Jose Reyes

Jose Reyes

The “Sonny Rollins Plus 4” album

Facebook

SonnyRollinsPlus4Cover

There’s no better general description and anything more that I could add about this album, “Sonny Rollins Plus 4” than this one from Wikipedia. All I can write here is that if by some freak mistake, you don’t have this album, please get it and enjoy!

From Wikipedia:

Sonny Rollins Plus 4 (also released as 3 Giants!) is a jazz album by Sonny Rollins, released in 1956 on Prestige Records. On this album Rollins plays with the Clifford Brown/Max Roach Quintet, of which he was a member at the time. The album was the last full recording including pianist Richie Powell and trumpeter Clifford Brown, as both died in a car accident three months later. The material from this album was later also re-released as 3 Giants and is part of the seven CD set with Rollins’ Complete Prestige Recordings.

History:

Rollins had written his two original compositions (“Pent-Up House” and “Valse Hot”) while a sideman in the Max Roach/Clifford Brown Quintet. It was more common in the 50s for a sideman recording his own work to record with either the rhythm section or leader; thus it was unusual when Rollins recorded with the same musicians that he played with in the Quintet. Rollins had just joined the Quintet five months beforehand, replacing Harold Land, who had left New York to care for his sick wife in California…..Learn More

Rollins had been working as a janitor in Chicago at the time, spending most of his time practicing and rethinking his life (a smaller sabbatical compared to the later ones he would take). The Quintet was in Chicago as well in November 1955, and were playing at the Bee Hive Club in Hyde Park. After sitting in with the Brown/Roach Quintet at the Bee Hive, Rollins was added as the tenor saxophonist.

About the album:

Richie Powell (piano); George Morrow (bass); Max Roach (drums). 1956, Sonny Rollins was spiritually and physically rejuvenated. And on Sonny Rollins Plus 4, he’s clearly inspired by Max Roach and Clifford Brown’s depth of spirit. Multi-dimensional re-arrangements of popular songs were a Brown-Roach trademark. “Kiss and Run” is treated to a stop-and-go intro, then settles into a brisk 4/4, as Rollins, Brown, and the perennially underrated Richie Powell fashion long dancing lines. “I Feel a Song Coming On” creates tension by alternating a vamp figure with a swinging release. Rollins takes an immense solo, contrasting chanting figures and foghorn-like long tones with Parker-ish elisions, and Brown answers with buzzing figures and daring harmonic extensions. Then Roach takes things out with sweeping melodic choruses and polyrhythmic fanfares, setting the stage for a torrid tenor-trumpet duel. On “Valse Hot,” there’s an early example of a successful jazz waltz as Rollins offers up one of his most charming themes. Max Roach treats the European three with the dancing elan of an American four, and Rollins responds by floating in between the beat, syncopating in Monk-ish stabs and thrusts, as Brown answers with the kind of rhythmically complex, sweetly articulated melodic lines that have inspired every modern trumpeter……Read More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

More to Explore

Klook and Francy

Kenny “Klook” Clarke and Francois “Francy” Boland are considered the pioneers of the “modern” Jazz big band. Their sexy cool sound had

Read More »

"I appreciate Jazz Con Class Radio because I love bop, hard bop, and related jazz forms. I especially appreciate Jazz Con Class because of the great range of musicians and cuts that are played. Although I like to hear Miles Davis play So What and John Coltrane play My Favorite Things, familiar cuts like these are heard too often on other jazz stations. Unlike other jazz stations, Jazz Con Class Radio frequently surprises me with great music that is not so familiar to me. I love it. And I also love the absence of commercial interruptions.

Although I am not a musician or an authority on music, I teach a Bop seminar for first-year students at the University of California at Davis. In addition to hearing the music, the students learn about the musicians and urban culture in the 40s, 50s, and 60s. I often play Jazz Con Class Radio at the start and end of class meetings. The music is a wonderful gift. The station is also a wonderful gift."

- Bruce Jaffee-California (USA)

"This is a real jazz station, and I can tell the announcer is a New Yorker. I'm a former NYC resident (born and raised) in Greenwich Village where many classic jazz clubs once existed, the Village Vanguard is still there. I hope Jazz Con Class Radio remains on the air for many years to come!"

- Tony Candido-Oakland, California (USA)

"Jazz Con Class Radio plays the finest in jazz 24 hours a day. Here you can listen to the best in jazz, all the giants from Duke Elliington and Charlie Parker to Miles Davis and Herbie Hancock as well as the infinite number of notable contributors in between. Jazz Con Class Radio plays the whole spectrum of jazz. Jazz that's melodic, but never boring as well as edgy, but not too far out. Jazz Con Class Radio presents all the best this great American music form has to offer. Online. 24 hours a day. You'll find it all on Jazz Con Class Radio."

- Sven Pantano, New Hampshire (USA)
css.php