American Masters (1985– )
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Celebrating Bird: The Triumph of Charlie Parker 

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Frank Morgan ...
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jazz | independent film | See All (2) »


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17 August 1989 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Includes a precious performance...
22 July 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

While much of the interview footage of this hour-length doc on legendary Jazz player Charlie (Bird) Parker is of the known (including Parker's widow), it still holds interest to the real meat of the piece. It is known among Parker fans that he only made one television appearance in his lifetime (taken away at 34, he left the Earth right when TV was bringing Jazz people like Louis Armstrong into homes all over America) with Dizzy Gillespie, playing "Hot House. This performance is included in the doc, and it's a blissful reminder of what he and Gillespie could do with seemingly simplistic chords, building on improvisations with gusto and inventiveness. Aside from that, the doc is fairly typical, with information that's likely to be found in better biographies, or even in Clint Eastwood's bio-pic on the film. It's worth a look though for the jazz fan if found in the local library or other.


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