List Price: $9.99
Oran ‘Hot Lips’ Page was a jazz trumpeter, vocalist and bandleader whose extrovert and exciting style allied to his showmanship made him a popular performer with audiences and fellow musicians alike, equally at home as a sideman in other leaders’ ensembles or leading his own bands. He started playing professionally in his native Texas, where he worked with top blues performers during the ’20s, becoming a feature of the Kansas City scene with Walter Page and Bennie Moten in the early ’30s, before a recording hiatus during the depression years. He would probably have had an even more illustrious career had he not left the Count Basie band after a short stay during the late ’30s to go solo, but as it was he became a ubiquitous fixture of the jazz scene during the ’40s, recording with a variety of line-ups and was especially popular for his ability to thrive in impromptu jam sessions. This great value 46-track collection brings together recordings with a wide selection of ensembles, both as sideman and leader, during the quarter century that comprised his main recording career, from his first recordings in 1929 through to some R&B flavoured material he recorded in the year or two before his premature death in 1954 at the age of 46. Not surprisingly, given the regard in which he was held, it features performances by some of the top names in the genre with whom he recorded, including Artie Shaw, Ben Webster, Billie Holiday, Albert Ammons, Big Joe Turner, Eddie Condon, Sidney Bechet and many more. It’s an entertaining overview of a musician who has not received the attention that he deserves.
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