Live at the FORUM, BATH 1992
George Shearing - Piano, Vocal
Neil Swainson - Bass
BBC Jazz Legends
Just a Mood
All or Nothing at All
For Heaven's Sake
Lullaby of Birdland
If you were the only girl in the world
Loot to Boot
George Shearing is not only a Jazz legend, he's a British Jazz legend and
there are few of those! Blind from birth, but in no way handicapped in his
This concert also features master Bass player Neil Swainson whose contribution
to the music is enormous. The jazz duo is not by any means unknown but unlike
most, this one sounds complete. The musical understanding between them borders
on the uncanny and the swing they generate at any tempo enormous. George
Shearing never plays anything ugly or unmusical, having said that, he is
along way removed from a cocktail pianist, he is a world class jazzer and
no mistake! His work with the Quintet made him one of the world's favourite
jazz stars and he has maintained his standards.
The album is pure enjoyment from start to finish, two men at the top of their
profession, totally complementary in their approach and obviously enjoying
themselves. The show kicks off with a Neil Swainson tune 'Horizon', which
gets things off to a swinging start. A Shearing composition follows 'Just
a Mood' and then the excellent Dave Brubeck tune 'The Duke'
'All or Nothing at All' is one of my favourite tracks with a great Bass intro
and superb improvising from both musicians. George sings on 'For Heavens
sake' and although the result is pleasant, I don't think he could have emulated
Nat Cole in that department although I know he was one of Nat's favourite
pianists. Donna Lee is based on the chords of Indiana and is a piece often
used by jazzmen to show off their technique and command of their instruments;
these two have plenty of both!
The Medley, which is a Shearing solo, is a fusion of the Kerry Dances with
the Kyrie from the B Minor Mass by Bach. 'Wail' is a Bud Powell number; this
one is a real swinger and a tremendous contrast to the gentle style of the
previous track. The CD is completed by 'Loot to Boot' by Errol Garner.
For me, 76.07 minutes of sheer enjoyment.
Don Mather is a Saxophone Player and Bandleader based in