The recorded legacy of Elvis Presley continues to be discovered by new generations that never saw him or heard him perform live. It's hard to appreciate that he started so much of what we take for granted now in popular music. Until 1956, the teenagers of suburban America, and the rest of the world, had to endure ditties by Rosemary Clooney and Perry Como but everything was about to be tossed upside down. On January 28 on a cold night in New York, Elvis took America by storm as he appeared on CBS-TV's Stage Show hosted by Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey. On February 4 for his second appearance he sang a song that literally changed the world of popular music "Heartbreak Hotel". Its unique sound and style literally blew everything before it away while at the same time inducing the blueprint for everything that was to come; by April, it would be #1 on Billboard.
The air on Mt. Olympus must have been something like that in Berlin’s Jesus-Christus-Kirche when, in September 1969, the threesome of Richter, Oistrakh and Rostropovich joined Herbert von Karajan for this majestic recording of Beethoven’s underrated Triple Concerto. That there could have been such a meeting of the minds in this gathering of greats is difficult to believe, until one remembers that the three soloists were frequent collaborators who all spoke the same musical language, and after years in the trenches knew each other and their conductor very well. As one would expect, the solo work of the three Russians is brilliant and deeply musical. But just as delightful is the way they adjust from solo to ensemble roles and play together, with perfect unanimity, in the duet and trio passages. Karajan and the Berliners provide a monumental accompaniment, weighty, powerful, and rich in tone. The recording, one of the best from EMI in this venue, has been remastered in exemplary fashion and is impressively detailed and vivid.
An overlooked trumpeter finally gets his due – in this amazingly rich set dedicated to the work of the great Dupree Bolton! Bolton's best known for his early 60s hardbop sides with Harold Land and Curtis Amy – but this may well be the first album to be issued entirely under his own name, and is definitely the first to feature such a wealth of music and historical notes on Dupree's life and career! The package is tremendous – filled with copious notes and vintage photos, and featuring music from three different slices in time – all equally compelling. First up is material from a 1962 TV show, Frankly Jazz – featuring Bolton on trumpet, Curtis Amy on tenor, Ray Crawford on guitar, and Dolo Coker on piano – playing beautifully together with a very soulful sound, on titles that include "Summertime", "Katanga", "Blues For Amy", and "Laura".