407

Coleman Hawkins: At Ease with Coleman Hawkins

Matt Cibula By

Sign in to view read count
Coleman Hawkins: At Ease with Coleman Hawkins In this crazy run-around world where we never really have time to stop and appreciate all the good things in our lives, it is pretty hard to make time for Coleman Hawkins. But that is precisely why it is so important to do so. They really never invented a saxophone player better than him, and very few musicians have ever gotten closer to what jazz is supposed to be.

At Ease with Coleman Hawkins, originally released in 1960, is like a 42-minute journey into Zen simplicity, with a touch of sexy swagger on the side. Many people today have forgotten just how good the Bean was at this stage of his career. But just because none of the work here is as revolutionary as his work in the 1920s, '30s or '40s doesn't mean these songs aren't full of beauty and invention. His work here on "Then I'll Be Tired of You" starts off kind of sleepy, all loopy Dean Martin phrases, and then gets slightly more beboppy as things go on, until he sounds like Sonny Rollins or someone like that. (Funny quotation work in this solo too!) And there's no mistaking his majesty on the ancient chestnut "At Dawning" or his predatory stroll through the just-as-ancient "Poor Butterfly."

But At Ease is not just all pretty notes and assurance. Hawkins was smart to have bopper Tommy Flanagan as his pianist here—you can hear the two push each other on the opener, "For You, For Me, Forevermore," generations teaching each other how to cook. Flanagan's beautiful intro on "Mighty Like a Rose" ends up presaging his pretty solo two minutes later. And the rhythm section stars throughout. Osie Johnson's drumming is always amazing, but Wendell Marshall deserves special marks for his bass line at the start of "I'll Get By."

This recording isn't fiery or out there, but it's about as solid as one can be, and it proves (for about the millionth time) the mastery of Coleman Hawkins. So what's not to love?

Track Listing: For You, For Me, Forevermore; While We're Young; Then I'll Be Tired of You; Mighty Like a Rose; At Dawning; Trouble Is a Man; Poor Butterfly; I'll Get By (As Long as I Have You).

Personnel: Coleman Hawkins: tenor saxophone; Tommy Flanagan: piano; Wendell Marshall: bass; Osie Johnson: drums.

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Prestige Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Welcome to Swingsville! CD/LP/Track Review Welcome to Swingsville!
by Jack Bowers
Published: March 26, 2017
Read Points of View CD/LP/Track Review Points of View
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 26, 2017
Read Migration Blues CD/LP/Track Review Migration Blues
by Chris Mosey
Published: March 26, 2017
Read Recent Developments CD/LP/Track Review Recent Developments
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 26, 2017
Read N.O. Escape CD/LP/Track Review N.O. Escape
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: March 26, 2017
Read Reflections CD/LP/Track Review Reflections
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 25, 2017
Read "Discoveries on Tracker Action Organs" CD/LP/Track Review Discoveries on Tracker Action Organs
by John Eyles
Published: January 21, 2017
Read "The Hidden Notes - Spirit Of Adventure" CD/LP/Track Review The Hidden Notes - Spirit Of Adventure
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 18, 2017
Read "Early Americans" CD/LP/Track Review Early Americans
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: June 29, 2016
Read "Ante Lucem for Symphony Orchestra and Jazz Quintet" CD/LP/Track Review Ante Lucem for Symphony Orchestra and Jazz Quintet
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 3, 2016
Read "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off" CD/LP/Track Review Let's Call the Whole Thing Off
by Edward Blanco
Published: August 29, 2016
Read "Touch My Beloved's Thought" CD/LP/Track Review Touch My Beloved's Thought
by Mark Corroto
Published: July 7, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: DOT TIME RECORDS | BUT IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!