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Thanks to the German TV mini series Babylon Berlin, I’ve been getting into a lot of late 1920s/1930’s jazz, and a bit of Swing/Big Band again.  I picked up this Italian pressing of Artie Shaw’s “Story” and it is a winner.

Side note: If you find yourself in my current hometown of Frankfurt, and you are jazz fan, you are in for a treat. Analogetontraeger has an amazing jazz collection, which is where I picked this gem up.  They’ll even fix you up with a coffee and let you listen to your finds. 

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The back jacket liner notes are both in English and Italian, but I can’t figure out when this pressing was released. I would guess in the 1950’s if I had to.

Artie Shaw was quite a controversial character.  Married and divorced several times to the likes of Ava Gardner, Lana Turner and Katherine Windsor to name a few, he also dated Judy Garland.

More noteworthy, is the fact that he was the first white band-leader to hire a black full-time singer whilst touring the segregated south.  The singer? None other than legendary Billie Holiday.  By the late 1940s he was performing classical music at Carnegie Hall with Leonard Bernstein.

This compilation is fantastic because it gives you a great survey of his work.  Definitely a great one to throw on the turntable. Shaw was a great bandleader and colorful character in the world of Big Band.  Worth discovering…

-PB

 

 

 

 

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