Bud Powell

The Genius of Bud Powell

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In 1951, Bud Powell was still at the height of his considerable powers. Included here are two sessions from that year: a trio with Ray Brown and Buddy Rich (three takes of "Tea for Two" and a super-fast "Hallelujah") and eight solo piano tunes from a different date. On "Tea for Two," Rich's drumming brings out the charming show-off in Powell, and on "Hallelujah," Powell plays with a hysterical clarity. "Oblivion" and "Hallucinations" are the most masterful of the eight solo cuts. Here Powell swings effortlessly and seems to be speaking his own, true language. The elegance of another era pervades the Gershwin-esque "Parisian Thoroughfare" and "Dusk in Sandi." And one can imagine a young Bill Evans listening to "A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square" and taking note of the rich, logical voicings coupled with a wonderful singing tone.

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