Category Archives: BEN WEBSTER

Ben Webster – King of the Tenors

Album: king of the tenors
Label: Verve
Format: MP3@320 kbps
Sound Quality: FULL
Size: 83 MBTime 39:23
Type: Album
Country: USA
Release Date: 1953
Genre: JAZZ
By 1953, Ben Webster had carved out his own niche in the world of jazz (and certainly in the world of saxophone). Early in his career, the tenor man was under the spell of Coleman Hawkins and some critics considered him a mere copy. However, by the ’50s, Webster had formed his own idiom. Still showing his roots, Webster nonetheless began to play with more flexible phrasing and a unique breathy tone. Uptempo numbers were intense yet controlled, and his ballad work (probably his greatest asset) was lyrical and more emotional than that of any of his contemporaries.
On KING OF THE TENORS we hear Webster in two different versions of the Oscar Peterson Quartet. The first setting features only one horn (Webster), the second session features legends Harry «Sweets» Edison (trumpet) and Benny Carter (alto sax) in addition to Webster. This reissue includes a previously unreleased version of «Poutin» as well as superb renditions of standard tunes «Tenderly,» «Don’t Get Around Any More,» and the lovely Irish traditional «Danny Boy.»

 01. Tenderly
 02. Jive At Six
 03. Don’t Get Around Much Any More
 04. That’s All
 05. Bounce Blues
 06. Pennies From Heaven
 07. Cotton Tail
 08. Danny Boy
 09. Poutin’
 10. Bounce Blues (Previously Unissued Alternate Take)

 11. That’s All (Single Version)

 Ben Webster (tenor saxo)
 Benny Carter (alto saxo)
 Harry «Sweets» Edison (trumpet)
 Oscar Peterson (piano)
 Barney Kessel, Herb Ellis (guitar)
 Ray Brown (bass)
 J.C. Heard, Alvin Stoller (drums)
This 1953 date matched Webster with such peers as alto saxophonist Benny Carter, trumpeter Harry Edison, and pianist Oscar Peterson for a series of elegant yet soulful and exuberant small group dates. With no cut longer than four and a half minutes, the players didn’t have time for excess statements or overkill; they had to quickly get to the heart of the matter in their solos, make their points, and return to the head. The original session has been enlarged by the addition of two previously unissued tracks, plus an alternate version of «That’s All» that was later issued as a single. Label head Norman Granz excelled in producing swing-oriented, crisply played mainstream dates. Although this date is more than four decades old, Ben Webster’s solos have a freshness and vitality that make them quite relevant to contemporary events.

by Ron Wynn

Courtesy All Music

It was the critic Leonard Feather who dubbed Ben Webster «the Clark Gable of the tenor saxophone, at once a brute and a hero». The opening two tracks of this 1953 vintage recording proves the point with a breathy, caressing «Tenderly» followed by an up-tempo «Jive At Six» with Webster sinking his teeth into the reed to produce an urgent, gutsy sound. The album couples the first two sessions Webster did for Verve producer Norman Granz, who made sure that the tenor saxophonist had colleagues of an equal stature. On all 11 tracks Webster is backed by the Oscar Peterson Trio plus a drummer and on five of them he is joined by Harry Edison and Benny Carter for some excellent mainstream jazz. The album contains the previously unissued minor key blues «Poutin'» and two takes each of «Bounce Blues» and a gorgeous ballad, «That’s All». Webster was a unique player who had complete control of the tenor and was capable of bringing his sound down to a whisper and then allowing it to die away leaving just a vibrating column of air in the instrument. This album demonstrates the artistry of a true giant at peak form. –Steve Voce



Label: Verve
Format: MP3@320 kbps
Sound Quality: FULL
Size: 108 MB

Time 48:45

Type: Album
Country: USA
Release Date: 1957
Genre: JAZZ
On this 1957 date, Webster is teamed up with the great Oscar Peterson Quartet. Supporting Webster on each track, this music lays «in the pocket» (as musicians would say) quite well. Much of this is due to drummer Stan Levey’s buoyant swing. Webster himself is heard on two simple blues numbers of his own penning including the title track and «Late Date.» Other songs include the standards «Lover Come Back To Me,» «Where Are You,» and «Makin’ Whoopee.» Perhaps the most riveting tune on SOULVILLE, however, is the beautiful ballad «Time on My Hands.»
Indeed, Webster is one of the most brilliant instrumental balladeers jazz has ever produced. No one can get that airy (even sultry) tone quite like Webster. Finally, as an intriguing bonus, we hear Webster perform three tunes in duet with Levey. Intriguingly, Webster plays piano on these tracks! Using an antiquated stride/boogie woogie style, Webster shows that his talent reaches beyond the saxophone.
Recorded in Hollywood, California on October 15, 1957. Originally released on Verve (8274). Includes liner notes by Barry Alfonso.
Additional Tracks
Personnel: Ben Webster (tenor saxophone, piano) Oscar Peterson (piano) Herb Ellis (guitar) Ray Brown (bass) Stan Levey (drums).
Liner Note Authors: Nat Hentoff; Barry Alfonso.
Recording information: Capitol Studios, Hollywood, CA (10/15/1957).
Photographers: Katherine Holzman Goldblatt; Burt Goldblatt.
 1.  Soulville (Webster) – 8:03
 2.  Late Date (Webster) – 7:13
 3.  Time on My Hands (Adamson/Gordon/Youman) – 4:16
 4.  Lover, Come Back to Me (Hammerstein/Romberg) – 8:26
 5.  Where Are You? (Davis/Pollack) – 4:41
 6.  Makin’ Whoopee (Donaldson/Kahn) – 4:29
 7.  Ill Wind (Arlen/Koehler) – 3:30
 8.  Who? (Hammerstein/Kern) – 2:56
 9.  Boogie Woogie (Webster) – 3:06
 10. Roses of Picardy (Weatherly/Wood) – 2:05
 Herb Ellis – Guitar
 Oscar Peterson – Piano
 Ben Webster – Piano, Sax (Tenor)
 Stan Levy – Drums
«Thank you Mr. Webster».
By Elmo’s Firetruck
This was the first Ben Webser LP I bought–at a used record store in Berkeley, CA in the early 1970’s. I had no idea who Ben Webster was at the time–was just discovering jazz and I liked the album cover. Thirty years later there is not a week that goes by that I don’t have Soulville on the turntable or in the CD player of my car. It might not be Ben Webster’s best LP (King of the Tenors, maybe?) or his best playing (1939/40 with the Ellington band), but this record has more grit and tender, loving SOUL than any album I’ve ever owned. Sit back in your favorite chair, pour a snifter of your favorite libation, turn out all the lights, make sure nobody is home and prepare to get kicked right in the guts. One warning–don’t play this LP if your wife or girlfriend has just walked out on you–it will bring you to tears. And Stan Levey, by the way, was Charlie Parker’s regular drummer after Max Roach left and, along with Roy McCurdy is the best drummer I’ve heard live on a REGULAR basis. And the rest of the rythym section speaks for itself.

Coleman Hawkins – Coleman Hawkins Encounters Ben Webster

Sound Quality: Lossless
Format: Flac | mp3_320Kbps
Record Label: Verve
Year Released: 1959 / 1988

The Masters.
An intimate conversation with two of the best saxophone players of the jazz age.
And a magical moment in the history of the jazz records.

«Coleman Hawkins Encounters Ben Webster» highlights the talents of both tenor men nicely, with Hawkins and Webster consistently complementing each other’s playing. In fact, they develop a kind of conversational interplay that is quite beautiful, particularly on the gentle «It Never Entered My Mind» and the slowly swinging «Shine on Harvest Moon.» Although the rest of the band consists of stellar musicians (including pianist Oscar Peterson and guitarist Herb Ellis), they concede the spotlight to Hawkins and Webster, whose dual saxophones more than carry the record. Other standout tracks include the sultry ballad «Tangerine» and the Latin-flavored «La Rosita

«…eine Sternstunde nicht nur von Hawk, sondern auch von Webster. Beide Tenoristen teilen sich fast alle Soli, und das Peterson-Quartett sieht sich in der Rolle einer perfekt spielenden Begleitung“. Hawkins und Webster kennen sich seit den 1930er Jahren; und so ist diese Session „von einer gegenseitigen Bewunderung gepragt, aber auch von Respekt und Nahe. Dies wird immer dann deutlich, wenn einer vom anderen das Solo ubernimmt, oder besser fortsetzt. Bis auf zwei Ausnahmen hat Hawk das erste Solo, Ben hat Zeit zuzuhoren, und er geht dann, wenn die Reihe an ihm ist, auf das vorher Gespielte ein.

The Rolling Stone Record Guide:  
This is the original album. There are also miscellaneous album versions with bonus tracks.

01. Blues For Yolande …6:49
02. It Never Entered My Mind …5:50
03. Rosita …5:05
04. You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To …4:19
05. Prisoner Of Love …4:16
06. Tangerine …5:23
07. Shine On Harvest Moon …4:49

total 36:30 min
«You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To»

Coleman Hawkins, Ben Webster – tenor saxophones
Alvin Stoller – drums
Oscar Peterson – piano
Herb Ellis – guitar
Ray Brown – bass

Recorded at Capitol Studios, Hollywood, California on October 16, 1957
Produced by Norman Granz

(p) 1959 Verve Records (LP)
LP Nr.: MGV-8327
(c) 1988 Verve Records (CD, AAD)
CD Nr.: 823 120-2

Ben Webster meets Oscar Peterson

Ben Webster meets Oscar Peterson is a 1959 studio album featuring a jazz trio, led by the Canadian jazz pianist Oscar Peterson, with the tenor saxophonist Ben Webster.

Track listing
«The Touch of Your Lips» (Ray Noble) – 6:20
«When Your Lover Has Gone» (Einar Aaron Swan) – 3:59
«Bye Bye Blackbird» (Mort Dixon, Ray Henderson) – 6:45
«How Deep Is the Ocean?» (Irving Berlin) – 2:36
«In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning» (Bob Hilliard, David Mann) – 3:13
«Sunday» (Chester Conn, Benny Krueger, Ned Miller, Jule Styne) – 3:57
«This Can’t Be Love» (Lorenz Hart, Richard Rodgers) – 9:51

Oscar Peterson – piano
Ben Webster – tenor saxophone
Ray Brown – double bass
Ed Thigpen – drums

They don’t come much better than Ben Webster and Oscar Peterson. And this CD demonstrates why.

From Webster’s opening on «The Touch of Your Lips» to the final notes of «This Can’t Be Love», these two great artists combined to create one of the best albums in jazz history. Its impossible to listen to this and not find yourself getting carried away. The highlight of the album, though, is Webster’s rendition of «In The Wee Small Hours of the Morning». As the liner notes state, its not surprising that Webster captures this Sinatra classic perfectly given the fact that he’d probably listened to it hundreds of times before this recording was made. All the same, the lush, lyrical, tone he achieves is simply awesome, and it lead me to wonder what a duet between Ben and Frank might’ve sounded like…….

Not only do you need to buy this album right now, when you get it you need to play it as loud as possible with all the windows open. Everyone in the world deserves to hear this one.
By D. Mataconis (Bristow, Virginia) –

Ανάρτηση αφιερωμένη στο φίλο μου Δημήτρη Τσαγανό, που στις αρχές του ’80 μου σύστησε αυτούς τους 2 γίγαντες της μουσικής!