In this series I’m going to be looking through the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die and commenting on the albums featured, telling you about albums I think should have been featured, artists that should have been featured too and just anything else I feel like commenting on!
This isn’t a sponsored series but if you’d like to read the book with me I’ll put a link at the bottom of this post to where you can buy it. This series is just something I wanted to do because I’d been reading the book and found that I had a lot of opinions!
Every Tuesday and Thursday I’m going to take one album from the front of the book starting in 1950s and one album from the back of the book starting in 2000’s, I’ll give you a bit of the albums history, the track list and of course my thoughts on the album!
In this post we’re going to be talking about Count Basie – The Atomic Mr Basie!
As this album is available on Spotify I’ll put a player below this paragraph so that if you’d like to listen along whilst you read the rest of this post you can!
Count Basie was an American Jazz pianist, organist and band leader and composer.
In one of the 1001 Albums posts that I posted the other day about Duke Ellington – Ellington At Newport 1956, I talked about how in the early 1950s jazz wasn’t popular anymore and consequently Duke Ellington had lost a lot of his popularity too (read the full post here if you’d like to) well the same thing happened with Count Basie.
By 1957 everything about Count Basie’s band was outdated and I’m sorry to say but irrelevant for the times, of course now everyone looks back on Count Basie and his career is celebrated entirely but at the time, he was sadly, irrelevant. He was about 30 years behind the times.
Thankfully though Count Basie’s band received some fresh blood and made this beautiful album, an album that according to the book is Basie’s last great record. I must admit I completely agree with that statement, I think this really was Basie’s last great record.
Let’s take a look at the track list:
Track One: Kid from Red Bank
Track Two: Duet
Track Three: After Supper
Track Four: Flight of the Foo Birds
Track Five: Double-O
Track Six: Teddy the Toad
Track Eight: Midnite Blue
Track Nine: Splanky
Track Ten: Fantail
Track Eleven: Lil’ Darlin’
This album was reissued in 1994 as The Complete Atomic Mr Basie and that’s actually the album that is in the Spotify player above.
I have to be honest and say that I hate with an absolute passion the fact that the album was re-released TEN YEARS after Count Basie had died and rebranded The COMPLETE Atomic Mr Basie…
If this was The COMPLETE Atomic Mr Basie then it would’ve been released with all of the above tracks and the bonus tracks in the first place or it would’ve at least been reissued by Count Basie whilst he was alive.
The original version of this album was PERFECT it didn’t need anything else to make it complete, it was already complete!
Anyway back to the original version of this album the only thing left for me to say is whether or not I think it belongs on the list of 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die…
My answer is yes, there always needed to be some Count Basie on the list because everyone needs a bit of Count Basie in their life, for me this is one of his best albums and as the book says it’s his last great record and so I do think this deserves it’s place on the list of 1001 Albums You Must Hear before you die!
That’s it for this post from my new series based on the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die! As I said at the beginning of this post this isn’t in anyway a sponsored series but if you’d like to buy the book so you can read along with me then click here for the link to purchase from Waterstones if you live in the UK and click here for the Amazon link if you’re in the rest of the world.
Those aren’t affiliate links; I just want to make sure you guys know where to buy the book if you want to read along too!
Here is the audio version of this post on SoundCloud.
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