435

Horace Silver: Finger Poppin'

By

Sign in to view read count
Finger Poppin' (1959) followed Silver's most under-appreciated (and perhaps most ambitious) Blue Note date, Further Explorations (1958). The cast is different (though the fiery Louis Hayes remains on drums), but the compositions and arrangements by Silver are no less artful and the soloists as inspired as the frontline of Art Farmer and Clifford Jordan from the preceding album. This time it's Blue Mitchell and Junior Cook negotiating the fast tempo and tricky stop-and-go melodies with precision and ease, with Mitchell impressively setting the pace with the first solo on the date. He's crisp, lyrical, inventive, melodic—reminiscent of Kenny Dorham with a fuller sound—and Junior Cook takes his cue accordingly, delivering a solo that's almost as melodically arresting as a Hank Mobley gem. Both soloists employ the too-rare practice of "listening to themselves," repeating and modifying their phrases while developing whole structures at top speed as opposed to letting fly with a stream of bebop cliches.

The arrangements have some of the complexity and sophistication of tunes like "Ecarole" and "Moon Rays," stylings reflective of the creative (even Ellingtonian) side of Silver which, unfortunately, became less apparent after simpler fare like Song for My Father (1964) proved a commercial formula that could best serve to keep tiny Blue Note records financially solvent (though it should be noted that the operation folded within several years after such Blue Note blockbusters as the aforementioned and Lee Morgan's Sidewinder (and its numerous imitations).

Thanks to the eventual purchase of the label by mega-conglomerate EMI, "Blue Note" still lives on at least in name, but it's albums like Finger Poppin' that testify not merely to its commercial niche but its invaluable contributions to a vibrant American art form in full bloom.

Track Listing: Finger Poppin'; Juicy Lucy; Swingin' The Samba; Sweet Stuff; Cookin' At The Continental; Come On Home; You Happened My Way; Mellow D.

Personnel: Horace Silver: piano; Gene Taylor: bass; Blue Mitchell: trumpet; Louis Hayes; drums; Junior Cook: saxophone.

Title: Finger Poppin' | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Blue Note Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Kurrent CD/LP/Track Review Kurrent
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: October 17, 2017
Read Duets CD/LP/Track Review Duets
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: October 17, 2017
Read Rev CD/LP/Track Review Rev
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 17, 2017
Read The Frequency Modulators Orchestra, Vol. 1 CD/LP/Track Review The Frequency Modulators Orchestra, Vol. 1
by Jim Olin
Published: October 17, 2017
Read The Adventures of Zodd Zundgren CD/LP/Track Review The Adventures of Zodd Zundgren
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 16, 2017
Read Any Other Way CD/LP/Track Review Any Other Way
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: October 16, 2017
Read "Dance of Time" CD/LP/Track Review Dance of Time
by Jeff Winbush
Published: May 26, 2017
Read "Invisible Hand" CD/LP/Track Review Invisible Hand
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 12, 2017
Read "Tether" CD/LP/Track Review Tether
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 12, 2017
Read "The Complete Syllables Music" CD/LP/Track Review The Complete Syllables Music
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 4, 2017
Read "Sing Me Some Cry" CD/LP/Track Review Sing Me Some Cry
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 20, 2017
Read "Original Demos" CD/LP/Track Review Original Demos
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: June 8, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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