My review of the just-released three-CD Elvis Presley box set: A Boy From Tupelo, chronicling his first four private recordings done at Sun, the complete Sun recordings, outtakes and a disc's worth of 1954-55 live performances taken from radio.
As one of Pittsburgh's jazz royalty, Erroll Garner (1921-1977) was a force of nature. With absolutely no formal musical training, he created a body of work bursting with energy, improvisational inventiveness, joie de vivre and an indomitable spirit. A true stylist, Garner was among a handful of jazz innovators whose work appealed to both the jazz cognoscenti and to a far wider audience less familiar with jazz in any form.
On September 30, Legacy Recordings, along with the estate of Pittsburgh-born jazz piano titan Erroll Garner (1921-1977), will release Ready Take One, a collection of 14 never-released performances from recording sessions in 1967, 1969 and 1971, taking place in New York and Chicago.
My review of the new 3-CD, 1 DVD package Highwaymen Live: American Outlaws, live material from 1990 and 1992-93 by the first country "supergroup" (Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson).
Sinatra's 100th Birthday has brought various new releases and celebrations. This is my review of the newly-issued 4 CD set A Voice On Air: 1935-1955, a collection of rare performances taken from 20 years of his radio broadcasts.
This video offers insights into the technical end of producing this material, taken from programs preserved on discs well over half a century old.
Another Pittsburgh Grammy nominee alongside Wiz and the PSO: pianist Geri Allen, Pitt's Director of Jazz Studies. She was co-producer (with Steve Rosenthal) of the recently-released 3-CD set The Complete Concert By The Sea, the best known album by pianist and Pittsburgh jazz giant Erroll Garner (1921-1977). Allen also contributed an essay to the accompanying booklet. This newly-released collection was nominated for a Grammy for Best Historical Album.
Recorded in 1955 on portable recording gear at a California show, the concert was edited from its full length at the time so a vinyl LP--the only medium for albums at that time--could handle it. That album included eight tunes plus an opening announcement. Exciting, lively and inventive, it became Garner's best-known album and one of the most popular jazz albums of all time.
But the complete concert was never released until this collection, which comes with added interviews done with Garner and his musicians recorded after the 1955 show. Pitt is the repository for Garner's archives, as we revealed in this June Blog entry.
Below is my "Believe Your Ears" Podcast review of the collection.
This week's "Believe Your Ears" PG Music Podcast reviews December Day by Willie Nelson and Sister Bobbie on Legacy Recordings. Bobbie Nelson is Willie's older sister and his longtime pianist.