185

Flip Phillips: Swing Is The Thing

Mark Corroto By

Sign in to view read count
Flip Phillips: Swing Is The Thing Generational differences often dictate jazz listening patterns. A younger jazz fan may prefer James Carter over Benny Carter, Ornette Coleman to George Coleman, and so on. Enthusiasm for today’s jazz ‘stars’ should be encouraged, and if your motivation for picking up a copy of tenor saxophonist Flip Phillips’ Verve outing is to complete your collection of Joe Lovano, James Carter, or Benny Green records, your wishes will be well served. But you’ll also be surprised and charmed by two musicians not regularly heard on major labels: Howard Alden and Flip Phillips. Phillips, now 85 years young, began playing alto saxophone and clarinet in the 1930s. He made his mark with Benny Goodman, Red Norvo, and through a famous stint with Woody Herman. Phillips was also a regular on Norman Granz' Jazz At The Philharmonic series, working beside such saxophone titans as Lester Young, Coleman Hawkins and Charlie Parker. Guitarist Howard Alden, some forty-years Phillips junior, dutifully enhances his return to the national spotlight. Alden, a modern swing stylist, plays with an efficiency and rhythm that is an infectious mixture of pre-bop sound with a very modern logic. His prior recordings on the Concord label are worth searching out.

The disc opens and closes with “The Mark Of Zorro” a three-tenor workout ala JATP. James Carter and Joe Lovano each share one additional track with Phillips. Carter and Phillips share the mild “Where Or When,” with JC sounding like an extra from Robert Altman’s Kansas City. Lovano steps into the up-tempo “Flip The Whip,” with a JATP-friendly noncutting contest take. But the meat and meaning to this disc is the subtle and sometime frail emotive quality to Phillips’ ballad playing. At age 85 he can’t be expected to thrill us with technique, so he romances your sensibilitirs. On “Music, Maestro, Please” everyone sits out except Green, Alden, and Phillips. In this intimate setting, the elder statesman tells us everything you need to know about love, life and jazz.

Track List:The Mark Of Zorro – Intro; I Hadn’t Anyone Till You; Everything I Have Is Yours; Where Or When; In A Mellow Tone; Exactly Like Us; Music, Maestro, Please; Swing Is The Thing; For All We Know; Flip The Whip; Susan’s Dream; This Is All I Ask; Grand Rose; The Mark Of Zorro.


Personnel: Flip Phillips

Title: Swing Is The Thing | Year Released: 2000 | Record Label: Verve Music Group


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Second Act CD/LP/Track Review Second Act
by Mark Sullivan
Published: August 23, 2017
Read Imaga Mondo CD/LP/Track Review Imaga Mondo
by Troy Dostert
Published: August 23, 2017
Read Port Of Call CD/LP/Track Review Port Of Call
by John Sharpe
Published: August 23, 2017
Read May I Introduce To You CD/LP/Track Review May I Introduce To You
by James Nadal
Published: August 23, 2017
Read Honey And Salt CD/LP/Track Review Honey And Salt
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 22, 2017
Read To the Bone CD/LP/Track Review To the Bone
by Geno Thackara
Published: August 22, 2017
Read "Arrhythmia" CD/LP/Track Review Arrhythmia
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 25, 2016
Read "Of Sound Mind" CD/LP/Track Review Of Sound Mind
by Budd Kopman
Published: September 30, 2016
Read "Piano, Violin, Viola, Cello" CD/LP/Track Review Piano, Violin, Viola, Cello
by John Eyles
Published: July 11, 2017
Read "The Beautiful Day" CD/LP/Track Review The Beautiful Day
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 6, 2016
Read "One" CD/LP/Track Review One
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: May 2, 2017
Read "Bring Joy" CD/LP/Track Review Bring Joy
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: January 4, 2017

Sponsor: JANA PROJECT | LEARN MORE  

Support our sponsor

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.