top
Mr. B.

Mr. B.

Chet Baker

Label: Timeless Jazz Legacy
Format: CD
Barcode: 0608917450224
barcode
Catalog number: TJL 74502
Releasedate: 01-10-10
Chet Baker is in excellent form throughout Mr. B, showing that his playing during his European years was even better than during the celebrated West Coast jazz sessions that he made in the 1950s.
  • More than 20 years after Chet Baker's death, the trumpeter is still a household name whose fame reaches beyond the jazz world.
  • During his comeback years of the 1970s and especially the '80s, Baker played some of the finest trumpet solos of his career.
  • While Baker recorded scores of sessions in Europe in the 1980s, Mr. B is one of his best sessions. He sounds healthy and happy throughout these performances.
  • the repertoire on Mr. B avoids most of Chet Baker's usual songs and he is challenged by the high-quality material.
Dolphin Dance by Herbie Hancock is a modern jazz classic. The absence of a drummer gives Chet's playing more presence. His own metric conception settles well into this medium tempo ballad. There is some impressive "open air" blowing. Ellen and David a Chet Baker original: a lovely, bittersweet quality and we can look back with a warm feeling even when tears are near. Strollin, in 1960 written by pianist Horace Silver, features softly riveting performances by both Baker and pianist Michel Graillier. Dave Brubeck's In Your Own Sweet Way is handled by Chet á la early Miles, giving the melody a little goose right on the last note of the theme. Two more Baker originals Mister B and Beatrice, the first flowingly uptempo, the second lopingly relaxed, bring another tuneful chapter of Chet Baker's recorded legacy. As a bonus on this CD White Blues and Father Christmas (both not on LP) with that fine guitar player Philip Catherine in the last piece. Eight tunes bringing out the more intimate and touching aspects of the Chet Baker sound, a sound well captured in the cosy Studio 44 in Monster, Holland.

'Dolphin Dance' by Herbie Hancock is a modern jazz classic. The absence of a drummer gives Chet's playing more presence. His own metric conception settles well into this medium tempo ballad. There is some impressive 'open air' blowing.
'Ellen and David', a Chet Baker original: a lovely, bittersweet quality and we can look back with a warm feeling even when tears are near.
'Strollin', in 1960 written by pianist Horace Silver, features softly riveting performances by both Baker and pianist Michel Graillier.
Dave Brubeck's 'In Your Own Sweet Way' is handled by Chet a la early Miles, giving the melody a little goose right on the last note of the theme. Two more Baker originals 'Mister B' and 'Beatrice', the first flowingly uptempo, the second lopingly relaxed, bring another tuneful chapter of Chet Baker's recorded legacy.
As a bonus on this CD 'White Blues' and 'Father Christmas' (both not on LP) with that fine guitar player Philip Catherine in the last piece.

Eight tunes bringing out the more intimate and touching aspects of the Chet Baker sound, a sound well captured in the cosy Studio 44 in Monster, Holland.
Wim van Eyle.
Chet Baker (1929-88) followed his own path throughout his career. Born in Oklahoma and raised in Southern California, Baker first gained attention when he won an audition to become a short-term member of Charlie Parker's quintet when the great saxophonist was visiting Los Angeles in 1952. Soon afterward he met baritonist Gerry Mulligan, becoming a key part of Mulligan's very popular pianoless quartet, and adopting My Funny Valentine as his trademark song.
Going out on his own, Baker had a successful quartet with pianist Russ Freeman, began to take vocals that greatly increased his popularity, and became a regular poll winner in the jazz world. However a lifelong addiction to drugs made Baker's life erratic for decades. A period in Europe during 1959-64 was marred by several arrests and jail sentences for possession of drugs. Baker was playing well when he returned to the United States but an attack after a drug deal went bad left him with broken teeth. However after a period of relearning how to play trumpet, Baker made a successful comeback in the early 1970s. His move to Europe led to a renaissance in his career that lasted until his unexpected death in 1988..