Basie's orchestra of course began as a territory band, and the classic "Dickie's Dream" was first recorded in 1939 by Basie's smaller Kansas City Seven, featuring solos by Buck Clayton, Lester Young and Dickie Wells. Bernstein based his arrangement, however, on the all-star big band fronted by Basie on CBS-TV's memorable The Sound of Jazz special from 1957. (In his liner notes, Bernstein mistakenly credits the 1957 arrangement to Andy Gibson; it was in fact written by Nat Pierce.) A Freddie Green-styled guitar riff and bustling drum accents launch the track, and the band enters playing the insistent theme with an authentic-sounding harmonic texture. A guitar fill precedes Gayton's fluently swinging trombone solo, unrelenting guitar riffs spurring him on. Burnham's slow-burning violin improv invokes both Claude Williams and Stuff Smith, as horn figures blare behind him. Apfelbaum grabs your attention from his first pungent phrase, which he then embellishes and amplifies creatively for the rest of his solo. Guitarist Wamble is next, in a Django Reinhardt mode, followed by Munisteri leaning more towards Charlie Christian. The band drops in still more riffs as the guitars exchange gliding passages. The wailing out chorus is riveting, augmented by Perowsky's rousing and unfettered big band drumming.
November 15, 2008 · 0 commentsTags: count basie covers
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