George Shearing – Continental Experience (1975/2014) [ProStudioMasters FLAC 24/88,2]

George Shearing – Continental Experience (1975/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/88,2 kHz | Time – 38:15 minutes | 705 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: ProStudioMasters | Front Cover | © MPS Records

George Shearing’s classic quintet is expanded to seven members on this release as two of Shearing’s “amigos,” Latin percussionists Carmelo Garcia and Chino Valdes, sit in on this 1975 release of pop standards. Includes a reading of Shearing’s biggest hit and signature tune Lullaby of Birdland.

In spite of the dismal result from The Way We Are, an earlier project for BASF by the George Shearing Quintet & Amigos, this seven-piece group once again recorded for the label but stuck this time to a dozen standards instead of inane ’70s pop songs as on the earlier record. While the results are greatly improved, this LP hardly measures up to the level of playing on Shearing Quintet recordings of the ’40s, ’50s, ’60s, or the revived quintet of 2000. Part of the problem is the lack of soloists in addition to the leader and the incessant and generally extraneous Latin percussion. In spite of the very strong mix of songs – including “I’ll Be Around,” “Don’t Blame Me,” “East of the Sun,” and “The Nearness of You” – the rather conservative arrangements make this a relatively rare George Shearing LP – one that jazz fans can safely bypass.

Tracklist:
01 – Lullaby of Birdland
02 – When Your Lover Has Gone
03 – Woodland Sketches, Op. 51
04 – I’ll Be Around
05 – Eileen: Thine alone
06 – Don’t Blame Me
07 – The Continental
08 – The Nearness of You
09 – Roses Of Picardy
10 – Oh, Kay!: Someone to Watch Over Me
11 – East of the Sun (West of the Moon)
12 – We’ll Be Together Again

Produced by MPS Records.
Recorded in 1975 at MPS Studios in Villingen, Germany.
Recorded and Mixed by Hans Georg Brunner-Schwer.

Musicians:
George Shearing – piano
Sigi Schwab – guitar
Heribert Thusek – vibraphone
Andy Simpkins – bass
Rusty Jones – drums
Chino Valdes – congas, bongos
Carmelo Garcia – timbales

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