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Live at Art D'Lugoff's Top of the Gate

Bill EvansAudio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)

Price: $21.63 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Audio CD, 2012 $21.63  
Vinyl, Box set, Live, 2012 $59.99  

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With Live at Art D'Lugoff's Top of the Gate, Resonance Records offers listeners a table at the front of the stage for a stellar performance by one of jazz's greatest trios. It's October 23, 1968 in Greenwich Village, and legendary pianist Bill Evans is joined by bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Marty Morell for two top-notch sets, represented here in their entirety. Aired only ... Read more in Amazon's Bill Evans Store

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Live at Art D'Lugoff's Top of the Gate + Complete Village Vanguard Recordings 1961 + Legendary Sessions
Price for all three: $59.35

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 12, 2012)
  • Original Release Date: 2012
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • ASIN: B007PNS4TY
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #70,270 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Emily
2. Witchcraft
3. Yesterdays
4. Round Midnight
5. My Funny Valentine
6. California Here I Come
7. Gone With The Wind
8. Alfie
9. Turn Out The Stars
Disc: 2
1. Yesterdays
2. Emily (Alternate Version)
3. In A Sentimental Mood
4. Round Midnight (Alternate Version)
5. Autumn Leaves
6. Someday My Prince Will Come
7. Mother of Earl
8. Here's That Rainy Day

Editorial Reviews

*A newly unearthed discovery of Bill Evans, recorded in Greenwich Village
on October 23, 1968, includes two complete, never before released concerts!*

Deluxe two-CD Digipak
Contains 28-page booklet with essays by Nat Hentoff, Gary Burton, Eddie
Gomez, Marty Morell, George Klabin & Art D Lugoff s son, Raphael D Lugoff.
Includes iconic photos by Tom Copi, Jan Persson, Raymond Ross, Fred Seligo,
and Herb Snitzer. Interesting historical documents includes contracts,
postcards, family photos, and more.

All previously unheard performances. The only Evans recording released from
The Village Gate! Digitally remastered from the original tapes; recorded
and mixed live, providing stellar sound & clarity. Features rare tracks (in
some cases recorded live with the Bill Evans trio for the very first time).

*Featured Artists*
Bill Evans: piano
Eddie Gomez: bass
Marty Morell: drums

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
65 of 68 people found the following review helpful
Format:MP3 Music
Historic Performances Captured More Than 40 Years Ago

Art D'Lugoff opened The Village Gate in 1958 with the idea of seeking out the the hottest talent, hosting prominent jazz artists, including Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Aretha Franklin, and Miles Davis, as well as the best in comedy, including Bill Cosby, Mort Sahl, Woody Allen, and John Belushi. he turned away Bob Dylan, but gave him practice space in the basement. He fired a young Dustin Hoffman for providing poor table service. Playwright Sam Shepard once bused tables. For the next 3 and a half decades `The Gate' was a Jazz Mecca. If you got invited to play The Gate, you were somebody, or you were going to be somebody.

A few years after opening The Gate, and building on the success of the venue, he opened up a club upstairs, The Top Of The Gate. On a cool fall night in 1968, D'Lugoff had managed to book the great Thelonious Monk Quartet and The Charles Lloyd Quartet in The Village Gate. Upstairs, there was only one piano player that could top the legendary Thelonious Monk and that was Bill Evans. And on this same night Evans brought with him one of jazz's greatest ever trios, bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Marty Morell.

In the audience that night was a 22 year old George Klabin who was invited to come down to the club and record 2 sets of the trio. This wasn't all that unheard of, a jazz lover being allowed to record live sets in clubs and as I have dozens of records to attest, it was usually disappointing at best and even disastrous on occasion.

I have dozens of "long lost live sets", that sound like they were recorded by a microphone hidden in a trash can at the back of the room. I have terrible recordings of all the greats; Dizzy, Parker, Monk, and even Miles.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
When I read about this "new" recording in the Wall Street journal about a week before it was released, I knew I had to have it. I pre-ordered it on this reviewer statement alone: "This is comparable to The Complete Village Vanguard Recordings, 1961 recordings". Well, VV is one of my favorite jazz recordings of all time and it didn't seem possible it could be duplicated, but I felt that even if Top of the Gate would only come close, it would still be a "must have" recording. I have to agree that this is comparable to, but not as good as, the VV recordings. That's because by any standard, this is an incredible assembly of great songs of one of the greatest jazz pianists ever on a remarkably clean and efficient recording. What makes it unlike the VV recordings is that it seems to be forced. The bass lines of Eddie Gomez are steady and strong, but they lack the "floatiness" and musicality that Scott LaFaro added to Evans' earlier trio. Likewise with the drums, Marty Morrell does an admirable job of supporting and pushing, sometimes even masterfully driving the music, but he lacks the flow and inventiveness of Paul Motian. Don't get me wrong: this is a great, great recording, and it does have a lot going for it. First of all, I got to hear Bill Evans play a number of songs I'd never heard him play before, including `Round Midnight, My Funny Valentine, and In a Sentimental Mood (one of the most rushed songs on this set). Second, I got to hear him play a number of familiar renditions in a far different, broader, I'll even say experimental manner, such as Witchcraft and Autumn Leaves. The packaging for this set is attractive and informative, and the recording, even in a live setting, is near flawless. Read more ›
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An interesting find, but nothing special September 8, 2012
Format:Audio CD
I've been a huge fan of Bill Evans for about 20 years or so, and I regret that I had never discovered his music when I was growing up in New York, where I could have heard him live in the late 1970s. But the many recordings - notably numerous live recordings - allow me to appreciate his music and his skills as an improviser.

From the very first live recording Evans released, from the Village Vanguard in 1961, through the final live recordings made in the year of his death in 1980, listeners can hear many examples of Evan's live performances with his trios.

This newly "discovered" recording was made at Top of the Gate, the room above the Village Gate, in Greenwich Village in New York City. For these two sets, Evans was recorded by George Klabin, a recording engineer for WKCR-FM, the Columbia University radio station. Klabin had an interesting recording strategy for the time. Instead of a single stereo microphone placed somewhere in front of the musicians, he used three mikes, one for each musician. He then mixed this down to stereo live, positioning the piano in the center, the drums to the left, and the bass to the right. The result is a surprisingly well-defined recording, in spite of this somewhat artificial positioning of the instruments. (A photo on the cover of the booklet shows the piano to the left, the bass in the center, and the drums on the right, which is often the way piano trios perform.) However, the sound is a bit muffled, particularly on the first two tracks. Klabin didn't have any sound check, and adjusted the sound as the performance went on.

The recording lets through crowd noise, and, as on the 1961 Village Vanguard recordings, and on some other live Bill Evans recordings, this provides a realistic atmosphere.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Good stuff. Worth it for bill evans fans.
Published 29 days ago by Jason Kohut
5.0 out of 5 stars What did you expect?
The trio is swingin, the ballads are crystalline, and the young Eddie Gomez is captured in great form.
I love this record.
Published 4 months ago by Tom Tallman
5.0 out of 5 stars Lost music found. Outstanding!!!
Bill Evans is my all time favorite Pianist. This live performance lives up to the reputation. A must have for any Bill Evans fan.
Published 9 months ago by Jeff
3.0 out of 5 stars Just ok
Not his best effort, but th cd was cheap enough
. Glad I didn't buy it on vinyl which is much more $
Published 10 months ago by Nathan Losman
5.0 out of 5 stars Still valid after all these years
A historic romp through some of the classic moments in jazz. Still as valid and exciting today as they were when first recorded.
Published 12 months ago by User #17
5.0 out of 5 stars Still the best
Jazz pianist extraordinaire! Fabulous recording - every instrument is heard and his coloring is light and ethereal! Buy this now.
Published 13 months ago by Douglas H. Bartlett
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite piano sounds from an artist
I used to watch Bill play at the Strictly Taboo Club in Dallas in the 70's. I only went for the pizza and beer until MR. Evans showed up at this venue. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Walter J. Stewart
4.0 out of 5 stars More Bill Evans
The live recording restoration is good, like you're sitting right there in the club--as I remember. A few tunes get different treatments in the second set, sounding out his new... Read more
Published 18 months ago by bunny
2.0 out of 5 stars A bit frantic
I was at Top of the Gate in Sept or October of 1968 and heard this trio live. It wasn't until I read about this new release that I thought much about having been there. Read more
Published 18 months ago by David Lawrence
4.0 out of 5 stars Music Is Very Good, Sonics the Same
This is not Evans at his most introspective. This is more of the upbeat Evans, as the Top Of The Gate was a supper club and, believe it or not, the 2nd tier club to the Village... Read more
Published 19 months ago by J. Bellin
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