Swingin’ With Basie

Welcome back to another blog about music. Today, I’ll begin with my most recent ripping, which continues with the last two Chris Christian records I have. The first one was called “With Your Love.” Produced in 1979 on Myrrh Records (MSB-6614), it features a song also recorded by The Imperials, “Praise the Lord.” It also includes another song recorded by The Imperials, “Heed the Call.” It is pretty standard Contemporary Christian Music, but, again, for its day, was a pretty good record. The final song on the album, “Pray Away,” is one of my favorite Chris Christian songs. Here’s a youtube clip of “Pray Away.”

The final Chris Christian album that I own was not produced until 1985. There are a few in there that I did not purchase. This one is called “Mirror of Your Heart,” (Home Sweet Home Records SPCN 7-01-000339-4) and was designed to be a sort of “easy listening” record, for use in devotions and meditations.
It was mostly songs already recorded, such as “Praise the Lord,” and “Pray Away.” It also featured “Living Sacrifice,” and the title track “Mirror of Your Heart.” Here is a youtube clip of a song from the album, called “We Are An Offering,” a very nice worship song.

My most recent foray into the land of 1000 Recordings had me listen to a three disc set of Count Basie, called “The Complete Decca Recordings.”
The caption of the article in Tom Moon’s book says, “The Definition of Swing.” Now, I don’t know much about Count Basie. Sure, I’ve heard the name, who hasn’t? But now that I’ve listened to 63 tracks of his music (it took me three days at work to get through this one, backtracking several times because I missed something because of, you know, work), I have a good feel for what he accomplished. William James Basie was born in Red Bank, New Jersey in 1904. In the early twenties, he studied briefly with Fats Waller, met Duke Ellington, and Willie “The Lion” Smith. He eventually became the pianist for the Bennie Moten Band in Kansas City. When Moten died, Basie formed his own band, made up of some from the Moten band.

This recording, according to Mr. Moon’s article, showcases “the first great Basie band, circa 1937, just after it arrived in New York. Of the Basie band and its technique, Moon describes them as a group of “ordinary elements” that became “a screaming locomotive of rhythm, boogying down the tracks and levitating just above them, sweeping up everything in its path.” Heh. I really like that description, and, having listened to this recording, agree 100%.

Moon’s key tracks for this recording are “Listen My Children and You Shall Hear,” “Roseland Shuffle,” and “One O’Clock Jump.” I find it baffling that he only came up with three key tracks from a 63 track recording! I made a list of songs that I really liked, and it had 23 songs on it! Just to mention a few, they were “Topsy,” “Swingin’ the Blues,” “Boogie Woogie” (I think I probably like any song with that title), “The Fives,” “Shorty George,” and “Panassie Stomp.” Like I said, there were 23 in all, and I’m not going to list them all here. Here’s a youtube clip of “Topsy.”

Here’s one of “Panassie Stomp.”

That’s a 78 rpm record in that video, by the way.

I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this recording. Swingin’, man!

TTFN, y’all!


3 thoughts on “Swingin’ With Basie

  1. “Now, I don’t know much about Count Basie. Sure, I’ve heard the name, who hasn’t?” …Um. I hadn’t until I read this blog. :-O I liked the two songs you posted, though.

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