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Gerald Cannon: Live At Dizzy's Club: The Music of Elvin & McCoy


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In the heart of the jazz universe, bassist Gerald Cannon pays homage to a couple of legendary figures Elvin Jones and McCoy Tyner with his album Live at Dizzy's Club: The Music of Elvin & McCoy. Not only is the recording an acknowledgement of the many years Cannon spent playing with Elvin and McCoy, but it is also a virtuosic tribute to the drummer and pianist who defined their dynamic interplay as part of the John Coltrane Quartet during the 1960s. Accompanying Cannon is a first-rate coterie of musicians, including drummer Lenny White, pianist Dave Kikoski, trombonist Steve Turre, trumpeter Eddie Henderson, alto saxophonist Sherman Irby and the exceptional tenor saxophonist Joe Lovano..

Of the eight tracks on this release, two are Jones' compositions, five are by Tyner, and one by Cannon. The opener is a Jones number, "EJ's Blues." White's drumming propels this jammy cooker, with Lovano grabbing the first solo offering in his usual inimitable fashion. All the other players take solos, each in their combustible style. Cannon's composition "Three Elders" is up next. It is a seductive number carried along mostly by the muted trumpet of Eddie Henderson, with Cannon's bass providing a solid foundation.

Another Elvin Jones original is "3 Card Molly," one of his signature compositions. White's nuanced and dynamic drumming respects Jones' polyrhythmic genius, while Lovano and Henderson have inquisitive and teasing solos. Kikoski's piano work is replete with internal logic, while Gannon's bass solo demonstrates technical prowess and an understanding of the music's emotional core. The remaining five tracks revolve around McCoy Tyner's compositions. The charts, as constructed, reflect Tyner's exploratory spirit and push the band as they navigate the composition's complexities.

"Blues In The Minor" begins with a dazzling solo from Kikoski as he dashes over the keyboard with a multiplication of piano lines. Lovano locks in his expansive sound with a deft solo while waiting in the wings. This energetic and fiery number captures the inventive spirit of the band, with White's arsenal of drumming accents driving the chart forward. The album closes with "Inception," a Gannon, White & Kikoski feature demonstrating these players' palpable, dynamic, and engaging chemistry.

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