All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

359

Benny Goodman: Centennial Collection

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
By Francis Lo Kee

Clarinetist Benny Goodman (1909-86) is considered by jazz historians to be one of the most important musicians in all of jazz, though not all of his important achievements were strictly musical. He is credited with racially integrating his bands at a time when it was not a popular idea, yet he brought jazz a level of audience attention that would earn it the title of pop music today. The DVD presents footage from 1939-66, while the CD concentrates on 1935-39, mostly big band music. The CD presents the pop music side of Benny Goodman more than the hot jazz improviser.

The music features vocals by Ella Fitzgerald, Helen Ward, and Martha Tilton and was arranged by Fletcher Henderson, Jimmy Mundy, Eddie Sauter, and Mary Lou Williams, to name a few. This is another aspect of the Goodman phenomenon: he surrounded himself with great musicians. (And some would say cynically built his career on their sometimes uncredited or de-emphasized work.) One of the great aspects of all the musical performances here is a sense of teamwork, a sense of the whole of the music being much more important than any one component part. Younger jazz musicians could get a lot out of this concept in this set.

Outstanding tracks include "Body and Soul, "I Hope Gabriel Likes My Music (with Roy Eldridge), "Bugle Call Rag, "Sing, Sing, Sing (with Gene Krupa), "Life Goes to a Party, Take 2, and "Bumble Bee Stomp. Also included is "And The Angels Sing, which, after a minute of a typical sounding pop ballad, stops, changes groove, and goes into the klezmer tune "Der Shtiler Bulgar (The Quiet Bulgar) for one pass, then segues back into the opening feel, giving trumpeter Ziggy Elman a very interesting feature.

The DVD presentation is more diffuse, drawing from Hollywood film performances that move from features to background function to an almost home-movie quality series from the 1966 Belgian Jazz Festival. The interest here is more cultural than musical. The big disappointment is that while Doc Cheatham is present in the 1966 group, we never really get to hear him do his thing!

This CD/DVD collection will be most interesting to Benny Goodman fanatics or would-be historians of jazz or pop culture. For a deeper understanding of Benny Goodman, clarinet improviser, we must dig deeper. This package is very good, with great sound and clear video, but the printed matter would be even more complete if it listed all of the performing musicians. If you can include recording dates and original serial numbers, go the extra mile and credit all the musicians (and be a little more generous with the type size). Other discs of interest in the Centennial Collection series feature Duke Ellington, Coleman Hawkins, and Fats Waller.


Track Listing: 1 Sometimes I'm Happy 3:44' 2 King Porter Stomp 3:11; 3 Body and Soul 3:32; 4 Good- Bye 3:30; 5 I Hope Gabriel Likes My Music 3:07; 6 Swingtime in the Rockies 3:15; 7 These Foolish Things Remind Me of You 2:35; 8 Moonglow 3:26; 9 Bugle Call Rag 3:00; 10 Jam Session 2:55; 11 Goodnight, My Love 3:11; 12 I Want to Be Happy 2:41; 13 Rosetta 2:42; 14 Sing, Sing, Sing 8:44; 15 Roll 'Em 3:15; 16 Life Goes to a Party [Take 2] 3:08; 17 Lullaby in Rhythm 3:36; 18 Wrappin' It Up 3:03; 19 Bumble Bee Stomp 3:01; 20 And the Angels Sing 3:14; 21 Opus 3/4 2:56; 22 I've Got a Heartful of Music/Avalon/House Hop [multimedia track]; 23 I Know That You Know [multimedia track]; 24 Roll 'Em [multimedia track]; 25 One O'Clock Jump [multimedia track]; 26 Movie Trailer [multimedia track]; 27 Why Don't You Do Right [multimedia track]; 28 Bugle Call Rag [multimedia track]; 29 Newsreel Coverage [multimedia track]; 30 The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise [multimedia track]; 31 Sextet Blues [multimedia track]; 32 The Monk Swings [multimedia track]; 33 The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise [multimedia track]; 34 The Monk Swings [multimedia track]; 35 Interview With Benny Goodman [Audio Only]

Personnel: Chu Berry Piano; Israel Crosby Bass; Roy Eldridge Trumpet; Ella Fitzgerald Vocals; Benny Goodman Clarinet; Lionel Hampton Vibraphone; Gene Krupa Drums; Allan Reuss Guitar; Jess Stacy Piano; Martha Tilton Vocals; Helen Ward Vocals

Title: Centennial Collection | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Bluebird

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Der Dichter Spricht CD/LP/Track Review
Der Dichter Spricht
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 26, 2018
Read Piano Works CD/LP/Track Review
Piano Works
by John Sharpe
Published: April 26, 2018
Read Throw Tomatoes CD/LP/Track Review
Throw Tomatoes
by Mark Corroto
Published: April 26, 2018
Read Reflections 2 CD/LP/Track Review
Reflections 2
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 26, 2018
Read Making Other Arrangements CD/LP/Track Review
Making Other Arrangements
by Ian Patterson
Published: April 25, 2018
Read Charlie & Paul CD/LP/Track Review
Charlie & Paul
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 25, 2018
Read "Sculptures" CD/LP/Track Review Sculptures
by Patrick Burnette
Published: March 2, 2018
Read "Thelonious Sphere Monk" CD/LP/Track Review Thelonious Sphere Monk
by Kevin Press
Published: February 1, 2018
Read "ANDINA: The Sound of the Peruvian Andes" CD/LP/Track Review ANDINA: The Sound of the Peruvian Andes
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: January 6, 2018
Read "Early to Late" CD/LP/Track Review Early to Late
by John Eyles
Published: March 29, 2018
Read "Best of the Bootlegs 2017" CD/LP/Track Review Best of the Bootlegs 2017
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read "Provenance" CD/LP/Track Review Provenance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 17, 2017