Lullaby of Birdland

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Lullaby of Birdland (m. George Shearing, w. George David Weiss) — published and first recorded in 1952

The title refers to Charlie “Bird” Parker and Birdland, the jazz club named after him, originally located at 1678 Broadway just north of West 52nd Street in Manhattan.

George Shearing Quintet 

The reduction of tempo between the 1952 George Shearing Quintet versions and its 1954 recording with the Ray Charles Singers might be explained by the following tidbit from JazzStandards.com, which quotes Shearing’s autobiography:

Shearing makes no bones about his preferred rendition of Lullaby of Birdland. “When I heard Erroll Garner’s recording of the tune, it quickly became my very favorite recording. I wonder why I didn’t write it that way–by which I mean I had a fairly brisk tempo in mind, whereas Erroll just took it very gently, he kind of lagged it along and scraped his way through it…”

All Shearing recordings and performances included below from 1954 onward are performed at a slower tempo than the 1952 versions except the 1959 live performance with Peggy Lee.

live, c. 1952

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George Shearing Quintet – recorded on 17 July 1952; issued as the B-side of “When Lights Are Low” on the single MGM 11354

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George Shearing Quintet with the Ray Charles Singers — issued in 1954 on MGM 11833 (also MGM K11833), b/w “Love is Here to Stay”

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1954 Sings Lullabys of Birdland-Chris Connor-Bethlehem 1001

Chris Connor accompanied by the Ellis Larkin Trio — originally released on the the 10″ 1954 album Chris Connor Sings Lullabys of Birdland, Bethlehem BCP 1001 (samples of the eight tracks available here)

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Sarah Vaughn – from the 1954 album Sarah Vaughn with Clifford Brown

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Teddy Wilson Trio – 1959

Teddy Wilson, piano
Major Holley, bass
Bert Dale, drums

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Peggy Lee and George Shearing — from the Bing Crosby Oldsmobile Show (TV), 29 September 1959

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George Shearing, The Quintet + Amigos – opening track of the 1975 album Continental Experience, (US) MPS Records, BASF MC 25612

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George Shearing and Niel Swainson

George Shearing – piano
Niel Swainson – bass

live, 1987

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live in Tokyo, 1990(?)

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Nikki Yanofsky – live in concert, 16 June 2008

PIANO: JOHN SADOWY
TROMBONE: ANDRE VERREAULT
SAXOPHONE: RICHARD BEAUDET
SAXOPHONE: SEAN CRAIG
SAXOPHONE: FRANCOIS D’AMOURS
BASS: ROBERT FAHIE
TRUMPET: ANDREW KING
DRUMS: GEOFF LANG
TRUMPET: OSCAR MARTINEZ

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Bobby McFerrin and Laise Sanches, North Sea Jazz Festival – 2008

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peeanoplayer — posted on Youtube 4 November 2008

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Anonymous
    Mar 12, 2010 @ 06:45:10

    super

    Reply

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