During the last few years of his life, guitarist Joe Pass enjoyed having reunions with the same musicians who played with him 25 years earlier for the classic For Django recording: rhythm guitarist John Pisano, bassist Jim Hughart and drummer Colin Bailey. This 1989 recording could almost be called For Django 2, for it is the same vein as the original. Pass takes his remake of "For Django" unaccompanied and performs four of Django's tunes, along with five standards from the 1930s and three originals. Pisano, who was instrumental in organizing the session and the repertoire, sticks to acoustic guitar, while Pass alternates between acoustic and electric. Although Joe Pass' main influence was Charlie Christian and he really does not sound like Reinhardt, he manages to evoke the spirit of Django while swinging in his own fashion. It is particularly nice hearing such tunes as "Belleville," the haunting "Tears" and "For Django" in newer versions.
As this lavishly boxed, four-CD distillation of his Pablo sessions proves, Joe Pass was probably the guitar-playing equivalent of Art Tatum on the Norman Granz roster – not only for his vast output, but also for the all-encompassing, almost orchestral way in which he got around his instrument. The set is divided equally into four sections – disc one for his astounding solo electric and acoustic guitar sides, disc two for studio recordings with various groups, disc three for various live recordings solo and with groups, disc four the delicate Ella Fitzgerald and other duo partner sessions and quartet pieces backing Sarah Vaughan…
Joe Pass became famous with his unaccompanied guitar showcase on Virtuoso, the beginning of a very notable series. However, this double CD (a reissue of a 1983 double LP plus three new performances) actually preceded the first Virtuoso by a month and differed in that Pass exclusively chose to play acoustic guitar, rather than electric. The relatively little-known set finds the guitarist sounding very much like a self-sufficient orchestra, and although his tone is necessarily softer on acoustic than electric, he swings hard on the uptempo pieces. Among the many highlights are "Indian Summer," "My Shining Hour," "I'll Remember April" and "Limehouse Blues."
Reissue with the latest 24bit remastering. Features original cover artwork. Comes with a descripton in Japanese. One of the greatest albums of Brazilian jazz that Bud Shank ever recorded — done with a style that's a lot more like some of the best bossa albums from Rio at the time! Bud's recorded in other bossa settings before — but there's something about this record that really gets the whole thing right — as Shank's alto and flute come into play with a killer combo that includes Clare Fischer on piano, Larry Bunker on vibes and drums, Joe Pass on guitar, and Milt Holland and Chuck Flores on percussion.
Guitarist Joe Pass and bassist Niels Pedersen, a pair of talented virtuosi, are typically outstanding on this live set of standards. With the exception of their ad-lib "Blues for the Hague," all of the material would qualify as overdone through the years (such as "'Round Midnight" and "Stella by Starlight") but the duo makes these veteran pieces sound fresh and new again. (Scott Yanow, All Music Guide)