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Ahmad Jamal - The Complete Collection Part I 1951-1959

Ahmad Jamal - The Complete Collection Part I 1951-1959


American jazz pianist and composer Ahmed Jamal was born Fritz Russell Jones in July 1930. Esteemed Jazz critic Stanley Crouch places Jamal second in importance in the development of jazz after 1945 to Charlie Parker. For five decades he has been one of the most successful small-group leaders in jazz.
He began playing at the age of three, at seven he started lessons and at 14 he was playing professionally. At this point he was already recognised as a "coming great" by no less a talent than Art Tatum. Jamal began touring with George Hudson's Orchestra after graduating from High School in 1948. He moved to Chicago in 1950 (where he legally changed his name to Ahmad Jamal), and played on and off with local musicians such as saxophonists Von Freeman and Claude McLin, as well as performing solo at the Palm Tavern.
He made his first records as 78 RPM discs in 1951 for the Okeh label (which were compiled for the 1958 Epic Album Piano Scene) with The Three Strings (later called the Ahmad Jamal Trio, although Jamal himself prefers not to use the term "trio"): the other members were guitarist Ray Crawford and a bassist (at different times, Eddie Calhoun (195052), Richard Davis (195354), and Israel Crosby (from 1954)). The Three Strings arranged an extended engagement at Chicagos Blue Note, but leapt to fame after performing at the Embers in New York City where John Hammond saw the band play and signed them to Okeh. Jamal subsequently recorded for Parrot (195355) and Epic (1955) using the piano-guitar-bass lineup. The trio's sound changed significantly when Crawford was replaced with drummer Vernel Fournier in 1957, and the group worked as the "House Trio" at Chicago's Pershing Hotel. The trio released the live album But Not for Me which stayed on the ten best-selling charts for 108 weeks. Jamal's well known song "Poinciana" was first released on this album.
This four disc compilation brings together all the music Ahmad Jamal released during his first seven years as a recording artist, covering the period 1951 1959. Including the sides he made for Okeh, his one album for Parrott, his earliest albums for Epic and several records made for Chess offshoot Argo.
Trained in both traditional jazz ("American classical music", as he prefers to call it) and European classical style, Ahmad Jamal has been praised as one of the greatest jazz innovators over his exceptionally long career. Following bebop greats like Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, Jamal entered the world of jazz at a time when speed and virtuosic improvisation were central to the success of jazz musicians as artists. Jamal, however, took steps in the direction of a new movement, later coined "cool jazz" an effort to move jazz in the direction of popular music. He emphasized space and time in his musical compositions and interpretations instead of focusing on the blinding speed of bebop.
 
Tracklist:

DISC 1

1 Old Devil Moon 3:44
2 Ahmad's Blues 2:55
3 Poinciana 4:33
4 Billy Boy 2:39
5 Will You Still Be Mine 2:42
6 Pavanne 4:25
7 Crazy He Calls Me 4:57
8 The Surrey With The Fringe On Top 2:50
9 Aki And Ukthay 3:07
10 Slaughter On 1th Avenue 4:52
11 A Gal In Calico 2:36
12 It's Easy To Remember 2:56
13 New Rhumba 4:39
14 A Foggy Day 4:23
15 All Of You 3:15
16 It Ain't Necessary So 3:00
17 I Don't Wanna Be Kissed (By Anyone But You) 3:25
18 I Get A Kick Out Of You 4:50
19 Jeff 4:52
20 Darn That Dream 3:10
21 Spring Is Here 4:01

DISC 2

1 Perfidia 3:59
2 Love For Sale 8:36
3 Rica Pulpa (Mf Latin) 3:55
4 Autumn Leaves 2:41
5 Squeeze Me 3:53
6 Something To Remember You By 2:51
7 Black Beauty 3:29
8 The Donkey Serenade 3:23
9 Don't Blame Me 3:25
10 They Can't Take That Away From Me 3:02
11 Volga Boatman 3:44
12 Green Dolphin 3:18
13 How About You 5:26
14 I Just Can't See For Lookin 2:02
15 Spring Will Be A Little Late 2:37
16 Beat Out One 5:24
17 Myram 3:37
18 East To Remember 5:36
19 Jim Love Sue 2:53

DISC 3

1 But Not For Me 3:32
2 Surrey With The Fringe On Top 2:35
3 Moonlight In Vermont 3:09
4 Music. Music, Music 2:56
5 No Greater Love 3:26
6 Poinciana 8:07
7 Woody'n You 3:40
8 What's New 4:11
9 Taboo 4:02
10 Should I 3:39
11 Stompin At The Savoy 4:16
12 The Girl Next Door 3:26
13 I Wish I Knew 3:45
14 Cheek To Cheek 4:46
15 Autumn In New York
16 Squatty Roo 2:18
17 That's All 2:38

DISC 4
  
1 This Can't Be Love 5:04
2 Autumn Leaves 7:52
3 Ahmad's Blues 3:58
4 Old Devil Moon 3:58
5 Seleritus 3:07
6 It Could Happen To You 4:17
7 Ivy 2:55
8 Tater Pie 3:15
9 Let's Fall In Love 5:03
10 Aki And Ukthay (Brother And Sister) 3:16
11 You Don't Know What Love Is 3:30
12 I Didn't Know What Time It Was 4:34
13 So Beats My Heart For You 3:39
14 Gal In Calico 4:45
15 Our Delight 3:01


TOTAL RUNNING TIME 278 MIN

DISC 1 Tracks 1-12 originally ‘Piano Scene’ EPIC 1951 LN 3631 • Tracks 13-21 originally ‘Ahmad Jamal Plays’ PARROT/ARGO 1955 LPS 673

DISC 2 Tracks 1-11 originally ‘Ahmad Jamal Trio’ EPIC 1955 LN 3212 • Tracks 12-19 originally ‘Count Em 88’ ARGO 1956 LP 610

DISC 3 Tracks 1-8 originally ‘At The Pershing/But Not For Me’ ARGO 1958 LP 628 • Tracks 9-17 originally ‘Live At The Spotlight/ Trio Vol. 3’ ARGO 1958 LP 636

DISC 4 Tracks 1-9 originally ‘Portfolio Of Ahmad Jamal Vol. 1’ ARGO 1959 LPS 2638 • Tracks 10-15 originally ‘Portfolio Of Ahmad Jamal Vol. 2’ ARGO 1959 LPS 2638



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