Big Brass is an appropiate name for the large ensemble arranged and conducted by Ernie Wilkins that accompanies the huge sound of Sonny Rollins. The energy within the leader's gospel-flavored shout "Grand Street" is considerable, while a swinging but no less powerful version of George & Ira Gershwin's "Who Cares" features a choice solo by guitarist Rene Thomas. Also added to this compilation are trio recordings with bassist Henry Grimes and drummer Specs Wright, including a brilliant leisurely stroll through "Manhattan," along with Rollins' tour de force unaccompanied tenor sax on "Body and Soul."
Essential: a masterpiece of Folk music
At the time of buying this LP, I thought I was going to find a Stivell immersed in the Prog-Folk music… my surprise was great after listening to it completely: Totally unplugged, no instrument with electric cables. Today is one of my favorite records of this legendary harpist. And I think he took the risk to go back to his Breton roots and immerse us in the Breton-Folk music.
This Savoy CD is a duplicate of the original LP although it lacks the fine liner notes included on the Arista/Savoy 1978 LP. The four selections (which unfortunately total under 34 minutes) are excellent, particularly a fun version of Horace Silver's blues "Opus De Funk" in which vibraphonist Milt Jackson, flutist Frank Wess and pianist Hank Jones have a long tradeoff. The quintet (which also includes bassist Eddie Jones and drummer Kenny Clarke) swings nicely throughout the three blues and lone ballad ("You Leave Me Breathless"). This is not essential, but it is enjoyable music.