Recently discovered 1960 concert recording of Nat King Cole with Quincy Jones and His Big Band, from the archives of Swiss Radio.
As a singer, Nat King Cole had a voice that enthralled audiences around the world for more than two decades and earned him success in the pop charts with a string of hit singles and albums on Capitol Records. What has remained underappreciated though, certainly among popular music fans, is that Nat was also an incredible jazz musician. His dexterity at the piano put him at the top of the critics' and readers' polls of magazines such as DownBeat who inducted him, posthumously, into the DownBeat Hall of Fame.
Whilst jazz fans might contend that he deserted them for the more lucrative pop market, the truth is that jazz was never far from Nat's work. In fact, Nat's incredible phrasing, timing and perfect pitch, were the very cornerstones of a vocal style born out of his prowess as a jazz musician.
On this recording the balance between Nat's pop and jazz output can be said to have been redressed. Jazz fans will be enthralled to hear the generous portions of his piano playing, and then equally enthralled by the added bonus of an all-star Quincy Jones Big Band in attendance. Whether in full-flight with the big band hanging on his coattails or in the intimacy of his trio, the performances captured on this CD are absolute treasures to be heard and appreciated, time and time again.
'This marvellous concert comes as a revelation. As well as proving that Quincy's was a world-class band, it demonstrates that Nat had not given up seriously playing the piano, as was commonly believed...he plays brilliantly here.' -- The Observer * * * * *
'A winner...Jones's big band is on sparkling form from the outset...this is an unmissable meeting of two jazz greats.' -- BBC Music Magazine * * * * *
'This is the first 'official' release of Cole's broadcast with the Jones orchestra in 1960, and with great playing and empathy, it's good to have it in Swiss Radio's usual high quality sound.'--Jazzwise