McCoy Tyner Trio: Inception (1962)
A trio setting with bassist Art Davis and drummer Elvin Jones, Inception is a strong debut, though not necessarily indicative of the monster player Tyner would become. His fleet-fingered, lyrical right hand is in full force but the thundering left hand, which would become something of his trademark, is not really evident here, partly due to the material, which is a bit more subdued when compared to the raucous repertoire that busied Tyner in his regular job at the time: manning the piano bench for Coltrane. That said, ballads and slower blues, like many of those on Inception, have remained an important part of Tyner's songbook throughout his career.
The program does pick up intensity as it progresses, with "Effendi" and the pianist's album-closing take on Kurt Weil and Ogden Nash's "Speak Low" highlighting Jones' percolating drum work, Tyner's dexterity and the symbiosis shared between them.
Inception remains important as a jazz giant's debut and an iconic example of 1960s piano jazz.
Track Listing: Inception; There Is No Greater Love; Blues for Gwen; Sunset; Effendi; Speak Low.
Personnel: McCoy Tyner: piano; Elvin Jones: drums; Art Davis: bass.
Record Label: Impulse!