217

Heath Brothers: Endurance

Joel Roberts By

Sign in to view read count
Endurance is a fitting word to describe Jimmy and Albert "Tootie" Heath, the veteran mainstreamers whose new release is their first since the death of their brother Percy four years ago.

Jimmy Heath, who just celebrated his 83rd birthday, remains a titan on the tenor saxophone (and occasionally the soprano), playing with the relaxed confidence and hard-earned wisdom of a certified jazz master. (The NEA honored him as such in 2003, one year after Percy.) His tone is warm and inviting, as are his bebop-based compositions, which account for seven of the album's nine tracks. Standouts include the breezy opener "Changes"; "Wall to Wall," a tune that opens with dramatic Coltrane-esque flourishes before morphing into a sort of upbeat Art Blakey march and the alluring Brazilian number "Rio Dawn."

Younger brother Tootie Heath, 73, continues to be one of the most tasteful, understated drummers in all of jazz, never reaching for attention, but never missing a beat. The talented young bassist David Wong bravely fills Percy's chair, performing especially beautifully on Jimmy's tribute to his late brother, "From a Lonely Bass," a tune that strongly recalls Ellington's classic "Solitude." The group's longtime pianist Jeb Patton rounds out the ensemble and contributes one of the date's most energetic and modern compositions, "Dusk in the City." Endurance is a sterling example of straight-ahead jazz, as authentic and heartfelt as it gets. Long may the Heath Brothers prosper.

Track Listing: Changes; Wall To Wall; You Or Me; Ballad from Leadership Suite; Dusk In The City; Two Tees; Autumn in New York; From A Lonely Bass; The Rio Dawn.

Personnel: Jimmy Heath: tenor sax, soprano sax (tracks 5 & 8); Jeb Patton: piano; David Wong: bass; Albert "Tootie" Heath: drums; Claudio Roditi: shaker (track 9).

Title: Endurance | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Jazz Legacy Productions


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read For the Love of You CD/LP/Track Review For the Love of You
by Jack Bowers
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Recent Developments CD/LP/Track Review Recent Developments
by John Sharpe
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Triple Double CD/LP/Track Review Triple Double
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Agrima CD/LP/Track Review Agrima
by Jerome Wilson
Published: October 21, 2017
Read The Study of Touch CD/LP/Track Review The Study of Touch
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 20, 2017
Read Another North CD/LP/Track Review Another North
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 19, 2017
Read "Endemic Ensemble: Tangled" CD/LP/Track Review Endemic Ensemble: Tangled
by Paul Rauch
Published: December 3, 2016
Read "Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau" CD/LP/Track Review Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau
by Geno Thackara
Published: January 16, 2017
Read "Graveyard Whistling" CD/LP/Track Review Graveyard Whistling
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 5, 2017
Read "Song of the Free Will" CD/LP/Track Review Song of the Free Will
by Dave Wayne
Published: November 16, 2016
Read "La Diversité" CD/LP/Track Review La Diversité
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 31, 2017
Read "With You In Mind" CD/LP/Track Review With You In Mind
by Mark E. Gallo
Published: August 12, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.