Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bud Shank - Summer Wind

Exploring Bud Shank's commercial recordings for World Pacific in the Sixties. Long reviled by jazz purists, I haven't read anything about Bud denigrating them. He did complain about earning a living in that decade. But it may have been the difficulty of  maintaining the Southern California lifestyle to which he was accustomed. He was a  top studio musician, played on hundreds, perhaps thousands of soundtracks, commercial big band & singer sessions, all while releasing quality solo jazz LPs in a variety of musical contexts. The rise of rock changed the demographics of pop music,  the bossa nova craze was ending, & so-called West Coast cool jazz was no longer so cool.   Certainly it took  chutzpah for Bud to record an album titled Magical Mystery that covered six songs from the Beatles LP including "I Am the Walrus," with drug-addicted Chet Baker toodling along on some of the numbers (Chet really did record some sh*t for World Pacific). Girl In Love was Bud's most easy listening release, stringy arrangements by Oliver Nelson. Nelson also worked both sides of the street, & we don't lose any of what they did by enjoying Bud's clear alto sailing over Oliver's bed of violins & voices on "Summer Wind."


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