DIZZY GILLESPIE
Bop / Big Band / Latin Jazz / Classic Fusion / Soul Jazz / Jazz Soundtracks / Hard Bop • United States

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DIZZY GILLESPIE picture
John Birks "Dizzy" Gillespie (1917 –1993) was a U.S. jazz trumpeter, bandleader, singer, and composer.

Gillespie, with Charlie Parker (Bird), was a major figure in the development of bebop and modern jazz He was also instrumental in founding Afro-Cuban jazz. Gillespie was a trumpet virtuoso and gifted improviser. In addition to his instrumental skills, Dizzy's beret and horn-rimmed spectacles, his scat singing, his bent horn and pouched cheeks, and his light-hearted personality endeared many to what was regarded as threatening and frightening music.

In his playing, Gillespie built on the "saxophonic" style of Roy Eldridge and the harmonic complexity of Charlie Parker, and then went far beyond Bird. That is, unlike his great contemporary, Dizzy made a point of enthusiastically teaching future generations (such as Miles Davis) about the convolutions of bop.

His memorable trademarks were distending his cheeks while playing (unlike most trumpet players, who are
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Night In Tunisia: The Very Best Of Dizzy GillespieNight In Tunisia: The Very Best Of Dizzy Gillespie
Bluebird/Legacy 2011
Audio CD$7.99
$0.99 (used)
Sonny Side UpSonny Side Up
Remastered
Verve Records 1997
Audio CD$7.94
$2.88 (used)
Ken Burns JAZZ Collection: Dizzy GillespieKen Burns JAZZ Collection: Dizzy Gillespie
Verve 2000
Audio CD$4.25
$2.48 (used)
Live in Vegas 1963 Vol 2Live in Vegas 1963 Vol 2
Import
Jazz Rewind Records 2016
Audio CD$7.58
$6.18 (used)
Have Trumpet Will Excite: VmeHave Trumpet Will Excite: Vme
Extra tracks · Remastered
Umvd Labels 2001
Audio CD$44.88
$4.17 (used)
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Vol 2 Dizzy Gillespie Audio CD Vol 2 Dizzy Gillespie Audio CD USD $9.07 Buy It Now 2h 43m
Roy Eldridge/Dizzy Gillespie/Harry Edison-Tour De Force-Verve 8212-MONO Roy Eldridge/Dizzy Gillespie/Harry Edison-Tour De Force-Verve 8212-MONO USD $19.99 Buy It Now 2h 54m
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3h
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4h
 Dizzy Gillespie ‎– Free Ride  EX Very Nice Record Dizzy Gillespie ‎– Free Ride EX Very Nice Record USD $7.00 Buy It Now 4h
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5h
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6h
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7h
The Winter in Lisbon 2015 by Dizzy Gillespie The Winter in Lisbon 2015 by Dizzy Gillespie USD $4.29 Buy It Now 7h
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8h
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9h
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OOL-YA-KOO: The Dizzy Gillespie Story 1939-1950 OOL-YA-KOO: The Dizzy Gillespie Story 1939-1950 USD $5.56 Buy It Now 11h
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15h
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19h
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Dizzy Gillespie And The Double Six Of Paris. Phillips Reissue. Jazz Vocal Bebop Dizzy Gillespie And The Double Six Of Paris. Phillips Reissue. Jazz Vocal Bebop USD $4.93 (0 bids)
23h
DIZZY GILLESPIE s/t 1970 UK BARCLAY/MAJOR MINOR RECORDS VINYL LP MCP 5053 DIZZY GILLESPIE s/t 1970 UK BARCLAY/MAJOR MINOR RECORDS VINYL LP MCP 5053 USD $15.52 Buy It Now 23h
 DIZZY GILLESPIE Digital at montreux 1980 LP SEALED w/ BERNARD PURDIE Jazz Pablo DIZZY GILLESPIE Digital at montreux 1980 LP SEALED w/ BERNARD PURDIE Jazz Pablo USD $29.50 Buy It Now 23h
THE ART Of THE BALLAD LP Verve VSP17 Stan Getz Coleman Hawkins Dizzy Gillespie THE ART Of THE BALLAD LP Verve VSP17 Stan Getz Coleman Hawkins Dizzy Gillespie USD $12.99 Buy It Now 23h
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Dizzy Gillespie-Journey to Next CD NEW Dizzy Gillespie-Journey to Next CD NEW USD $11.25 Buy It Now 23h
DIZZY GILLESPIE Symphony Sessions 1989 BMG LARGE CD AUCTION DIZZY GILLESPIE Symphony Sessions 1989 BMG LARGE CD AUCTION USD $1.99 (0 bids)
1 day
Dizzy Gillespie - Ool-Ya-Koo (2000) Dizzy Gillespie - Ool-Ya-Koo (2000) USD $1.23 (0 bids)
1 day
 DIZZY GILLESPIE STORY: Rare SAVOY Sealed LP w/ HANK JONES + RAY BROWN NICE! DIZZY GILLESPIE STORY: Rare SAVOY Sealed LP w/ HANK JONES + RAY BROWN NICE! USD $29.50 Buy It Now 1 day
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Aretha Franklin - Who's Zoomin' Who? - Near Mint Vinyl LP- Dizzy Gillespie Aretha Franklin - Who's Zoomin' Who? - Near Mint Vinyl LP- Dizzy Gillespie USD $7.34 Buy It Now 1 day
STAN GETZ/SONNY STITT/DIZZY GILLESPIE - FOR MUSICIANS ONLY (RM) - VINYL STAN GETZ/SONNY STITT/DIZZY GILLESPIE - FOR MUSICIANS ONLY (RM) - VINYL USD $19.29 Buy It Now 1 day
Dizzy Gillespie : Verve Jazz Masters 10:  Dizzy Gillespie CD (1993) Dizzy Gillespie : Verve Jazz Masters 10: Dizzy Gillespie CD (1993) USD $3.98 Buy It Now 1 day
Kush: The Music of Dizzy Gillespie New CD Kush: The Music of Dizzy Gillespie New CD USD $21.63 Buy It Now 1 day
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1 day
Dizzy Gillespie-Dizzy In Greece-Verve 8017-MONO NICE Dizzy Gillespie-Dizzy In Greece-Verve 8017-MONO NICE USD $19.99 Buy It Now 1 day
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Soul Time [Dizzy Gillespie] New CD Soul Time [Dizzy Gillespie] New CD USD $11.33 Buy It Now 1 day
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Dizzy Gillespie The Ebullient Mr. Gillespie Vinyl LP 1960 Jazz Verve Stereo Dizzy Gillespie The Ebullient Mr. Gillespie Vinyl LP 1960 Jazz Verve Stereo USD $9.99 Buy It Now 1 day
Dizzy Gillespie W  The Mitchell Ruff Duo In Concert LP Mainstream Stereo MRL3252 Dizzy Gillespie W The Mitchell Ruff Duo In Concert LP Mainstream Stereo MRL3252 USD $16.99 Buy It Now 1 day
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Diz And Roy(Dizzy Gillespie/Roy Eldridge) Gatefold 1977 LP NM Diz And Roy(Dizzy Gillespie/Roy Eldridge) Gatefold 1977 LP NM USD $5.00 (0 bids)
1 day
The Gifted Ones-Dizzy Gillespie-Ray Brown...ORIGINAL Pablo Jazz LP-SEALED! The Gifted Ones-Dizzy Gillespie-Ray Brown...ORIGINAL Pablo Jazz LP-SEALED! USD $24.99 (0 bids)
1 day
Dizzy Gillespie Dizzy Gillespie "The Real Thing" 1970 Jazz-Funk LP,SEALED, Orig Perception Press USD $49.95 Buy It Now 1 day
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DIZZY GILLESPIE Discography

DIZZY GILLESPIE albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie and His All Stars
Big Band 1947
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Plays & Johnny Richards Conducts
Big Band 1950
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Modern Trumpets
Big Band 1952
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Plays
Bop 1953
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Horn of Plenty
Bop 1953
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie With Strings
Bop 1953
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Over Paris
Bop 1953
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Ol' Man Rebop
Big Band 1954
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy and Strings (aka Diz Big Band)
Big Band 1954
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Diz And Getz
Bop 1955
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Plays
Bop 1955
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Blue 'n Boogie
Bop 1956
.. Album Cover 3.75 | 2 ratings
Manteca (aka Afro)
Bop 1956
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Champ
Bop 1956
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
School Days
Bop 1956
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jazz Recital
Bop 1956
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
World Statesman
Big Band 1956
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy At Home And Abroad
Big Band 1957
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Dizzy Gillespie Story
Bop 1957
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Sittin' In
Bop 1957
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Birks' Works
Bop 1957
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie And Stuff Smith
Bop 1957
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Spotlight On Dizzie Gillespie And Chuck Lewis
Bop 1958
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Duets
Bop 1958
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Swing Chez Les 3 Grands
Bop 1958
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Ebullient Mr. Gillespie
Bop 1959
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Have Trumpet, Will Excite!
Bop 1959
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Greatest Trumpet Of Them All
Bop 1959
.. Album Cover 4.50 | 2 ratings
A Portrait of Duke Ellington
Big Band 1960
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Perceptions
Big Band 1961
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Giants Of Modern Jazz (with Charlie Parker)
Bop 1962
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Something Old, Something New
Bop 1963
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
New Wave!
Latin Jazz 1963
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Cool World (Original Score)
Jazz Soundtracks 1964
.. Album Cover 4.75 | 2 ratings
Jambo Caribe
Latin Jazz 1964
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The New Continent
Big Band 1965
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Melody Lingers On
Latin Jazz 1966
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
It's My Way
Bop 1969
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Soul & Salvation (aka Souled Out)
Bop 1969
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Portrait Of Jenny
Bop 1970
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Real Thing
Bop 1970
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Cornucopia
Bop 1970
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Giants (with Bobby Hackett / Mary Lou Williams / Grady Tate / George Duvivier)
Bop 1971
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Source
Latin Jazz 1973
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy!
Bop 1974
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Giant
Bop 1975
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Bop Session
Bop 1975
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Bahiana
Latin Jazz 1976
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Y Machito : Afro-Cuban Jazz Moods
Latin Jazz 1976
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy's Party
Bop 1977
.. Album Cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Free Ride
Bop 1977
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The King Of Bop
Bop 1979
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Trumpet Summit Meets The Oscar Peterson Big 4
Big Band 1980
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
To A Finland Station (with Arturo Sandoval)
Bop 1983
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Closer To The Source
Bop 1984
.. Album Cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
New Faces
Bop 1985
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Enduring Magic (with Mitchell-Ruff Duo)
Bop 1986
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Meets The Phil Woods Quintet
Bop 1987
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Endlessly
Bop 1988
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Symphony Sessions: August 25th, 1989
Bop 1990
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Nort Sea Jazz Sessions, vol.1
Bop 1992

DIZZY GILLESPIE EPs & splits

DIZZY GILLESPIE live albums

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Concert In Paris
Big Band 1953
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Pleyel Jazz Concert
Bop 1954
.. Album Cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
In Concert featuring Chano Pozo
Big Band 1954
.. Album Cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
At Newport
Big Band 1957
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy In Greece
Bop 1957
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Gillespiana
Latin Jazz 1960
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Carnegie Hall Concert
Bop 1961
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy on the French Riviera
Bop 1962
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dateline: Europe Dizzy Gillespie In Concert
Bop 1963
.. Album Cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie & the Double Six of Paris
Bop 1963
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
3/27/65 Charlie Parker 10th Memorial Concert
Hard Bop 1965
.. Album Cover 2.52 | 2 ratings
Swing Low, Sweet Cadillac
Bop 1967
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At The Village Vanguard
Bop 1967
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Dizzy Gillespie "Reunion" Big Band 20th & 30th Anniversary
Big Band 1968
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
In Concert (with The Mitchell-Ruff Duo)
Bop 1971
.. Album Cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
A Musical Safari (Featuring Lalo Schifrin)
Bop 1974
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At Montreux Jazz festival 1975
Bop 1975
.. Album Cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Sweet Soul
Soul Jazz 1977
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Montreux '77
Bop 1977
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Digital At Montreux, 1980
Bop 1980
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Jam
Bop 1981
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Musician-Composer-Raconteur
Bop 1982
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
One Night In Washington
Big Band 1983
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Y Gonzalo Rubalcaba ‎– Gillespie En Vivo
Latin Jazz 1985
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Y Arturo Sandoval ‎– Gillespie En Vivo
Latin Jazz 1985
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At The Royal Festival Hall
Big Band 1990
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
To Bird With Love
Bop 1992
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
To Diz, With Love (Live At The Blue Note)
Bop 1992
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Quintet in Copenhagen Concert 1959
Bop 1992
.. Album Cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Diz 'N Bird At Carnegie Hall (with Charlie Parker)
Big Band 1997
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Bird Songs: The Final Recordings
Big Band 1997
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy for President
Bop 1997
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Paris Jazz Concert: Olympia, 24 November 1965
Bop 1998
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live at the 1965 Monterey Jazz Festival
Bop 2007
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Unissued In Europe 1971
Bop 2008
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At Ronnie Scott's, Vol. I
Classic Fusion 2014
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At Ronnie Scott's, Vol. II
Classic Fusion 2014
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At Ronnie Scott's, Vol. III
Classic Fusion 2014
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At Ronnie Scott's, Vol. IV
Classic Fusion 2014

DIZZY GILLESPIE demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

DIZZY GILLESPIE re-issues & compilations

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Volume III
Bop 1974
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dee Gee Days
Bop 1976
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Legendary Guild And Musicraft Sides
Bop 1980
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie 1944-1946
Bop 1981
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Gillespie Big Band: 1962
Big Band 1985
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Lady Be Good
Bop 1989
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jazz Collector Edition
Bop 1991
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Groovin' High
Bop 1992
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Shaw 'Nuff
Bop 1993
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Verve Jazz Masters 10
Bop 1994
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Professor Bop
Bop 1995
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
1940 - 1941
Bop 1995
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Complete RCA Victor Recordings
Bop 1995
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Complete Edition, Volume 3: 1941 - 1942
Bop 1995
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Midnite Jazz & Blues: Dizzy Atmosphere
Bop 1995
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzier and Dizzier
Bop 1996
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Jazz Masters: 100 anos de Jazz
Bop 1996
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Complete Edition, Volume 4: 1943-1944
Bop 1996
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Complementary Works, Volume 5: 1945
Bop 1996
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Chronological Classics: Dizzy Gillespie 1945
Bop 1996
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Things to Come
Bop 1996
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Be Bop
Bop 1997
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Talkin' Verve
Bop 1997
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Greatest Hits
Bop 1997
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Ultimate Dizzy Gillespie
Bop 1998
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Plays in Paris
Bop 1998
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Complete Edition, Volume 7-8: 1946
Bop 1998
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Chronological Classics: Dizzy Gillespie 1946-1947
Bop 1998
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Gold Collection
Bop 1998
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Blue Moon
Bop 1999
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Essential
Bop 1999
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Ken Burns Jazz: Definitive Dizzy Gillespie
Bop 2000
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Cubana Be, Cubana Bop
Bop 2000
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Anthology
Bop 2000
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jazz in Paris: Cognac Blues
Bop 2001
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Night In Tunisia
Bop 2001
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Manteca
Bop 2001
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Matrix: The Perception Sessions
Bop 2001
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Odyssey: 1945-1952
Bop 2002
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jazz in Paris: Dizzy Gillespie & his Operatic Strings Orchestra
Bop 2002
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Hall of Fame
Bop 2002
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Professor Bebop
Bop 2002
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Dizzy Gillespie Story
Bop 2002
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Chronological Classics: Dizzy Gillespie 1952
Bop 2003
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Great Blue Star Sessions 1952-1953
Bop 2004
.. Album Cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Gettin' Dizzy: The High Flying Dizzy Gillespie
Bop 2005
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Chronological Classics: Dizzy Gillespie 1953
Bop 2005
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Just Jazz: Groovin' With Diz & Co.
Bop 2005
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Chronological Classics: Dizzy Gillespie 1953-1954
Bop 2006
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dizzy Digs Paris
Bop 2006
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Verve/Philips Dizzy Gillespie Small Group Sessions (1954-64)
Bop 2006
.. Album Cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
At Newport (50th anniversary edition)
Big Band 2007

DIZZY GILLESPIE singles (1)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Groovin' High / Blue'n Boogie
Bop 1945

DIZZY GILLESPIE movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
In Redondo
Bop 1986

DIZZY GILLESPIE Reviews

DIZZY GILLESPIE At Newport

Live album · 1957 · Big Band
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js
The original “Dizzy Gillespie at Newport” is an excellent CD, but its no match for the 50th anniversary re-issue. The 50th Anniversary edition of “Dizzy Gillespie at Newport” is another one of those CD re-issues that adds enough new material to make it a significant improvement over the original. The original version of “At Newport” did not include the songs that Gillespie’s band performed with Mary Lou Williams that day, those songs instead showed up on a split EP with Count Basie. The 50th Anniversary edition brings all the songs together and you can now hear the entire show, although the songs are not in the right order as they happened that day. Having said that, this review will deal only with the original CD, which is good enough in its own right.

“Dizzy at Newport” contains some of the hottest playing you will ever hear from Dizzy and his band, or anyone else for that matter. Unlike the swing based bands of Ellington, Basie and others, Dizzy’s band was the be-bop big band; their tempos were fast, their unison lines a blur of speed and their solos displayed a new formidable modern technique. The opening tune, “Dizzy’s Blues”, busts out of the gate with Dizzy leading the charge with an incredible fiery hot solo relentlessly pushing the beat forward. Wynton Kelly’s jagged piano backup adds to the beautiful chaos. Dizzy tended to gear his shows towards the general public, not just die hard jazz fans, so there is always an upbeat easy going crowd pleasing nature to his shows, along with a good dose of humor. Whether or not Gillespie’s humor gets to be too silly or over done sometimes is a matter of taste.

After the fierce opener, follow up tune, “School Days”, is provided as a sure crowd pleaser with Dizzy doing silly school boy raps over a jump blues/rock-n-roll beat. “Manteca” is intense Latin Jazz and “Cool Breeze” brings back the fast energy of the opener. In between those two you get a beautifully orchestrated version of “I Remember Clifford”. For a live big band recording in the late 50s, the sound quality on here is not too bad, but not remarkably good either.

As mentioned earlier, the salient features of these six tracks are pure energy and instrumental fire, few performers can take a tune to the next level the way Dizzy can with a solo. This original album is good enough, but if you can get the 50th anniversary re-issue, go for it. The extra cuts with Mary Lou Williams show a whole different side of the band as they tackle William’s ambitious 3rd stream “Zodiac Suite".

DIZZY GILLESPIE Diz 'N Bird At Carnegie Hall (with Charlie Parker)

Live album · 1997 · Big Band
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js
A short review of “Diz n’ Bird at Carnegie Hall” could sum things up nicely by providing that this is a one star recording of a five star performance. The performance in question took place on Sept 29, 1947 at Carnegie Hall and featured an opening set by Diz and Bird as a quintet, which was followed by Dizzy’s big band. Ella Fitzgerald also performed that night, but she does not appear on the album. The Parker/Gillespie set presented on here consists of five tunes, followed by another ten for Dizzy’s big band. Those five opening tunes by the quintet are the highlight, Parker’s playing is absolutely phenomenal, some of his best ever captured on a recording. Also, the bad sound issues are not nearly as bothersome with the smaller group than with the full orchestra that will follow.

The ten big band tunes that follow are all great, but the recording issues make them hard to listen to. It sounds like there were no special recording mics set up, instead it seems everything is being recorded possibly by one PA mic which was probably set in front of the whole band with the intent of amplifying whoever is the soloist. Needless to say, whenever a soloist leans to heavily into the mic, much of the rest of the band fades to the background. Even without a loud soloist, the balance between band sections is awful with the trumpet section blowing every one off of the recording. Its unfortunate these tunes weren’t recorded better, because many are great. Some highlights include George Russell’s modern pointillist arrangement of “Relaxin at Camarillo”, John Lewis’ early 3rd stream experiment , “Toccata for Trumpet”, and the high speed scatter of “Things to Come”. Overall Gillespie’s band is not about the subtle tone colors of Ellington, or the relentless groove of Basie, but instead is all about hot fiery energy, Latin rhythms and a screaming trumpet section.

This CD isn’t for everyone, but Parker fans may want to get this for the first five cuts which really capture the special sparks that would fly whenever Bird n’ Diz hit the stage together. The rest of the album could be interesting to Dizzy and big band fans who want to hear what Dizzy’s innovative orchestra was up to during this time period. As a good example of the sound issues on this recording, the great John Lewis plays piano in both groups, but I doubt you will be able to hear much of what he plays.

DIZZY GILLESPIE Sweet Soul

Live album · 1977 · Soul Jazz
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js
Dizzy Gillespie started out his career as one of jazz’s most important trailblazing innovators. Like most musicians who stick around long enough, Dizzy’s later career was a mixed bag with the always good-natured Diz willing to participate in endeavors that were sometimes less than stellar, which leads us to this pop-RnB soul jazz LP that is sometimes titled “Sweet Soul”, and other times, “Azure Blue”. Whatever it is titled, it is actually Dizzy's "Soul and Salvation", released in 1969, and it sounds very much like a 60s RnB production geared for am radio and automobile dashboard speakers.

Soul jazz in itself is a genre that ranges from excellent sides by folks like Eddie Harris and Herbie Mann, to pure commercial fluff put out by others. “Sweet Soul” falls somewhere in-between those two extremes with about half the cuts featuring solid RnB/jazz riffs, while the other half can range from trite to outright annoying. The credits on here are very sketchy, but there is a very prominent saxophonist on here who carries most of the melodies and a lot of the solos too, quite possibly it is James Moody, but there are several other saxophonists on here as well as a couple more trumpeters besides Diz.

“Sweet Soul” starts out fairly strong with the first five cuts all being fairly catchy RnB pop songs, third track “Azure Blue” is particularly striking with a great solo from Diz. Track six, “Party Man” introduces one of this album’s biggest faults, wordless vocals (“yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah”) that repeat every couple of bars throughout the entire song in a very mind-numbing fashion. Its really hard to make it through the entire song after you have heard that refrain more than three or four times. A couple more songs also contain the overbearing vocals and as the album wears on you begin to realize that a lot of these songs are very similar to each other. Adding to this album’s cheapness and lack of credibility is this hilariously polite canned applause that starts and ends each song. I seriously doubt this is a “live” record as the applause is exactly the same every time it comes around.

The main plus on here is that Dizzy’s soloing is high energy on every cut, even the banal ones. Fans of rare groove and classic soul jazz may want to pick this up, there are just enough good cuts on here to make it worthwhile, but anyone looking for Gillespie’s outstanding contributions to jazz will want to pick up something from earlier in his career.

DIZZY GILLESPIE At Newport (50th anniversary edition)

Boxset / Compilation · 2007 · Big Band
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js
The 50th Anniversary edition of “Dizzy Gillespie at Newport” is another one of those CD re-issues that adds enough new material to make it a significant improvement over the original. The original version of “At Newport” did not include the songs that Gillespie’s band performed with Mary Lou Williams that day, those songs instead showed up on a split EP with Count Basie. This 50th Anniversary edition brings all the songs together and you can now hear the entire show, although the songs are not in the right order as they happened that day.

This CD opens up with the six tunes that comprised the original LP and contain some of the hottest playing you will ever hear from Dizzy and his band, or anyone else for that matter. Unlike the swing based bands of Ellington, Basie and others, Dizzy’s band was the be-bop big band; their tempos were fast, their unison lines a blur of speed and their solos displayed a new formidable modern technique. The opening tune “Dizzy’s Blues” busts out of the gate with Dizzy leading the charge with an incredible fiery hot solo relentlessly pushing the beat forward. Wynton Kelly’s jagged piano backup adds to the beautiful chaos. Dizzy tended to gear his shows towards the general public, not just die hard jazz fans, so there is always an upbeat easy going crowd pleasing nature to his shows, along with a good dose of humor. Whether or not Gillespie’s humor gets to be too silly or over done sometimes is a matter of taste.

The rest of the five tunes from the original LP are all good with “School Days” being a sure crowd pleaser with Dizzy doing silly school boy raps over a jump blues/rock-n-roll beat. “Manteca” is intense Latin jazz and “Cool Breeze” brings back the fast energy of the opener. The following tunes on this CD feature the cuts with Mary Lou Williams that were originally released as a separate EP back in the 50s. Apparently these were actually the opening tunes at the concert and present a totally different side of the band. William’s set opens with her ambitious three part “Zodiac Suite” which has the band digging into difficult and exotic 3rd stream type arrangements. This era of early big band experimentation produced some very interesting, almost naïve at times, creations and William’s odd “Suite” is no exception. The rest of this CD is made up of two more well known Latin flavored numbers.

What a great idea to bring the two original separate records of this concert together onto one CD. You get some excellent variety on here with the high brow and ambitious “Zodiac Suite” contrasting with the good times rockin energy of the other cuts. Besides Dizzy, some other great soloists on here include Al Grey on trombone, Pee Wee Moore and Benny Golson on sax, and Lee Morgan on trumpet.

On an interesting side note, Gillespie's 57 appearance at Newport came one year after Ellington’s big band smash success at the festival in 1956. No doubt Ellington’s success was an influence on Gillespie’s presentation as there are some interesting similarities including a three part suite followed by some crowd pleasing bluesy early rock-n-roll back beat.

DIZZY GILLESPIE In Concert featuring Chano Pozo

Live album · 1954 · Big Band
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
js
The end of the big band era was marked by the emergence of the small combo playing be-bop, thus the idea of a big band playing bop seemed ironic at best, and impossible at worst. Many critics felt the big band format would prove too cumbersome for the new fleeter style, but undaunted, Dizzy Gillespie went ahead and put together a very successful big band in the new idiom. “Dizzy Gillespie in Concert” is a very early Gillespie big band recording (1948), but it was not released until 1954. This was his band’s first appearance on the west coast and the excitement shows in the performances and in the enthusiastic crowd reactions. I’m sure the concert was great, but unfortunately this recording isn't. The soloists come through pretty clearly, and the rhythm section isn’t too bad, but the ensemble horns sound distant, and sometimes barely audible. Even by the standards of live recordings in the late 40s, this isn't great. In all fairness though, some people really enjoy this record, despite the sound.

The tunes on here feature well known Gillespie crowd pleasers. Possibly Dizzy felt that since the big band itself was a risk, he might as well go with material people already knew. The arrangements lean heavily on Dizzy’s role models, Ellington and Basie, but the fiery horn lines in odd rhythms reflect Gillespie’s interest in Machito and other Afro-Cuban band leaders. Dizzy takes this material and modernizes it with the fire of bop. The rapid high pitched unison horn lines foreshadow the coming of macho horn sections such as the bands of Maynard Ferguson and Bill Chase. As mentioned earlier, the recorded sound of the ensemble work is often murky or vague, but the soloists come through loud and clear. Along with Gillespie on horn, you get three great saxophonists, James Moody, Cecil Payne and Ernie Henry. The main co-star though is Cuban conga player Chano Pozo, who drives the band with syncopated double time rhythms. Pozo’s presence in general helps add to the already present Afro-Cuban flavor in Gillespie’s arrangements.

A lengthy song with “humorous” scat vocals and other occasional cheezy displays of obvious humor may not be to everyone’s taste. As mentioned earlier, there is a crowd pleasing element to this show, but big band bop is never profitable or commercial by a long shot. The potential buyer needs to weigh which one trumps: good music or bad recording.

DIZZY GILLESPIE Movies Reviews

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