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Charlie Parker session details

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May 15, 1949 (1 item; TT = 4:54)
Salle Pleyel, Paris (France)
Private recording (Tape) (B)

Charlie Parker (as); Kenny Dorham (tpt); Aime Barelli (tpt); Bill Coleman (tpt); Oran "Hot Lips" Page (tpt); Miles Davis (tpt); Russell "Big Chief" Moore (tb); Hubert Rostang (cl); Pierre Braslavsky (ss); Sidney Bechet (ss); Don Byas (ts); James Moody (ts); Al Haig (p); Hazy Osterwald (vb); Toots Thielemans (g); Tommy Potter (b); Max Roach (d)

1 Blues Final (incomplete) [Farewell Blues] (S. Bechet) 4:54

Shorter version (ca. 3:46) on all issues except Vogue YX-0001

1 Blues Final (incomplete)
12" LP: Spotlite SPJ 118, Toho/Vogue YX-0001
CD: Philology Volume 12 (W 842), Volume 61 (W 892), Rare Live Recordings RLR 88658, Frémeaux & Associés FA 1336

This is a broadcast recording from the Festival International 1949 de Jazz. The festival included many traditional acts from the United States -- Sidney Bechet, Russell Moore, Oran "Hot Lips" Paige -- but it also introduced bebop groups like the Charlie Parker Quintet and the Miles Davis-Tadd Dameron quintet. Also on the bill were musicians from England (Vic Lewis's big band), Belgium (Toots Thielemans Trio), Switzerland (Hazy Osterwald's quintet), Italy (Armando Trovajoli), and of course many from France (including Aimé Barelli, Hubert Rostang, the Django Reinhardt Quintet). [roster front] [roster back] [program cover] [Jazz Hot Nr. 22 (Mai 1949)]

Parker arrived in Paris on Friday, May 6, with Sidney Bechet, Kenny Clarke, and several other American musicians. The following day rehearsals were scheduled at the Salle Pleyel (Parker was AWOL and missed this one) and the Club St. Germain, and in the evening the festival promoters threw a cocktail party for the musicians at the Pavilion de 'Elysee. The Parker Quintet was in France for nine more days (May 8-16), booked at the following venues:

May 8-9: Salle Pleyel, Paris (Festival International de Jazz -- opposite Sidney Bechet, Hot Lips Page, the Miles Davis-Tadd Dameron Quintet, and others)
May 10-11: Rex Theatre, Club Martinez et Christera, Marseilles
May 12: Colisée Movie Theatre, Roubaix
May 14: Salle Pleyel, Paris
May 15: Salle Pleyel (two concerts, including closing All-Star jam session)

Or, as the liner notes to Spotlite SPJ-118 have it,

Bird and his men -- Kenny Dorham, Al Haig, Tommy Potter, and Max Roach -- played evening concerts on the Sunday and Monday, then did a concert the following Saturday, winding up with afternoon and evening shows on Sunday, May 15, the final day of the festival. From Tuesday to Friday the group undertook a short tour playing concerts in Roubaix and Marseille before returning to Paris.

André Hodier reviewed the festival in his essay "Le Festival 1949" in Jazz Hot No. 34 (Juin 1949), pp. 7-10.

This music is from a farewell concert on May 15, where most of the musicians got together for a Dixieland-style blowing session. There are two different versions of this blues:

"Farewell Blues"
(Philology Vol. 12, etc.)
"Blues Final"
(Vogue YX-0001)

0:00-0:29 Byas (ts) (inc)
0:29-1:37 Coleman/Page (tpt)
1:37-2:30 Bechet (ss)
2:30-3:03 Davis (tpt)
3:03-3:46 Parker (as) + ensemble

Cut off mid-Parker solo.

0:00-0:26 Byas (ts) (inc)
0:26-1:37 Coleman/Page (tpt)
1:37-2:32 Bechet (ss)
2:32-3:06 Davis (tpt)
3:06-4:00 Parker (as) + ensemble
4:00-4:49 ensemble
4:49-4:54 Applause

Thanks to Hideki Murayama for supplying me with a copy of the Vogue Disque LP, and to Pascal Garnier for sharing the Juin 1949 issue of Jazz Hot.

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