Monday, May 25, 2009

Gary Burton - Rarum, Vol. 4: Selected Recordings

This record has been a revelation for me. You see, I never really checked out Gary Burton...my post-bop vibes have always been courtesy of Bobby Hutcherson...In a recent (and massive) hard drive swap I acquired a bunch of Burton (and other stuff I will roll out in the coming months) and Rarum, Volume 4 is where I started. It is a nice, basic overview of his sessions as a leader on the ECM label...from Muze:
"Gary Burton recorded for the ECM label for 15 years in the '70s and '80s. This set (which shares its title with other collections in the same series) is a portrait of the vibraphonist's working bands during that era. The material was chosen by Burton, and his liner notes follow the history with concise insights. With the exception of his duets with Chick Corea (not represented here, but their "Crystal Silence" is a key work in the discographies of both men) and Ralph Towner, Burton was truly a band player and leader throughout the entirety of his career. Perhaps recognising the specific timbres of his instrument, Burton has always sought appropriate settings to showcase its sound and gently expand its possibilities. Writing only rarely, Burton found material from the members of his band as well as a couple key outsiders, Carla Bley and Michael Gibbs."
And from Amazon:
"...an absorbing, wide-ranging portrait of his middle years, by the end of which he was well on the way to being the only vibist to seriously rival Milt Jackson...So consistent is the music despite its variety of mood and texture that it is difficult to nominate highlights...The playing throughout is of the highest quality, transcending the somewhat dated quality of a few of the arrangements or conceptions, and in all respects that matter this is timeless fare. If you're new to Burton, this is the perfect introduction to a great jazzman, and so satisfying is the compilation that it is hardly less recommended to those who may have one or two of the tracks already."
As an introduction to someone I am looking forward to getting more acquainted with, it worked for me...

Download:
Gary Burton - Rarum, Vol. 4: Selected Recordings