Gerald Wilson

Cruisin' with Gerald

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Bandleader Gerald Wilson's Los Angeles recordings of 1945-49 are among the rarest of his career. Of the 38 selections that he recorded for such labels as Excelsior, Black & White, United Artists and Aladdin, 26 were instrumentals and 15 of those are on this collector's LP plus a vocal by Estelle Edson. Wilson used some of the top L.A.-based players of the era along with a few ringers; among his sidemen are trumpeters Snooky Young, Emmett Berry and Hobart Dotson, trombonists Melba Liston and Vic Dickenson, saxophonists Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis (on an early 1945 session) and Buddy Collette and pianist Jimmy Bunn. The music, mostly originals but also including versions of "Come Sunday," "One O'Clock Jump" and "Cruisin' with Cab," is often quite boppish. These little-known recordings are quite interesting and will hopefully be reissued on CD eventually.