This set documents the four-night stand by John Coltrane (sax) and his quintet at the Village Vanguard in New York City, November 1 — 5, 1961. Although these are not newly discovered tapes — as the majority of the selections have turned up on no less than five separate releases — their restoration is significant in assessing motifs in Coltrane's live appearances. Coltrane is accompanied by an all-star ensemble of Eric Dolphy (alto sax/bass clarinet), Garvin Bushell (oboe/contrabassoon), Ahmed Abdul-Malik (oud), McCoy Tyner (piano), Jimmy Garrison (bass), Reggie Workman (bass), Elvin Jones (drums), and Roy Haynes (drums).
John Coltrane returns to the Village Vanguard – but his sound here is a lot more far-reaching than a few years before! The album's a great counterpart to the first Vanguard session – as it takes all of the bold, soaring energy of that date, and balances it with the newly introspective sound of the later Coltrane years – plus some of the freedoms learned from the Love Supreme era. The group here showcases the new territory explored by Coltrane – with Trane himself on tenor, soprano, and a bit of bass clarinet (echoing earlier Dolphy), plus Pharoah Sanders on additional tenor, Alice Coltrane on piano, Jimmy Garrison on bass, and Rasheid Ali on drums. The album only features 2 long tracks – an incredibly soulful version of "Naima", and a very firey version of "My Favorite Things", but one that begins with a haunting bass solo by Garrison!
Recorded over three consecutive nights in December of 2014, Live at the Village Vanguard showcases bassist Christian McBride and his trio in concert at the storied New York venue. A four-time Grammy winner, McBride has been a superstar in the jazz world since debuting as a teenager in the late '80s.
It might be more concise to list what musical genres Marc Ribot hasn't explored than the ones he has, but his approach to the guitar has often reflected the freedom, reinvention, and elastic boundaries of jazz, no matter what the specific context. On this date, recorded in mid-2012 during a handful of shows at one of New York's most iconic venues, Ribot gives himself the luxury of stretching out with a pair of gifted accompanists, bassist Henry Grimes (who worked with Albert Ayler, one of Ribot's key influences) and drummer Chad Taylor (a veteran of the Chicago Underground Duo and Trio), and the result is one of Ribot's most explicitly jazz-focused dates in some time.
Named Jazz Album of the Year by readers of Downbeat Magazine, this double CD features tenor saxophonist Joe Lovano during two appearances at the Village Vanguard recorded ten months apart. Other than the leader, the pair of quartets are completely different and they bring out two sides of Lovano. The earlier session features the leader in a stimulating piano-less quartet, matching wits and creativity with flügelhornist Tom Harrell. While the music is closer to Ornette Coleman than to Gerry Mulligan (to name two famous pianoless groups), Harrell's tone more closely resembles Chuck Mangione than Don Cherry although fortunately he is much more inventive.
Mary Stallings sings 12 excellent and soulful interpretations of songs by such great composers as Cole Porter, Burton Lane, Louis Prima, and Duke Ellington on her second release for the Maxjazz label, Live at the Village Vanguard. Her voice is strong, rich, and full of the introspection that only comes with musical growth. Accompanied by Ron Blake on tenor saxophone, Eric Reed on piano, Vicente Archer on bass, and Carl Allen on drums, Stallings is in touch with her music and in sync with her emotions…