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Introducing Johnny Griffin Extra tracks, Original recording remastered

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Audio CD, Extra tracks, Original recording remastered, February 6, 2007
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 6, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Blue Note Records
  • ASIN: B000MG2LR2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #228,679 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Jack Baker on July 18, 2008
Format: Audio CD
This 1956 quartet session includes the stellar Wynton Kelly on piano, Curly Russell on bass, and Max Roach on the drums. This album was tenor sax phenom Johnny Griffin's Blue Note debut and the man called the Little Giant doesn't disappoint.

The album begins with a Griffin original, "Mil Dew", taken at breakneck speed with flurries of twisting notes. I don't think I've ever heard a sax player pack as many notes into a phrase as Griffin, yet he manages to remain melodic without seeming like he's showing off, and each passage seems effortless. My favorite track is "Chicago Calling", another Griffin original that Joe Segal refers to as the title track of the session in his original liner notes. (No mention there or in the liner notes for the RVG edition as to why this was changed.) The piece is loose and bluesy, with a rainfall-like Wynton Kelly solo bookended by pulsing Griffin tenor solos. "These Foolish Things" and "The Boy Next Door" are both solid pieces, followed by another cool Griffin-penned piece, "Nice and Easy". The group then tackles Cole Porter's "It's Alright With Me" and the jazz favorite "Lover Man" which closed out the original album. The RVG edition adds two bonus tracks: "The Way You Look Tonight" and a blistering version of "Cherokee" guaranteed to knock your socks off.

Some of Wynton Kelly's finest work can be heard on this album as he ably keeps pace with Griffin, while Russell and Roach serve to keep the high-flying soloists from veering too far off course. The RVG remaster seems especially excellent for this release, particularly the voicing on Kelly's piano. If Johnny Griffin's tone amd musical ability seem outstanding here in 2008, one can only imagine what someone thought after playing this in 1956. Don't miss this one!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Tony NYC on January 10, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I've had this album on vinyl for many many years, but you MUST get the Ruday Van Gelder edition with the two bounus cuts, "The Way You Look Tonight" and "Cherokee". Griffin is such an unsung hero here in the US. Thank GOD Europe and Asia recognize his greatness. Griffin, like Charlie Rouse are two of the best tenor players that ever lived. In my honest opinion, Rouse was the best tenor player for Thelonious Monk, but Griffin has that SPEED along with creativity but never lets you forget the melody while he is flying through his solo's. So many other "great" tenor players, play solos that have nothing to do with the song. If you listen to Griffin's solo's alone, you know which songs they come from.I hate when a player takes a solo that has nothing to do with the song they are playing on. Griffin is GREAT. This album is GREAAT. The bonus cuts, especially the great Ray Noble song "CHEROKEE" make this reissue a real gem.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By dwood78 on August 4, 2007
Format: Audio CD
While in my late 20-years, I do collect & buy jazz reissue. I'd never heard of this man until I purchase this CD (then I remember that he played with Art Blakey's Jazz Messagers in the late 1950s (the tenor saxophonist on the 1957 jazz Messagers with Monk recording).

This is classic jazz at its finest with 9 songs of originals & standards (the last 2 were not in the 1956 LP release & won't see the light of day until the CD era). Griffin can really play the tenor horn, but because he made an exdous from the US in the early 1960s, he's not as well known here as he should be.

Besides the disc, you get a booklet with the original liner notes, a new eassy from Bob Blumenthal, among with rare photos.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Paul F. Henegan on February 12, 2007
Format: Audio CD
This is a 'must have' recording. The only thing better than this is having heard Mr. Griffin perform live. One might quibble about the sound quality, yet it is all good ;)

Buy it while Mr. Griffin is still alive to enjoy the royalties.

Peace,

paul
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