Various Artists

Ultimate Bebop

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The three discs of Ultimate Bebop were originally released as separate volumes and have now been packaged together as a three-disc box. There's one disc apiece devoted to Bud Powell, Dizzy Gillespie, and Charlie Parker, the three most important bebop innovators, with track selections made by jazz greats profoundly influenced by their work (Chick Corea, Roy Hargrove, and Jackie McLean, respectively). These are decent, if not essential overviews of each artist's recording tenure at Verve -- and all three did some very important work for the label -- but Ultimate Bebop provides only a taste of the bigger picture. In the end, these giants are better served with more extensive anthologies which better illustrate the full range of their talents and innovations.

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