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Chris Potter: Got The Keys To The Kingdom (Live At The Village Vanguard)

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Chris Potter: Got The Keys To The Kingdom (Live At The Village Vanguard)
There is a lot of heavy ordnance going off during this album. Indeed, the incoming only lets up once, and then briefly, during a performance of Billy Strayhorn's "Blood Count" at the halfway point. For the rest of the sixty-one minutes playing time, the watchword is eruptive. But no PPE is required. The barrage is benign.

This is the third album Chris Potter has recorded live at the Vanguard. The attraction is no surprise. Saxophonists, especially those whose primary horn is the tenor, must get a special charge from performing at the venue immortalised by John Coltrane. Potter leads a quartet completed by pianist Craig Taborn, bassist Scott Colley and drummer Marcus Gilmore. Each has form with Potter, especially Colley and Gilmore: Colley was in the band which recorded Lift (Live At The Village Vanguard) (Sunnyside, 2004) and Taborn in the one which made Follow The Red Line (Live At The Village Vanguard) (Sunnyside, 2007). Gilmore, the youngest member of the group, is no stranger to Potter either. Nor is he, genealogically speaking, a stranger to the Vanguard: his grandfather the great Roy Haynes, sat in for Elvin Jones for a run of "Chasin' The Trane" during Coltrane's historic 1961 residency.

Unlike the two earlier discs, which mostly consisted of Potter originals, Got The Keys To The Kingdom is entirely made up of covers. They are an imaginatively diverse collection: Mississippi Fred McDowell's "You Gotta Move;" "Nozani Na," a Brazilian folk tune collected by Heitor Villa-Lobos and Edgar Roquette-Pinto; Charlie Parker's "Klactoveedsedstene;" Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Olha Maria;" and the title track, a traditional African American spiritual; and the aforementioned "Blood Count." The main soloist is Potter, who must be on-mic for around eighty per cent of the time. Next up is Gilmore, with three killer solos and Taborn with two. Colley steps forward only on the intro to "Olha Maria."

The album will shave your ass and Potter deserves an honorary set of keys to the Vanguard on the strength of it.

Track Listing

You Gotta Move; Nozani Na; Blood Count; Klactoveedsedstene; Olha Maria; Got The Keys To The Kingdom.

Personnel

Album information

Title: Got The Keys To The Kingdom: Live At The Village Vanguard | Year Released: 2023 | Record Label: Edition Records


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