Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

338

Dexter Gordon: The Squirrel

Joel Roberts By

Sign in to view read count
This never-before-released live recording, taped by Danish radio during an engagement by Gordon and his quartet at Copenhagen's Jazzhaus Montmartre in the summer of 1967, captures the great tenor saxophonist at his most boisterous mid-60s peak. To hear Dexter Gordon live in this period is to hear one of the most powerful instrumentalists in jazz at the very top of his form.

On four extended numbers, clocking in at between twelve and twenty minutes, Gordon plays fast, furious and remarkably athletic tenor alongside an outstanding rhythm section of pianist Kenny Drew, Danish bassist Bo Stief, and drummer Art Taylor. The selections include three up-tempo bebop workouts - Tadd Dameron's title cut, Gordon's familiar "Cheese Cake," and Gordon disciple Sonny Rollins' "Sonnymoon for Two" - plus one standard, the ballad "You've Changed." The group's formula here is not complicated: Gordon briefly states each song's theme and then roars off into a six or seven minute solo, before stepping aside for a shorter solo by the always engaging Drew or the incendiary drummer Taylor.

This album is almost as much a showcase for Taylor's powerhouse drumming as it is for Gordon. While Taylor's incredible energy and volume, which recall another great Art of the drums, at times threaten to overwhelm the rest of the rhythm section, Dexter seems enervated by the drummer's aggressiveness and responds with some of his most energetic playing.

An additional highlight of this enormously enjoyable album is the brief spoken introduction Gordon provides for each number. Even speaking just a few words in his resonant baritone, Gordon's musicality and gracefulness shine through.


Title: The Squirrel | Year Released: 1997 | Record Label: Blue Note Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Bad Hombre CD/LP/Track Review Bad Hombre
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Aladdin's Dream CD/LP/Track Review Aladdin's Dream
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Glow of Benares CD/LP/Track Review Glow of Benares
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Magic Circle CD/LP/Track Review Magic Circle
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: December 12, 2017
Read A Gathering Foretold CD/LP/Track Review A Gathering Foretold
by Geannine Reid
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Swinging In The Holidays CD/LP/Track Review Swinging In The Holidays
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 11, 2017
Read "Dirt In The Ground" CD/LP/Track Review Dirt In The Ground
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 13, 2017
Read "Asian Fields Variations" CD/LP/Track Review Asian Fields Variations
by John Kelman
Published: May 21, 2017
Read "Jersey" CD/LP/Track Review Jersey
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 22, 2017
Read "Heptagon" CD/LP/Track Review Heptagon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 23, 2017
Read "Reunion – Live From Cafe Oto" CD/LP/Track Review Reunion – Live From Cafe Oto
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 5, 2017
Read "First Set" CD/LP/Track Review First Set
by Jerome Wilson
Published: February 6, 2017

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!