Charlie Parker: Bird Gets the Worm


Bird Gets the Worm


Charlie Parker (alto sax)


Charlie Parker/Miles Davis Birdsong (Savoy Jazz 17180)

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Charlie Parker (alto sax), Duke Jordan (piano), Miles Davis (trumpet), Tommy Potter (bass), Max Roach (drums).

Composed by Charlie Parker


Recorded: Detroit, December 21, 1947


Rating: 97/100 (learn more)

This track has no pretense of melody. The red light comes on, Parker sets a furious tempo, and the musicians take off on the chords of "Lover Come Back to Me." Of course, boppers often copped the changes from some standard and overlaid a thinly disguised tune to create an "original" (wink, wink) composition. Here, however, Bird seems impatient. Perhaps, four days before Christmas, he's anxious to finish his last-minute shopping. Whatever, Parker's leadoff solo is one of his most jaw-dropping on record, and Miles's assured cup-muted follow-up is the ideal complement. With improvising like this, who needs a melody?

Reviewer: Alan Kurtz

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