Looking back in awe, it seems impossible that anyone could get such a collection of jazz giants into one studio for a recording like this, but that was the genius of Norman Granz. Using his successful Jazz at the Philharmonic formula of grouping together an all-star collection of musicians for a jam session consisting of ballad medleys and full blown swingers, Granz outdid himself on this gem by grouping together Dizzy Gillespie with the likes of Coleman Hawkins, Stan Getz, and Paul Gonsalves for a dream recording of '50s jazz.
With loose, lusty, and wild ensemble playing on the hard driving "Dizzy Atmosphere" and "The Way You Look Tonight," Hawkins is particularly inspired as he growls during his chorus. On the ballad medley, Getz is warm, luscious, and feathery, particularly on "Time After Time." All throughout this set, Diz is his incandescent and jovial self, and he's also quite delicate on the ballads. To hear three tenor giants in friendly dialogue and compare their styles, tones, and ideas is a dream come true for any fan of jazz. Step into this time capsule and relive a era when artists ruled the world.
Track Listing: Dizzy Atmosphere; I'm Thru With Love/Without a Word/Sweet Lorraine/Love Walked In/
September Song; On the Alamo/Stompin' at the Savoy/This Time the Dream's on Me/Time
After Time/Gone With the Wind; The Way You Look Tonight.
I love jazz because it is both challenging and exhilarating, and the endeavor of improvisation is the highest form of art.
I met so many great musicians--including my two earliest heroes, Maynard Ferguson and Dizzy Gillespie--by attending concerts
and being willing to treat them with the respect they deserve.
The best show I ever attended was the Pat Metheny/Ornette Coleman Song X concert at Cornell University.
The first jazz record I bought was an RCA compilation by Dizzy Gillespie.
My advice to new listeners is to not be afraid to listen to something because you're not familiar with the artists or the band or
the genre or anything - this is music that is best experienced through discovery.