Track 1: The Buck Clayton All-Stars (Clayton,trumpet; J.J.Johnson,trombone; Coleman Hawkins,tenor sax; Dick Katz,piano; Benny Moten,bass; Gus Johnson,drums) Track 2:Ben Webster & Billy Strayhorn (Webster,tenor sax; Strayhorn,piano; Oscar Pettiford,bass; Sonny Greer,drums) Track 3 The Newport "House" Band (Clark Terry,Howard McGhee,trumpet; Coleman Hawkins,Zoot Sims,tenor sax; Joe Zawinul,piano; Wendell Marshall,bass; Roy Haynes,drums) Track 4 The Jazz at Carnegie Hall All-Stars (Roy Eldridge,trumpet; Al Grey,trombone; Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis,tenor sax; Joe Pass,guitar; Tommy Flanagan,piano; Keter Betts,bass; Freddie Waits,drums) Track 5 Billie Holiday (Holiday,vocals; Mal Waldron,piano; Joe Benjamin,bass; Jo Jones,drums) Track 6 Dinah Washington (Washington,vocals; Blue Mitchell,trumpet; Melba Liston,trombone; Harold Ousley,tenor sax; Sahib Shihab, baritone sax; Wynton Kelly,piano; Paul West,bass; Max Roach,drums) Track 7 Ella Fitzgerald(Fitgerald,vocal; Joe Pass,guitar; Tommy Flanagan,piano; Keter Betts,bass; Freddie Waits,drums) Track 8 Ella Fitzgerald (Fitzgerald,vocal; Ellis Larkins,piano) Track 9 Mahalia Jackson (Jackson,vocals; Mildred Falls,piano; Lilton Mitchell,organ; Toimmy Bryant,bass).