This is the BBC...
- Last night BBC Radio Three broadcast an hour long programme on Bessie Smith as part of
their Jazz Library series, the avowed intention of which is to offer guidance and
recommendations to listeners who wish to build a library of jazz CDs. The producers of last
night's programme seemed to think that promoting the career of someone called Christine
Tobin, who is, allegedly, a singer apparently not over-familiar with Bessie's output, and who,
interviewed by Alyn Shipton, read her responses from a script that ranged in scope from the
bleeding obvious to the downright irrelevant, would somehow add to our knowledge and
appreciation of Bessie Smith's artistry. The Properbox and Naxos issues came highly
recommended, and the Columbia set was promoted as the definitive complete edition of
Bessie's recordings. No mention whatsoever was made of the superb 8-CD set of Bessie's
complete recordings (remastered by John RT Davies) available from Frog.