This Art Tatum CD – the 9th in Storyville Records’ series – consists entirely of previously unreleased material from 1944, 1945 and 1952. The 27 tunes (76 min.) include solo piano, duo, trio and large orchestra accompaniment, and the music was recorded at radio broadcasts, Art Tatum’s own home (!!!) and at an after hour club in Los Angeles. The repertoire is basically “standard Tatum”, including “Blue Skies”, “Jitterbug Waltz”, “Sweet Lorraine” and “Tea For Two”. Besides playing piano on all tracks, Tatum also occasionally sings and talks about the music he’s playing. Art Tatum was possibly the greatest American jazz pianist of all time – his harmonic daring, rhythmic ingenuity, incredibly precise timing and overall inventiveness have never been equaled. Tatum’s music is constantly taking unexpected twists and turns but at the same time is very musical and – in spite of his often break-neck tempo – logical and relaxed. The musical genius in evidence here means that new insights are gained every time one listens to this amazing CD.
Art Tatum/piano & vocal Slam Stewart/bass Alan Roth Orchestra with strings