Excellent funk from Dizzy Gillespie – featuring all 3 of his albums for the legendary Perception label! The Real Thing is an amazing mix of funky jazz, cool rhythms, and some nice Latin-tinged grooves – and it's a stunning representation of the way that Dizzy kept on growing as a musician, long after his bebop years were over. James Moody sits in with some very funky tenor, and Mike Longo is on piano. Tracks include "N'Bani", "Matrix", "Soul Kiss
", "Ding A Ling", and "Alligator" – all short, hard, and funky! Next up is Portrait Of Jenny, which has a cool electric feel that you don't really associate with Diz. The whole album has a sly sweet funky sound that's part CTI/
part Latin-tinged Dizzy – and the real strength is the great Mike Longo, who plays some amazing stretched out piano lines, which work perfectly with the basslines on the record as a foil for Dizzy's sparkling trumpet solos. The album's got 4 long cuts – including the excellent "Me N Them", plus "Olinga" and "Diddy Wa Diddy". The last set is Giants – a live recording that features Dizzy with Mary Lou Williams and Bobby Hackett, in a pretty mellow, pretty straight setting that shows that Diz could still play straight jazz when he wanted to. Titles include "Love For Sale", "Caravan", "My Man", and "Birks Works". 2 CDs, with 21 tracks in all!
(Out of print.)