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The Dave Brubeck Quartet’s ‘Last Time Out’

The classic quartet's final performance as an active band is released

The Dave Brubeck Quartet

In December 1966, Dave Brubeck told his quartet that the following year would be their last. He wanted to retire from the rigors of touring in order to concentrate on composing. Brubeck must have also informed his record company, for two live albums from the 1967 world tour were released, Bravo! Brubeck! from Mexico and The Last Time We Saw Paris. Releasing multiple concert recordings in a single year was not really that unusual for Brubeck. Live LPs had been a staple of his catalog since his first album for Columbia in 1954 (Jazz Goes to College) and before, with Jazz at Oberlin and College of the Pacific (both on Fantasy).

Now the final performance by the Dave Brubeck Quartet has been released, a December 1967 concert from Philadelphia titled Their Last Time Out. These tapes were not in the record company’s vault, but were instead retrieved from the pianist’s own home closet. Brubeck doesn’t recall how he acquired them. But when longtime friend and collaborator Russell Gloyd realized what they were, he took the tapes to Columbia for release. We should be glad he did.

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