A New Way to Hear Some Revelatory Charlie Parker Bootlegs

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“Bird in L.A.,” now available on vinyl and streaming, features Parker’s audacious artistry in a wide range of live settings. Save this story Two years ago, a revelatory suite of Charlie Parker’s recordings, made between 1945 and 1952, was released as a two-CD set, titled “Bird in L.A.

” Now this collection of concert and radio performances has dropped online (on Spotify and elsewhere) and has also been reissued on vinyl. Parker is

the crucial hero of modern jazz, and, in his brief life (he died at thirty-four, in 1955), he was recorded copiously by record labels in the studio—and, more importantly, he was recorded fanatically in concert, privately. It’s a sign of his preëminence that he was constantly followed by bootlegging recordists; their activity, whatever its legality, has offered incomparable treasures to the history of music and expanded Parker’s legacy.

Most of Parker’s official recordings were made in studios on 78-r.p.m. records, which maxed out at around three minutes (in the usual ten-inch series) or five (in the premium twelve-inch recordings).

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