Monday, October 30, 2017

Barney Kessel - Easy Like

Barney Kessel incorporated the best of swing, bop, and beyond into his guitar playing and his writing. Through years of studio work backing a multitude of singers and instrumentalists he developed an unparalleled ability to accompany and solo in a variety of settings and styles. Oscar Peterson talked Barney into leaving the studios and joining his Trio for a brief one year spanning 1952-1953, after which Barney returned to studio work. Fortunately, Contemporary Records signed Barney to make a series of excellent jazz records from 1953 to 1961 (including several trio sessions under the name "The Poll Winners" with Ray Brown and Shelly Manne). Barney's Contemporary recordings just may be the best of his career as this CD clearly shows.
Easy Like features Kessel in a cool bop quintet session recorded in November & December 1953 and February 1956. The front line features either Bud Shank (8 tracks) or Buddy Collette (6 tracks) on flute and alto. Shelley Manne on drums anchors the fine rhythm section of Arnold Ross (8 tracks) or Claude Williamson (6 tracks) on piano, Harry Babasin (8 tracks) or Red Mitchell (6 tracks) on bass. Charlie Christian's influence on Barney's swinging bop guitar is evident throughout, especially on the five tracks penned by Barney: "Easy Like","North of the Border", "Bernardo ", "Vicky's Dream " and Barney's trib

Source :

Barney Kessel
Easy Like


1 Easy Like (Kessel)  4:04
2 Tenderly (Gross, Lawrence)  3:15
3 Lullaby of Birdland (Shearing, Weiss)  3:09
4 What Is There to Say ? (Duke, Harburg)  3:35
5 Bernardo (Kessel)  2:36
6 Vicky's Dream (Kessel)  2:53
7 Salute to Charlie Christian (Kessel)  3:18
8 That's All (Brandt, Haymes)  4:11
9 I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart (Ellington, Mills, Nemo)  3:40
10 Just Squeeze Me (But Don't Tease Me) (Ellington, Gaines)  2:59
11 April in Paris (Duke, Harburg)  2:46
12 North of the Border (Kessel)  2:45
13 Easy Like [alt. take] (Kessel)  4:07
14 North of the Border [alt. take] (Kessel)  2:46


Barney Kessel - g
Bud Shank - fl & as
Buddy Collette - fl & as [# 1, 9, 12-14]
Arnold Ross - p
Claude Williamson - p [# 1, 9, 12-14]
Harry Babasin - b
Red Mitchell - b [# 1, 9, 12-14]
Shelly Manne - dr

Recorded in Los Angeles, California ; November 14, 1953 ; December 19, 1953 ; & February 23, 1956


Anonymous said...

Thank you.

Mike Chinaski said...


Fred Archtop said...

Instant classic. Thanks Mel.

deGallo said...

Ah! The most marvelous Barney! Thank you.

sep troelstra said...

Many thanks!!

Sergej said...

Thank you very much.

francisco santos said...


WOODY said...

Looking at Personnel-List in combination with recording date there is no doubt for another classical album, so thanks to Melanchthon, very much appreciated!

alligator69 said...

Thanks Mel

Historicus said...

Many thanks!

Steve Wise said...

Thanks. I love barney kessel's stuff

Kovina Kris said...

Great post!

Melanchthon said...

Karl K said...

I wish you had a "DONATE" button, set up through PayPal so I could lend a little support to your blog site, Mel. Over the years, you've provided me (and many others) with a LOT of GREAT music that we otherwise would not have experienced.

We owe you for a lot!

Many thanks for all your work.

jose arboleda said...

Muchas gracias.