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Norman Granz Jazz In Montreux Presents Count Basie Jam '75
Norman Granz Jazz In Montreux Presents Count Basie Jam '75
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
NR     2004     1hr 5min

Norman Granz is one of the most important non-musicians in the history of jazz and no one has made a greater contribution to the staging, recording and filming of jazz concerts. This series of performances from the prestig...  more »


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Movie Details

Genres: Music Video & Concerts
Sub-Genres: Pop, Basie, Count, Jazz, DTS
Studio: Eagle Rock Ent
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen
DVD Release Date: 09/21/2004
Release Year: 2004
Run Time: 1hr 5min
Screens: Color,Full Screen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Fun Concert..and correction for S J BUCK
Jeff Phillips | Orlando,Fl | 03/29/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Basie rhythm section is of course tight, and I would agree that the front line is not always cohesive, but I still think its great fun. For SJ,in your reply to my Oscar review, the "run" you refer to in "NightTime" is not part of the tune. You have the transciption book taken from the "Live At The Blue Note" concert. He just happened to do a run before the tune and it was put into the transcription for some strange reason. I have no less than 6 recordings of the tune and have heard it live twice. In late 1989 and 1998. Not trying to be a smarty pants, but that is the deal"
Can't go wrong
S J Buck | Kent, UK | 03/10/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This series of DVD's is a treasure trove.
This is basically a jam session with NHOP, Johnny Griffin, Roy Eldridge and Milt Jackson. All are excellent.
Billies Bounce and Lester Leaps are the two well known numbers, the other two are just blues jams.
The Count of course is as cool as can be.
Obviously this being 1975 the sound is not up to modern standards.
That said, these guys are giants of Jazz and I am grateful that they have been captured on film at all.
You can always Count on Basie!
Brother Hamza | the Midwest | 08/18/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Sorry for the "punishing" title for this review, but I just couldn't resist the urge. I owned the original LP on the Pablo label from the middle 1970s which contained three of these numbers ... Billie's Bounce, Lester Leaps In, and one of the the two Blues Jams. The other Blues Jam was on a compilation LP from the Montreux 1975 Festival (which, unfortunately, I never owned).

The sound quality on this DVD is not as good as the audio recording on LP or CD, but don't let that bother you. This is a very good session, with everyone in fine form. One reason I purchased this video is that the price is right. Another is that, as a (semi-pro) Tenor Sax player myself, I'm a big fan of Johnny Griffin. Griffin is in excellent form for this show. I'd never seen him on film until I watched this DVD. Roy Eldridge was also up for this show. I had seen him live about 9 months previously when he played the opening set for an Ella Fitzgerald concert. Eldridge is in better form here, taking risks and usually achieving the desired results. I've heard better from Milt Jackson on live dates from this period, but Jackson is still good enough here to make a difference. The rhythm section is crisp (although the sound mix is not the greatest on the DVD). Basie seems to be able to play with any combination of musicians. This makes him a good fit for a Norman Granz' produced live jam session.

Growing up, I encountered many critics who complained about the line-ups for the Jam Session section on JATP recordings. For the most part, I never had a problem with the mixed swing and bebop lineups. Willie Smith contrasted well with Bird on the '40s records, while Eldridge and Gillspie did the same on the mid-to-late 50s dates. How does one make enough money to pay the artists what they're worth on a JATP tour? Add an Illinois Jacquet and/or a Flip Philips to the lineup. Besides, if one doesn't like it when they "cook", both these guys play great on the ballads (listen to Jacquet's "Tenderly" and Philips' "All of Me" in the 1955 JATP Box Ballad Medley and you'll see what I mean).

Its the same thing on this Basie Jam date. Eldridge is a swing musician, first and foremost, who happens fit in well with musicians of later styles. He does not sound out of place with Johnny Griffin or Milt Jackson in the lineup. I believe they "jell" very well together. The energy level is as high here as on any of the JATP Jam Sessions in the 1950s box sets. It doesn't have to be labeled JATP to be JATP, and for my money, this is JATP. Etaion Shrdlu could have even written the two Montreux Blues Jams! (smile)

In the end, I debated whether I should rate this DVD with 4 or 5 Stars. Good thing this isn't a fashion video ... it might not have even made 3 stars! In the end, I rounded 4.5 stars up to 5 (despite the protests of my wife)! She doesn't like Jam Sessions.

Thank you again Norman Granz and Montreaux
rayjazz | las vegas, NV | 07/19/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is what makes jazz the greatest American art form
this world has ever witnessed. This is music that will
always be appreciated, long after the pop stars and flash
in the pans are forgotten. This crew, with Johnny
Griffin, [very underated], Roy Eldridge, Neils Orsted
Pederson, Milt Jackson, Louis Bellson, and of course,
the Count himself. You actually get to hear the Count
play, not just comp, as is usually the case. Johnny
Griffin is a very dynamic tenor man, and you can see
that here. Everybody solos on this outing, and if you
don't like this one, you don't like the earthy, bluesy
mode of jazz that made this form immortal in the music
world. These guys do this for the sheer love of it,
and you can see this, in this performance."