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Reviewers: Don Mather, Dick Stafford, John Eyles, Robert Gibson, Ian Lace, Colin Clarke, Jack Ashby



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Crotchet

 

ERROLL GARNER
Plays Misty
Original Recordings 1953 –1954
NAXOS JAZZ LEGENDS 8.120771

 

 

 

  1. Stompin’ at the Savoy
  2. I’ve Got Your love to Keep Me Warm
  3. You are my Sunshine
  4. I’ve Got the World on a String
  5. Rosalie
  6. In a Mellotone
  7. Don’t worry ‘Bout Me
  8. My Heart sings
  9. Misty
  10. I’ve Got to be a Rug Cutter
  11. There’s a Small Hotel
  12. Exactly Like You
  13. Lullaby of Birdland
  14. Avalon
  15. No Greater Love
  16. Will You Still Be Mine

Erroll Garner – Piano
Wyatt Ruther – Bass
Fats Heard – Drums

There has only been one Erroll Garner and I think it is unlikely that there will ever be another. To go to one of his concerts, and I went to many, was an absolute joy. There was no wasted time, no gimmicks, just superb playing of the best tunes that have ever been. Erroll never even stopped when the audience applauded, long before the applause had died down at the end of one number, he was already playing the introduction to the next tune. Those introductions too were something very special, often long and never giving a hint of what the tune was to be! His bass players were always watching things carefully, to try to work out which number he was going to play and what key it would be in on that night!

As this record demonstrates, his playing was full of joy and he could swing just as well on any tune or in any key. This record is an important part of any jazz collection, because it has some of the best of one of the finest jazz piano players ever. The programme includes old favourites like his own composition ‘Misty’, George Shearing’s ‘Lullaby of Birdland’, a lovely laid back version of ‘Exactly

Like You’ and ‘In a Mellotone (usually ‘In a Mellow Tone) and ‘I’ve Got to be a Rug Cutter’ from the Duke.

Wyatt Ruther and Fats Heard play their parts well, with Erroll every one else had a supporting role, but that is the stature of the man! Even when playing his trade mark four in the bar left hand, everything still swings and he is never so far from the melody that you can’t guess what the tune is.

The reproduction quality is excellent throughout; the standards of restoration possible with today’s tools and skills are amazing.

I like it!

Don Mather



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