Basie's Beatle Bag

Basie's Beatle Bag

by Count Basie & His Orchestra

CD

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Overview

The Count and his orchestra tackle the music of the Fab Four, without any hint of condescension or lassitude. Indeed, the 11 songs by John Lennon and Paul McCartney and one ("Kansas City") by Leiber & Stoller are treated with the same kind of dignity and enthusiasm that the band would give to the likes of Johnny Mercer or Harold Arlen. "Kansas City" is the bluesiest number here, and the one with which the band is obviously the most comfortable -- it's the only number here that could have appeared, as is, on any Basie album of the previous decade. But "Michelle" is the best track here, a gently swinging rendition in which Basie's piano is featured in some pleasing flourishes and the band slips into a satisfying groove. The rest also comes off well -- the ballads fare the best, showing off the quieter side of the band, stretching out and luxuriating on pieces like "Do You Want to Know a Secret." Basie and company also rise to the occasion on rockers like "I Wanna Be Your Man" and "Can't Buy Me Love," taking big bites out of the beat and the principal melodies with some hot ensemble playing and solos. In the end, the songs and the band are both well served by Chico O'Farrill's arrangements, which manage to maintain the familiar and emphasize some surprises. Even "Yesterday," the most over-recorded of the Beatles' songs, comes off fresh, with a moving jazz vocal treatment from Bill Henderson supported by Basie's engaging organ fills and a quietly soaring trombone and sax section. The band romps, and the soloists, in addition to Basie, include Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis and Al Grey.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/21/1998
Label: Polygram Records
UPC: 0731455745528
catalogNumber: 557455

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Count Basie & His Orchestra   Primary Artist
Count Basie   Organ,Piano,Trombone
Freddie Green   Guitar
Grey   Trombone
Bill Henderson   Vocals
Grover Mitchell   Trombone
Marshall Royal   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Wallace Davenport   Trumpet
Aarons   Trumpet
Henderson Chambers   Trombone
Sonny Cohn   Trumpet
Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis   Tenor Saxophone
Eric Dixon   Flute,Tenor Saxophone
Charlie Fowlkes   Flute,Bass Saxophone
Philip Guilbeau   Trumpet
Bill Hughes   Bass Trombone
Norman Keenan   Bass
Sonny Payne   Drums
Bobby Plater   Flute,Alto Saxophone
Count Basie Orchestra   Track Performer

Technical Credits

Chico O'Farrill   Arranger
Teddy Reig   Producer
Richard Seidel   Executive Producer
Pete Spargo   Producer
Sung Lee   Artwork
Ami Hadim   Engineer

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