Joe Henderson: Blue Bossa
Joe Henderson (tenor sax)
Page One (Blue Note 98795)
Composed by Kenny Dorham.
Recorded: Englewood Cliffs, NJ, June 3, 1963
Rating: 96/100 (learn more)
As the title advertises, "Blue Bossa" is bossa nova with blues overtones. An eminently catchy tune (even non-jazz fans recognize it), it's Kenny Dorham's rightful entry into the jazz standards canon. In original form here as the first track from Joe Henderson's debut album, a strong composition is given strong treatment. After the two horn players state the theme in unison, Dorham takes the lead, restating his theme with a succession of rapid-fire tremolos that sound like he's playing his trumpet behind an electric fan. The rest of the way, he stays close to the theme in a clean and relaxed manner. Henderson's ensuing solo introduces his warm tenor from the Sonny Rollins school, finding notes that aren't always obvious but always fit. Foreshadowing his affinity for Antonio Carlos Jobim's music, Tyner already sounds right at home with the Brazilian form. Warren makes his own solo statement concise.
"Blue Bossa" introduced the world to Joe Henderson in fine fashion. This classic piece remains the place to start for discovering the treasure trove of Henderson's body of work.
Reviewer: S. Victor Aaron