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Big Band & Quartet in Concert Import

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As influential as he proved to be during the final decades of his lifetime, it appears that Thelonious Sphere Monk (1917-82) has only gained greater stature in the years since his death. Once considered too eccentric and complex to be appreciated by listeners and other musicians, Monk has become a standard of excellence, as both composer and soloist, for those who seek to extend the jazz ... Read more in Amazon's Thelonious Monk Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (1 Feb. 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Sbme Special Mkts
  • ASIN: B0012GMXME
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 137,236 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description

I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Bob Wright on 25 July 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Thelonious Monk produced a well-regarded album of big band music in concert in 1959 ("At Town Hall"). The band on that occasion was a little heavy on the brass side, including French horn and tuba, and, with the passage of time, the music has begun to sound a little dated. But, on this second occasion, from December 1963, the band had a stronger emphasis on reeds. As a result, it sounds lighter and more swinging as it works through the terrific arrangements - by Hall Overton, as on the previous occasion. The tracks by the band are obviously central to the proceedings. They allow plenty of room for the soloists - chiefly Thad Jones on cornet, Phil Woods on alto saxophone, Charlie Rouse (naturally) on tenor saxophone and Monk himself. Butch Warren's bass provides firm support, and Frank Dunlop, on drums, is prominent in the mix and drives the proceedings along. As the album title indicates, Monk's quartet features as well, and there's also a splendid Monk solo rendition of the old standard "Darkness on the Delta". The standout track is the final number, "Four In One" by the big band: after a round of solos, the band romps through Hall Overton's intricate orchestration of Monk's solo on his original recording, which leaves the audience stunned. Then the band goes into Monk's signature number, "Epistrophy", and away!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 15 reviews
24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
The rematch 12 April 2004
By N. Dorward - Published on
Format: Audio CD
In the late 1950s Monk made his first big-band disc, a live concert recorded at Town Hall. The charts were by Hall Overton; the featured soloists aside from Monk were Charlie Rouse (one of his earliest appearances with Monk), Phil Woods & Donald Byrd. More or less the same format is adhered to with Monk's second big-band date, recorded in Dec. 1963 at Lincoln Center: the Overton charts include one piece with an arrangement of a previously recorded Monk solo (on the Town Hall date it was "Little Rootie Tootie"; here it's "Four in One", the solo lifted from the Blackhawk album on Riverside); Rouse & Woods are present again, with Thad Jones on cornet the other main soloist. The original album was chopped down a bit, omitting several tracks & editing out some of the drum solos; it's restored here, & while one might regret the inclusion of all those drum solos it's inarguably an improvement to have the unreleased tracks.
In some ways the best stuff on the album isn't the big band but the quartet & solo tracks that serve as an interlude: "When It's Darkness on the Delta" is one of Monk's best solo performances, & "Misterioso" is superb. The program is mostly less-frequently encountered Monk tunes like "Light Blue", "Four in One" & "Played Twice", which makes a nice change of pace from Monk's run of Columbias (where the repertoire ended up rather heavy on warhorses like "Blue Monk" & "Ruby My Dear"). -- There is even one new tune, "Oska T.": no-one will ever claim this as one of Monk's greatest compositions--it's little more than two riffs soldered together with a typically Monkian sense of humour (they barely fit together!). It's still a fascinating track, with Thad Jones's solo almost completely setting aside the chords. Woods & Rouse are as usual hard-hitting though a bit predictable in their improvising strategies--though Rouse by now was so attuned to Monk's music that his displacements of the beat can be as bewildering as the master's--and Frankie Dunlop's scrappy drumming is a pleasure to hear. (Whatever happened to Frankie Dunlop?) The one real disappointment is the same as on the Town Hall concert: it's a great band, & yet most of the players aren't allotted a solo. Could it have hurt to give Steve Lacy, Eddie Bert or Nick Travis a solo?
Monk only recorded twice again as part of a larger group (the Nonet disc from Europe & the very late, & rather disappointing, encounter with Oliver Nelson). That makes this an especially valuable recording.
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Gotta Have It 14 April 2000
By R. Anderson - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
If I had to pick recordings for a stay on a desert island, this would be one of them. All of the tunes are great, and the CD provides recordings left out and edited down from the album, which I played many, many times. I'll just mention a couple of the cuts here.
"I Mean You" is absolutely fabulous. Frankie Dunlap replies in his solo to what the others had done, and the soloists (Jones, Woods, and, ahem, oh well, Rouse) seemd to be on the same frequency. This tune really rocks.
I don't know why this album isn't looked upon with such favor by many people. It is great. And for those who question Monk's skill as a pianist, sit back and take in his solo interpretation of "Darkness on the Delta."
Overton's arrangements are great. It's just too bad more of these recordings weren't made.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
As Good As It Gets 14 Nov. 2007
By Richard W. Cutler - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is, all in all, remarkably demanding music that for all its complexity swings the house down. I can only echo the praise other reviewers have heaped upon this extraordinary concert. As good as all the soloists are, Monk simply defines himself in a separate class, an orchestra unto himself. "Four In One," with its scoring of Monk's recorded solo, is the premier track, but one cannot overlook "Evidence" --one of the most remarkable minimalist compositions of modern music in any idiom-- which thrives from Monk's conclusion of his solo with the rhythmic riff picked up by the entire band. And who but Monk could resurrect "Darkness on the Delta," a song not recorded for thirty years at the time of this concert?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Wow, what a price 21 July 2011
By Eliminator Man - Published on
Format: Audio CD
I can't believe this double disc for six bucks. This is incredible music and I bet I paid over 20 when it first came out as a double. Like others here I had the original LP and was excited for the additions. I was listening to this this morning while I stained my deck. The discs may be a little short on time by modern standards but that's all there was. This is the Monk big band set for me.
Monk Gets Big 22 May 2014
By Disink - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Monk released a lot of albums in the sixties, and it's no surprise that this one tends to be overlooked: the songs look endlessly long (nothing with the big band save "Epistrophy" is under ten minutes), it's the same songs Monk had been playing live for at least five years, and isn't there already At Town Hall if you want to hear Monk with a big band? Yet this is a unique concert, and it's a way of hearing songs like "I Mean You" or "Evidence" arranged right, with the right players putting everything they have into making a big sound, and on this record, Monk does everything big. And it is quite a band: Phil Woods, Charlie Rouse (of course), Steve Lacy (but no solos, sadly), Eddie Bert, and the wonderful Thad Jones are just a part of this band, and it's a joy to hear them stretch out over some Monk classics and one new song, "Oska T", which starts with a pummeling and ends in a vaudeville twist, a true curiosity even in his catalog. This was for a 12/30/63 Philharmonic Hall show, and clearly everyone was well prepared, and a new listener should decide how prepared he or she is for what's here.

There are two types of tunes here, essentially. The first are lengthy big band workouts of tunes like opening number "Bye-Ya", which misses the spontaneity of the Prestige recording, but amps up the recent Monk's Dream version. The band locks in nicely, and some good solos are on hand, though the slower tempo could turn off some listeners. That is a problem with any big band: go too fast, and you lose your players, but go too slow, and you lose your listeners. This is where the stellar arrangements come into play, as well as the players, who really add spice to the numbers. In particular, Charlie Rouse is becoming a melodic weapon at this point, fully finding his voice with Monk as he twists and bends the lyrical tunes like "Four in One". Behind the band may be the real secret weapon of the set, though. Butch Warren was new, but he adds deep pocket bass here, and it's too bad he only stayed for two albums. There's also Frankie Dunlop, who understood how to accentuate Monk's songs, staying in the low end and putting a good kick on the numbers. This would be his last album, and all of his work with Monk is worth hearing.

That rhythm section may sound best, though, on the other type of tune on this record, which is the representation of the regular Monk live experience: the solo and quartet pieces, and these are something. Monk is clearly having a blast through "Darkness on the Delta", and it's nice to hear the two quartet pieces if only to feel the band let loose a bit. Of course, there are many Monk sets with a strong quartet showing, going back to the masterful Thelonious Monk Quartet with John Coltrane at Carnegie Hall set and moving forward to the amazing Live at the It Club: Complete sets. For newcomers to live Monk, these quartet numbers give a good idea to what to expect there, especially live Monk with Rouse.

Ultimately, this deserves better sound than it has (why wasn't it remastered with the other Columbia sets?), but it's a good price, and Monk fans will be pleased. It's almost a lost album, really, and it deserves better, as there's a chilly sort of day just perfect for this music (just add fireplace). One such day was likely felt from the audience's perspective at this show, watching and hearing what must have been a great night of music. Why not join them?
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