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The Keynote Jazz Collection 1941-1947 (11CD) [Box set]

Various Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 90.24 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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The Keynote Jazz Collection 1941-1947 (11CD) + Jazz on Disques Vogue
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Product details

  • Audio CD (20 Dec 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 11
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Fresh Sound Records
  • ASIN: B00GTX9WSS
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 46,490 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description

Product Description

24BIT
DIGITALLY REMASTERED
11 CD SET
124-PAGE BOOKLET
POSTER INCLUDED (9.4 x 14.2 inches)
Back in 1940, Keynote Recordings Inc. was a new, small and independent New York company with offices at 522 Fifth Ave., recently founded by Eric Bernay, the owner of a midtown Manhattan record store called The Music Room. Bernay was musically open-minded and, looking for a place in the increasingly convulsed American record industry, he launched a catalog of varied music and performers. The nature of Keynote s early releases stopped them reaching a broader market, but at the end of 1943 he took a decision that, for a while, helped move his business in the right direction: Keynote turned to jazz and for the following three and a half years built up a large 78 rpm record catalog of 10 and 12-inch albums which contributed greatly to documenting the jazz history of forties America. Responsible for this impressive venture was an unlikely figure; a Javanese fan called Harry Lim. During this relatively short period he used his deep knowledge and great contacts to record some of the most celebrated jazz soloists and outstanding newcomers on the New York, Chicago and Los Angeles jazz scenes discs that rapidly became collectors items.
This box set is a homage to Harry Lim, who made Keynote the legendary jazz label it is today.

Ann Hathaway; Arnold Ross; Babe Russin; Barney Bigard; Benny Carter; Benny Morton; Bernie Leighton; Bill Harris; Billy Taylor; Bud Freeman; Buddy Stewart; Charlie Shavers; Chubby Jackson; Clyde Hurley; Coleman Hawkins; Corky Corcoran; Cozy Cole; Danny Hurd; Dave Lambert; Dinah Washington; Earl Hines; Ellis Larkins; Emmett Berry; Frank Froeba; Gene Sedric; George Barnes; George Hartman; George Wettling; Herbie Haymer; Horace Henderson; Irving Fazola; J.C. Heard; Joe Thomas; Jonah Jones; Juan Tizol; Kenny Kersey; Lennie Tristano; Lester Young; Manny Klein; Marie Bryant; Milt Hinton; Neal Hefti; Pete Brown; Red Norvo; Red Rodney; Rex Stewart; Roy Eldridge; Ted Nash; Teddy Wilson; The Keynoters; Willie Smith

Product Description

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Collection 6 Mar 2014
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An excellent collection of jazz of the 1940s with a range of well known bands and musicians as well as many lesser known players. Very well transferred to digital, very clean. Excellent and comprehensive information book and well illustrated.
With many lesser known players and sessions. This is essential to any comprehensive jazz collection of the World War II era and shortly after; 1940 - 1947. A bargain at this price -- Great.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A splendid collection 30 Jan 2014
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Keynote recorded during the period immediately preceding the bebop revolution and this collection represents the mature swing era in its flowering. It is full of quality performances by well assembled groups and benefits from very good recording, no doubt assisted by Fresh Sound's expert remastering. A panoply of jazz stars is featured (study the list) and it is hard to imagine that anyone who buys this set will be disappointed. Many congratulations to Fresh Sound for putting this together. Invaluable!
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Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CELEBRATED SOLOISTS AND OUTSTANDING NEWCOMERS IN JAZZ FROM N.Y., CHICAGO, AND LOS ANGELES 21 Mar 2014
By Stuart Jefferson - Published on Amazon.com
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Wow. It's too bad this extraordinary box set will probably never garner the recognition and accolades it deserves. The relatively high price and the fact that the name Keystone isn't well known like other small jazz labels works against any widespread recognition. This collection has been reviewed already, so I won't repeat the same information and waste time and space. But one thing is certain--this music rates 5 "stars"--maybe more if it was possible. I'm surprised and a bit saddened that more jazz fans haven't made some noise about this fine collection of music. Released over a year ago (2013), this should've been a contender for jazz reissue of the year.

I'm writing this to hopefully, in my own small way, bring this fine set of 1940's era jazz to more jazz lover's attention. This is an example of a living breathing moment, when jazz was moving away from traditional Dixieland/swing styles into the be-bop era. Across these eleven discs you'll hear both styles. And besides some great jazz, you're also hearing the period when music was morphing, moving ahead, and away from the seeming constraints of traditional swing style jazz. This was ( and still is) a major turning point in jazz, and you're there when the changeover is happening. A good example of this musical shift is on Disc 1. Listen to George Hartman's Dixieland jazz, and then listen to vocalist Dinah Washington with Lionel Hampton's band. You can hear the change from traditional jazz to something newer. Also listen to Roy Eldridge's "I Want To Be Happy", which combines both older and newer styles of music.

Included are sides by Lester Young, Dinah Washington, Roy Eldridge, George Hartman, Coleman Hawkins, Charlie Shavers, Pete Brown, Billy Taylor, Red Norvo, Chubby Jackson, Barney Bigard, Milt Hinton, J.C. Heard, Bud Freeman, Ted Nash, Juan Tizol, Benny Carter, Lennie Tristano, Ann Hathaway, Neal Hefti, Red Rodney, and a number of other well and lesser known artists.

The Fresh Sounds label has done right by this music. The digitally remastered sound has done small wonders for the 1940's era 78 rpm recordings--clean and more open sounding without any digital harshness--the authenticity hasn't been smothered by a modern approach. But you can hear the limitations of the recording process (hiss/lack of dynamics) of the era, plus the sources used aren't, after all this time, pristine. The discs slip into glossy jackets with photos and song information on the front and back sides. The eleven jackets fit inside their own (glossy) slipcase which then fits inside the well done outer box slipcase. Plus there's a small 40's era-looking poster with photos of the musicians with name and instrument for each--a nice touch. But along with the great music is an equally great 124 glossy page (!) booklet. It contains the story of Keynote Records along with an essay on jazz fan Harry Lim, who was responsible for recording and documenting jazz in the 1940's for the label. The albums he recorded soon became collector's items and are hard to find today. The story of the music and the early years of the label is laid out in wonderful detail, and continues with Lim recording so much great music. Also included is recording information for each track along with brief (but well written and intelligent) information (mostly taken from Down Beat and Metronome) on the various musicians. And when you include the many great period photos, well, this is one of the best booklets I've ever come across, and an example of how things should be done.

So I'm hoping more jazz fans will somehow come across this and other reviews of this seminal collection of jazz. No one's jazz library can be called "complete" and/or definitive without this box set. How often can you witness a living, breathing change in a musical genre into new, uncharted territory before your own ears?

And while I'm at it, you might also want to check out "Jazz On Disques Vogue" (Sony/Vogue Legacy), a 20 CD set of good/great jazz from both American and French jazz artists. This is another box set that has set packaging standards very high, plus the sound taken from these old 78 rpm vinyl albums is as good as they're likely to ever be. There's occasional surface noise and other anomalies throughout the set, but the jazz is unassailable. And unlike the Keystone set, this set can be found for well under fifty dollars as I write this. Jazz fans will find much to like all through this outstanding collection from the Vogue label. An undiscovered treasure for jazz fans.
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Collectable LP Boxed Set goes CD...Fimally! 31 Dec 2013
By Jeffrey Kinzig - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
After over 70 years, the Keynote set has been reissued on CD. It had previously only available on individual cd's by certain artists.
Of course sound quality is okay...for 1944. However, just to have the Keynotes available in one set with a huge book is a milestone.
This set is definitely not for the Kenny G crowd...rather for real jazz buffs.
Fresh Sounds released the Jeri Southern digi-pak set this year. I hear 'bootleg' all the time with certain re-releases. Well you cannot expect s 60-70 year old re-release to be in living stereo. Companies such as Fresh Sounds, Definitive, and The Jazz Factoryare all made in Spain where the 50 year issue on re-releasing ban has been lifted. I highly recommend the Kenote set for serious jazz buffs.
And can sell my LP version which is gathering dust with all of my old vinyl records.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reissue of the decade? 25 Feb 2014
By gwjazz - Published on Amazon.com
These 11 cds comprise the entire catalogue of short lived Keynote records. Some of you may have heard the Hawkins, Young or Tristano material, but that's just the appetizer, as there is a truckload of overlooked artists like Joe Thomas/tp, Joe Thomas/ts, Willie Smith/as and then casual sessions with Harry Carney, Allen Eager and others during the transition from swing to bop. You wouldn't do wrong if this were the only thing you bought all year. A gift from above!
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hours of pleasure 22 Jan 2014
By Ravenous Fellow - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
In the ideal world, this glorious music would have been out on CD -- with alternate takes -- decades ago. But this is a delicious package, full of surprises that excite the ears and elate the heart. I've written about it here: JAZZ LIVES -- [...] -- if you want to read more.
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Keynote Jazz Collection 1941-1947 Superb!! 28 Feb 2014
By Gloria Wright - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
We liked all the discs. While we were familiar with the names of the performers, we had not heard them playing some of the tunes, or in combinations with other performers.

I bought another set for a friend after we had heard the collection on our set.
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