It's the mid-'40s, World War II is over, business is booming, people are buying cars, mobility and freedom are within every American's grasp, and big-band jazz is dying, being replaced by jazz that you didn't dance to with your feet but with your head. Bebop it was called, and it fed on improvisation, quick reaction, and virtuoso changes and shifts, and it flowed and bent like a fast-flowing river. The war was over and all things in America were in motion, and when Jack Kerouac decided to write his novel On the Road in the style of bebop trumpet player, a steady string of bending sentences and turns that tried to catch in words the feel of a sax solo, beat was born, the so-called Beat Generation. This intriguing set captures this specific moment in time with flair and style, and it features jazz greats like Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, and Thelonious Monk mixed in with beat-styled readings by Kerouac and others. What emerges is a delightful black-and-white audio photo of a very particular time in America, a time when motion and distance seemed surmountable, a time when freedom in all things, from art to commerce and even where one called home, seemed to be up and in the air, a time when the most important thing seemed to be to just GO.
AllMusic Review by Steve Leggett
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2