Buddy DeFranco And Oscar Peterson Play George Gershwin – Album Review

Buddy DeFranco And Oscar Peterson Play George Gershwin – Album Review

Review by Nick Ellman, of Naughty Professor

Fast Forward to 1954, this album is a meeting of giants paired with lush string arrangements that will melt your heart. Buddy DeFranco is lyrical and sensitive with the ballads and laser sharp when the songs pick up the tempo. Beautiful arrangements, gorgeous sounds and tasteful choices all around on this album.

“I Wants To Stay Here” is the first track and it really sets the mood for the whole record. A cinematic slow tune, it sets us up to know what’s to come. Once we don’t expect these monster players to simply shred the whole time, we can sit back and enjoy this work as a whole.

The second song, “I Was Doing All Right,” is easy going and easy to listen to. DeFranco plays into the soothing sounds of the clarinet. None of his inflections are overdone or offensive. After Oscar Peterson takes a tasteful, melodic solo, Buddy DeFranco comes in leading a horn soli before jumping into some double time riffs on his solo. There, he sounds more like a bebop player using enclosures and diminished triplet sequences. Everything he plays is perfectly executed with some great language to learn from for students of the game. 

The standout track here for me is “Strike Up The Band.” What can I say, I like to hear great players like Buddy DeFranco rip up a fast tempo swing tune. It sounds like he does so without breaking a sweat. Great playing all around on this album.



  1. I Wants To Stay Here
  2. I Was Doing All Right
  3. ’S Wonderful
  4. Bess, You Is My Woman Now
  5. Strike Up The Band
  6. They Can’t Take That Away From Me
  7. The Man I Love
  8. I Got Rhythm
  9. Someone To Watch Over Me
  10. It Ain’t Necessarily So


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