Charlie Parker

Charlie Parker on Dial, Vol. 1

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The first of six LPs from the English label Spotlite, Charlie Parker's first volume for Dial contains a superior session and a tumultuous one. The former features Charlie Parker and trumpeter Miles Davis with a top-notch West Coast septet playing definitive versions of "Moose the Mooche," "Yardbird Suite," "Ornithology," and "A Night in Tunisia," along with seven alternate takes. In addition, there is a slightly earlier recording of "Diggin' Diz" that teams Parker with trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie. However, this LP concludes with the scary "Lover Man" session during which Bird was in terrible physical shape. He stumbles through ridiculously rapid versions of "Max Making Wax" and "Bebop" with a quintet led by trumpeter Howard McGhee, and visibly struggles through the two ballads "Lover Man" and "The Gypsy"; it's debatable whether this music should ever have been released. Still, collectors will want to get all six volumes in the Dial series.