Eddie Lang was the first jazz guitarist to record as a solo performer rather than as part of a band. On his 1928 recording of pianist Frank Signorelli’s pretty tune he’s accompanied by another pianist/composer, Rube Bloom. Lang was frequently the musical partner of violinist Joe Venuti whose 1931 recording features Lang, composer Signorelli, and clarinetist Jimmy Dorsey, a small but effective chamber group.
A 1937 session led by pianist Teddy Wilson brings vocalist Billie Holiday and tenor saxophonist Lester Young together. Although Young doesn’t solo on the cut, his obbligato to Holiday is a treasure as is leader Wilson’s solo and, of course, Holiday’s vocal.
Clarinetist Artie Shaw’s 1945 big band was a supercharged outfit laden with talented musicians such as exciting trumpeter Roy Eldridge and young lions Barney Kessel (guitar) and Dodo Marmaosa (piano). Trombonist Ray Coniff’s arrangement leaves ample room for solos by boss Shaw, Eldridge, Marmarosa, and tenor saxophonist Herbie Steward.
Chris Tyle - Jazz Musician and Historian