February 23, 2021- Today's Bebop Era Topic: Bebop
Blue Note Records was founded in 1939 by Alfred Lion and joined a couple of years later by Francis Wolf.
Together they created one of the most important record labels in jazz that still continues today.
At first they were dedicated to recording traditional jazz, boogie woogie and small group swing and are most well known for their classic hard bop recordings of the fifties and sixties.
Before hard bop came along though, Blue Note played an important role during the bop era of the nineteen forties.
When modern jazz came along they embraced it and recorded thirteen important bebop sessions between 1947 and 1949.
This includes Thelonious Monk’s first recordings as a leader; the recordings that established him as a major figure in the jazz world. Blue Note recorded several of Monk’s early masterpieces including Evidence, Misterioso, Epistrophy and Round Midnight.
Also in 1947, Blue Note recorded Art Blakey’s first session as a leader as well as important dates by Babs Three Bips and a Bop and Tadd Dameron.
In 1948 they added leader dates by The Howard McGhee/Fats Navarro Boptet plus James Moody with Chano Pozo.
In 1949 they recorded Bud Powell as a leader featuring his early recordings of Bouncing with Bud, 52nd Street Theme, Dance of the Infidels, Un Poco Loco and Parisian Thoroughfare.