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Count Basie ‎– Basie Plays Hefti (1970)

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Count Basie ‎– Basie Plays Hefti (1970)

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A1 	Has Anyone Here Seen Basie 	2:42
A2 	Cute 	3:10
A3 	Pensive Miss 	3:48
A4 	Sloo Foot 	3:08
A5 	It's Awfully Nice To Be With You 	3:31
B1 	Scoot 	2:28
B2 	A Little Tempo, Please 	2:36
B3 	Late Date 	3:17
B4 	Count Down 	2:45
B5 	Bag 'A Bones 	2:42

Alto Saxophone – Frank Wess, Marshall Royal
Baritone Saxophone – Charlie Fowlkes
Double Bass – Eddie Jones
Drums – Sonny Payne
Flute – Frank Wess
Guitar – Freddie Green
Piano – Count Basie
Tenor Saxophone – Billy Mitchell, Frank Foster
Trombone – Al Grey, Benny Powell, Henry Coker
Trumpet – Eugene Young, Joe Newman, Thad Jones, Wendell Culley
Written-By, Arranged By – Neal Hefti

 

The Count Basie Orchestra was in top form for this set of Neal Hefti arrangements. Hefti had been one of the main architects of the new Basie sound of the '50s and on this memorable date he utilizes the flute of Frank Wess prominently. "Cute" (heard here in its initial recording) became a standard. ---Scott Yanow, AllMusic Review

 

One of the top jazz arranger/composers of the 1950s, Neal Hefti first wrote charts in the late '30s for Nat Towles. He contributed arrangements to the Earl Hines big band; played trumpet with Charlie Barnet, Horace Heidt, and Charlie Spivak (1942-1943); and toured with Woody Herman's First Herd (1944-1946), marrying Herman's singer Francis Wayne. It was with Herman that Hefti began to get a strong reputation, arranging an updated "Woodchopper's Ball" and "Blowin' Up a Storm," and composing "The Good Earth" and "Wild Root." He also took a notable solo during a Lucky Thompson session on "From Dixieland to Bop." However, Hefti soon relegated his trumpet playing to a secondary status (although he played it on an occasional basis into the 1960s) and concentrated on his writing. He contributed charts to the orchestras of Charlie Ventura (1946), Harry James (1948-1949), and most notably Count Basie (1950-1962). For Basie, he wrote "Little Pony," "Cute," "Li'l Darling," "Whirlybird," and many other swinging songs, often utilizing Frank Wess' flute in inventive fashion. Neal Hefti also led his own bands off and on in the 1950s, but in later years concentrated on writing for films while remaining influenced by his experiences in the jazz world. Hefti passed away at his California home on October 11, 2008, at age 85. ---Scott Yanow, allmusic.com

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