Bobby Hutcherson: Wise One (2009)
The four Coltrane pieces, for the most part, are infrequently explored by other jazz musicians. The brooding, powerful "Spiritual" retains its tension, though the vibes are much lighter than Coltrane's soprano sax, as is Wilson's guitar in place of Eric Dolphy's piercing bass clarinet. The breezy Latin setting of "Like Sonny" contrasts with the reflective interpretation of the title track and the gently swinging "Dear Lord."
Although Coltrane was a prolific composer during the 1960s, he took time out to explore compositions by others. Two standards, "Nancy (With the Laughing Face)" and "All or Nothing at All," appeared on the Ballads album, rumored to have been a rebuttal to critics who thought Coltrane was no longer capable of playing a great melody without an avalanche of notes. Hutcherson takes the former in a reserved fashion while the latter is played as a brisk bossa nova, with delightful comping by the rhythm section. Tyner's "Aisha" is a rarity because Coltrane rarely recorded his sidemen's originals. Hutcherson's spacious, shimmering arrangement does much to unveil its beauty, an early work that is deserving of greater exploration by others.
Track Listing: Wise One; Like Sonny; Aisha; Equinox; All Or Nothing At All; Nancy (With The Laughing Face); Spiritual; Out Of This World; Dear Lord.
Personnel: Bobby Hutcherson: vibes; Anthony Wilson: electric guitar; Joe Gilman: piano; Glenn Richman: bass; Eddie Marshall: drums.
Record Label: Kind of Blue Records