AVID Jazz is proud to introduce an exciting new addition to our Four Classic Album series, Four Classic Jazz Instrumentalists. We continue with Four Classic Jazz Bassists, a re-mastered 2CD set complete with original artwork, liner notes and personnel details.
Leroy Vinnegar: Leroy Walks; Doug Watkins: Soulnik; Paul Chambers: 1st Bassman and Ron Carter: Where?
For our latest release in this new series we have chosen a diverse range of jazz bassists who released their debut or follow up albums from the late 1950s to the early 1960s. Leroy Vinnegar - Meet The Walker, Mr Leroy Vinnegar, the bass man famed for his walking bass line featuring ascending and descending notes. Born in Indianapolis, Leroy moved to LA where he made his reputation playing with many of the West Coast cool school jazz musicians. He was a prolific musician both as a solo and as a vital sideman to countless of the jazz greats. Making his solo debut in 1957/8 with Leroy Walks he would produce many great solo albums throughout his long career but most of his work was done as a sideman to other greats. These would include many of those West Coast cool cats like Shelly Manne, Stan Getz, Lee Konitz, Chet Baker and Shorty Rogers as well as other giants like Benny Carter, Buddy Collette, Kenny Dorham, Kenny Drew and Teddy Charles, with whom he played on nine albums. Many of these guys can be found with their own albums in the AVID catalogue. Doug Watkins - Due to his tragic early death in a car accident, our next fine bass man only made two solo albums, this was his second and guess what? He doesnt even play bass on it, but instead he chose the cello! And that after spending only three days with the instrument! And what a great idea we at AVID say. Soulnik is a mighty fine album indeed. Doug says in the liner notes I usually do these tunes on the bass but I wanted a different sound
..to me the cello gets a tone between a guitar and a piano. Just take a listen to Doug playing with the flute and oboe of Yusef Lateef, wonderful stuff! By the way watch out for our second Classic Bassist set which will feature Dougs hard to find debut album Watkins At Large. Paul Chambers (PC) has got to be one of the finest and most famous bass men in the history of the instrument! Known for his fine timing, intonation and improvisational skills, PC was the go to bass man throughout the 1950s and 1960s. Whether plucked or bowed, PC was your man! A list of who he played with is truly awesome and almost too staggering to be believed. If you take a look through the AVID catalogue it is just full of great jazz names featuring Paul on bass. Perhaps his most famous association was with Miles Davis with whom he played on around a dozen albums in his first classic Quintet, including of course the legendary, best-selling jazz album of all time, Kind Of Blue which features the classic intro to So What with Chambers trading licks with Bill Evans. Just to give you a flavour of some of the other jazz giants he played with, how about, a dozen or so with Wynton Kelly, another dozen or so with Red Garland and John Coltrane, then take a listen to albums by Hank Mobley, Jackie McLean, Cannonball Adderley, Sonny Criss, Donald Byrd, Chet Baker, Kenny Burrell and Jackie Byard. And were not even out of the Bs and Cs yet! Awesome! Ron Carter - Hey, we got a live one! Yes Ron Carter is one of that rare breed of AVID legends, a living one! At 80 years of age, Ron Carters long and illustrious career has made him the most recorded jazz bassist in history with over 2,200 recording sessions to his name(Thats a lot of late nights, we at AVID say!). And by the way he also plays cello which he began learning at age 10 before switching to bass after suffering racial prejudice as a black person playing a traditionally white classical instrument. However, thankfully, Ron did return to the cello and can be heard playing it on many of his fine solo albums, including Where and many of his numerous recording sessions. His early career saw him playing with a newer breed of younger jazzmen including Eric Dolphy, Jackie Byard, Mal Waldron and Don Ellis. Later in the 1960s he found fame in the second great Miles Davis Quintet. As with many of the great players in the rhythm section, the list of greats Ron has played with is very similar to Paul Chambers, i.e. almost everyone who is anyone. However in Rons case, due to his long career, the list takes us to infinity and beyond!
1-7: Leroy Vinnegar: Leroy Walks!
1. Walk On
2. Would You Like To Take A Walk?
3. On The Sunny Side Of The Street
5. Walkin My Baby Back Home
6. Ill Walk Alone
7. Walkin By The River
8-13: Doug Watkins: Soulnik
8. One Guy
11. Andres Bag
12. I Remember You
1-5: Paul Chambers: 1st Bassman
2. Bass Region
4. Mopp Shoe Blues
6-11: Ron Carter: Where?
7. Bass Duet
8. Softly As In A Morning Sunrise
10. Yes Indeed
11. Saucer Eyes