Erroll Garner: That Old Black Magic


That Old Black Magic


Erroll Garner (piano)


Mambo Moves Garner (Mercury 834909-2)

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Erroll Garner (piano),

Wyatt Ruther (bass), Eugene “Fats” Heard (drums), Candido Camero (congas)


Composed by Harold Arlen & Johnny Mercer


Recorded: Chicago, July 27, 1954


Rating: 95/100 (learn more)

Mambo Moves Garner was Erroll Garner's first recording with a conga player. For this arrangement of the popular Harold Arlen tune, Garner trades his "four on the floor" left-hand accompaniment for variations on a 3-2 Cuban son clave, while bassist Ruther's lines suggest a tumbao pattern at times. While conguero Candido's role is clearly one of accompaniment, this piece is far from kitsch novelty. Rather, it reflects an effective fusion of styles, with Garner's indelible musical personality shining through in a new, refreshing context. As a result of this album's success, Garner revisited the piano trio + conga configuration throughout his career.

Reviewer: Mark Lomanno

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