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mx  WCO 26490 x
FEBRUARY  7,  1940     Wednesday Columbia Recording Studios,  NYC

  12-BAR  BLUES Key of C Quarter Note = 186 Time: 1:17
  4-Bar  Intro  +  4  CHORUSES  +  8-Bars  (breakdown):
      4 bars  –  piano (Intro)
    12 bars  –  ensemble (Theme)
    12 bars  –  alto sax
  12 bars  –  CC
    12 bars  –  trombone
      8 bars  –  piano < breakdown >

  Metronome All Star Nine
  BENNY CARTER alto sax
  EDDIE MILLER tenor sax
  BENNY GOODMAN clarinet
  HARRY JAMES trumpet
  JESS STACY piano
  GENE KRUPA drums

Composed by: “Randy Mergentroid”  (George T. Simon)
© VALDÉS 02/07/18


Transcription Page:     Guitar Solo




This was the first time Charlie Christian participated in the annual Metronome All Star sessions; the following January he would be in his final one.  Metronome Magazine sponsored these recording sessions with jazz musicians selected based on its readers’ poll.  Thirteen sessions were held intermittently for 18 years – this February 1940 date was the second one.

     ALL STAR STRUT     7 February 1940

WCO 26490 x     breakdown:

The assembled nonet (each of the nine members would get a one-chorus solo) seems to be in fairly good form for the session.  Even so, Charles’ typical blues solo makes the adjoining (Benny Carter precedes on alto, Teagarden follows on trombone) eminent soloists sound a bit archaic.  Carter, incidentally, was the most modern arranger of the era.

This unfinished first take was not released until 1983, on a Blu-Disc LP.

  LISTEN   Guitar Solo – breakdown    

WCO 26490 A     master take:

The next two takes were slowed down a bit from the initial try.  A most refreshing solo by CC is on this released take.  Anyone casually listening to this ragtime-ish swing blues on the radio would definitely perk up and take full notice of the guitar solo.  The opening phrase in Charles’ solo here became a prominent part of the out-chorus riffs on Good Enough to Keep four months later.

This take was promptly released later in the month on Columbia 78.  Nine years later it was reissued exclusively to U.S. military troops on V Disc.

  LISTEN   Guitar Solo / Chords behind bass – master take    

WCO 26490 B     alternate take:

The best of these one-chorus solos may have been on the last take where it sounds like Charles is really hitting full stride with a superb F7-C run (mm 5-7).  Immediately following that, there’s an especially notable, and unique, G9/13 sequence at mm 8-9 capped by a brilliant ending.  Unfortunately for listeners of that time, it remained in the Columbia vaults.

This last take remained unreleased for over three decades;  it appeared on LP in 1972.

  LISTEN   Guitar Solo / Chords behind bass – alternate take    


Issued Recordings:
  [ LP ] Blu-Disc T-1012 (side A, track 3)
  [ CD ] Columbia/Legacy AC4K 65564 (disc 4, track 20)
    Columbia/Legacy C4K 65564 (disc 4, track 20)
    Masters of Jazz MJCD 44 (track 4)
    Masters of Jazz MJCD 9004 (disc 3, track 4)
    Sony/Legacy 93035 (disc 4, track 20)


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