Claude Thornhill

1946-47 Performances, Vol. 2

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The U.K.'s Hep label continues its tribute to Claude Thornhill & His Orchestra with this second volume devoted specifically to recordings made in 1946 and 1947. Opening with a pair of definitively rare transcription discs from an unspecified date in 1946, this exciting compilation plows through the standard Thornhill session discography from August 11 to December 17, 1947, salvaging a long-lost alternate rendition of "La Paloma" and an adaptation of "The Troubadour," a movement from Modest Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition. What makes this edition perhaps more adventuresome than Vol. 1 is the emphasis upon early modern jazz. This means that even as the sweet element was still active (especially in the form of pop tunes interpreted by vocalist Fran Warren), Thornhill was hiring skilled young improvisers like Red Rodney, Danny Polo, and Lee Konitz while granting arranger Gil Evans freedom and license to incorporate bop themes and progressive tropes into the band's operative infrastructure. Suddenly, Thornhill's book was sprouting contemporary outgrowths like Trummy Young's "Sorta Kinda" and Sir Charles Thompson and Illinois Jacquet's "Robbins' Nest," as well as Dizzy Gillespie and/or Charlie Parker compositions like "Anthropology," "Donna Lee," and "Yardbird Suite." The omission of ten quartet recordings dating from this part of the Thornhill chronology suggests that the producers saved the more intimate small-group episodes for a different volume in the series.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
02:26
2
02:28
3
04:45
4 05:59
5
03:13
6
03:20
7 03:06
8 02:49
9
03:25
10
03:18
11
03:11
12
03:24
13 03:19
14
03:32
15
03:01
16
03:13
17
03:09
18
03:26
19
02:56
20
03:22
21
03:23
22
03:07
23
03:18
blue highlight denotes track pick