275

Booker Ervin & Pony Poindexter: Gumbo!

Derek Taylor By

Sign in to view read count
Booker Ervin & Pony Poindexter: Gumbo! A strange combination of sorts, this release gathers two disparate sessions whose only apparent common denominator is the incredible Booker Ervin. Ervin’s name on the bill should be a signal to most jazz fans that the contents contained herein are worthy of their attention. The added bonuses are many as well and include a brief, but tantalizing meeting between the Texas tenor titan and forward-thinking organist Larry Young.

Poindexter is something of an enigma. He never really made it big beyond his hometown of New Orleans, but based on his intriguing work collected here it’s difficult to discern why. Matching an equal facility on soprano and alto with a deep passion for hard bop and Dixieland, Poindexter opted for a program of tunes that would conjure the sights and sounds of his birthplace. Grey’s tailgate trombone and Ervin’s booting sax help him toward these ends and the rhythm section fronted by bop scholar Gildo Mahones keeps things moving at a percolating pace. A mystery conga player is also attendance beginning on the soulful “Creole Girl” which tips its hat to the Herbie Hancock-inspired 60s sound. “4-11-44” continues along the same path and is awash in gris-gris grooves compliments again of the rhythm section and most noticeably Tucker’s thick-fingered bass lines. Tucker’s taut figures also shine on the rousing rendition of “Wade In the Water” which takes the session out. Several of the tracks including “Moody’s Mood” feature Poindexter’s vocals, which are fairly forgettable in comparison to his musicianship.

The Larry Young session appended to the end of the disc is as frustrating as it is revelatory. The frustration comes with the brevity of the meeting, a mere four tracks and one alternate, but what’s included is by and large well worth hearing. The date predates Young’s ascendancy to the title of ‘Coltrane of the organ,” but his dense, meaty lines still push the envelope at this early stage and goad Ervin into some thrilling solo passages. Thomas gives sufficient, if sometimes clunky, support and the three burn through the handful of tunes with a surefooted groove in tow. Though this disc does consist of a rather bizarre match of sessions the music is uniformly entertaining and should be investigated, particularly by listeners who harbor an appreciation for Ervin.

Collective

Track Listing: Front O

Personnel:

Collective Booker Ervin- tenor saxophone; Pony Poindexter- alto & soprano saxophones, vocals; Al Grey- trombone; Gildo Mahones- piano; George Tucker- bass; Jimmie Smith- drums. Larry Young- organ; Jerry Thomas- drums.

Title: Gumbo! | Year Released: 2000 | Record Label: Prestige Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Eleven Cages CD/LP/Track Review Eleven Cages
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 27, 2017
Read Afro-Caribbean Mixtape CD/LP/Track Review Afro-Caribbean Mixtape
by Mark F. Turner
Published: June 27, 2017
Read Wake Up Call CD/LP/Track Review Wake Up Call
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 27, 2017
Read The Late Trane CD/LP/Track Review The Late Trane
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 27, 2017
Read Developing Story CD/LP/Track Review Developing Story
by Edward Blanco
Published: June 26, 2017
Read Inspirations (featuring Matthew Halsall) CD/LP/Track Review Inspirations (featuring Matthew Halsall)
by Phil Barnes
Published: June 26, 2017
Read "Tiresia" CD/LP/Track Review Tiresia
by Mark Corroto
Published: September 11, 2016
Read "My Iris" CD/LP/Track Review My Iris
by Phil Barnes
Published: April 12, 2017
Read "Bright Side" CD/LP/Track Review Bright Side
by David A. Orthmann
Published: October 31, 2016
Read "Festen" CD/LP/Track Review Festen
by John Sharpe
Published: November 12, 2016
Read "Blue Canvas" CD/LP/Track Review Blue Canvas
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: January 4, 2017

Smart Advertising!

Musician? Boost your visibility at All About Jazz and drive traffic to your website with our Premium Profile service.