Clark Terry & Max Roach: Friendship (2003)
Terry continues to be a player for whom expressiveness and invention are natural outcomes of his craft. His tone, rich and full, lends vitality and credence to the music. Roach, the architect of rhythm, builds his pulse through dynamic textures, layer upon layer. He uses space in his time with that same extraordinary sense that has imbued his music for 60 years. Take “Lil Max,” his solo outing. The beat is sharply etched; the accents ride the snares, shaping soundscapes that lilt and dance and build little whorls that moan and whoomp. Roach and Terry's chemistry is witnessed in their duets, including the delectable “Simple Waltz” where Roach sets the tempo and Terry glides in.
The aural delights are evinced right through. “Let’s Cool One” is taken at a brisk, wonderfully swinging pace. Terry brings in a nice fat tone on the flugelhorn as he grooves in controlled abandon. Pianist Don Friedman is scintillating, his playing vibrant and flowing. It is all rounded nicely with bassist Marcus McLaurine essaying a sturdy beat that never lets go of the melodic core. Terry goes solo on “When I Fall In Love” and on “The Nearness Of You,” and they are remarkable performances indeed. His control is tight even as he improvises on the melody lines. Clark Terry's gorgeous playing on “I Remember Clifford” is also deeply moving. Roach sat this one out. It’s said that he found the memories too emotional.
This is music that stirs the soul and warms the heart.
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Track Listing: Statements; Let
Personnel: Clark Terry
Record Label: Eighty-Eights