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Jazz Street: Count Basie

posted November 12, 2015, 11:14 am by Nathaniel Lathy | Filed Under Jazz Street, Throwback Thursday | comment Leave a Comment

count basieI’ve started listening more intently to Basie in recent years. I hadn’t realized I had heard some of his songs performed or danced to watching cartoons or television shows over the years. I’ve enjoyed listening to “The Essential Count Basie.” Perhaps I can come across some movies and shorts where he made appearances. All I know is it sounds great what I’ve heard from him. The swing era is one of the best for popular music. I listen to 1940’s station on Sirius, and it’s my favorite. The 50’s station is good, too. Still, I find myself wanting to hear the crooners and big band recordings from the decade more so than the rock ‘n’ roll. Yes, I like those songs, too. There is something to be said for listening to pop music in a broader stroke than the rock period. It’s good to go back to the ’30s.

Basie worked with a number of the great vocalists including: Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett and Bing Crosby. I still find myself favoring Louis Armstrong from the pre-rock days. Still, I can understand those who may lean toward Basie. In the jazz realm (are there others?), I consider this music top tier. The be-boppers had their moments. But this kind of music scores artistically, as well. There are those who look to the 70s and 80s for romantic songs. I think love was summed up better, going back further. The artists didn’t take themselves too seriously, back then. And in the end, they reached a higher level of art, than what has been reached since. Someone compared his love of classical to my preference for jazz. I don’t find jazz quite so intellectual as classical. Then again there’s plenty of good music in both. I’ll keep listening to Basie along with Bach, Beethoven, the Beatles and Berry.


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