Count Basie: Counter Block
Count Basie and His Orchestra
Breakfast Dance and Barbecue (Roulette 52028)
Count Basie (piano), Frank Foster (tenor sax), Thad Jones (trumpet), Joe Williams (vocals), Frank Wess (reeds), Marshall Royal (alto sax), Billy Mitchell (tenor sax), Charlie Fowlkes (baritone sax), Joe Newman (trumpet), Wendell Culley (trumpet), Snooky Young (trumpet), Harry "Sweets" Edison (trumpet), Al Grey (trombone), Benny Powell (trombone), Henry Coker (trombone), Freddie Green (guitar), Eddie Jones (bass), Sonny Payne (drums).
Composed by Thad Jones.
Recorded: Miami, Florida, May, 1959
Rating: 100/100 (learn more)
This performance by the Basie band took place during a late-night gig at a Disc Jockeys of America convention on May 31, 1959. The dance for 2000+ people started at 2 a.m. and ended at 7 a.m. (Basie’s band had been booked at Birdland that week. The band flew to Miami late at night, played the gig and then returned to NYC after the gig in time for their scheduled performance at Birdland that evening.) Thad Jones wrote this tune, and you can hear the genesis of the band he shared with Mel Lewis a few years later. It's fascinating to listen to Sonny Payne play this; like the whole band, he swings like crazy. Other tracks are all great, especially those with singer Joe Williams. A wonderful album.
Reviewer: Peter Erskine (for Desert Island Dozens)