The Illinois Jacquet Collection 1942-56
Catalogue Number: ADDCD3203
Illinois Jacquet was a tenor saxophonist of the Texas school who bridged the gap between swing, R&B and post-war jazz with a powerful and emotional style which was equally at home in the full orchestras of the likes of Lionel Hampton and Count Basie as it was in the quintets and sextets that he led during his recording heyday of the late ‘40s and early ‘50s. He came to the fore in 1942, when, aged just 20, he recorded an inspired solo in Lionel Hampton’s “Flying Home”, which became a landmark of the genre, endlessly copied by other players over the years. He was one of the core musicians in Norman Granz’s “Jazz At The Philharmonic” concerts, underlining the respect he enjoyed with his peers and his ability to improvise, which is amply evident from the selections in this anthology. This excellent-value 44-track collection does not set out to be in any way definitive – it simply comprises selections from studio sessions, and one or two ‘live’ performances, design to include some of the recordings which have been highlighted by commentators over the years as representing among the best examples of his unique style and skill. It inevitably includes performances alongside some of the jazz luminaries who were his peers – too numerous to list here - featuring him as both sideman and leader, and it is an entertaining introduction to an innovative sax stylist.