Tuesday, November 1, 2011

CD Box Set of the Month - "Wes Montgomery: Movin' - The Complete Verve Recordings"

CD Box Set of the Month
Wes Montgomery: "Movin' - The Complete Verve Recordings" (Verve/Hip-O Select) 2011

All eight of the albums Wes Montgomery issued on Verve in the mid-'60s (including the two sessions with organ wiz Jimmy Smith) are reunited on this 5-CD box set, plus many bonus tracks – packaged in the Hip-O Select 7" book-styled graphics, complete with lots of liner notes.
In addition to the bonus material, you'll get the full tracks from the albums "Movin Wes" (arranged by Johnny Pate), "Bumpin'" (Don Sebesky's first collaboration with both Wes and Creed Taylor!), "Smokin At The Half Note" (with the Wynton Kelly Trio), "Goin Out Of My Head" (arranged by Oliver Nelson), "Tequila" (scored by Claus Ogerman), "California Dreaming" (Sebesky is back), "Jimmy & Wes - The Dynamic Duo" (Oliver Nelson once again) and "Further Adventures Of Jimmy Smith & Wes Montgomery". 91 tracks in 383 minutes. Original sessions produced by Creed Taylor & engineered by Rudy Van Gelder.

Featuring my dear late friend Bobby Scott on piano, "Movin' Wes" (which came out in '64 but hit #18 on the jazz charts in '67 following its rediscovery in the wake of his "Bumpin'" album) marked the beginning of Wes' Verve era. This period saw the octave-wielding guitar genius leap from jazz-scene favorite to pop-chart regular; of the eight LPs on these 5 CDs, four were pop hits. His guitar pairs beautifully with orchestras -- arranged & conducted by Don Sebesky, Claus Ogerman, Oliver Nelson and the aforementioned Pate) and small groups alike, featuring Herbie Hancock, Wynton Kelly, Roger Kellaway, Ron Carter, Bob Cranshaw, Richard Davis, George Duvivier, Paul Chambers, Grady Tate, Helcio Milito, Jimmy Cobb, Candido Camero and Ray Barretto.

It's worth to mention that, curiously, besides the original Verve CD releases, most of these albums were also reissued, in 1993 and 1994, on Creed Taylor's own CTI label, with new artworks by his son Blake Taylor and using different cover pics by his favorite photographer, Pete Turner.

Complete Personnel: Wes Montgomery (guitar); Margaret Ross (harp); Lewis Eley, Julius Held, Joseph Malignaggi, Sol Shapiro, Arnold Eidus, Louis Haber, Bernard Eichen, Gene Orloff, Paul Gershman, Emanuel Green, Harry Lookofsky, Joe Malin (violin); David Schwartz, Harold Coletta (viola); Abe Kessler, Charles McCracken , Harvey Shapiro , George Ricci (cello); Dan Bank (flute, alto flute, bass clarinet, baritone saxophone); Romeo Penque (flute, piccolo, clarinet, oboe, English horn, tenor saxophone); Jerry Dodgion (flute, piccolo, clarinet, alto saxophone); Ray Beckenstein (flute, piccolo, alto saxophone); Bob Ashton (flute, clarinet, saxophone); Stan Webb (clarinet, English horn, alto saxophone, baritone saxophone); Walter Kane (clarinet, bassoon, tenor saxophone); Phil Woods (clarinet, alto saxophone); Jerome Richardson (woodwinds); Clark Terry, James Nottingham, Donald Byrd, Ernie Royal, Joe Newman, Mel Davis , Snooky Young, Bernie Glow (trumpet); James Buffington (French horn); Danny Moore, Johnny Messner, Jimmy Cleveland, Quentin Jackson, Urbie Green, Wayne Andre, Bill Watrous, Tony Studd, Chauncey Welsch (trombone); Harvey Phillips, Don Butterfield (tuba); Al Casamenti (rhythm guitar); Herbie Hancock, Wynton Kelly, Roger Kellaway, Bobby Scott (acoustic piano); Ron Carter, George Duvivier, Richard Davis, Bob Cranshaw, Paul Chambers (acoustic bass); Jack Jennings (vibes, castanets); George Devens (vibes); Grady Tate, Sol Gubin, Hélcio Milito, Jimmy Cobb (drums); Candido Camero (congas, bongos); Ray Barretto (congas, percussion); Willie Bobo (percussion).

Liner Notes: Chuck Taylor, Marc Myers, Holmes Daylie, Gene Lees, Burt Korall, Johnny Magnus, Orrin Keepnews, Michael Zwerin.
Photographers: David Redfern, Lee Tanner, Chuck Stewart.

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