Dinah Washington: All of Me

Track

All of Me

Group

Terry Gibbs Sextet

CD

Jazz On A Summer's Day (original soundtrack) (Snapper/Charly 191)

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Musicians:

Dinah Washington (vocals, vibes), Terry Gibbs (vibes), Urbie Green (trombone), Wynton Kelly (piano), Max Roach (drums),

Don Elliott (mellophone), Paul West (bass)

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Composed by Gerald Marks & Seymour Simons

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Recorded: live at Newport Jazz Festival, RI, July 6, 1958

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Rating: 85/100 (learn more)

It's easy to see why novice filmmaker (and non-jazz fan) Bert Stern picked "All of Me" instead of a different Dinah Washington number for Jazz on a Summer's Day (1960), his documentary of 1958's Newport Jazz Festival. Having belted the opening chorus with customary gusto, Dinah steps aside for most of Terry Gibbs's ensuing solo, only to mischievously butt in near the end for some 4-handed vibes frivolity that's as visually entertaining as it is musically negligible. Strictly for listening, however, this track has less to recommend. Max Roach rushes the tempo as the second chorus begins, and Urbie Green's throwback trombone solo, while technically admirable, makes you wonder why J.J. Johnson wasn't at Newport that year.

Another track from the same day, though, shows Miss Washington at her brash best. "Backwater Blues," a tribute to its composer, Bessie Smith, is Dinah-mite with the fuse lit. Backed only by Roach, bassist West and the extraordinary Wynton Kelly on piano, Dinah does her precursor proud. If Bessie was Empress of the Blues, Dinah was the Doyenne of Delight.

Reviewer: Alan Kurtz

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