<p>2018 Japanese CD reissue.</p>
In between recording sessions and on days off, Count Basie had no problem with his musicians recording on their own. Basie knew that if he wanted to hang onto the titanium talent he had on board, he'd be well served to give his men the economic and creative freedom they wanted. Jazz fans are certainly better off for Basie's policy. That's how all of those terrific Frank Wes recordings were possible in the '50s for Savoy and other labels.
Wes' reed-mate Frank Foster also took advantage of Basie's leeway—but not nearly as frequently and mostly as a sideman. One of the small-group albums he recorded as a leader during his years with the Count was Basie Is Our Boss. The album was recorded in February 1963 for Argo during one of Basie's many extended club stays in Chicago and in between the band's Hits of the 50's and 60's and More Hits of the 50's and 60's recording sessions in January and April.
On the Basie Is Our Boss date were Al Aarons (tp), Frank Foster (ts) Eric Dixon (ts,fl), John Young (p), Buddy Catlett (b) and Philip Thomas (d). All were relatively new additions to Basie's band, except Young and Thomas, who were Chicago players. Foster, of course, joined, in 1953. Dixon joined Basie in '61 from Quincy Jones' orchestra. Aarons came aboard in '62 and Catlett, also a former Jones bassist, was with Basie since '60.
One of the many reasons why this album is so special is how Foster's arrangements made so few sound like so many. If you didn't know how many musicians were on the date, you'd swear there were more. Another reason why this album is special is Foster's evolving sound, shifting from big band player to a small group leader.
Marc Myers ~ AllAboutJazz
Be The First To Review This Product!
Help other Birdland Records users shop smarter by writing reviews for products you have purchased.