1947-1950

Leo Parker - 1947-1950

2002 | Melodie Jazz Classic 

  • CD

    $24.99

    1947-1950

    03/26/2002

  • iTunes

    Prices may vary.

    Subject to availability.


All Music Guide Review

There's something about the purling, snarling and booting of a baritone sax that can create pleasant disturbances in the listener's spine and rib cage. Leo Parker came up during the simultaneous explosions of bebop and rhythm & blues. Everything he touched turned into a groove. Recording for Savoy in Detroit during the autumn of 1947, Leo was flanked by Howard McGhee and Gene Ammons, who at this point seems to have been operating under the influence of Lester Young. Leo does his own share of Prez-like one-note vamping, bringing to mind some of Lester's Aladdin recordings made during this same time period. Leo's Savoys originally appeared on 78 rpm platters, then on 10" long-playing records. Anyone who has ever heard one of these relics played on period equipment can testify to the sensation of hearing an old-fashioned phonograph wrestling with the extra fidelity contained in the voice of that king-sized sax. The next session happened in New York two months later. J.J. Johnson was on hand to supervise a smart recording of his own soon-to-be-famous "Wee Dot." Dexter Gordon is in fine form and it's nice to hear Joe Newman blowing so much gutsy bebop through his trumpet. Everything smoothes out for a gorgeous rendition of Duke Ellington's "Solitude," a lush feature for the baritone. The rhythm section of Curly Russell, Hank Jones and Shadow Wilson makes this particular session even more solid than usual. Leading his "Quintette" in Detroit on March 23rd, 1948, Leo races into "Dinky" with a run straight out of Herschel Evans' "Doggin' Around." Sir Charles Thompson tosses off some of his most fragmented playing, splattering the walls with abrupt block chords and tiny whirlpools of truncated riffs. "SeƱor Leo" cruises at a very cool, almost subterranean Latin tempo, a mood that brings to mind Bud Powell's hypnotic opus "Comin' Up." You get to hear the voices of Parker and Thompson at the beginning of "Chase 'n' the Lion," a fine bit of updated boogie-woogie. Apparently, Sir Charles was also known at that time as "Chase." A second session recorded on the same day adds Charlie Rouse to an already steaming band. Leo gnaws his way through four tunes of his own devising. Nothing brilliant here, just good hot jamming. The people at Prestige Records were smart enough to line up a date with the Leo Parker Quartet in July of 1950, resulting in what has got to be the hippest version of "Mona Lisa" ever put on record. The quartet hatched two other handsome ballads and a pair of kickers. "Who's Mad" is a sort of sequel to the famous "Mad Lad," made when Leo was recording for the Apollo label under Sir Charles' leadership. That makes "Mad Lad Returns" a sequel to the sequel. Unable or unwilling to shake this particular thematic, Leo called his next recording band "the Mad Lads." Two out of four sides were issued on the little Gotham label. Meet the all-but-forgotten Henri Durant, a bop tenor who made all the right moves and promptly split the scene. Good thing he at least made it on to this blowing session. Finally, get a load of Leo's creatively reconstituted "Solitude," rejected by Gotham but included by Classics at the tail-end of this mother lode of vintage recordings by the amazing Leo Parker. ~ arwulf arwulf, Rovi

1947-1950 Track Listing

  • #
  • Title
  • time
  • 1
  • El Sino
  • 3:15
  • Sound Clip for El Sino from 1947-1950

  • 2
  • Ineta
  • 2:55
  • Sound Clip for Ineta from 1947-1950

  • 3
  • Wild Leo
  • 2:58
  • Sound Clip for Wild Leo from 1947-1950

  • 4
  • Leaping Leo
  • 3:06
  • Sound Clip for Leaping Leo from 1947-1950

  • 5
  • Wee Dot
  • 2:45
  • Sound Clip for Wee Dot from 1947-1950

  • 6
  • Solitude
  • 2:53
  • Sound Clip for Solitude from 1947-1950

  • 7
  • Lion Roars
  • 2:52
  • Sound Clip for Lion Roars from 1947-1950

  • 9
  • On the House
  • 3:03
  • Sound Clip for On the House from 1947-1950

  • 10
  • Dinky
  • 2:28
  • Sound Clip for Dinky from 1947-1950

  • 11
  • Senor Leo
  • 2:40
  • Sound Clip for Senor Leo from 1947-1950

  • 13
  • Leo's Blues
  • 2:26
  • Sound Clip for Leo's Blues from 1947-1950

  • 16
  • The New Look
  • 2:28
  • Sound Clip for The New Look from 1947-1950

  • 17
  • Mona Lisa
  • 3:17
  • Sound Clip for Mona Lisa from 1947-1950

  • 18
  • Who's Mad
  • 3:08
  • Sound Clip for Who's Mad from 1947-1950

  • 19
  • Darn That Dream
  • 3:04
  • Sound Clip for Darn That Dream from 1947-1950

  • 21
  • Mad Lad Returns
  • 2:51
  • Sound Clip for Mad Lad Returns from 1947-1950

  • 22
  • Woody
  • 2:50
  • Sound Clip for Woody from 1947-1950

  • 25
  • Solitude
  • 3:21
  • Sound Clip for Solitude from 1947-1950

  • Credits of 1947-1950

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