Grachan Moncur III: Thandiwa
Grachan Moncur III (trombone)
Some Other Stuff (Blue Note 32092)
Composed by Grachan Moncur III.
Recorded: Englewood Cliffs, NJ, July 6, 1964
Rating: 88/100 (learn more)
The only chord change-based tune on an album of otherwise free-form pieces, "Thandiwa" is an angular waltz made up of 4-bar phrases in AABB form. Of the four solos, the leader's is, oddly enough, the shortest and most tentative. Shorter stretches out, exploring the tune from every angle, developing short motives, toying with the rhythms, and dissecting the changes before winding things up with some quiet sheets of sound. It's nice to be reminded of how great Herbie Hancock sounded on a real piano and in the company of his peers. Though the personnel consists of 3/5 of the Miles Davis Quintet at the time, Moncur's music puts things into an entirely different sound world.
Reviewer: Kenny Berger