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Uploaded on Jan 21, 2012
George Shearing's trio of his own composition "To Be Or Not To Bop". I find this recording striking in that George's first solo chorus (single notes) are not your typical pianist's solo, but rather sounds more like lines typically played by a horn (such as a trumpet). Then his second solo chorus he uses his signature "block chord" style with extensive use of harmonic dissonance. Clearly ahead of his time. My only complaint about this recording is that the drummer is not very supportive -- sounds more like he's soloing alongside of George (particularly noticeable on George's first solo chorus.) Had the drummer used the ride cymbal (as he did during the second solo chorus) all throughout it would have sounded much better. Nevertheless, this was a groundbreaking recording, both for JAZZ itself and for George Shearing. Interesting to note that years later when Dizzy Gillespie wrote his book, he titled it "To Be Or Not To Bop".