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Sunday, 1 March 2020

The Fabulous Guitar Of Bill Jennings (King LP 295-106)

Side 1:
01) Big Boy
02) Darn That Dream
03) Soft Winds
04) Sophisticated Lady

Side 2:
01) They Can't Take That Away From Me
02) What's New
03) 633-Knock!
04) Danny Boy

Back in November 2019 I posted a "reconstruction" of the Bill Jennings / Leo Parker King LP "Billy In The Lion's Den." That 12 incher from 1957 was an expanded version of an LP originally released as a 10 incher in 1955 - "Jazz Interlude" (King LP 295-105) -

At roughly the same time (going by the issue numbers) King released the 10 inch LP that I have "reconstructed" for this post - "The Fabulous Guitar Of Bill Jennings." Four of the eight tracks originated from the July 1954 sessions with Leo Parker ( but sans Parker, natch) and the remaining four tracks were from an October 1954 session on which Jennings was backed by the Bill Doggett combo.

A couple of the tracks recorded with Doggett are good R&B swingers ("Big Boy" and "633-Knock!") with "Big Boy" being a substantial R&B hit in 1955. The rest of the tracks are fine mellow jazz with "Soft Winds" perhaps being the closest to R&B in feel. It was interesting to find that Billboard reviewed some of the single releases of these tracks as jazz ("What's New" / "Soft Winds" and "They Can't Take That Away From Me") while the remaining tracks were reviewed under R&B. See below for details on the issue on single of the tracks on this LP.

Recording Details

They Can't Take That Away From Me; What's New; Soft Winds; Sophisticated Lady were recorded in Cincinnati on July 8th 1954 by the following personnel: Bill Jennings (guitar); Andrew Johnson (piano and organ); Joe Williams (bass); George DeHart (drums)

Big Boy; Darn That Dream; 633-Knock!; Danny Boy were recorded in Cincinnati in October 1954 by the following personnel: Bill Jennings (guitar); Bill Doggett (organ); Jimmy Glover (bass); Shep Shepherd (drums)

Single Release Details

What's New / Soft Winds - Bill Jennings Quartet - King 45-4735 - released August 1954

Big Boy / Danny Boy - Bill Jennings Quartet - King 45-4760 - released December 1954

Darn That Dream / Blue Grass - Bill Jennings Quartet - King 45-4771 - released February 1955

Sophisticated Lady / 633-Knock! - Bill Jennings Quartet - King 45-4786 - released April 1955

They Can't Take That Away From Me / Sweet And Lovely - Bill Jennings Quartet - King 45-4805 - released June 1955

Elsewhere On The Blog

Get yourself over to the post on the Bill Jennings / Leo Parker LP "Billy In The Lion's Den" for more of Bill's guitar stylings plus the lowdown on his career as an R&B session man (mostly with King) and as an exponent of soul jazz (mostly with Prestige).

My thanks to the original uploaders of the album artwork. The front and back covers were from and the disc labels were adapted from


Bhowani said...

Great post and share! Thanks a lot for this exceptional addition!!!

Bhowani said...

Aaargh!!! 27 Mo only ?!! Why? That beautiful musician deserved better treatment. Don't you think? (Please, don't take this the wrong way : you're doing a great job!!!)

boogiewoody said...

Hi bhowani, thanks very much for commenting. Yep, it's a very short ten inch LP. I don't think there was enough material left over from these sessions to produce an extended 12 inch LP version, unfortunately.