Recent listening, current

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

76. Nat Adderley Quintet / Blue Autumn (1983)

Recorded live at the Keystone, 1983. The quintet is Nat Adderley (c), Sonny Fortune (as), Larry Miller (p), Walter Booker (b), and Jimmy Cobb (d). There's a lot going on in this tribute, and it's a bit of a mixed bag. While Cannonball isn't in attendance, it's not always obvious with Sonny Fortune blowing alto, especially on the smoldering "For Duke and Cannon." That channel is again fulfilled by the last number, which is Willis' rollicking "Tallahassee Kid." And the band pays further homage with "Book's Bossa" in the middle of the set, a form popularized by Cannonball. Booker, Cobb and Willis are like a band unto themselves, working closely while Nat haunts the wings, shouting his encouragement. He flies in and out where needed in his characteristically bright and broad tone, especially in "Fifth Labor of Hercules," wildly shaping and reshaping themes before putting it all back in the box at the end. These performances don't just showcase the soloists, though. Like any Adderley band, it's a celebration of a band, and in this case, a really good band. 

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