Harry Betts

Jazz Soul of Doctor Kildare

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This wasn't the first album of its kind -- others had done jazz interpretations of television music, going back to the '50s -- but Harry Betts' Jazz Soul of Doctor Kildare was one of the better ones in the subgenre, an enjoyable and occasionally surprisingly ambitious pop-jazz creation, by a top arranger and trombonist. Betts and company -- including Jack Sheldon, Bud Shank, Conte Candoli, and Red Callender on tuba, no less -- manage to find room for improvisation without straying so far from the mood and character of the series for which the music was written that it ever becomes unrecognizable. And engineer Bones Howe recorded them so crisply and vividly that the record has held up as an audiophile quality release across more than three decades, even earning a Mobile Fidelity CD reissue in the '80s.