A day after he finished The Heart of the Ballad, Chet teams again with Pieranunzi and his trio. This was to be Chet's last studio recording, and it is a nice way to remember Chet. When he was in good shape, and he surrounded himself with excellent sidemen (both the case here), he was as capable of creating magic. A good example of this is the title cut. Chet's never really played it much after his famous 1957 vocal and instrumental recording of the tune. He revives it one last time and gives one of the best vocal performances of his last years.
THE COMPLETE REMASTERED RECORDINGS ON BLACK SAINT & SOUL NOTE is a monographic box-set collection aimed at recounting the most beautiful chapters that revolutionised the history of jazz.
This new series was launched in March 2010 with the simultaneous release of four box-sets, including albums by some of the artists who participated in the success of the outstanding labels. A philological work, beginning with the original recordings on multi-track master tapes, patiently integrally remastered paying strict attention to the sound quality.
It is a tremendous challenge to find a fresh approach to standards and frequently performed jazz compositions. But pianist Enrico Pieranunzi is up to the task in this collection of live trio performances from 2001 in Paris. He is accompanied by two of Europe's finest musicians, bassist Hein Van de Geyn and drummer André Ceccarelli (who worked together in singer Dee Dee Bridgewater's band). The leader's take of "Body and Soul" includes a fluttering introduction and some dazzling Tatum-like runs. "I Hear a Rhapsody" is transformed into a daredevil post-bop anthem, while Van de Geyn introduces "I Fall in Love Too Easily" with a heartfelt solo. But the big surprise is their playful take of "Someday My Prince Will Come," which sounds more like a nightmare than a dream! Pieranunzi's off-centered arrangement of Wayne Shorter's modal masterpiece "Footprints" is full of tension, though his approach to Fats Waller's "Jitterbug Waltz" is fairly restrained. The leader contributed several originals, including the moody ballad "One Lone Star" and the more upbeat "Una Piccola Chiave Dorata." The support of the rhythm section is an essential ingredient throughout this highly recommended two-CD set. ~ Ken Dryden
Having been reissued numerous times over the years under various titles, this Bluebird version of Chet Is Back! stands out as the definitive packaging of one of Chet Baker's best early-'60s recordings. Besides featuring the original artwork and liner notes – as well as detailed new liner notes from James Gavin, author of Deep in a Dream: The Long Night of Chet Baker – the real impetus to pick this up is the inclusion of four orchestral pop singles Baker recorded with Ennio Morricone around the same time as the album. Never before released in the U.S., these tracks were purportedly composed by the trumpeter/vocalist while serving jail time in Lucca, Italy after obtaining fake drug prescriptions.