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Paul Gonsalves became well known and recognized as a great Jazz tenor in 1956 (You will read below) while playing in Duke’s big band. This 1960 album sounds like a big band and is classified in that genre, it is a septet. And to make it more special, Johnny Hodges is there on the alto sax switching lead with Gonsalves, a great combo! It seems that Hodges and Gonsalves take their respected turns in creating the mood and playing the blues. Don’t forget the contributions from the talented Ray Nance on the trumpet, who really gets down and dirty in some spots. “Ellingtonia Moods and Blues” is a very enjoyable album that will help relax the Jazz Con Class Radio after a hard day’s work.  Check the schedule link for

About the album:

Paul Gonsalves was considered some kind of new genius of the tenor saxophone after he blew an astounding 27 choruses with Duke Ellington’s Orchestra on the Duke’s “Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue” at the 1956 Newport Jazz Festival. As part of RCA’s reissue series to celebrate Ellington’s 100th birthday, Ellingtonia Moods & Blues brings back a 1960 date featuring Gonsalves and other Ellington soloists. Although nominally credited to Gonsalves, this, in fact, is a co-chaired date with Johnny Hodges. Hodges shares the composing, arranging and — as always — swinging soloing. Add the fine trumpet work of Ray Nance and the swinging trombone work of Booty Wood — both contributing just the right blend to offset the two saxophonists — and this makes for one potent date. The rhythm section is solid and supportive, with great playing from Jimmy Jones on piano, Al Hall on bass, and Oliver Jackson on drums. Gonsalves plays his usual breathy tenor, full of warmth and depth, caressing his notes in much the same time-honored manner as Hodges, making their solos……..Read More

BIG BONUS TRACKS: I added “Low Gravy” from the “Gettin’ Together!” album and “Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue” (Live from Newport 1956) to complete the hour!

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