Cecil Payne is outstanding here in this straight forward early hard bop recording. He leads throughout and Read more →
This classic featured album was recorded in 1956 and can be used as a benchmark for those who have any crazy doubt about Sonny Rollins. The name of this album which I will be featuring is “Tenor Madness” and should be in every Jazz lover’s library. Sonny Rollins is accompanied by the already well known John Coltrane and successfully manufacture a historical work of art. Never was a title for a Jazz album so misleading, especially when there are two tenor saxophone players together. The expected and the norm would be intense dueling with a strong emphasis on competitiveness. The title of this album sure implies this but cannot be anymore than the opposite. Both Rollins and Coltrane work in perfect harmony and compromise each other impeccably with their distinct sounds. Check the schedule link for play times, enjoy!
About the Album:
It’s interesting to contrast Sonny Rollins’ playing here, backed by the 1956 Miles Davis rhythm section, and his work with Ray Brown/Max Roach Incorporated. Certainly if Clifford Brown hadn’t died that summer in an auto wreck, Rollins and his PLUS FOUR teammates would have continued to rival the creative output of the heralded Davis Quintet.
Here, Rollins and special guest John Coltrane get right down to it on the classic riff “Tenor Madness.” Coltrane is still zeroing in on his sound, while Sonny has found his (for now). Coltrane chases the blue trains, the snakes and the wind on a fulminating solo, ending with a hint of “Stranger In Paradise.” Rollins replies coyly–his sense of space and phrasing more akin to Miles–painting with clouds, patiently elongating his line out of dozens of little melodic motifs, teasing Philly Joe until he busts, finishing with a counterpunching flurry of his own. As Coltrane and Rollins trade riffs and choruses, you can hear them commenting favorably on each others’ inventions until they’re practically one voice………Learn More