Dexter GORDON – Featuring Joe NEWMAN 1976

Dexter GORDON – Featuring Joe NEWMAN  1976
1995 Issue.

Jazz

This live set is better than it appears at first glance. The recording quality is excellent and Dexter Gordon (who had recently returned to the U.S. after quite a few years in Europe) is in inspired form, really tearing into his solos with intensity. Trumpeter Joe Newman, who obviously had not played much with Gordon, has to fight to find a place for himself in the ensembles and is sometimes overextended in his solos, but his colorful tone is immediately recognizable. The rhythm section is fine in support with drummer Wilbur Campbell really pushing the group, and pianist Jodie Christian contributing some excellent solos. Not every number is a classic. Newman’s feature on “Ode to Billy Joe” is a bit dull, and there are some unfortunate fadeouts, with the two parts of “Body and Soul” being lengthy fragments from Dexter Gordon solos; “The Shadow of Your Smile” is only comprised of Gordon’s statement, with “Softly” ending during Newman’s spot. However, Dexter Gordon’s heated improvisations on “Tangerine” and “Walkin'” are both quite memorable. So, this album is easily recommended to fans.
By Scott Yanow. AMG.
**
Before Dexter Gordon’s historic U.S. homecoming tour in the late 1970s, he and fellow expatriate Joe Newman visited Chicago for these live dates at the Jazz Workshop. They teamed up with the great jazz trio of drummer Wilbur Campbell, bassist Eddie DeHaas (misspelled in the liner notes) and pianist Jodie Christian to play a stack of standards with hard swinging in mind. Christian in particular sounds very inspired, ripping off huge lines or chords at will and freely with masterful dexterity. Gordon and Newman were old friends since the ’50s, and it shows in not only their ability to play together, but their deference to each other’s solo space and leadership roles. Yes, this is Gordon’s bandstand as he takes the bulk of the solos, clearly chose the repertoire, and does the announcing, but Newman is no slouch, and sounds as good as ever, playing precise lines that at times exudes a confidence greater than Gordon. Much more than a simple jam session with a pick-up band, Gordon and Newman come out of the box roaring on “Tangerine,” with the trumpeter’s sweet harmony lines giving way to Gordon’s classic hard bop sound, and Christian boosting the group over this lengthy warm-up. They tear into “Softly, As in a Morning Sunrise,” a vehicle perfectly suited for wailing at a steady tempo as the two horns play together, while on “Walkin’,” Newman jumps ahead of the tenor man as if he knows the tune better, convincingly leading out while Gordon plays the harmonic part. Newman’s feature is the curious pop song “Ode to Billy Joe,” turned into a soul-jazz piece, quiet for the bulk of the tune with the trumpeter and DeHaas opting for their own take on the controversial lyric turned instrumental, then turning it into a funky postlude swing. Gordon’s two part “Body & Soul” may have been marred by a reel recorder running out of tape, split up by a gaping hole of silence, then faded in. He also does “The Shadow of Your Smile” without Newman, and it is all classic, romantic, and sultry Dex. Collectors should want this well-recorded one-shot session between two acclaimed jazz masters that the U.S. turned their back on for all the wrong reasons. That they returned to America treating us with their gifts, and that they were documented so lovingly here, is something we should all be thankful for. Are there any additional tracks for further volumes?
By Michael G. Nastos.

Dexter Gordon- (Tenor Sax)
Joe Newman- (Trumpet)
Jodie Christian- (Piano)
Eddie Dehase- (Bass)
Wilbur Campbell- (Drums)
**
01. Tangerine  13:35
02. Ode to Billie Joe 5:31
03. Body and Soul, Pt. 1  4:43
04. Body and Soul, Pt. 2  4:03
05. Softly   7:37
06. The Shadow of Your Smile  5:00
07. Walkin’  15:45
**

NoPassword
*
DLink
*
Please Donate

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: