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...

8

Quartet: Live at the Deer Head Inn

Richard J Salvucci By

Sign in to view read count
A few months ago, I discovered the Deer Head Inn at the Delaware Water Gap.. That led to discovery of Deer Head Records. Which led to the discovery of this recording. Sometimes, ignorance can lead to bliss.

I hadn't heard much of Joe Locke, and aside from Bill Goodwin, the other musicians were unknown to me. I clearly don't get out enough.

This is, no exaggeration, a spectacular recording of a group put together for, I guess, one night. When you listen to the live set, all you can think is, consummate pros, all of them. To record something this simpatico with no rehearsal tells you all you need to know.

My first reaction was "I think this is a great recording," but I'm prone to enthusiasms. I also had trouble counting some of the tunes, which is not unusual. So I asked my friendly local bop drummer, a guy named Willis Salomon, if he could confirm my instinctive reaction, not to mention give me some clue as to meter. He got back to me and said, in not so many words, yeah it's great. Goodwin and Locke are great. They're all great and jazz is in good hands even if no one is paying much attention these days. Willis told me to think six and four, compound meter and straight swing. On a long, long road trip from San Antonio to Abilene, Texas, I did just that. I arrived in Abilene sort of high. These guys will do that to you.

I was unfamiliar with Donald Byrd's Tanya and Bobby Troup's Meaning of the Blues. Both are great tunes, and both feature very hip solos by everyone concerned. Equinox sneaks up on you by starting out with a countermelody as an introduction, but I found myself much absorbed. Yet the highlights of the recording are Midnight Sun and I Love You.

When Locke strikes the tonic for Midnight Sun, you are off on an adventure, polyrythmic, inventive, and very moving. I found myself listening to the interplay of Locke, Goodwin, Jim Ridl and Tony Marino with some awe. The 6/4 and 4/4 stuff really builds to climax after climax, and Ridl's solo made me think of some combination of Lou Levy and Bill Evans, if that's even possible. I kept asking Tony Marino to clue me in: where are you guys? The bassist is going to tell me. And he does. And Goodwin pushes these guys hard, but almost never too obtrusively. I suspect he was too close to a mike, but it's live music and that's the price you pay for excitement.

I Love You, the final track, is taken way up, and Joe Locke virtually explodes into his last chorus after noodling around chromatically for a sort of stop time thing. I was transfixed. No other way to describe it. Is there a more imaginative or inventive player around these days? I want to hear him or her.

Bottom line, this recording is gem and I wish I had been there when these guys made it. Texas is a big state, and they kept me from noticing that from San Antonio to Abilene, there isn't much other than ranches, cotton, and cattle. It's a long ride, but I'd make the drive in the company of this band any time. It's a challenge to the ears, it's joyous in the sense of discovery, and if it doesn't move you, well, that's your problem.

Track Listing: Tanya; The Meaning of the Blues; Equinox; Midnight Sun; I Love You

Personnel: Joe Locke: vibraphone; Bill Goodwin: Drums: Tony Marino: Bass; Jim Ridl, Piano.

Title: Live at the Deer Head Inn | Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: Deer Head Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Shop Music & Tickets

Click any of the store links below and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Live at the Deer Head Inn

Live at the Deer Head...

Deer Head Records
2014

buy
Quartet. Live at the Deer Head Inn

Quartet. Live at the...

Deer Head Records
2014

buy
Quartet

Quartet

Nonesuch Records
2007

buy
Date Detail Price
Jan25Fri
7:00 pm
Quartet
One World Theater
Austin, TX

Related Articles

Read Fred Hersch Trio '97 @ The Village Vanguard CD/LP/Track Review
Fred Hersch Trio '97 @ The Village Vanguard
by Doug Collette
Published: December 13, 2018
Read The Forest from Above CD/LP/Track Review
The Forest from Above
by John Eyles
Published: December 13, 2018
Read Imaginary Band CD/LP/Track Review
Imaginary Band
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 13, 2018
Read Night CD/LP/Track Review
Night
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: December 13, 2018
Read An Ayler Xmas Volume 2 CD/LP/Track Review
An Ayler Xmas Volume 2
by Mark Corroto
Published: December 13, 2018
Read I Always Knew CD/LP/Track Review
I Always Knew
by Paul Rauch
Published: December 12, 2018
Read "The Lead Belly Project" CD/LP/Track Review The Lead Belly Project
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: December 19, 2017
Read "Musical Prophet:The Expanded 1963 New York Sessions" CD/LP/Track Review Musical Prophet:The Expanded 1963 New York Sessions
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: November 23, 2018
Read "Brothers" CD/LP/Track Review Brothers
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 24, 2018
Read "Not Two" CD/LP/Track Review Not Two
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 14, 2018
Read "Flatbed Buggy" CD/LP/Track Review Flatbed Buggy
by Troy Dostert
Published: October 12, 2018
Read "From a Familiar Place" CD/LP/Track Review From a Familiar Place
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: December 23, 2017