Scotty Barnhart: Giant Steps
Scotty Barnhart (trumpet)
Say It Plain (DIG 137)
Rodney Jordan (bass), Leon Anderson, Jr. (drums, whistle).
Composed by John Coltrane.
Recorded: Tallahassee FL, July 9, 2008
Rating: 88/100 (learn more)
If I hear one more deadgummed cover of “Giant Steps” I’m going to (insert violent act here). But wait, what’s this? A marching whistle? A frisky second line beat? Competing melodic lines between the trumpet and sax? Brilliant. Why hasn’t anybody thought of playing Coltrane’s tune like this before?
Even Roberts gets into the Big Easy spirit when the band halts on him mid-solo and he begins to tickle ivories stride-style. Williams’ soprano is more modern sounding than, say, Sidney Bechet’s, but still fits the festive mood. Barnhart follows with a very brassy trumpet that is determinedly in the pocket.
Scotty Barnhart makes an old song sound fresh again, ironically by bringing it to Old New Orleans.
Reviewer: S. Victor Aaron
Tags: 2000s jazz