Chet Baker

Love Songs

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Columbia's Chet Baker entry in its Love Songs compilation series mixes tracks from three of Baker's original LPs onto one disc. Included are tracks from the early-'50s classic Chet Baker & Strings, the lesser '70s Carnegie Hall Concert reunion album with Gerry Mulligan, and the trumpeter's 1974 comeback CTI album, She Was Too Good to Me. All are must-hear dates for any Baker fanatic and duly fit the "love song" category, but barring Chet Baker & Strings, none really hold much interest for the casual listener -- the person most likely to want a compilation album. Given that most Baker fans will want the full-length versions -- which have all been reissued on CD -- and that there are better Baker comps available, Love Songs doesn't really seem like the place to start listening to the icon of '50s cool jazz for a romantic evening or otherwise.

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