Laura: A Charlie Parker Review

Charlie Parker; the master of bebop.

My last recommendation was Charlie Parker with the Woody Herman Band in 1951 (You Go To My Head). I may have been wrong to write that this was a studio recording. A closer listen reveals an audience. I wasn’t wrong to draw attention to his matchless genius however and the same concert included a version of the Hollywood ballad ‘Laura’. I never much liked this melody but I am aware that it was one of the great compositions to emerge before the Media Class turned popular music into music for babies and pimply teens.  Parker treats this complex melody and chord structure with near disdain, soaring over them with endless creativity. Give time to listen closely for musical genius was always rare and has now vanished. Yes, I am aware that there are many musicians with awesome technique but where are the artists?

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