Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

216

Horace Silver: Live at Newport '58

By

Sign in to view read count
From his first recordings with the Jazz Messengers in 1954, Horace Silver's values as pianist, bandleader and composer have been clearly evident: buoyant swing propelled by strong riffs and ensemble drive, along with expressive, edited-in-advance solos. There's a kind of controlled enthusiasm at the center of Silver's music, a slightly formal celebration that owes much to gospel music and the classic Basie band of the '30s.

Live recordings of the Silver Quintet at its peak in the late '50s and early '60s were once rare. Only Doin' the Thing (at the Village Gate) (Blue Note) from 1961 appeared in the band's prime, followed belatedly by the 2002 release of Paris Blues (Pablo). This recently-discovered performance presents the group in a transitional stage. Blue Mitchell hadn't yet joined and in the trumpet chair is Louis Smith, a fine, boppish player, only intermittently active, his moment in the jazz spotlight acknowledged recently with the reissue of his 1958 Blue Note debut, Here Comes Louis Smith. Drummer Louis Hayes combines with Silver to brew a churning, resilient backdrop, the whole circling bassist Gene Taylor's springy beat. Silver is also a forceful soloist, mixing up riffs and vamps and bluesy chords along with deft quotations. Tenor saxophonist Junior Cook plays with the force and focus the music requires and Smith is a deft trumpeter, his quick, thoughtful lines ricocheting off the themes.

Sets at the Newport Jazz Festival would often run a scant 20 minutes, but Silver's quintet gets 44 here, enough to turn in robust versions of four of Silver's taut anthems. The Silver band discipline was such that a live performance's mood didn't veer far from his studio sessions. Rhythms shift confidently from straight-ahead to Latin, with permutations and overlays; the theme of "Senor Blues" slides easily between understatement and brash declamation. This is classic hard bop, from the style's finest hour.

Track Listing: Introduction by Willis Conover; Tippin'; The Outlaw; Senor Blues; Cool Eyes.

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

Title: Live at Newport '58 | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Blue Note Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Related Articles

Read Hastings Jazz Collective/Shadow Dances Album Reviews
Hastings Jazz Collective/Shadow Dances
By Dan McClenaghan
May 21, 2019
Read Crowded Heart Album Reviews
Crowded Heart
By Nicholas F. Mondello
May 21, 2019
Read That's a Computer Album Reviews
That's a Computer
By Jerome Wilson
May 21, 2019
Read All I Do Is Bleed Album Reviews
All I Do Is Bleed
By Paul Naser
May 21, 2019
Read LE10 18-05 Album Reviews
LE10 18-05
By Karl Ackermann
May 20, 2019
Read Remembering Miles Album Reviews
Remembering Miles
By Dan McClenaghan
May 20, 2019
Read Merry Peers Album Reviews
Merry Peers
By Bruce Lindsay
May 20, 2019