Low-quality DVD, good Basie footage, otherwise disappointing
Peter Feng | Wilmington, DE United States | 12/06/2003
(1 out of 5 stars)
"This is a so-so film released in a sub-standard DVD. Sound quality is poor, image quality is poor, and the original direction doesn't give you many up-close views of the performers. Count Basie gets four numbers with relatively good sound and okay images, but no one else comes off very well.The original 53 min. film was apparently produced by Encyclopedia Brittanica. The DVD is black-and-white (not color as listed) -- but I suspect the original film may have been in color. David Meeker's JAZZ IN THE MOVIES sheds no light on this question. Meeker does note that the film does not focus on the music as much as it could or should.The source material for this DVD seems to be a 16mm film print (the early sequences are scratchy and spliced), although some sequences have such poor contrast that I wonder if the source may have been a videotape of the original film. Supertitles are frequently illegible (which is why I suspect the original print may have been in color). There's audible hum in some scenes, and the frequency range is compressed. The DVD chapters are poorly placed, sometimes located after a song has already begun.I was interested in the Count Basie footage, and as it happens it comes across better than any of the other sequences. The film gives you a montage of fans buying hotdogs, sunning themselves, etc. and doesn't show you much of the band at first, but by the second tune there are some nice close-ups of soloist Thad Jones. The duet sung by Jimmy Rushing and Joe Williams is a treat.Oscar Peterson Trio w/ Ray Brown & Ed Thigpen: "Six and Four" (Oliver Nelson) [opening sequence]
Lambert, Hendricks & Bavan: "Come on Home," "Moanin'" [seems to have been shot at night, poor contrast, hard to watch]
Roland Kirk performs one tune on multiple horns
Clara Ward Gospel Singers perform two tunes, including "The Saints"
Oscar Peterson plays a fast 32-bar tune
Newport All-Stars (featuring Ruby Braff & Pee Wee Russell): we get an excerpt
Duke Ellington Orchestra: we get the last part of "Rockin' in Rhythm," the last part of "Passion Flower" and "Things Ain't What They Used to Be" (featuring Johnny Hodges)
Count Basie Orchestra: "I Needs to Be Bee'd With" (featuring Quentin Jackson), "Four-Five-Six" (featuring Thad Jones and Eric Dixon), "I'm Coming Virginia" sung by Jimmy Rushing, "Goin' to Chicago" sung by Joe Williams and Jimmy Rushing, and a snippet of "Jumpin' at the Woodside" plays over the end credits."
I am the Producer/Director of the Film
Buddy Bregman | West Los Angeles, CA USA | 11/06/2005
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I hate what happened to this film of mine. Disgusting. I spent weeks working on the film and even shot Close Ups myself for 3 full days with my cameramen - and meticulously direted it as well as produced it and then began to edit it - BUT in the middle of editing I got 2 big TV Specials to produce and direct in Paris - and the jazz festival was left in the hands of a non-musical editor who had only edited stuf that was not as musical as what this was - and being the musician I also am besides being a producer and director it was ruined. I left notes on exactly how to finish the Show but what could I expect - I wasn't there but on to bigger and better things - The Roland Petit Ballet TV Specials with Eve St. Laurent costumes and me producing and directing in Paris - now how could I pass that up? I couldn't! I am so sorry to have it pop up as a "proper" TV Special - it is sickening - and I also just wasted a bit under $20 for it myself - so sorry!
Producer/Director for NBC Newport Jazz Festival During the America's Cup races - Buddy Bregman
Another rip-off in the name of Jazz
Shuman | South Africa | 11/25/2004
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Too many producers are getting away with murder by fobbing off the public with statements such as 'the historical nature of the material is such that despite ...............'
The picture and sound is extremely poor and one can definately live without having this one in their collection.
It has some use though. I find that the dvd makes an excellent coaster for glasses and even hot drinks, as well as being a conversation piece."