Lou Mecca – Bill DeArango – Chuck Wayne – 3 Swinging Guitar Sessions
Originally issued on three 10-inch LPs, these albums feature three outstanding but underrated jazz guitarists: Lou Mecca, Bill de Arango and Chuck Wayne.
Crisp, inventive and fleet-fingered, Mecca found his own voice from his main inspiration, Tal Farlow, whom he replaced in the Gil Mellé Quartet. Lou’s classical guitar sound is complemented in this 1954 Blue Note recording by fine vibist Jack Hitchcock, bassist Vinnie Burke and drummer Jimmy Campbell.
De Arango, among the first of the modern jazz guitarists in 52nd Street’s heyday, hadn’t recorded for a while when he made his album for EmArcy in 1954. His full sound, great swing and consistently imaginative power were in the Charlie Christian tradition, but, as this date proves, he was also very individual. Here, he is backed excellently by pianist Johnny Williams, bassist Teddy Kotick and drummer Art Mardigan.
Masterful as a soloist and rhythm player, Chuck Wayne conclusively proved his worth as a standout member of Woody Herman’s First Herd, and in his contribution to the success of George Shearing’s Quintet. On this excellent 1953 Progressive album with Brew Moore and Zoot Sims he shines with both, achieving a relaxed unity with each. For all who dig guitar, this is a well seasoned group of performances by three articulate and compelling guitarists.
1. All the Things You Are (Kern-Hammerstein II) - 4:12 2. You Go to My Head (Coots-Gillespie) - 4:52 3. Bernie’s Tune (Miller-Stoller-Leiber) - 4:21 4. Stan’s Invention (Stan Purdy) - 3:34 5. The Song Is You (Kern-Hammerstein II) - 3:55 6. Just One of Those Things (Cole Porter) - 4:00 7. Alone Together (Schwartz-Dietz) - 3:09 8. Gone with the Wind (Wrubel-Magidson) - 3:01 9. All God’s Children Got Rhythm (Kaper-Kahn) - 2:47 10. The Nearness of You (Carmichael-Washington) - 2:46 11. The Gypsy in My Soul (Boland-Jaffe) - 2:26 12. Dancing on the Ceiling (Rodgers-Hart) - 2:47 13. Summertime (G. & I. Gershwin) - 2:45 14. These Foolish Things (Link-Marvell-Strachey) - 3:04 15. You Brought a New Kind of Love to Me (Fain-Kahal-Norman) - 3:03 16. S.S. Cool (Chuck Wayne) - 3:03 17. Mary Ann (Chuck Wayne) - 2:44 18. Butterfingers (Chuck Wayne) - 3:29 19. While My Lady Sleeps (Kaper-Kahn) - 2:47 20. Tasty Pudding (Al Cohn) - 3:22 21. Prospecting (Chuck Wayne) - 2:33 22. Sidewalks of Cuba (Oakland-Mills-Parish) - 2:56
Tracks #1-6, from the 10” album “Lou Mecca Quartet” (Blue Note 5037)
Tracks #7-14, from de 10” album “De Arango” (EmArcy MG 26020)
Tracks #15-22, from de 10” album “Chuck Wayne Quintet” (Progresive PLP-3003)
Personnel on “Lou Mecca Quartet”:
Lou Mecca, guitar; Jack Hitchcock, vibes; Vinnie Burke, bass; Jimmy Campbell, drums.
Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, NJ, March 25, 1955
Personnel on “De Arango":
Bill de Arango, guitar; Johnny Williams, piano; Teddy Kotick, bass; Art Mardigan, drums.
Fine Recording Studios, New York City, May 20, 1954
Personnel on “Chuck Wayne Quintet”:
Brew Moore or Zoot Sims (# 19-21) tenor sax; Chuck Wayne, guitar; Harvey Leonard, piano; George Duvivier, bass; Ed Shaughnessy, drums.
Recorded in New York City, on April 13, 1953
Original recordings produced by Alfred Lion (Blue Note), Bob Shad (EmArcy) and Gus Grant (Progressive).
Blue Note art: John Hermansader / Francis Wolff
EmArcy cover art by Burt Goldblatt
Compiled & produced for CD release by Jordi Pujol