Høsten byr på 5 nye utgivelser i Blue Note Tone Poet serien.
How is it that one of Art Blakey’s greatest albums with the Jazz Messengers is so little known? The 1961 edition of the Messengers included Lee Morgan on trumpet, Wayne Shorter on tenor saxophone, Bobby Timmons on piano, and Jymie Merritt on bass. In February and May of 1961, this group (with pianist Walter Davis Jr sitting in on two tracks) entered Rudy Van Gelder’s studio in New Jersey and proceeded to lay down Roots & Herbs, a brilliant set of six Shorter compositions including the driving hard bop of the title track, the playful “Ping Pong,” and the clever “United.” The album was eventually released in 1970 and deserves a place among Blakey’s finest recordings.
Oblique is one of only two quartet sessions the great vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson recorded for Blue Note (the classic Happenings being the other). Both albums featured the seminal pianist Herbie Hancock and drum master Joe Chambers, with the only variable in the line-up here being bassist Albert Stinson.
The simmering groove of the 10-minute opening title track of Duke Pearson’s magnificent 1968 album The Phantom sets the stage for one of the most under-recognized gems of the Blue Note catalog. The pianist, composer, arranger, and Blue Note stalwart assembled a superb cast of musicians including vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson, flutist Jerry Dodgion, guitarists Sam Brown and Al Gafa, bassist Bob Cranshaw and the magnificent percussion team of Mickey Roker, Victor Pantojo and “Potato” Valdes on drums and congas.
The Waiting Game was the unsung tenor saxophonist Tina Brooks’ final album, recorded in 1961 but not released until 1999. Brooks is one of the most under-appreciated tenor players and composers of the hard bop era, with only one of his four Blue Note sessions (the classic True Blue) released during his lifetime. Brooks is joined here by Johnny Coles on trumpet, Kenny Drew on piano, Wilbur Ware on bass, and Philly Joe Jones on drums.
The high-spirited soloing of trumpeter Donald Byrd and tenor saxophonist Hank Mobley on “Ghana”—the opening track of Byrd In Flight—lets listeners know that they are in for an exceptional musical experience. In addition to Mobley, Byrd is joined by Jackie Mclean on alto saxophone, Duke Pearson on piano, bassists Doug Watkins and Reggie Workman, and drummer Lex Humphries on these sessions from 1960.
On his second Blue Note album Tender Moments, pianist and composer McCoy Tyner explored the colors and textures available in a nonet setting with some of the finest musicians of the time: Lee Morgan on trumpet, Julian Priester on trombone, Bennie Maupin on tenor saxophone, James Spaulding on alto saxophone and flute, Bob Northern on French horn, Howard Johnson on tuba, Herbie Lewis on bass, and Joe Chambers on drums.