Various Artists

Great Jazz Pianists [Melodie]

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AllMusic Review by arwulf arwulf

The Classics chronological reissue series offers an unprecedented overview of vintage jazz and blues, transcending the original label copyright restrictions in order to document the recording careers of musicians who lived and died both in the limelight and the penumbra of popular culture. Each CD in the series represents a segment of a given artist's professional life, presenting, on the average, 24 historical tracks culled from original 78 rpm platters and early LPs. Drawn directly from this outstanding series, Great Jazz Pianists is a triple-disc tribute to three archetypal musicians whose innovations shaped the development of jazz and popular music: Jelly Roll Morton, Willie "The Lion" Smith and Art Tatum. In each case, the discs chosen from the series contain both solo and ensemble performances. Tatum's disc (1934-1940) references his early maturity; Smith's portion (1938-1940) focuses upon his peak middle years as soloist and bandleader, while Morton's contribution consists only of his very last recordings, cut for the General label in December 1939 and January 1940. Between the three of them, these pianists represent the evolution of jazz from its blues and ragtime origins through swing to the early intimations of bop. This entertaining and informative history lesson is recommended for listeners of all ages and of every persuasion.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Art Tatum 03:09 Amazon
2 03:09 Amazon
3 Art Tatum 03:09 Amazon
4 Art Tatum 02:43 Amazon
5 Art Tatum 03:09 Amazon
6 Art Tatum 03:02 Amazon
7 Art Tatum 02:53 Amazon
8 Art Tatum 03:13 Amazon
9 Art Tatum 03:26 Amazon
10 Art Tatum 02:44 Amazon
11 Art Tatum 02:39 Amazon
12 Art Tatum 03:20 Amazon
13 Art Tatum 03:17 Amazon
14 Art Tatum 03:06 Amazon
15 Art Tatum 03:03 Amazon
16 Art Tatum 02:46 Amazon
17 Art Tatum 03:08 Amazon
18 Art Tatum 02:16 Amazon
19 Art Tatum 03:00 Amazon
20 Art Tatum 02:22 Amazon
21 Art Tatum 03:00 Amazon
22 Art Tatum 02:45 Amazon
23 Art Tatum 02:51 Amazon
24 Art Tatum 02:32 Amazon

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Jelly Roll Morton 03:05 Amazon
2 Jelly Roll Morton 02:51 Amazon
3 Jelly Roll Morton 02:49 Amazon
4 Jelly Roll Morton 02:50 Amazon
5 Jelly Roll Morton 02:51 Amazon
6 Jelly Roll Morton 02:45 Amazon
7 Jelly Roll Morton 02:50 Amazon
8 Jelly Roll Morton 02:49 Amazon
9 Jelly Roll Morton 02:42 Amazon
10 Jelly Roll Morton 03:00 Amazon
11 Jelly Roll Morton Seven 02:54 Amazon
12 Jelly Roll Morton Seven 02:34 Amazon
13 Jelly Roll Morton Seven 02:46 Amazon
14 Jelly Roll Morton Seven 03:12 Amazon
15 Jelly Roll Morton Six 02:46 Amazon
16 Jelly Roll Morton Six 02:51 Amazon
17 Jelly Roll Morton Six 02:38 Amazon
18 Jelly Roll Morton Six 02:52 Amazon
19 Jelly Roll Morton Seven 02:52 Amazon
20 Jelly Roll Morton Seven 02:53 Amazon
21 Jelly Roll Morton Seven 02:38 Amazon
22 Jelly Roll Morton Seven 02:43 Amazon

Track Listing - Disc 3

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Joe Bushkin / Willie "The Lion" Smith / Jess Stacy / George Wettling 02:34 Amazon
2 Joe Bushkin / Willie "The Lion" Smith / Jess Stacy / George Wettling 02:59 Amazon
3 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:42 Amazon
4 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:43 Amazon
5 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:40 Amazon
6 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:39 Amazon
7 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:43 Amazon
8 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:47 Amazon
9 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:34 Amazon
10 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:48 Amazon
11 Lavay Smith & Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers 02:43 Amazon
12 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:54 Amazon
13 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:42 Amazon
14 Willie "The Lion" Smith 02:41 Amazon
15 Willie "The Lion" Smith 03:03 Amazon
16 Lavay Smith & Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers 02:40 Amazon
17 02:40 Amazon
18
02:50 Amazon
19 03:14 Amazon
20 02:40 Amazon
21 Willie "The Lion" Smith / Joe Turner 02:44 Amazon
22 Willie "The Lion" Smith / Joe Turner 02:49 Amazon
23 Willie "The Lion" Smith / Joe Turner 02:35 Amazon
24 Willie "The Lion" Smith / Joe Turner 02:53 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick