Transcription Page: Breakfast Feud
third take 15 Jan 1941 CO 29512-2 (master)
Five complete takes of Breakfast Feud had been recorded at the Columbia studios on 19 December 1940 – none were
released. Less than four weeks later, on 15 January 1941, the tune would be recorded again four more times. The third take was subsequently released in April 1941.
Count Basie had now replaced pianist Kenny Kersey and Basie’s drummer Jo Jones was now at hand to provide better rhythm support than on the prior
session. The piano intro used in the initial session had been eliminated but the rest of the routine, including the four-bar coda, was the same.
The first four bars of CC’s first chorus is an ascending, lead-in refrain played by the ensemble.
This run-down has a very nice, very long non-stop run of over 5 mm that’s the feature attraction, from bar 12 of the first chorus through bar 5 of the
second chorus. Howbeit, the solo is multifarious as a whole and an excellent effort in all respects.
♦ third take CO 29512-2 (master take)
LISTEN Guitar Solo / Coda
On this take there are a deceptively intricate first three bars and an equally labyrinthine, memorable F7 line at mm 9-11 on the first chorus of Charles’ solo.
Uncommon repeated Bb sweeps start off the second chorus followed by chromatically descending doubled notes on alternating strings. A diminished 7 caprice closes the solo.
Charlie Christian’s solo on this take of Breakfast Feud is especially interesting for the lyrical/rhythmic approach, tremendous drive, and
innovative fretwork that he maintains at such a high level of creativity from start to finish…on such a simple harmonic base.
The first few opening notes of Charles’ solo are as on CO 29512-3 but within little more than four beats the line deviates into a more routine run. The
transition from the first to the second chorus contains a lot of rhythmic phrasing that seems to motivate the guitarist to full flight for the remainder of the solo.
There is little doubt that Charles was revving up for further adventures had it not been for the studio time restraints. This is but a wee sampling of
what would be heard from Charlie Christian live at Minton’s in a few short months.
This alternate take has been reissued more often than the master – presumably because it has the best version of the eleven solos that he recorded on this particular twelve-bar blues.