VA – In The Beginning …. Bebop

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“The CD’s 12 tracks are actually divided into four from a 1947 Kai Winding date, four from a 1948 Brew Moore outing, and Navarro’s tracks from 1946. The three dates share the unpretentious attitude of Savoy sessions from this period – the era predating the intelligentsia’s co-opting of bop.

The Winding and Moore sessions feature, respectively, the cool-toned tenors of Allen Eager and Moore, who were both part of Woody Herman’s Four Brothers tenor sax lineup. The Winding tracks are similar to the music of Winding’s frequent co-trombonist partner, J. J. Johnson, although Eager’s legato mooing doesn’t generate the sparks that the young Sonny Rollins did on Johnson’s Savoy sessions from this period. The tracks with Moore capture some unremarkable, easy-swinging, cool school bop. Pianist Gene DiNovi is the main point of interest.

Although Navarro’s best work would come shortly after his set here, the trumpeter’s tracks– thanks to the barking tenor of Eddie Lockjaw Davis–are the hottest tunes on the compilation. In addition to Davis’s storming solos, the highlights include the pioneering electric guitar of Huey Long, whose sustaining, slightly distorted tone provides a distinctive flavor to Navarro’s rhythm section, which also includes pianist Al Haig.” – Jim Todd/AllMusic.

Track listing:

00:00 1 Mr. Dues
02:40 2 Saxon
05:25 3 O – Go – Mo
07:57 4 Oh Kai
10:31 5 Blue Brew
13:07 6 Brew Blew
16:04 7 More Brew
19:07 8 No More Brew
21:59 9 Spinal
24:29 10 Red Pepper
27:35 11 Just A Mystery
29:53 12 Maternity

1 to 4
Kai Winding – trombone
Allen Eager – tenor saxophone
Marty Napoleon – piano
Eddie Safranski – bass
Shelly Manne – drums

5 to 8
Brew Moore – tenor saxophone
Gene Di Novi – piano
Jimmy Johnson – bass
Stan Levey – drums

8 to 12
Fats Navarro – trumpet
Eddie Lockjaw Davis – tenor saxophone
Al Haig – piano
Huey Long – guitar
Gene Ramey – bass
Denzil Best – drums


1 to 4: January 22, 1947
5 to 8: October 22, 1948
9 to 12: December 20, 1946


Label: Savoy Records ‎– SV-0169
Format: CD, Compilation, Remastered, Mono
Country: Japan
Released: 1992
Duration: 32:49