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July/August 2000

C-Jam All Stars
Diminuendo, Crescendo and Blues
RCA Victor

Recorded in Munich in November 1958, the C-Jam All Stars consist of Paul Gonsalves, his fellow Ellingtonians Clark Terry, playing both trumpet and flugelhorn, bassist Jimmy Woode, and drummer Sam Woodyard, and German bop pianist Carlos Diernhammer, a little known devotee of Bud Powell. Although short in duration, even for an LP, this album does display the tightly knit combo on 10 tracks, ranging from an up-tempo reinterpretation of Gonsalves' famed "Diminuendo and Crescendo In Blue" solo, which in spots varies quite dramatically from the oft-heard Newport version, to a number of blues and pop standards and originals. Terry, playing both muted and open, contributed three tunes, the slow blues "Evad," the medium swinging "Hildegard" and the way-up bop blues "Ocean Motion," while Gonsalves brought in two heads, the medium bright blues "Autobahn" and a relaxed "I Got Rhythm"-based theme called "Jivin' With Fritz." The remainder of the numbers are standards by Duke and others.

Originally published in July/August 2000
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