Billie Holiday often stated that she styled her vocal phrasing to echo the sound of a jazz horn, so it should be no surprise that she found the perfect duet partner in tenor sax player Lester Young. Lady Day and Pres (they bestowed the nicknames on each other) recorded some 60 sides together between 1937 and 1946, many if not all of which have to be considered classics. This three-disc set collects everything the pair did, including alternate takes, and the best tracks are truly revelatory. Given the obvious musical connection on display in these sides, it is telling that both Holiday and Young died only four months apart in 1959. Apparently the world just couldn't handle one without the other.
They weren't joined at the hip, yet Chet Atkins and Les Paul were far closer than many realize. Chet's half-brother Jimmy Atkins played rhythm guitar in the Les Paul Trio in the '40s. Both Chet and Les's playing reflected Belgian Gypsy jazz virtuoso Django Reinhardt's influence. They not only created records of monumental importance to guitarists in all genres, but their signature model electric instruments advanced guitar technology. ~ Amazon
Chester & Lester is a collaborative album by guitarists Chet Atkins and Les Paul released in 1976.
It was recorded in the mid-1970s when Chet was in his fifties and Les in his sixties. Chet coaxed Les out of his decade-long retirement for this recording. The liner notes state there is very little overdubbing and the majority of the album was live in the studio.
Chester & Lester peaked at No. 11 on Billboard's Country album chart and No. 172 on the Pop album chart. It peaked at No. 27 on the Country chart again in 1978. At the Grammy Awards of 1976, Chester & Lester won the Grammy Award for Best Country Instrumental Performance.