Nat King Cole – Hittin’ The Ramp: The Early Years 1936-1943 Deluxe Box Set, 7 CD

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Released in partnership with the Nat King Cole estate, Resonance Records’ HITTIN’ THE RAMP: THE EARLY YEARS (1936-1943) is the first large-scale collection of the pivotal early recordings (1936-1943) of Nat’s 29-year recording career. Most tracks are receiving their first official release in this meticulously restored set of original live-to-disk recordings.

This definitive 7CD and limited-edition 10LP collection draws upon a wide range of sources, including many newly-discovered tracks unearthed for the first time from archives located all over the world, such as “Trompin” (jukebox-only release for Cinematone, 1939), “What’cha Know Joe” (undocumented radio performance, 1940 — now the earliest known recording of Nat “on the air”), “The Romany Room is Jumpin’” (private recording, 1941) and “Beautiful Moons Ago” (longer alternate take, 1943). Sessions include Nat at age 17, playing piano in his brother’s band in Chicago, 1936; the first King Cole Trio recordings from 1938, made for radio broadcdast only, for Standard Transcriptions; further radio transcription sessions for Standard, Davis & Schwegler, Keystone, plus his first (uncredited) session for MacGregor, with vocalist Anita Boyer; the Ammor Records Session (Spring 1940 – the first commercial-release sessions for the trio), the Decca Recordings (1940-41), the small-label sessions for Excelsior and Premier labels (1943), many previously-uncirculating Armed Forces Radio performances, and, with producer Norman Granz at the helm, early jazz sessions with Lester Young (Granz historic, first session as a producer) and Dexter Gordon, originally released on Philo and Mercury, respectively.


Boasting an extensive 60+ page booklet with rare photographs; essays by acclaimed author Will Friedwald and guitarist Nick Rossi (with a special focus on Oscar Moore); plus interviews and testimonials from Johnny Mathis, Tony Bennett, Quincy Jones, Harry Belafonte, John Pizzarelli, Freddy Cole, Michael Feinstein and many others.


Hittin’ the Ramp features new remastering from original source disks transferred for this set from a number of personal collections and from the archives at University of California – Santa Barbara, The Institute for Jazz Studies at Rutgers University, the the CU Boulder American Music Research Center, and the Library of Congress.


Celebrate Nat King Cole’s centennial in 2019 with this definitive early years multi-disc box set. This is the origin story of a great artist just as he was just “hittin’ the ramp,” launching a distinctive style that would quickly become famous the world over.

Track Listings:
Disc: 1
1. Honey Hush 2:52, 1936, Decca master take
2. Stompin’ at the Panama (Skoller’s Shuffle) 2:59, 1936, Decca master take
3. Bedtime (Sleepy Moan) 2:54, 1936, Decca master take
4. Thunder 1936, Decca master take
5. Mutiny in the Nursery 2:52, 1938, Standard transcription
6. F.D.R. Jones 3:10, 1938, Standard transcription
7. The Sheik of Araby 2:17, 1938, Standard transcription
8. The Blue Danube 2:50, 1938, Standard transcription
9. Button, Button 2:52, 1938, Standard transcription
10. Jingle Bells 1938, Standard transcription
11. Swanee River 1938, Standard transcription
12. With Plenty of Money and You 2:15, 1938, Standard transcription
13. Don’t Blame Me 2:26, 1938, Standard transcription
14. Lullaby in Rhythm 2:48, 1938, Standard transcription
15. Dark Rapture 3:13, 1938, Standard transcription
16. The Wiggly Walk 2:52, 1938, Standard transcription
17. Flea Hop 2:43, 1938, Standard transcription
18. Chopsticks 2:44, 1938, Standard transcription
19. Patty Cake, Patty Cake 2:43, 1938, Standard transcription
20. Blue Skies 2:09, 1938, Standard transcription
21. Liza 2:58, 1938, Standard transcription
22. Three Blind Mice 2:08, 1938, Standard transcription
23. Caravan 2:17, 1938, Standard transcription
24. There’s No Anesthetic for Love 3:15, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
25. Dixie Jamboree 3:04, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
26. Ta-De-Ah 2:39, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
27. Riffin’ at the Bar-B-Q 2:05, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
28. Harlem Swing 2:30, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
29. I Lost Control of Myself 3:16, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription DISC 2:

Disc: 2
1. The Land of Make Believe 2:52, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
2. That Please-Be-Mine-Able Feeling 2:15, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
3. Dancing in the Street 3:09, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
4. You’re So Different 3:02, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
5. I Wouldn’t Have Known It 2:33, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
6. Let’s Get Happy 2:18, 1939, Davis & Schwegler transcription
7. Undecided 2:26, 1939, Standard transcription
8. ‘Taint What You Do 2:53, 1939, Standard transcription
9. Do You Wanna Jump, Children? 2:46, 1939, Standard transcription
10. Riffin’ in F Minor 2:06, 1939, Standard transcription
11. Ol’ Man Mose Ain’t Dead 3:30, 1939, Standard transcription
12. Blue Lou 3:01, 1939, Standard transcription
13. Honey 2:11, 1939, Standard transcription
14. Russian Lullaby 2:07, 1939, Standard transcription
15. Georgie Porgie 2:23, 1939, Standard transcription
16. The Limp 2:52, 1939, Standard transcription
17. Snug as a Bug in a Rug 2:35, 1939, Standard transcription
18. Liebestraum 3:23, 1939, Standard transcription
19. Fidgety Joe 2:57, 1939, Standard transcription
20. Two Against One 3:00, 1939, Standard transcription
21. Some Like it Hot 3:09, 1939, Standard transcription
22. Crazy Rhythm 2:00, 1939, Standard transcription
23. Moonglow 2:57, 1939, Standard transcription
24. Don’t Let That Moon Get Away 2:45, 1939, Standard transcription
25. My Blue Heaven 1:36, 1939, Standard transcription
26. I Was Doing Alright 2:17, 1939, Standard transcription
27. I Can’t Get Started 2:41, 1939, Standard transcription
28. Old Man Moon 2:16, 1939, Standard transcription
29. Carry Me Back to Old Virginny 2:14, 1939, Standard transcription

Disc: 3
1. Moon Song 3:09; 1939, Standard transcription
2. Baby, Won’t You Please Come Home 2:20, 1939, Standard transcription
3. Rosetta 2:11; 1939, Standard transcription
4. Trompin’ 2:46, 1939, Standard transcription
5. You’re My Life 2:54, 1939, Standard transcription
6. Hoy Soy 2:33, 1939, Standard transcription
7. Take ‘Em 2:24, 1939, Standard transcription
8. Scategoria 2:32, 1939, Standard transcription
9. Rhythm Serenade 2:35, 1939, Standard transcription
10. Rib Town Shuffle 2:46, 1939, Standard transcription
11. Music’ll Chase Your Blues Away 2:01, 1939, Standard transcription
12. I’ll Gather Up My Memories 3:34, 1939, Standard transcription
13. A Fool’s Affair 3:34, 1939, Standard transcription
14. Jump, Jack, Jump 2:47, 1939, Standard transcription
15. I Knew a Time 3:05, 1939, Standard transcription
16. Mine You’ll Always Be 3:19, 1939, Standard transcription
17. Doin’ the Bow Wow 2:44, 1939, Standard transcription
18. Lilla Mae 2:18, 1939, Standard transcription
19. I Like to Riff 2:49, 1940, Ammo, master take
20. On the Sunny Side of the Street 2:55, 1940, Ammor master take
21. Black Spider Stomp 2:40, 1940, Ammor master take
22. By the River St. Marie 2:25, 1940, Ammor master take
23. Slew Foot Joe 2:14, 1940, Standard transcription
24. 1-2-3-4 2:09, 1940, Standard transcription
25. Crazy ‘Bout Rhythm 2:04, 1940, Standard transcription
26. Off the Beam 2:18, 1940, Standard transcription
27. King Cole Blues 2:07, 1940, Standard transcription
28. Jivin’ with the Notes 2:01, 1940, Standard transcription
29. Never Mind, Baby 1:45, 1940, Keystone transcription

Disc: 4
1. I’m a Perfect Fool Over You 2:38, 1940, Keystone transcription
2. Lovely Little Person 2:23, 1940, Keystone transcription
3. Love Me Sooner 2:32, 1940, Keystone transcription
4. Sentimental Blue 2:44, 1940, Keystone transcription
5. Goin’ to Town with Honey 2:21, 1940, Keystone transcription
6. Syncopated Lullaby 1:51, 1940, Keystone transcription
7. Falling in and Out of Love 1:50, 1940, Keystone transcription
8. Let’s Do Things 2:01, 1940, Keystone transcription
9. Jumpy Jitters 1:51, 1940, Keystone transcription
10. Nothing Ever Happens 2:35, 1940, Keystone transcription
11. What’cha Doin’ to My Heart 1:37, 1940, Keystone transcription
12. Bedtime 2:45, 1940, Standard transcription
13. Honey Hush 2:18, 1940, Standard transcription
14. French Toast 2:15, 1940, Standard transcription
15. Vine Street Jump 2:43, 1940, Standard transcription
16. B Flat 2:32, 1940, Standard transcription
17. You Send Me 2:11, 1940, Standard transcription
18. Love Is My Alibi 3:13, 1940, Standard transcription
19. Pogo Stick Bounce 2:19, 1940, Standard transcription
20. Whatcha’ Know, Joe? 2:36, 1940, unreleased radio broadcast
21. Sweet Lorraine 2:57, 1940, Decca master take
22. Honeysuckle Rose 2:34, 1940, Decca master take
23. Gone with the Draft 2:44, 1940, Decca master take
24. This Side Up 2:49, 1940, Decca master take
25. Jumpin’ with the Mop 2:26, 1941, Standard transcription
26. Jam Man 2:05, 1941, Standard transcription
27. Let’s Try Again 3:05, 1941, Standard transcription
28. Fudge Wudge 3:51, 1941, Standard transcription
29. Smokey Joe 1:58, 1941, Standard transcription
30. Windy City Boogie Woogie 2:26, 1941, Standard transcription
31. Ode to a Wild Clam 2:26, 1941, Standard transcription

Disc: 5
1. Let’s Try Again 3:10, 1941, MacGregor transcription
2. Whatcha’ Know, Joe? 2:12, 1941, MacGregor transcription
3. Lazy River 1:46, 1941, MacGregor transcription
4. Georgia on My Mind 2:45, 1941, MacGregor transcription
5. Rockin’ Chair 3:13, 1941, MacGregor transcription
6. A Little Jive Is Good for You 3:41, 1941, MacGregor transcription
7. You’ve Changed 3:05, 1941, MacGregor transcription
8. Babs 2:27, 1941, Decca master take
9. Scotchin’ with the Soda 2:35, 1941, Decca master take
10. Slow Down 3:09, 1941, Decca master take
11. Early Morning Blues 2:46, 1941, Decca master take
12. The Romany Room Is Jumpin’ 2:30, 1941, unreleased private recording
13. This Will Make You Laugh 3:14, 1941, Decca master take
14. Stop! The Red Light’s On 2:39, 1941, Decca master take
15. Hit the Ramp 3:21, 1941, Decca master take
16. I Like to Riff 2:48, 1941, Decca master take
17. Call the Police 3:05, 1941, Decca master take
18. Are You Fer It? 3:08, 1941, Decca master take
19. That Ain’t Right 3:14, 1941, Decca master take
20. Hit That Jive, Jack 2:59, 1941, Decca master take
21. Indiana 4:53, 1942, Philo, w/Lester Young
22. I Can’t Get Started 4:55, 1942, Philo, w/Lester Young

Disc: 6
1. Tea for Two 4:47, 1942, Philo, w/Lester Young
2. Body and Soul 5:13, 1942, Philo, w/Lester Young
3. Vom, Vim, Veedle 3:02, 1942, Excelsior master take
4. All for You 3:28, 1942, Excelsior master take
5. Hip Hip Hooray 2:24, 1943, AFRS Jubilee #5
6. I Know That You Know 2:10, 1943, AFRS Jubilee #5
7. I’m Gonna Move to the Outskirts of Town 3:44, 1942 or 1943, Live from the 331 Club
8. Pitchin’ Up a Boogie 3:14, 1943, Excelsior master take
9. I’m Lost 3:19, 1943, Excelsior master take
10. Beautiful Moons Ago 2:27, 1943, Excelsior master take
11. Let’s Spring One 2:43, 1943, Excelsior master take
12. Slender, Tender, and Tall 2:06, 1943, AFRS Jubilee #29
13. I’ve Found a New Baby 4:44, 1943, Mercury, w/Dexter Gordon
14. Rosetta 5:10, 1943, Mercury, w/Dexter Gordon
15. Sweet Lorraine 4:56, 1943, Mercury, w/Dexter Gordon
16. I Blowed and Gone 4:47, 1943, Mercury, w/Dexter Gordon
17. Solid Potato Salad 2:07, 1943, AFRS Jubilee #36
18. F.S.T. (Fine, Sweet & Tasty) 3:07, 1943, Premier master take
19. Got a Penny 2:37, 1943, Premier master take
20. Let’s Pretend 3:18, 1943, Premier master take
21. My Lips Remember Your Kisses 3:11, 1943, Premier master take
22. I’m an Errand Boy for Rhythm 1:51, 1943, AFRS Jubilee #51
23. Straighten Up and Fly Right 2:45, 1943, AFRS Jubilee #51

Disc: 7
1. Honey Hush 2:47, 1936, Decca alternate take
2. By the River St. Marie 2:12, 1938 Standard transcription
3. I Like to Riff 2:33, 1939, Standard transcription
4. Black Spider Stomp 2:54, 1939, Standard transcription
5. Sweet Lorraine 3:23, 1939, Standard transcription
6. Early Morning Blues 2:53, 1940, Standard transcription
7. Gone with the Draft 2:22, 1940, Standard transcription
8. Trompin’ 1:48, 1939, Recorded for Cinematone
9. Sweet Lorraine 2:57, 1940, Decca alternate take
10. Gone with the Draft 2:41, 1940, Decca alternate take
11. Scotchin’ with the Soda 2:25, 1941, Standard transcription
12. Gone with the Draft 2:28, 1941, Standard transcription
13. The Romany Room Is Jumpin’ 2:33, 1941, unreleased private recording, alternate take
14. Hit That Jive, Jack 2:16, 1942, AFRS Mail Call #16
15. Beautiful Moons Ago 3:36, 1943, Excelsior alternate take
16. Honeysuckle Rose 3:20, 1943, AFRS Jubilee #29
17. I Know That You Know 2:53, 1943, AFRS Jubilee #36
18. Solid Potato Salad 2:14, AFRS Command Performance #87
19. My Lips Remember Your Kisses 3:07, 1943, Premier alternate take
20. Straighten Up and Fly Right 2:52, 1943, AFRS Personal Album #227

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