Milt Jackson-Ray Brown: Frankie and Johnnie
Frankie and Johnnile
Milt Jackson Quintet Featuring Ray Brown
That's the Way It Is! (Impulse AS 9189)
Recorded: live at "Shelly's Manne-Hole", Hollywood, CA, August 1 & 2, 1969
Rating: 100/100 (learn more)
“Frankie and Johnnie” is just a great jam. Milt Jackson and Ray Brown were inseparable cronies. They were very much like Fred and Barney, Cramden and Norton. Ray was definitely Ralph Cramden or Fred Flintstone. Definitely the leader of the two. I think their kinship really comes across well all through that particular recording. Once again, Ray is in his element, just playing the straight 12-bar blues, having a good time, swinging real hard. Dick Berk is playing drums on this record. This is an early recording session for Monty Alexander on piano, and Teddy Edwards is on tenor. They’ve got their teeth sunk right into the groove, Ray is propelling the band, and they stretch out on the blues for about 10 minutes and have a really good time. You can hear Ray talking to the guys throughout the track. “Yeah, Jackson!” when Milt’s taking a solo. You can hear Ray yelling down to Monty, “Play the left hand.” It’s a really cool, fun track.
Reviewer: Christian McBride