Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for readers 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!

132

Von Freeman & Ed Petersen: Von & Ed

Derek Taylor By

Sign in to view read count
Down and dirty cutting contests are nothing new in Jazz and their allure seems to transcend any idiomatic boundaries in the music. There’s a long lineage to draw on from the spirited jousts of Lester Young and Herschel Evans in the early incarnations of Basie’s Orchestra to Long Tall Dex and Wardell Gray slugging it out on the seminal bop brawl “The Chase.” Even a glance at the specs on this session should reveal it for what it is- a blowing session built on the prodigious talents of two Chicago-based titans of the tenor saxophone. An examination of the fare for the date gives further conspicuous clues. Five standards, with three clocking in at over fifteen minutes- a strong indication that these guys came to blow the roof off the rafters! Mirroring the succinct title of the disc Freeman and Peterson dispense with pleasantries, throw their cash into the collective pot, take what their dealt and come up with a full house.

The opening up-tempo reading of “Mr. P.C.” gets things off to a galloping start with a unison theme statement before Vonski launches into a lengthy lyrical exposition on the familiar melody. Peterson vaults into the fray next close on his friend’s heels. His more overtly plangent and muscular tone is clearly discernible from Vonski’s bent, high-register athletics. He submits a scorching solo before the rhythm section gets in on the act with woolly turns from Pickens and Shy. “Four” and “Lover Man” are given significantly less space to evolve, but the results on both are just as engaging as those found on the lengthier numbers. “Lover Man” is invested with a modal preface that segues smoothly into the lusty exchanges of its later sections. The disc’s centerpiece, at least in terms of temporal size is the quartet’s mammoth rendition of “A Night In Tunisia” (is there a jazz standard covered more frequently?). The expansive length of the tune precludes some coherence and there are points where the cohesion between front-line and rhythm section falters a bit. But the marvelously inventive solos of both hornmen (Peterson first, followed closely by Vonski) make these minor imbroglios of little concern. A blistering take on “Lover” signals the session’s close with Vonski blowing a ferocious ‘inside/outside’ solo punctuated by upper register wails.

Over the years Vonski has taken a lot of heat for his resolute insistence on sticking to his signature, and some say outrageous, sound on saxophone. In the company of someone like Peterson who is capable of applying a prodding fire under his feet, Vonski resources a level of ingenuity that should silence many of these naysayers, if there are still any out there. Anyone with a sweet tooth for zestfully deployed tenor prowess needs to check this disc out at his or her earliest opportunity. If the material here whets your appetite and leaves you wanting more word on the street is that a date featuring Vonski with Frank Catalano, another solid tenor presence on the Delmark roster, is currently in the works.


Track Listing: Mr. P.C./ Four/ Loverman/ A Night In Tunisia/ Lover.

Personnel: Von Freeman- tenor saxophone; Ed Petersen- tenor saxophone; Willie Pickens- piano; Brian Sandstrom- bass; Robert Shy- drums.

Recorded: July 26 & 27, 1998, Chicago, IL.

Title: Von & Ed | Year Released: 2000 | Record Label: Delmark Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Satoko Fujii Solo CD/LP/Track Review Satoko Fujii Solo
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 17, 2018
Read when the shade is stretched CD/LP/Track Review when the shade is stretched
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 17, 2018
Read The Influencing Machine CD/LP/Track Review The Influencing Machine
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 17, 2018
Read Presence CD/LP/Track Review Presence
by Geannine Reid
Published: January 17, 2018
Read Flaneur CD/LP/Track Review Flaneur
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: January 16, 2018
Read D'Agala CD/LP/Track Review D'Agala
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 16, 2018
Read "Mist. Moss. Home." CD/LP/Track Review Mist. Moss. Home.
by Jim Olin
Published: April 10, 2017
Read "Beloved" CD/LP/Track Review Beloved
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: October 10, 2017
Read "Ugly Beauty" CD/LP/Track Review Ugly Beauty
by Troy Dostert
Published: March 6, 2017
Read "Morphogenesis" CD/LP/Track Review Morphogenesis
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 13, 2017
Read "Landing" CD/LP/Track Review Landing
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 30, 2017
Read "Manhattan EP" CD/LP/Track Review Manhattan EP
by Troy Dostert
Published: March 2, 2017