CULTURE: Build Yourself an Instant Collection of Timeless Jazz; JAZZ CD REVIEWS

The Birmingham Post (England), May 10, 2006 | Go to article overview

CULTURE: Build Yourself an Instant Collection of Timeless Jazz; JAZZ CD REVIEWS


Byline: by Peter Bacon

Jazz CDs of the week

Cannonball Adderley - Great Sessions (Blue Note 0946 3 52729 2 5)

Herbie Hancock - Great Sessions (Blue Note 0946 3 52747 2 1)

Sonny Rollins - Great Sessions (Blue Note 0946 3 52763 2 9)

Wayne Shorter - Great Sessions (Blue Note 0946 3 52730 2 1)

pounds 13.99 each

***** each

Four boxes, each containing three discs, mostly in excellent remastered editions, of solid gold classics from the 1960s and each box the price of one chart disc - has there been a better way to create an instant collection of modern jazz?

The Adderley set contains his masterpiece Somethin' Else, in fact almost the Miles Davis Quintet by another name, and playing versions or Autumn Leaves, Love For Sale and Dancing In The Dark which have become some of the most loved in jazz.

Of course a Cannonball set would be incomplete without a live session by his band including brother Nat on cornet and the young Joe Zawinul, and this one is Mercy, Mercy, Mercy!

Completing the trio and showing the saxophonist's versatility is the album he made with Sergio Mendes and other Brazilians, Cannonball's Bossa Nova.

The Hancock set covers 1964 to 1968 and reminds us just how strong the pianist was from the start, bringing a completely new sound and set of harmonies to jazz piano, as well as some enduring melodies.

These Great Sessions are Maiden Voyage and Empyrean Isles, with Freddie Hubbard, Ron Carter and Tony Williams in the band, and Speak Like A Child.

The Sonny Rollins discs come from within a nine-month period of intense recording as Rollins stood as a matching colossus to John Coltrane.

Volume 1 contains one of his most endearing of unlikely song choices, How Are Things In Glocca Morra?, while Volume 2 boasts not one giant pianist but two - Thelonious Monk and Horace Silver - as well as J J Johnson on trombone.

Newk's Time contracts to a quartet and the lovely Surry With The Fringe On Top in addition to Miles Davis's Tune Up providing the vehicles for classic Rollins solos.

Another giant of the tenor saxophone, and three solid gold releases from Wayne Shorter: Ju-ju, Speak No Evil and the slightly lesser known Adam's Apple.

There's an argument that if you have listened closely to Speak No Evil you can understand everything that has happened since in jazz music. Certainly, it is one of the most often named albums in musicians' top ten lists. …

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