Any big jazz band that works steadily is on the road; it's a condition of employment. The Count Basie band was on the move from its beginnings in the Southwest in the 1930s to its successes of the second half of the century. This 1979 recording captures one of Basie's fine later editions at a stop on the road through Europe. In Montreux, Switzerland, a center for jazz appreciation on the continent, impresario Norman Granz attracted an audience to the studio, and the session had the feeling of a concert. The repertoire had compositions by stalwarts of the Basie arranging stable. Ernie Wilkins, Bobby Plater, Sammy Nestico, and Neal Hefti and by a promising young newcomer, John Clayton. There were also a couple of standards and a tip of the yachting cap to Basie's contemporary, Duke Ellington. It was a good night on the international road.
Wind Machine, Blues for Stephanie, John the III, There Will Never Be Another You, Bootie's Blues, Splanky, Basie, Watch What Happens, Work Song, In a Mellow Tone
with Pete Minger, Sonny Cohn, Ray Brown, Mel Wanzo, Charlie Fowlkes, Eric Dixon, Freddie Green, Keter Betts, Mickey Roker, and others