Art FARMER and Benny GOLSON – Meet The Jazztet 1960

Art FARMER and Benny GOLSON – Meet The Jazztet 1960
1991 Issue.

Jazz

Although this CD has the same program as the original LP, it gets the highest rating because it is a hard bop classic. Not only does it include superior solos from trumpeter Art Farmer, trombonist Curtis Fuller, tenor saxophonist Benny Golson, and pianist McCoy Tyner (who was making his recording debut) along with fine backup from bassist Addison Farmer and drummer Lex Humphries, but it features the writing of Golson. Highlights include the original version of “Killer Joe” along with early renditions of “I Remember Clifford” and “Blues March.” This was Fuller and Tyner’s only recording with the original Jazztet, and all ten selections (which also include “Serenata,” “It Ain’t Necessarily So,” “It’s All Right With Me,” and “Easy Living”) are quite memorable.
By Scott Yanow, All Music Guide.
**
After working together on a couple of previous albums, Art Farmer and Benny Golson formed the Jazztet in 1960 and recorded a handful of albums for the Argo label; this was the first. (The group lasted only a couple of years, though Farmer and Golson revived it in the 1980s.)

The personnel here is somewhat of an anomaly in that it changed radically after this initial session (except for Farmer and Golson, of course). Curtis Fuller is on trombone and he’s phenomenal on IT’S ALL RIGHT WITH ME, which is taken at breakneck speed. AVALON is also taken WAY up tempo; in fact, it’s TOO fast – it’s all notes. Golson’s tenor is featured nicely on his classic tune I REMEMBER CLIFFORD and on the standard EASY LIVING. Farmer is excellent on his own composition MOX NIX, an up-tempo blues. Benny Golson was a superb composer and PARK AVENUE PETITE is a beautiful ballad. His BLUES MARCH is also performed, though not quite as successfully as on the Art Blakey Blue Note recording entitled MOANIN’, which is definitive. And his KILLER JOE gets its first airing on this CD, taken medium-slow. McCoy Tyner (p) Addison Farmer (b) and Lex Humphries (d) round out the rhythm section. This is an excellent hard bop album and one of the best by the Jazztet.
By Bomojaz.
**
It’s difficult to understand from this distance in time why this aggregation never really broke through to the kind of acclaim that they deserved. The playing on this collection is excellent, particularly on the self-penned material ( mostly from Golson – but “Mox Nix” from Farmer is stunning). The standouts are the version of “I remember Clifford”, “Park Avenue Petite” and of course, the much lauded “Killer Joe”.The ensemble playing is terrific and the rhythm section of Addison Farmer and Lex Humphries gave this version of the group real propulsion. So why not 5 stars ? Well, because the best it got for me, was the group that played on the now-out-of print Verve album “Here and Now” which has been available only from time to time (shame on you Verve Interactive) most recently in 1998.That’s where the interplay between Golson and Farmer seemed at its best, and Farmer gets to play some great flugelhorn. However this is just fine!
Dr. D. Treharne.
**
When people discuss the cream of the hard-bop crop, names such as Clifford Brown and Max Roach, Art Blakey, and Horace Silver usually rise to the top. Without question, the Jazztet deserves inclusion in that discussion. Co-leaders Farmer and Golson had already made names for themselves before the sextet’s 1960 recording debut; upstarts Curtis Fuller and McCoy Tyner were well on their way. Benefiting from Golson’s usual crafty arrangements, the ensemble rolls through 10 cuts, offering a nifty combination of down-home funk and lyrical flair. Two of Golson’s most revered compositions—the gentle “I Remember Clifford,” led by Farmer’s silky trumpet, and the urgent “Blues March”—accompany the original recording of Golson’s “Killer Joe,” which includes his verbal description of the title character. The band also rips merrily through Cole Porter’s “It’s All Right with Me” and struts easily through Gershwin’s “It Ain’t Necessarily So.”
By Marc Greilsamer.
**
This is widely considered a hard bop classic. Well, it’s a little hard for me to see exactly why. It’s a mildly pleasant record, with ten short songs (3 to 4 minutes), and there’s no denying the quality of the musicians involved, but there’s no real spark.

It’s a very traditional record, as one would expect by the cover photo. At times, it even sounds like big-band jazz, even if it is a sextet. But the fact that it isn’t a groundbreaking record is not what prevents me from liking it. “Blues-Ette” is well-behaved also, but it’s a million light-years better than this.

I think it’s hard for me to define what’s the problem. Being not a musician, my concern is never with technical issues, but with the sheer pleasure conveyed by the music. This one leaves me a little cold. And the frequent alternance between lightspeed bop and too-slow ballads feels a little odd too.
**
Art Farmer- Trumpet
Benny Golson- Tenor sax
Curtis Fuller- Trombone
McCoy Tyner- Piano
Addison Farmer- Bass
Lex Humphries- Drums
**
01. Serenata (Anderson-Parish) 3:30
02. It Ain’t Necessarily So (Gershwin) 4:26
03. Avalon (Rose-DeSylva) 3:29
04. I Remember Clifford (Benny Golson) 3:10
05. Blues March (Benny Golson) 5:16
06. That’s All Right With Me (Cole Porter) 3:53
07. Park Avenue Petite (Benny Golson) 3:41
08. Mox Nix (Art Farmer) 4:01
09. Easy Living (Rubin-Ranger) 3:33
10. Killer Joe (Benny Golson) 4:57
**


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