Chett Baker-Live at Ronnie Scott's (2002)
Informational Subtitles-Trivia Track
|Year Of Production||2002|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||
Ricardo Del Fra
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.33:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Melancholy and tired - those three words sum up my feelings having just sat through Chett Baker - Live at Ronnie Scott's. Renowned jazz trumpeter Chett Baker shot to fame in the early sixties, having successfully auditioned to play with Charlie Parker in 1952, with his soulful renditions of jazz classics such as My Ideal and I'm a Fool to Want You. Unfortunately, his career was racked by the turmoils of sustaining a hard drug habit which saw his front teeth knocked out in the early seventies, a short jail term and which was associated with his fatal fall from an Amsterdam hotel window in 1988.
Credited with being his last performance, this short set was filmed at Ronnie Scott's jazz club in 1986 as a trio with pianist Michel Graillier and double bass player Riccardo del Fra and guest appearances by Van Morrison who sang the vocals on Send in the Clowns and Elvis Costello who sang his rendition of The Very Thought of You and You Don't Know What Love Is. Chett Baker sat on his stool, looked tired and reminiscent and accompanied the talented piano/bass duo with a sensitive trumpet, faltering vocals and an occasional teary eye.
The performance fired up temporarily for If I Should Love You, with a glimpse of the glory of bygone days, but for the most part the performance stood as a requiem for better times. Even the young audience seemed to sense that this was the swan song of, and farewell to, the deeply creased face rendered in punishing detail by the video camera close-ups. The backing duo was very competent and Elvis Costello was in fine singing form but Van Morrison got off to a very shaky start, his lack of confidence hallmarked by the song lyric sheet he needed to refer to to get through the performance. About 20% of the tape was taken up with an interview with Baker reminiscing on the ups and downs of his life and sadly remarking on the almost total dearth of classical jazz and venues in the US. Needless to say, the interview was about as animated as the performance.
|1. Ellen David|
2. Just Friends
3. Shifting Down
4. Send In The Clowns
5. If I Should Lose You
|6. My Ideal|
7. Love For Sale
8. The Very Thought of You
9. You Don't Know What Love Is
10. I'm A Fool To Want You
The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 and is not 16x9 enhanced.
The focus is soft as is often the case with NTSC video transfers and the 80s model video cameras don't fare too well under the club's subdued lighting. Shadow detail is limited and there is low level noise and graininess in the shadows throughout the feature.
Colours were subdued, as befitting the sombre occasion, and skin tones were rather washed-out under the spotlight. The remainder of the set was a murky blend of pinks, greens and greys.
The video editing was well done, though too much time was spent on close-ups of the creased features and stubble of Baker and Van Morrison. There was minimal aliasing and no MPEG artefacts of note.
Subtitles took the form of notes on the songs and players rather than transcriptions of the spoken word.
The disc is single sided and single layered (a DVD-5) and consequently there is no layer transition point.
The dialogue was clear and the lyrics easy to discern. Audio and lip sync were satisfactory.
The surrounds were barely used with just a hint of reverberation and expected audience applause.
The subwoofer was effectively used to round out the double bass and enhanced the listening experience.
|Surround Channel Use|
Well, this bit's quick - there weren't any of note!
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The video is of sub-standard quality.
The audio quality is quite good.
The extras are just about non-existent and considering that this DVD is more a tribute than entertainment, a biography or more film footage would have been good.
|DVD||Toshiba SD-900E, using RGB output|
|Display||Pioneer SD-T50W1 (127cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Denon ACV-A1SE. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Amplification||Theta Digital Intrepid|
|Speakers||ML Aeon front. B&W LRC6 Centre. ML Script rear. REL Strata III SW.|