Art Tatum/Ella Fitzgerald

The Best of the Pablo Group Masterpieces/ The Best of the Concert Years

What becomes a legend most? Just three years before Tatum’s death (in 1956 at age 47), Norman Granz began recording him extensively, first solo (issued since as the seven-CD Complete Solo Masterpieces), then in eight small-group settings. This Pablo Records compilation is taken from the six-CD set and features the blazingly fast and harmonically incredible Tatum (with bass and drums) at speed on “Just One of Those Things.” The best of the rest find him relaxing with (separately) Ben Webster, Benny Carter and Buddy DeFranco.

Ella, another Granz favorite, works her patented magic in four concerts (1953-83) on this second Pablo compilation. Noted for her scatting, “How High the Moon” (Tokyo ’53) and “Day Dream” (New York City ’67) take top honors in the fast and slow categories, respectively. Got Ella? Get Ella!