Gene Krupa: How High the Moon
How High the Moon
Gerry Mulligan: Mullenium (Columbia/Legacy CK 65678)
Gene Krupa (drums),
Composed by Nancy Hamilton & Morgan Lewis. Arranged by Gerry Mulligan.
Recorded: New York, May 27, 1946
Rating: 86/100 (learn more)
By mid-1946, when Gene Krupa recorded 19-year-old arranger Gerry Mulligan's arrangement of "How High the Moon," the 1940 Broadway show tune was such a jazz staple that interpolating Charlie Parker's "Ornithology" (based on songwriter Morgan Lewis's lunar phases) was a transparent signal of wannabe hipness. Even so, the fading, 37-year-old Swing Era superstar drummer deserves credit, both as talent scout for discovering Mulligan and as bandleader for so crisply executing the lad's buoyant chart. Despite this track's substandard audio on Columbia's 1998 Mullenium CD, the postwar swing-to-bop transition is revealingly documented from the belly of the beastóGene Krupa's throwback big band.
Reviewer: Alan Kurtz
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