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Charlie Parker: The Complete Legendary Rockland Palace Concert

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Recordings of Parker performances continue to materialize nearly 42 years after his death, and they virtually always include astonishing playing by Bird. For years, amateur tapes and bootleg LPs of some of the music from the September 1952 Rockland Palace date have floated through the underground. Their technical quality is, to put the best face on it, grossly substandard. This two-CD set is compelling not only for the stunning alto solos but for the digital re-engineering that makes the music as listenable as such execrable source material is likely to allow.

Engineer Doug Pomeroy and the Jazz Classics producers discovered that a second recorder was running during the engagement. Pomeroy married the two tapes to enhance the sound and supply previously missing music. Synchronizing the tapes and correcting the constantly fluctuating pitch must have been like trying to thread two needles at once. In one piece, Pomeroy painstakingly combined the recordings to produce a fascinating approximation of stereo.

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