This summit recording by pianist John Hicks, drummer Elvin Jones, and bassist Cecil McBee might not always hit the heights, but it still impresses with a fine repertoire and quality playing. John Coltrane's "Cousin Mary" kicks things off with Hicks and Jones matching the vigorous interplay the drummer and pianist McCoy Tyner plied so well in Coltrane's classic quartet, while a faithful reading of the tenor giant's airy ballad "After the Rain" is also included.
Cecil McBee (born May 19, 1935) is an American post bop jazz bassist, described by the Guinness Who's Who of Jazz as "a full-toned bassist who creates rich, singing phrases in a wide range of contemporary jazz contexts." Allmusic called him "One of post-bop's most advanced and versatile bassists"
The first of two Chico Freeman recordings for the soon-defunct Black-Hawk label finds the leader switching between tenor, alto, sopranino, soprano, bass clarinet, bass flute and C flute. John Purcell "only" limits himself to five reeds (alto, baritone, oboe, alto flute and piccolo), and the horns are joined by either Kenny Kirkland or Mark Thompson on piano, bassist Cecil McBee and drummer Elvin Jones. The many combinations of reeds highlight this set, which has originals by Freeman, Mark Thompson ("Monk 2000"), John Stubblefield, Alex North and Cecil McBee ("Blues on the Bottom"), in addition to the standard "Softly As In a Morning Sunrise." The style ranges from straight-ahead to more exploratory sounds, and this colorful album is worth searching for.
Features SHM-CD format and the latest 24bit 192kHz remastering. One of the most dynamic albums that Andrew Hill ever cut for Blue Note – a record of long tracks, played by a largeish group who seem perfectly suited to Hill's most creative musical ideas! There's an approach here that almost predates some of the more righteous soul jazz ensemble sides of the 70s – as Hill's piano leads a octet that features Freddie Hubbard on trumpet, John Gilmore on tenor and bass clarinet, Cecil McBee and Richard Davis on basses, Joe Chambers on drums, and Nedi Quamar and Renaud Simmons on percussion. The percussionists roll out with quite a bit of presence in the set – not so much as on some of the Art Blakey percussion sides for Blue Note, but more with a pronounced sense of "bottom" that you might not always hear from Hill – an earthy, sometimes organic way of riffing that then allows freer solo work from the horns and piano on the top!
Two years after the death of his mentor and boss, John Coltrane, and just before signing his own contract with Impulse!, Pharoah Sanders finally got around to releasing an album as a leader apart from the Impulse! family. Enlisting a cast of characters no less than 13 in number, Sanders proved that his time with Coltrane and his Impulse! debut, Tauhid, was not a fluke. Though hated by many of the jazz musicians at the time – and more jazz critics who felt Coltrane had lost his way musically the minute he put together the final quintet – Sanders followed his own muse to the edges of Eastern music and sometimes completely outside the borderlines of what could be called jazz. That said, Izipho Zam is a wonderful recording, full of the depth of vision and heartfelt soul that has informed every recording of Sanders since.
Features 24 bit digital remastering. Comes with a description. Before his great quartet split at the end of 1968, Charles Lloyd took this band literally to the ends of the earth. As a quartet, they had grown immensely from that first astonishing spark when they toured the summer festivals in 1966. Here they are a seasoned unit, full of nuance, elegance, and many surprises, while having moved their entire musical center over to the pursuit of Lloyd's obsession – incorporating the music of the East into Western jazz. This show in Norway, which featured the original band of Lloyd on flute and saxes, Keith Jarrett on piano, Cecil McBee on bass, and Jack DeJohnette on drums and percussion, took the idiom begun by John Coltrane and Yusef Lateef and moved it into places even they hadn't imagined.
Still known as Dollar Brand at the time of this recording, Abdullah Ibrahim had his first encounter with a large ensemble on African Space Program, and the results are quite successful. Despite a muddy sound quality, this is music built on infectious themes and played with verve by a fine cast of instrumentalists. The first part of "Tintiyana," entirely written, is redolent of Ellington and Mingus, all churning low tones and percussion. When the second portion begins, the mood turns celebratory with a striding, gospel-imbued theme supporting heroic solos from all involved. Several of the musicians on hand were generally involved with the avant-garde end of the jazz spectrum at the time, and their playing is full of bite and a risk-taking nature that greatly enlivens the proceedings.