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Barney Kessel - A Jazz Legend (Hard Cover)

Barney Kessel - A Jazz Legend (Hard Cover)
Ashley Mark Publishing Company


SKU AM4586
Author Maurice J. Summerfield
Format Book
Duration 304 pages
Notation Text
Dimensions 210mm x 300mm
Publisher Ashley Mark Publishing Company
Departments Guitar History incl. Artists & Composers
Our price: £7.50



Barney Kessel is a legend in the history of jazz. This is the first book to document his remarkable life in music. The comprehensive discography of hundreds of his jazz recordings will prove to be a valuable source of information to jazz historians for many years to come.

Born in 1923, Barney Kessel played and recorded for over 40 years with hundreds of jazz greats including Lester Young, Charlie Parker, Dexter Gordon, Coleman Hawkins, Howard McGhee, Sonny Criss, Buddy Rich, Billie Holiday, Art Tatum, Oscar Peterson, Ray Brown, Shelly Manne, Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Anita O'Day, Ben Webster and Sonny Rollins.

Charlie Christian came to see the 16-year old Kessel play in 1939 in Oklahoma City, and then jammed with him for three days. In 1942-1943 Kessel played and recorded with the big band of Chico Marx and then with the big bands of Artie Shaw (1944-45), Benny Goodman (1947, 1958) and Charlie Barnet (1945 - 1947). He was featured in the 1944 award-winning documentary film Jammin' The Blues with Lester Young and other jazz greats, and was a leading member of Norman Granz's Jazz at the Philharmonic.

In 1947 he was a member of Charlie Parker's septet and took part in the saxophonist's historic Dial record sessions. Barney Kessel was one of the original members of Oscar Peterson's Trio in 1952-53. A winner of all the major jazz polls, including Downbeat, Metronome, Melody Maker and Playboy for several years, he was the most popular jazz guitarist in the world of the 1950s and 1960s. His recordings for Contemporary, Concord and many other labels, are part of jazz history. Barney Kessel was the first to record the electric guitar as the predominate voice in a jazz trio with bass and drums. His five history-making Poll Winners albums, with Shelly Manne on drums and Ray Brown on bass, changed the course of jazz history.

Barney Kessel worked for almost 40 years in Hollywood as an arranger and freelance musician for radio, films and television shows including Steve Allen, Bob Crosby and Hollywood Palace. He created original music for many commercials including Der Wiener Schnitzel and Rice Krispies. He performed and recorded with such diverse talents as Fred Astaire, Henry Mancini, the Beach Boys, Barbara Streisand, Liberace, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Marlene Dietrich, Maurice Chevalier, Gene Autry, Sonny and Cher and the Righteous Brothers. He was on many of Phil Spector's most famous Wall of Sound records and also was an A&R man for Verve Records where he produced Ricky Nelson's first big hit.

As a teacher, he gave seminars and workshops all over the world. Barney Kessel served as cultural ambassador for the U.S. State Department in Europe, Asia, the Balkans, South America and Egypt. He performed for two presidents - at the inaugural reception for Ronald Reagan, and at the invitation of President Jimmy Carter in 1981.

From 1969-1992 Barney Kessel devoted his life to playing jazz. He toured the world with his own trio, as a member of The Great Guitars, the Newport Jazz All Stars and the Concord Jazz all Stars.

Foreword by Howard Alden.

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