Christmas eve 1939 at Carnegie Hall in the select company of the best bluesmen in the
business. The Kansas City Six played two slow blues and a very up-tempo
28-bar tune at this From Spirituals to Swing concert. Good
Morning Blues was first with Prez taking an excellent solo on the two
choruses preceding Charlie Christians solo.
Charles two-chorus solo is absolutely exquisite. Lots of triplets and
sixteenth-note runs in just the right places with lots of rhythmic surprises everywhere
beginning with two in the very first two measures. Lots of blue notesG#
(Ab) preceding the
A, a flat-nine here and a sharp-five there, a
dim7 leading to the dom7
at bar 8 and a Bbm resolving to the
Fmaj at the end of each chorus. Then theres that
beautiful sequence that leads off the second choruswhat absolute perfection.
Freddie Green provides Charles with superb rhythm guitar backing.
After CCs solo, a two-chorus trumpet solo winds up the tune and the Kansas City
Six (half of whose members had roots in Oklahoma City) goes on to play the other blues
number, Paging the Devil. That was followed by a wild Way Down Yonder
in New Orleans, an A(8mm)/B(12mm)/C(8mm)-structured
tune on which Charlie Christian played his fastest recorded solo.