Benny Golson: The Jazz Messengers: The Legacy Of Art Blakey
Recorded less than a year ago, this session finds each artist in fine form. Blanchard's trumpet voice is more forceful and robust than in past years. Golson and Fuller show their experienced wares, as does young lion Keezer. Washington and Nash drive the ensemble with appropriate charm. The standard bop approach of passing solos from one performer to the next applies here; however, the Blakey form also stands, as the horns work as a unit to express these familiar melodies. Keezer and Blanchard stand out exceptionally well with dramatic solo work on "Whisper Not." Washington and Nash drive the ensemble; the bassist has several welcome solo passages. Lewis Nash propels "Plexus" with an exceptional focus, even adding several trademark Art Blakey snare drum figures. The live recording setup seems to have muffled Curtis Fuller's trombone voice throughout; however, the audience reaction and the artists' overt enthusiasm shine through loud and clear.
Track Listing: One by One; A La Mode; Whisper Not; Oh, By the Way; Plexus; Blues March.
Record Label: Telarc Records