Learn How

Help improve All About Jazz

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. For $20, we'll hide those pesky Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

286

Count Basie: Basie's Beatles Bag

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Count Basie: Basie's Beatles Bag Many recording artists covered The Beatles in the '60s; even their own producer, George Martin, released George Martin Instrumentally Salutes The Beatle Girls (One Way, 1966). Pianist/bandleader Count Basie recorded two albums of Beatles tunes in that decade: Basie's Beatles Bag (Verve, 1966) and Basie On The Beatles (Happy Tiger, 1969).

Both discs contain vital versions of John Lennon/Paul McCartney classics, but Basie's Beatles Bag is rawer and more cohesive. Arranged by Chico O'Farrill, it selects some of the more rough and ready Beatles songs, back to "Hold Me Tight" and "I Wanna Be Your Man," from With The Beatles (EMI, 1963).

Revealing much about the tunes themselves, the album is also a fun party album. The faster hits are there, such as "Help," "A Hard Day's Night" and "Can't Buy Me Love," but the arrangement of "Do You Want To Know A Secret" shows the pure swing era influence in its writing. With its beautiful Johnny Hodges-style saxophone solo, it is far superior to The Beatles' version. "Michelle," also, has the authentic Basie touch, his piano evoking his '30s-era band.

The strong R&B origins of "Hold Me Tight" are clear here, its great back beat making it one of the album's most fruitful recreations. O'Farrill throws elements of Nelson Riddle into "I Wanna Be Your Man" and "All My Loving," his gifted understanding of the music also giving saxophonist Charlie Fowlkes a baritone part on "And I Love Her" (a very imaginative touch). "All My Loving" shows, however, that guitarist Freddie Green was no match for George Harrison's soloing capabilities.

Instrumentally daring, the grooving Basie's Beatles Bag casts new light on some classic songs, reveling in the rawer bluesy, swing and R&B roots of The Beatles' music.


Track Listing: Help; Can't Buy Me Love; Michelle; I Wanna Be Your Man; Do You Want to Know A Secret?; A Hard Day's Night; All My Loving; Yesterday; All My Loving; Yesterday; Hold Me Tight; And I Love Her; She Loves You; Kansas City.

Personnel: Al Aarons: trumpet; Sonny Cohn: trumpet; Wallace Davenport: trumpet; Phil Guilbeau: trumpet; Henderson Chambers: trombone; Al Grey: trombone; Grover Mitchell trombone; Bill Hughes: bass trombone; Marshall Royal: alto saxophone, clarinet; Bobby Plater alto saxophone, flute; Eddy Davis: tenor saxophone; Charlie Fowlkes: flute, baritone saxophone; Freddie Greene: guitar; Norman Keenan: bass; Sonny Payne: drums; Chico O'Farrill: arranger; Bill Henderson: vocal (8).

Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Verve Music Group


Shop

More Articles

Read #knowingishalfthebattle CD/LP/Track Review #knowingishalfthebattle
by Mark F. Turner
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Live In Brooklyn CD/LP/Track Review Live In Brooklyn
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 23, 2017
Read King Of Xhosa CD/LP/Track Review King Of Xhosa
by James Nadal
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Blooming Tall Phlox CD/LP/Track Review Blooming Tall Phlox
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Hear & Now CD/LP/Track Review Hear & Now
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: January 22, 2017
Read Known-Unknown CD/LP/Track Review Known-Unknown
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: January 22, 2017
Read "Flowers" CD/LP/Track Review Flowers
by John Sharpe
Published: November 23, 2016
Read "Satori" CD/LP/Track Review Satori
by Chris Mosey
Published: November 1, 2016
Read "Oratorios and Songs" CD/LP/Track Review Oratorios and Songs
by John Eyles
Published: October 18, 2016
Read "Flow" CD/LP/Track Review Flow
by Karl Ackermann
Published: August 2, 2016
Read "Roma-Rio" CD/LP/Track Review Roma-Rio
by Tyran Grillo
Published: May 22, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Get Jazz Near You via email!

Enjoy the convenience of receiving a comprehensive listing of jazz events in your area every Thursday. It's free!