Art Blakey: Wee-Dot
Art Blakey (drums)
A Night at Birdland with Art Blakey, Volume 2 (Blue Note 5038)
Curly Russell (bass).
Composed by J.J. Johnson & Leo Parker.
Recorded: live at Birdland, New York, February 21, 1954
Rating: 95/100 (learn more)
Art Blakey had led his own sessions from as early as 1947, when his collaboration with Kenny Dorham and Walter Bishop Jr., among others, was released as New Sounds (also released as The Thin Man and The Bop Alley). These February '54 performances, however, truly launched Blakey's solo career. It is out of this legendary lineup that the original, small-group Jazz Messengers would soon be formed. Note the classic performances by all band members here – the scorching Brown improvisation, the astoundingly Birdlike Donaldson offering, the soulful Silver comping, and the simple, sustained intensity of Blakey's groove. While no group may ever be able to swing as fast and with as much virtuosity as Diz/Bird/Roach, no group may ever be able to swing as physically hard and as deep as this bebop/hard-bop lineup. A classic introduction to the Blakey sound.
Reviewer: Eric Novod
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