In classical music, this would be termed a trombone recital. Wycliffe Gordon, arguable the finest trombonist practicing, joins uber-pianist Eric Reed for an assembly of standards, originals and spirituals. The duet is pentultimately the most spare of formats to play within. This spareness is relieved to a degree by Reed's pungently orchestral approach to the piano. I cite his playing on "The Lord's Prayer," "Precious Lord Take My Hand," and "He Looked Beyond My Fault," where he creates a tsunami of sound welling beneath Gordon's low brass. Gordon even sings (even admirably) on his original "Toast My Bread."
What does this bit of stream-of-consciousness mean? Frank Nagel-Heyer affords Gordon and Reed a very broad latitude in what type of recording they put together. It is one of the hallmarks of this label as the same courtesy is offered all leaders. We is a recording full of risk taking: the acceptance of a piano/trombone duet; the heavy reliance on spirituals, the almost campy vocals. It all works, due largely to the supreme musicianship of Gordon and Reed.
Track Listing: The Lord's Prayer; Paris Blues; This Rhythm On My Mind; Embraceable You; Precious Lord Take My Hand; Lament; Toast My Bread; He Looked Beyond My Fault; He Cares. (Total Time: 55:15).
Personnel: Wycliffe Gordon: trombone; Eric Reed: piano.
I love jazz because next to my kids, it's the love of my life.
I was first exposed to jazz by Joe Rico from a tiny station in Niagara Falls in 1954 when I was 13.
The best show I ever attended was Maynard Ferguson who blew the roof off Massey Hall in the late 50s.
My advice to new listeners is to listen to everything you can and then listen again.