Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Oscar Moore with Carl Perkins

In 1947, as the great jazz pianist Nat “King” Cole struggled with the baggage that often accompanies good fortune in the music business, his guitarist of ten years, Oscar Moore, was having little difficulty deciding musical direction. With more and more pop vocals finding their way into th nightly sets of this highly regarded and lucrative jazz trio, as well as an album in the works featuring Cole backed by strings, Moore’s ample $35,000.00 yearly salary was not enough to hold him to position that ruffled his artistic temperament. Despite Cole’s pro-bebop posturing, it was apparent the the “King” was selling out, and Moore wasn’t buying.
Born on Christmas day, 1916 in Austin, Texas, Oscar Moore was raised in Phoenix, Arizona, the son of a blacksmith and brass bandleader. Although principally self taught, Moore’s first exposure to the guitar came under the guidance of an itinerant Mexican named Carl Gomez. His first professional experience came in 1934 with a quartet co-led by his brother Johnny, also an accomplished guitarist. Around 1936, Oscar moved to Los Angeles where he was one of the first blacks to work as a session man for the film studios. There he met Nat Cole through Cole’s first bassist, Wesley Prince.
Besides one hobby in deep-sea fishing, Moore’s interests lie totally with music. Citing Segovi and Vincente Gomez as his favorite guitarists demonstrates the originality with which he approached his personal genre. As one of the first guitarists to use an electronic pickup, there were few influential contemporaries from whom to draw. While many critics oversimplify Oscar Moore’s accomplishment as a distillation of the established efforts of Django Reinhardt and Charlie Christian, a closer listen find Moore continually developing the electric guitar's capabilities throughout his tenure with Cole.
His harmonic approach was advanced ; emphasis on the flatted 5th, the 9th and 13th placed him in the forefront of experimentation with the bebop movement. The art of comping as we know it wa developed by Moore. While all other jazz guitarists, including Charlie Christian, were “chunking” away four-to-the-bar, Moore was experimenting with the subtleties of the instrument, laying down a colorful velvety carpet upon which to apply melody. Speaking of melody, rapid-fire runs were deemed possiblt because of the new electronic technology, and Moore pursued technique with a vengeance. Regarding his sense of swing, many a musician's jaw touched the floor while listening to the incredible ease witl which the Nat “King” Cole Trio performed their beautifully arranged repertoire.

The cd at hand, The Oscar Moore Quartet was culled from sessions dating from 1954, originally released on two separate recordings, a 10” LP on the Skylark label, released in 1954, and a 12” LP on Tampa released in 1955...
James Rozzi, 1992, from the booklet

 Oscar Moore
Carl Perkins


1 Roulette (Moore)  4:30
2 The Nearness of You (Carmichael, Washington)  2:55
3 Love for Sale (Porter)  1:49
4 Body and Soul (Eyton, Green, Heyman, Sour)  2:38
5 Kenya (Moore)  5:20
6 Blues in B Flat (Moore)  2:28
7 Up Tempo* (Moore)  5:03
8 Buddy Can You Spare a Dime* ? (Gomey, Harburg, Moore)  2:38
9 There'll Never Be Another You* (Bergner, Nelson)  2:33
10 April in Paris* (Duke, Harburg)  2:40
11 Samson and Delilah Theme* (Young)  3:17
12 Moonlight in Vermont* (Blackburn, Suesort)  2:09
13 Kiss Me Again* (Blossom, Herbert)  1:29
14 Dinner for One* (Carr)  2:32
15 Walkin' Home* (Moore)  5:46
16 Warm Up* (Moore)  2:50


Oscar Moore - g
Carl Perkins - p
Joe Comfort - b
Mike Pachebo* - bg
Lee Young - dr

Recorded at Radio Recorders, Hollywood, California ; 1954


Pippo said...

Great finding, really dig this guy and I find amazing how I never had notice him while listening to Nat King Cole.
Thank you Melanchthon

Morris said...

This is a great share! Thanks to you I have become a big Carl Perkins fan. I can't wait to hear this!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this. I did never heard about & i appreciated your share (as allways).


jose arboleda said...

Muchas gracias.,qué calidad de cds...

Michele B said...

Wonderful disc and very gentle to share...Pass please?

glinka21 said...

Many thanks!

Jazzsoulman said...

Thank You

AmyBRAINS said...

Many thanks, Melanchthon.

Melanchthon said...

deGallo said...

Thank you

musician3 said...

AMAZING.............................THANK YOU FOR ALL

Anonymous said...


Can you re-up this album?

Many thanks for you're works!