What is bebop exactly and what does this strange word mean? Well bebop is a form of music distinct from jazz and this great album features a collection of highly entertaining bebop artists including Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker and Red Norvo.
“My 7 year old son loves bebop. This is really amazing compilation, his favourite!” Kate
“Good for those just opening their ears to jazz bebop. Great for lounging and driving in the car. Chill in the house and turn it up” Amazon customer
Jazz has always welcomed innovators. Duke Ellington’s new compositions made Jelly Roll Morton seem old hat, Lester Young changed the voice of the tenor-saxophone and Charlie Christian pioneered an approach to jazz performance on guitar which still carries weight today. Bebop, on the other hand, was not simply the outcome of a single individual’s drive and musical vision, it was a complete movement in its own right, made up of artists dedicated to change. With its advent in the early 1940s, jazz was never the same again.
So, what is bebop exactly – what does this strange word mean? French critic Hugues Panassie, something of a reactionary in these things, dismissed bebop (usually known now as bop) as ‘a form of music distinct from jazz’ while trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie described it simply as ‘just the way my friends and I feel jazz.’ Saxophonist Charlie Parker, the new music’s finest exponent, held a more measured view, inadvertently echoing that of Panassie when he said it was ‘something entirely separate and apart.’ It’s a measure of bebop’s originality, its ‘avant-garde’ status, that it is still considered by many to be ‘modern’ today.