Art Tatum

Pieces of Eight

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When this compilation was released in 1981 by Smithsonian it was an instant collectable, as many of the tracks were either previously unreleased, had been released partially edited, or had appeared only on unauthorized issues. The thirteen cuts of Tatum's brilliant solo piano comes from transcription sessions as well as Ray Heindorf's well-documented 1955 Hollywood wrap party for the movie Pete Kelly's Blues. Even though all but one track have since appeared on other LPs or CDs, except for a trio version of "Exactly Like You," this LP is worth acquiring because of its exceptional sound quality, detailed liner notes, and rare photos. Pick it up if you can find it.