- Audio CD (December 9, 2008)
- Number of Discs: 500
- Format: Import
- Label: Membran
- ASIN: B001G8P3KW
- Average Customer Review: 8 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #703,997 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
World's Greatest Jazz Collection - The Encyclopedia of Jazz
Audio CD | Import
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Incredible 500 CD box (yes, five hundred CDs!) that contains five separate 100 CD boxes that spotlight the different periods of Jazz Music (Big Band, Bop, Modern Jazz, Classic Jazz and Swing). This set encompassing an entire Who's Who of 20th century Jazz history: the essence of four decades of jazz, exclusively and compactly compiled especially for you. Doc. 2008.
Top customer reviews
It came in a big cardboard suitcase that was already starting to come apart, although the five sets inside were undamaged. Each set comes in a long cardboard box with 100 CDs, each disc in its own little cardpaper sleeve (pretty sturdy) with track times and artist information. More complete information (dates, personnel) is available in the CD-sized booklets, one per set. I would have preferred it had the boxes had been made smaller (they take up a decent bit of room). They probably could have shaved off a few inches.
The actual musical content is pretty great, although serious jazz collectors will almost certainly complain about the selections. The set works best as a great survey of American jazz from about 1900 to the mid-'60s; I expected to encounter a lot of artists I might have otherwise passed over and it's been quite good for that. The later boxes do seem to suffer from what were presumably copyright and licensing problems, as might be expected, so you get some lesser efforts and live recordings from more recent major artists, but many of these are still interesting and serve as a good signposts for further investigations. Sound is typically quite good; whoever did these transfers avoided scraping off too much noise... you don't get the 'pillows over your ears' effect.
There is one annoying problem, one which seems to crop up in many giant CD box sets: at least one disc is labelled wrong, something you discover when you load them onto your computer. I bitterly miss this Eddie Lang/Joe Venuti disc - it's printed with the right info but the actual disc is Bix Beiderbecke - since the other three discs of their work in this set are so great. I haven't tried to contact Membran for a replacement, but I can't imagine it's easy to get them to send free discs from Germany (this operation seems to be more Brilliant Classics than Bear Family). Having said that, it almost seems petty to complain since what you *do* get is such a good bargain.
I will be back with another review of this collection soon and let you know what I find in the early swing bands (many are very very rare) and others.. All I can say is BUY THIS while it is available.. Check out the Amazon Vendors for pricing..