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Ray Brown - Jazz Cello

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Jazz Cello

Ray Brown

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On the last day of August and the first day of September 1960, bassist Ray Brown recorded his third album for the Verve label, focusing most of his attention upon the cello while Joe Mondragon handled the bass. The 11-piece band on this date was conducted by arranger Russ Garcia and included reed players Paul Horn and Bob Cooper as well as pianist Jimmy Rowles. The results were typical of late-'50s West Coast mainstream jazz: familiar ballads and friendly, uplifting standards, tidily performed. Some of the tunes reach back to the 1920s, with "Rock-A-Bye Your Baby with a Dixie Melody" serving as a surprisingly hip link with vaudeville as Brown's pizzicato maneuverings are punctuated with punchy blasts from reeds and brass. If one takes the time to place this recording within an historical context, an impressive evolution reveals itself. The first bassist to cross over to cello on records in modern times is believed to have been Oscar Pettiford, while Fred Katz popularized the warm-toned instrument through his work with drummer Chico Hamilton. The progression of jazz cellists since then is impressive, from Ray Brown, Sam Jones, Percy Heath and Ron Carter to Abdul Wadud, David Holland, David Darling, David Eyges and Diedre Murray. By the first decade of the 21st century, an unprecedented number of improvising cellists had appeared, making Ray Brown's 1960 Jazz Cello album seem like a sunny little episode in the foundation of a fascinating modern tradition spanning several generations.
© arwulf arwulf /TiVo

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Jazz Cello

Ray Brown

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1
Tangerine
00:03:13

Johnny Mercer, ComposerLyricist - RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Victor Schertzinger, ComposerLyricist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

2
Almost Like Being In Love
00:04:11

RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Frederick Loewe, Composer - Alan Jay Lerner, Author - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

3
That Old Feeling
00:04:35

RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Lew Brown, ComposerLyricist - Sammy Fain, ComposerLyricist - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

4
Ain't Misbehavin'
00:05:09

Andy Razaf, Author - RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Fats Waller, Composer - Harry Brooks, Composer - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

5
Alice Blue Gown
00:02:37

RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Harry Tierney, ComposerLyricist - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Joseph Allan McCarthy, Author - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

6
Rosalie
00:03:03

Cole Porter, ComposerLyricist - RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

7
But Beautiful
00:03:57

RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Johnny Burke, ComposerLyricist - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Jimmy Van Heusen, ComposerLyricist - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

8
Poor Butterfly
00:03:13

John Golden, ComposerLyricist - RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Raymond Hubbell, ComposerLyricist - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

9
Memories Of You
00:04:50

Andy Razaf, ComposerLyricist - RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Eubie Blake, ComposerLyricist - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

10
Rock A Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody
00:02:06

Sam M. Lewis, Author - RAY BROWN, MainArtist - Joe Mondragon, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Horn, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Young, Author - JIMMY ROWLES, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Jean Schwartz, Composer - BOB Cooper, Oboe, AssociatedPerformer - Med Flory, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Don Fagerquist, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Hood, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - HARRY BETTS, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Russell Garcia, Conductor, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Norman Granz, Producer - Morris Stoloff, Arranger, Orchestrator - Jack Cave, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dick Shanahan, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1960 The Verve Music Group, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

Album Description

On the last day of August and the first day of September 1960, bassist Ray Brown recorded his third album for the Verve label, focusing most of his attention upon the cello while Joe Mondragon handled the bass. The 11-piece band on this date was conducted by arranger Russ Garcia and included reed players Paul Horn and Bob Cooper as well as pianist Jimmy Rowles. The results were typical of late-'50s West Coast mainstream jazz: familiar ballads and friendly, uplifting standards, tidily performed. Some of the tunes reach back to the 1920s, with "Rock-A-Bye Your Baby with a Dixie Melody" serving as a surprisingly hip link with vaudeville as Brown's pizzicato maneuverings are punctuated with punchy blasts from reeds and brass. If one takes the time to place this recording within an historical context, an impressive evolution reveals itself. The first bassist to cross over to cello on records in modern times is believed to have been Oscar Pettiford, while Fred Katz popularized the warm-toned instrument through his work with drummer Chico Hamilton. The progression of jazz cellists since then is impressive, from Ray Brown, Sam Jones, Percy Heath and Ron Carter to Abdul Wadud, David Holland, David Darling, David Eyges and Diedre Murray. By the first decade of the 21st century, an unprecedented number of improvising cellists had appeared, making Ray Brown's 1960 Jazz Cello album seem like a sunny little episode in the foundation of a fascinating modern tradition spanning several generations.
© arwulf arwulf /TiVo

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