When you get up in the morning, you must have a song - Ray Charles

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Charlie Parker - The Happy Bird

I recently found myself on the wrong side of a discussion about Blue Note records. Everyone on the message board had been fawning over records that I had been listening to for years. Or rather, not been listening to for years because I felt over familiar with them.

Did this make them bad records? Of course not. But it also led me to thinking "Why don't I ever listen to those bebop records that turned me on so long ago?" I mean those records turned me on my ear at one time. I couldn't get enough of the slurred notes, that blistering pace, all the while sounding perfectly natural to me. Not a hint of anything "outside" no matter how wild they may have been in their time.

I have spent the last couple of weeks revisiting some of those records. I'm thinking I may like to share a few with you all.

And why not start with the master himself? A posthumous release on the label named after the man himself. I love the fact that this recording is less than perfect. I can only imagine what a live Parker performance must have been.

While those live performances have been documented extensively, unless you are a completest, there are plenty that slip by. Here's one I really like.

Charlie Parker
The Happy Bird

1. Happy Bird Blues
2. Scrapple From The Apple
3. I Remember April
4. I May Be Wrong

There are no liner credits on my lp, but I am sure someone will be along shortly to fill us in. And I mean that in the nicest way.


* a bit of research tells me this MAY have been recorded 4/12/51.


mel said...

Oops! This link appears to be broken.

SlimStew said...

Thanks for this--I haven't heard this in 25 years.

Hookfinger said...

Link fixed - Sorry guys.

mel said...

Thanks very much - firstly for sharing this rare Parker album and secondly for fixing the link.

keep boppin´ marcel said...

first a big thank you for your posts. As a big bird afficionado i have to step in for the discographical informations:
„lullaby in rhythm“ (listed on the lp as „i may be wrong“)(wellington and pierce solos have been edited out); „scrapple from the apple“; „happy bird blues“ (this track is an edited parker solo with rhythm section). jam session, christy´s, framingham, mass., april 12, 1951, thursday.(privately recorded by eddie curran). bird,as, bill wellington, as (on lullaby in rhythm only); wardell gray, ts, howard mcghee, tp, nat pierce, p, jack lawlor, b, joe macdonald, dr.
at a later date, possibly during december 8-14, 1952. location is unknown, possibly christy´s. „i remember april“: bird,as, possibly joe gordon,tp, possibly bill wellington,ts, dick twardzik,p, charlie mingus,b, roy haynes,dr. this information comes from the wonderful liner notes of the „uptown“ cd „charlie parker, boston, 1952“ upcd 27.52.

keep boppin´

Bhowani said...

Charlie Parker : The Happy Bird

1 : Happy bird blues (3 :01) (*)---April 12, 1951
2 : Scraple from the apple (15 :48)---April 12, 1951
3 : I’ll remember Aptil (10 :54) ---December 08, 1952
4 : Lullaby in rhythym (I may be wrong) (13 :01)---April 12 , 1951

1, 2, 4 : April 12, 1951
C P (as)
Bill (Dick) Wellington (as)
Unknown (tp)
Unknown (tp) onLullaby
Wardell Gray (ts)
Walter Bishop(p) on Happy Bird blues
Teddy Kotick (b)
Roy Haynes (dr)

3 : December 08, 1952
CP (as)
Joe Gordon (tp)
Bill Wellington (p)
Dick Twardzick (p)
Charles Mingus (b)
Roy Haynes (dr)

(*) : ON 1 other source says :
Nat Pierce (p)
Jack Lawlor (b)
Joe MacDonald (dr)

These infos come from the wonderful liner notes of the Philology « Bird’s eyes, Framingham, Mass, Christy’s Restaurant, Vol. 33 »

Hookfinger said...

From another site, my friend Zero says...

Great selection, Dave. I have the Collectables CD version (among my most-played Bird discs) courtesy of another source. I don't think there are any liner notes for the CD but the tray offers the following credits:

Tracks 1, 2 and 4:

Charlie Parker - alto sax
Walter Bishop - piano
Wardell Gray - tenor sax
Benny Harris - trumpet
Teddy Kotick - bass
Roy Haynes - drums

Track 3:

Charlie Parker - alto sax
Dick Twardzik - piano
Charlie Mingus - bass
Max Roach - drums

Recorded live at Christy's Restaurant, Boston, Massachusetts, April 12, 1951.

G Man said...

Great Recording. Nothing touches me like Parkers sound so much heart and feeling. For a live bird it sounds awesome. Blogland needs more Parker posts like this one.
Thank You
G Man