George Shearing

The Complete Capitol Live Recordings

  • AllMusic Rating
    9
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Pianist George Shearing, whose vibes-guitar-piano-bass-drums quintet was one of the most popular in jazz throughout the '50s and '60s, seemed to have had a dual career while signed to Capitol. While his studio recordings often found his quintet augmented by strings, voices, brass, and/or Latin percussion in performances closer to mood music (or even Muzak) than jazz, his live engagements were definitely in the cool/bop vein. This Mosaic five-CD limited-edition box set brings back his five in-concert recordings, two of which are now double in length thanks to the inclusion of 13 previously unissued selections. There is more variety than expected to this program, with the full quintet featured on most numbers but space also set aside for showcases by the trio, Shearing's solo piano, and his regular "guest" Armando Peraza on congas. Shearing is the star throughout, although the sidemen include such fine players as vibraphonists Gary Burton, Emil Richards, and Warren Chiasson; guitarists Toots Thielemans (who plays harmonica on "Caravan"), Dick Garcia, John Gray, and Ron Anthony; bassists Al McKibbon, Ralph Pena, Bill Yancey, and Gene Cherico; and drummers Percy Brice and Vernel Fournier. Shearing's funny comments to the audience have also been included, and the result is a classy show filled with accessible but surprisingly inventive bop-based music.

Track Listing

Title/Composer Performer Time
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
blue highlight denotes track pick