Greetings and I hope your weekending was superb. Monday brings an anniversary show 40 years in the aging, featuring one of the deities of the music of our epoch here.
There isn't much to say about this performance, recorded in Paris 40 years ago tonight, other than it's one of the acknowledged all-time greats accompanied by an absolutely top-drawer supporting cast.
You say the name Dexter Gordon and you think of elegance, tone, swing for decades, and longevity. Surely one of the greatest and most powerful tenor saxophonists ever to bend a reed. Untouchable.
So if I fail to explain who he is in my usual verbose manner, you'll understand. If I have to explain who the titans of American music are, we should just kill ourselves and get it over with because we're culturally as illiterate as we often seem.
As for this date, it finds the man in the company of some heavyweight bandmates, especially with drum avatar Kenny Clarke on the scene. Thankfully France Musique rebroadcasts sets like this one fairly frequently, because you'll hear this music on American radio at approximately the same time as the current POTUS exhibits prescience and humility. Which is to say, don't hold your breath.
Anyway for today I feel it's best to just cut the chatter and spin the platter, so let's get to posting this delicious 53 minutes of Our Man In Paris, blowing gold on tenor and even a taste of soprano, somewhat unusual for him but something he broke out frequently during this mid-1970s era.
Dexter Gordon Quartet
01 Sticky Wicket
02 A la Modal
03 Body and Soul
Total time: 52:57
Dexter Gordon - tenor & soprano saxophones
Al Haig - piano
Pierre Michelot - bass
Kenny Clarke - drums
digital capture of a January 2017 France Musique rebroadcast
254 MB FLAC/September 2017 archive link
I shall return on Saturday with a very special birthday bash a whole century in the making, but for this week I need you to paste your ears to Dex and his compatriots and let them fill your Monday with Jazz until your cup runneth over. Deal? Enjoy!--J.
2.27.1923 - 4.25.1990