343

Jaki Byard: Family Man

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
Named for his family members, several movements from Jaki Byard’s "Family Suite" relate the deep affection the pianist harbored for his home and family. Byard made his decision early on in his career to work close to home rather than travel. Recorded in 1978, long out of print, but reissued last month for the first time on compact disc, Byard’s Family Man offers a glimpse toward several of the many styles this pianist espoused during his 60-year career as teacher/composer/performer.

Byard wrote the album’s opening tune as a bouncing Major Holley-type swinger. The bassist’s wordless vocals - in unison with bowed upright bass - create a lovely pattern that introduces the session’s family orientation. Two Ellington and Strayhorn piano trio ballads follow that with a setting made for just sitting around the house with nothing else to do on a rainy day. "L.H. Gatewalk" moves from slow rag to traditional stride piano while "Ballad to Louise," housed in a vibraphone/tenor saxophone duet, returns to emotional contemplation. The remainder of the session opts for the piano trio to paint excerpts from Byard’s "Family Suite." Inspirational in both its intentions and methods, Byard’s Family Man makes a welcome addition to the jazz collection.

Track Listing: Just Rollin

Personnel: Jaki Byard- piano, tenor saxophone on "Ballad to Louise," alto saxophone on "Prelude #16 (Time Machine);" Major Holley- bass, Fender bass on "Garr," tuba on "L.H. Gatewalk Rag;" Warren Smith- drums, tympani on "Emil," vibraphone on "Ballad to Louise;" J.R. Mitchell- drums on "Prelude #16," "Gaeta," "Garr" and "John Arthur."

| Record Label: 32 Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read LifeCycle CD/LP/Track Review LifeCycle
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Right Up On CD/LP/Track Review Right Up On
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Wanderlust CD/LP/Track Review Wanderlust
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Imagination CD/LP/Track Review Imagination
by Geannine Reid
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Evolution CD/LP/Track Review Evolution
by Greg Simmons
Published: April 23, 2017
Read On A Monday Evening CD/LP/Track Review On A Monday Evening
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 22, 2017
Read "Guitarist, Alone" CD/LP/Track Review Guitarist, Alone
by John Eyles
Published: August 5, 2016
Read "Live At The Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival" CD/LP/Track Review Live At The Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival
by Roger Farbey
Published: December 23, 2016
Read "Kansas City Here I Come" CD/LP/Track Review Kansas City Here I Come
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: February 10, 2017
Read "America's National Parks" CD/LP/Track Review America's National Parks
by Mark Sullivan
Published: October 10, 2016
Read "It's A Mystery" CD/LP/Track Review It's A Mystery
by Roger Farbey
Published: March 31, 2017
Read "The Joy of Being" CD/LP/Track Review The Joy of Being
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 1, 2017

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

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!