Jazz Currents: Charlie Parker With Strings

Jun 19, 2017

The artwork for the 1995 compilation on Verve Records

In the 1940’s, Charlie Parker helped to create a new musical language called bebop, and became arguably the most influential alto saxophonist of all time. Parker was not satisfied with this alone, and began to look for new ways to express himself musically. 


In 1949, he recorded a group of standards with a lush string section, and the result was the album Charlie Parker with Strings. We’ll hear how Parker created the perfect mix of jazz and classical music to create this landmark recording. Musical excerpts used in this episode were all taken from Charlie Parker with Strings-The Master Takes.

1. I didn’t know what time it was (Richard Rodgers/Lorenz Hart)

2. Repetition (Neil Hefti)

3. If I should lose you (Ralph Rainger/Leo Robin)

4. Autumn in New York (Vernon Duke)

5. Everything happens to me (Tom Adair/Matt Dennis)

6. They can’t take that away from me (George & Ira Gershwin)

7. Summertime (George Gershwin/Ira Gershwin/DuBose Heyward)

8. Laura (David Raksin/Johnny Mercer)

9. April in Paris (Vernon Duke/E.Y. Harburg)

10. Lover (Richard Rodgers/Lorenz Hart)

11. Just Friends (John Klenner/Sam Lewis)

12. Easy to Love (Cole Porter)

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