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Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? Original recording remastered

4.6 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, September 18, 2007
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Editorial Reviews

Jimmy's blazing organ riffs and the Oliver Nelson Orchestra met again on this 1964 LP, now on CD for the first time in the U.S.! Includes the title track; Slaughter on 10th Avenue; Bluesette; Wives and Lovers ; a bonus cut, and more.
  • Sample this album Artist (Sample)
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30
7:06
Album Only
2
30
4:27
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3
30
4:58
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4
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5:16
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5
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3:18
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5:46
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3:41
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 18, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Verve
  • ASIN: B000TJ6CJU
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #225,620 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Originally recorded in January 1964, WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOLF was a Creed Taylor production released on vinyl by Verve Records. The arrangements for most tunes start with a smooth orchestral opening and Smith playing melody. The orchestra crescendos and departs to make room for Jimmy Smith's incredible improvisations. This is best illustrated on "Slaughter" and the first version of the title cut.
More mainstream but nonetheless enjoyable are Smith's comparatively low-key versions of Bacharach's "Wives and Lovers" and Toots' standard "Bluesette."
It's been a long but worthwhile wait for this essential piece of Jimmy's prolific catalog. The disc's packaging is faithful to the original gatefold record cover.
JB
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Format: Audio CD
This CD is so great I had a special recording studio convert my old vinyl copy to a CD so I could have it in my car! This is one of Jimmy's BEST. "Slaughter on 10th Avenue" just builds to a mighty crescendo that just leave you exhausted, exhilarated and smiling. It is so incredible and then the second track, "Virginia Woolf" takes off and you're off on another incredible adventure in Jimmy's undeniable perfection of the Hammond B-3. Others have followed, others have tried, but Jimmy has always brought innovation to the Hammond that has never been equalled. Jimmy has many, many albums, but this one, "The Cat" and also the great "Jimmy and Wes" bring new heights to jazz for all the ages. It's great -- you need this if you have any Jimmy Smith CDs in your collection, and you need the three mentioned here for a GOOD collection!
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Best album I have ever heard. Good mix of styles of music. Best jazz organist of all time. I have listened to this album on records and CD for 40 years and am taken to near Nirvana each time.
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Format: Audio CD
If you love hard-driving big bands, Jimmy Smith at the B3, and don't own a copy of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, order this great CD right now!

The first three tracks (Slaughter On Tenth Avenue & Virginia Woolf, Parts 1 & 2) are so exciting and exhilarating, it actually takes a while to recover from them. Jimmy Smith never sounded more inspired as he and the band--especially the rhythm section--unleash absolute torrents of sound.

This Verve Originals CD reproduces the look of the 1964 double-sleeve LP. The CD audio quality preserves the electrifying sound of the original LP. Nice work by reissue producer Bill Levenson, and mastering engineer Ellen Fitton.

Two great musicians were responsible for the band arrangements: Oliver Nelson and Claus Ogerman. Unfortunately, their separate contributions aren't identified on the CD. (I believe that information was on the LP labels and wasn't picked up for the CD.)

The blistering charts for Slaughter on Tenth Avenue and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (Parts 1 & 2) were arranged and conducted by Oliver Nelson.

Claus Ogerman arranged and conducted the tasty versions of Wives and Lovers, Women of the World, and Bluesette.

Jimmy Smith is credited as arranger on John Brown's Body. (The famous tune is better known with the words to The Battle Hymn of the Republic.)
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Still a silly cover, but hey, better that than a repackaged one. I had the title tracks on reel tape ever since it came out, but really didn't know much about the rest of the album until now, when it was finally released on CD. The title tracks (Parts 1 and 2) are still the centerpiece of the disc, so far as I'm concerned. If you like the big band music of the 1960s (check out what Woody Herman was doing in his old age, for instance) and you like the Jimmy Smith school of organ funk, this is the apotheosis of the combination right here. "Slaughter on Tenth Avenue," a bit of jazzy movie music from the pen of one of the greatest Broadway musical composers in history, Richard Rodgers, gets a good setting too, and the improbable transformation of a section of it into a jazz waltz works very well. We get two more jazz waltzes ("Wives and Lovers" and Thielemans' "Bluesette"), and, while Jimmy can smoke up a waltz, there becomes a bit too much waltz on the album. That leaves the bossa nova-ish "Women of the World," which Jimmy rightly turns to a more aggressive (but still Latino) jazz number, and "John Brown's Body," which only sounds like it will be rather stupid but in fact becomes a substantial piece in Jimmy's sure hands. Yep, one of the best Jimmy Smith LPs, now on CD. Crank this up on your stereo and watch the dog cower under the sofa.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I ordered the MP3 version of this album and I am highly disappointed. It sounds watered-down. The crescendos I remember from when I used to play the vinyl almost everyday (a few decades ago) are not there. It reminds me of how music sounds when you copy a cassette about four or five times.

Buy the vinyl or nothing at all. If you really liked this album in its original form and sound, you will not like the MP3 version that is offered here. It is not even close.
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