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To Date, Columbus, Ohio organist Tony Monaco has had three well received releases on Summit records: Burnin’ Grooves; Master Chops T , and Intimately Live at the 5:01. But before all of these, Monaco recorded and a self-produced a collection of Be Bop and Post Bop classics. Mr. Monaco recorded these pieces with three different trios from the Columbus area. Several of the sidemen have shown up again on his Summit releases.
Tony Monaco is a leader in the resurgence of the Hammond B3 organ as a central jazz instrument. With Jimmy Smith and Dr. Lonnie Smith aging, and Brother Jack McDuff, Big John Patton, and Richard "Groove" Holmes recently passing away, Mr. Monaco steps up to carry the torch of organ soul jazz and to become Brahms to Jimmy Smith’s Beethoven. He has an engaging personality that bursts from his playing like a hot projector light through melting video film.
is a swinging collection of tunes with superb accompaniment. Of specific note are the hard-swinging Be Bop anthems "Yardbird Suite," "Cherokee," and "All The Things You Are." Mr. Monaco proves to be just as at home with these complex delights as he is with the greasiest blues. Stevie Wonder’s "Superstition" is given the lounge treatment with the jazz element turned up to eleven. "Samba De Orfeo" is infectious with it Latin character and brilliant bass-pedal use. This earlier Tony Monaco recording is worth seeking out for those who have found his Summit releases irresistible.
Track Listing: Friday Night At The Cadillac Club; Once I Had A Secret Love; Superstitious; Da Blues; Yardbird Suite; Cherokee; Minor Chant; All The Things You Are; Samba De Orfeo; One Step Ahead. (Total Time: 71:24).
Years ago now--in Rhodesia--listening to Voice of America with Willis Conover I heard Bunk Johnson play When The Saints Go Marching In, and Billie Holiday sing Don't Explain. I knew then there was no other life for me than jazz.