Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The Birdlanders, vol. 2

In the '50s, serious bop fans made a point of visiting Birdland when they visited New York. Henri Renaud was no exception ; the French pianist/producer knew that the club's original location attracted a wealth of bop talent. And he played alongside some of those Birdland heavyweights when he produced a series of Birdlanders dates in 1954. The Birdlanders, Vol. 2, which was the second of two Birdlanders reissues that Fantasy provided in 2000, focuses on sessions from March 5 and 13, 1954. The March 5 session is a quartet date that boasts Renaud on piano, Al Cohn on tenor sax, Gene Ramey on bass, and Denzil Best on drums ; the March 13 date, however, unites Renaud and Cohn with trombonist Kai Winding, guitarist Tal Farlow, bassist Oscar Pettiford, and drummer Max Roach. As one might expect, many inspired moments occur, and the musicians are in fine form on material that ranges from the standard "You Stepped out of a Dream" to Leonard Feather's "Rhumblues" and Gerry Mulligan's "East Lag" (which that famous baritone saxophonist had yet to record himself when he agreed to let the Birdlanders record it). Meanwhile, Hoagy Carmichael's "Stardust" is primarily a vehicle for Pettiford's acoustic bass. It isn't surprising that the chemistry between the musicians is as strong as it is ; many of them knew each other from Birdland and elsewhere, and Renaud was well aware of that when he produced the Birdlanders' 1954 sessions. Now, here is the ironic part : the New York bop heavyweights who Renaud recruited for his Birdlanders project were only a fraction of the New York bop heavyweights who were often booked at Birdland in 1954 — that's how much first-class talent the club was able to attract. This CD is recommended to bop enthusiasts without hesitation.
Alex Henderson

Source :

The Birdlanders
vol. 2


1 East Lag (Mulligan)  2:36
2 Marcel the Furrier (Renaud)  6:03
3 Rhumblues (Feather)  4:31
4 Stardust (Carmichael, Parish)  5:13
5 Ondine (Feather)  3:12
6 Burt's Pad (Renaud)  9:54
7 You Stepped Out of a Dream (Brown, Kahn)  4:57
8 Lazy Things (unknown)  4:29
9 NY's Idea, N° 1 (unknown)  2:17
10 Once in a While (Edwards, Green)  5:23
11 NY's Idea, N° 2 (unknown)  3:17


[# 1-6]
Oscar Pettiford - b & cel
Al Cohn - ts
Kai Winding - tb
Tal Farlow - g
Henri Renaud - p
Max Roach - dr
Recorded in New York City ; March 13, 1954
[# 7-11]
Al Cohn - ts
Henri Renaud - p
Gene Ramey - b
Denzil Best - dr
Recorded in New York City ; March 5, 1954


srimira2000 said...

Birdlanders Vol 2 is absolutely fabulous!!! Don't pass it up. Thanks so much, Mel.

Kneigh said...

Thanx for posting this, Mel!! I had all 3 LP's of The Birdlanders many years ago, but, alas, lost them in a fire. Sure hope you find the Volume 1! This is superb jazz!!

Again, many thanx for all your great music!!


neil said...

Looking forward to adding to my 1950s Pettiford tracks. Many thanks, Mel...

Kovina Kris said...

Never heard of this but with that lineup who could pass this up? Not me! Thank you!

El Rana said...

Is this the referential Stardust version, where Pettiford plays the melody?

Seems to be !

Thanks a million


LaroSwing said...

Merci merci merci!

nlrp said...

thanks. Tal Farlow at the best.

neil said...

If you like this, check out 'J.J. Johnson & Al Cohn - The Birdlanders'[1954]; many thanks mel...

deGallo said...

This is wonderful. Thank you.

Pernath said...

Looks great. THanks Mel!

CrunchyFrog said...

very nice - nevr heard volume 2 before. excellent post. thanks, Mel.

Prof. Yaffle said...

Many thanks

FLAVIOLA said...

Bop Bliss! big thanx!!

Jazzsoulman said...

Thank You

bho wani said...

Many thanks, Mel.

rm said...

merci beaucoup

kristophermc28 said...

Thanks Mel!

klf said...

I had trouble with tracks 7, 9, 10, & 11 on vol 2 and track 5 on vol 1. Did anyone else experience this? Old comments for vol 1 mention trouble with track 5, and the fixed track is no longer available.

klf said...

Interesting - after a bit of googling, direct transcoding of FLAC to MP3 can choke while decoding to WAV, first, might not. So, I tried decoding to WAV (using the decode through errors setting in Trader's Little Helper) and the files *seem* fine. Sorry to take up bandwidth, but I'm posting my troubles and solution(?) in case it might help someone else. I tried the transcoding both in Trader's Little Helper and foobar2000 - errors on the 5 offending files in both applications. Anyway - thanks, as always for the wonderful music!!!

klf said...

Heh, one last comment - all tracks but the last one - vol 2 track 11 - seem to have converted just fine, but the last track has issues I can't get around (but it plays fine as FLAC!).

AmyBRAINS said...

Excellent post.
Thanks a lot Melanchthon.

Leonid Ostapenko said...

Dear Melanchthon, upload again this album please.

Melanchthon said...

Fred Archtop said...

Thanks a lot Mel.

Pedro del Castillo Alonso said...

Thank you very much!

daniel genovese said...

Thank you

sandor essedy said...

thank you Mel! & there is a vol.1?

WOODY said...

Nice discovery THE BIRDLANDERS to me, as my personal jazz instrument the vibraphone is represented by one of the - if not greatest - man on the vibes MILT JACKSON.
So thank's a lot for this gem - Vol I & II, great share!