Charlie Parker: Carvin' the Bird
Carvin’ the Bird
Charlie Parker (alto sax)
The Complete Savoy and Dial Master Takes (Savoy Jazz)
Composed by Charlie Parker.
Recorded: Hollywood, February 26, 1947
Rating: 95/100 (learn more)
Just weeks after his release from Camarillo State Hospital, Parker was back in Dial’s studios to record with trumpeter Howard McGhee, saxophonist Wardell Gray and other top West Coast bebop artists. What makes "Carvin’ the Bird" so special—in addition to Bird’s refreshed sound—is Barney Kessel’s unusual guitar intro. Kessel opens with a series of thick, modern chords—a prototype, perhaps, for John Coltrane’s Giant Steps? Despite the crowd of musicians on this date, "Carvin’ the Bird" is an effective blues, with echoes of George Gershwin’s "Fascinating Rhythm," and marks the reemergence of Bird from an especially dark period.
Reviewer: Marc Myers