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At Newport Extra tracks, Live, Original recording remastered

5.0 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Extra tracks, Live, August 18, 1992
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Editorial Reviews

Besides Dizzy Gillespie, no founding father of modern jazz had the tenacity to keep a big band together for an extended period of time. Gillespie managed to do it in the late 1940s and then again in the mid-'50s, creating electrifying music in the process. The band of the 1950s toured the world extensively under U.S. State Department auspices, honing tight sectional play and developing explosive power on a book of new arrangements. Those strengths show in this 1957 Newport appearance, both on the extended treatments of Gillespie's earlier masterpieces, such as "A Night in Tunisia" and "Manteca," and on new material, including Ernie Wilkins's arrangement of Horace Silver's "Doodlin'" and Benny Golson's lustrous "I Remember Clifford." Whether doing comic vocals or letting his trumpet soar over the charging band, Gillespie is in magnificent form here, supported by Golson and Billy Mitchell on tenors, altoist Ernie Henry, and pianist Wynton Kelly. The concert also includes selections from Mary Lou Williams's "Zodiac Suite," with the composer joining the band on piano. --Stuart Broomer
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 18, 1992)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks, Live, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Verve Records
  • ASIN: B0000046LR
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #337,997 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By A Customer on July 14, 2000
Format: Audio CD
A year after Duke Ellington brought the house down at the Newport Jazz Festival, Dizzy came back and did it, too. The big band captured on this disc, the one Dizzy traveled around the world with for the State Department, may arguably have been his best, featuring Al Grey, Ernie Henry, Benny Golson, Pee Wee Moore, Wynton Kelly, and a young Lee Morgan on trumpet. The energy and volume of the orchestra on tunes such as Dizzy's Blues, Manteca, and Cool Breeze is truly incredible. Benny Golson's recently composed 'I Remember Clifford' is given an appropriately somber and moving arrangement. Mary Lou Williams comes out of semi-retirement to play piano on 'Carioca' and three selections from her own 'Zodiac Suite'. The biggest treat on this album, though, is a funky, often hilarious run-through of Horace Silver's 'Doodlin', where baritone legend Pee Wee Moore shows everybody the true meaning of minimalism. And the playing of John Birks himself has never been better, roaring above the rest of the band at will with machine-gun speed and harmonic precision. Trumpeter Lee Morgan has a breakthrough performance when Dizzy gives him the solo for Night in Tunisia, and Morgan responds admirably. This CD reissue is always exciting, often funny, and absolutely essential.
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Format: Audio CD
Why I waited so long to purchase this classic is as much of a mystery to me as Verve's slowness to publish and promote a newly remastered edition. Rate this one along with Ellington at Newport '56 and Basie at Newport '57 as one of the truly memorable recorded occasions of that 50-year-old festival. It also may be the most satisfying, representative album by the ebullient, many-faceted Mr. Gillespie.

There are numerous listeners who didn't come to Dizzy until the late 1960's and later when, like Louis, he was depending increasingly on showmanship and humor (often admittedly less hip than sappy) along with congas, vocals, and shortened, underpowered (but never uninventive) trumpet solos. To those Gillespie-ites who insist Diz was more virtuosic, daring and even musical than Bird, let this Newport set provide further evidence for their case; to those Diz devotees who feel that Miles may have gotten unwarranted marquee treatment at the expense of the greater star, I'm afraid the comparative neglect of this album can only sharpen their point.

Sure, the band is a trifle ragged in spots, but the fast tempos, erratic programming, improbable mix of the personal, the historical, the exotic, the eccentric, the dramatic, and the sheer excitement of pyrotechnics used not for display but to create aesthetic tension all make for one of the most engaging big band performances on record. And through it all Diz does what he does best--"play" with the music. Music even as supercharged as this should be fun, and Diz like Mozart the master player, is the genius who never allows his art to be anything more nor less than a captivating game.

His trumpet work on "Dizzy's Blues" and "Cool Breeze" is spectacular yet effortless at the same time.
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Format: Audio CD
One of the top 10 jazz CDs, in my opinion, this catches Dizzy's "State Dept." big band of the mid 50s LIVE, with arrangements by Benny Golson and with Al Grey, Wynton Kelly, a young Lee Morgan, and - as Dizzy tells you at length...the star of the band...PEE WEE MOORE. OK, well, the set opens up smokin' with "Dizzy's Blues", and if Diz ever played better I have yet to hear it. The band then launches into "School Days", which serves as a double 'take-off'. First, Diz shows the Newport audience that he, as well as the Duke, can whip an audience into a frenzy; and secondarily spoofing the 'one note ride' that had become prevalent in jazz as well as R&B to the point of absurdity. However; as absurd as Diz tries to make it, it still works wonders with a great band blowing changes behind it. "Doodles" is the Pee Wee Moore send-up...Golson's "I Remember Clifford" is truly memorable and "Cool Breeze" catches the band roaring again. Mary Lou Williams comes out and is featured, as mentioned by the previous reviewer. The highlight of the set, for me, is the live, wide-open version of "Manteca" - the best version on record even without congas. Diz sort of ends with "A Night In Tunisia", then clowns the REAL end of the show. This set is memorable for all the things that jazz should be - great playing, great showmanship, and tremendous fun. It is a must have CD.
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Format: MP3 Music
In what turned out to be one of his most celebrated live performances, Dizzy Gillespie
thrilled audiences at The Newport Jazz Festival in 1957, which was exclusively captured
on this winning live album on that same year. Backed by his big band, Dizzy At Newport
gives us the absolute live atmosphere, great performances, Dizzy’s sense of humor and
electrifying solos that help makes it one of the most highly acclaimed and celebrated live
jazz recordings in music history. With a stellar big band cast that includes trombonist Al
Grey, Billy Mitchell, rising young trumpet sensation Lee Morgan, saxophonist- composer
Benny Golson and Quincy Jones doing the arrangements, the orchestra roars with such
extraordinary solos and sheer perfection as Dizzy At Newport showcase Dizzy’s second
great big band at the peak of it’s powers. Featuring an enthralling track list that includes
the blazing Cool Breeze, a humorous take on Doodlin’, School Days (also a hit for Louis
Jordan And The Tympani Five). I Remember Clifford, and Dizzy’s Blues, master pianist-
composer Mary Lou Williams makes her glorious guest appearance on selections of her
famed Zodiac Suite and a stirring rendition of Carioca. As one of the great live big band
albums ever to have grace The Newport Jazz Festival from the 1950’s and early-1960’s
(ranked along with Maynard Ferguson’s highly praised A Message From Newport, Duke
Ellington’s phenomenal Newport albums, Count Basie At Newport, Gerry Mulligan’s The
Concert Jazz Band At Newport and Quincy Jones’ Live At Newport), this live session is
hailed as one of the most highly honoured live big band recordings ever to be produced.
Dizzy At Newport is a gripping and timeless jazz landmark from music history which will
blow you away and leave such a tremendous impact on you.
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