Blue Note


The Finest In Jazz Since 1939
High Fidelity

Profoundly Blue (1941)


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Charlie Christian

All of the music on this single CD was formerly out on a now out of print Mosaic box set from the LP era. Three of clarinetist Edmond Hall's four Blue Note dates are reissued in full on this 1998 CD, including all of the alternate takes; the fourth date came out as part of The Blue Note Jazzmen. The outing by Hall's Celeste Quartet (which consists of Hall, guitarist Charlie Christian, Meade Lux Lewis on celeste, and bassist Israel Crosby) has long been famous. The only session that Christian ever made on acoustic guitar and a rare opportunity to hear the celeste featured as a prominent member of a jazz combo, this exquisite date is highlighted by the two takes of "Profoundly Blue," and sticks to blues at various tempos. The second Hall session is late-period swing, with the clarinetist joined by two of Benny Goodman's associates -- vibraphonist Red Norvo and pianist Teddy Wilson -- plus the acoustic chordal guitar of Carl Kress (who recorded far too little during this period) and bassist Johnny Williams. The final set has some unusual instrumentation too, with Hall assisted by trombonist Benny Morton, baritonist Harry Carney, pianist Don Frye, guitarist Everett Barksdale, bassist Junior Raglin, and drummer Sid Catlett. The participation of Carney (heard in a rare outing away from the world of Duke Ellington) is special; he shows off his Coleman Hawkins influence and tends to take solo honors. Overall, this is a highly recommended reissue of swing and blues with hints of Dixieland. ~ Scott Yanow