Count Basie

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In 1952, Count Basie put together his second big band after two years of work with six- to eight-piece units. This double LP documents his recordings of that year and it is very interesting to hear the beginnings of his second great orchestra. The soloists are mostly different than he would feature during the remainder of the '50s, with the most impressive voices being the two contrasting tenors of Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis and Paul Quinichette. With new charts by Neal Hefti and Ernie Wilkins, it seems apparent that the band was on its way even if Al Hibbler was, at this point, Basie's vocalist; his version of "Goin' to Chicago" sounds a bit odd. This two-fer also has a pair of combo performances that are Count Basie's first matchup with pianist Oscar Peterson.