1944-1948

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
This superb album of early Thelonious Monk opens with a pair of sides he helped to cut in October of 1944 with the Coleman Hawkins Quartet. These were Monk's very first studio recordings. He interacts smoothly with Edward "Bass" Robinson and master percussionist Denzil de Costa Best, backing Hawkins on two numbers attributed to Walter "Foots" Thomas, himself a capable tenor saxophonist. The piano introduction to "Driftin' on a Reed" clearly contains seed syllables, as it were, of Monk's beautiful melody "Ask Me Now." Almost exactly three years transpired before Monk began recording as a leader for the Blue Note label, introducing both a brand-new repertoire and an ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
This superb album of early Thelonious Monk opens with a pair of sides he helped to cut in October of 1944 with the Coleman Hawkins Quartet. These were Monk's very first studio recordings. He interacts smoothly with Edward "Bass" Robinson and master percussionist Denzil de Costa Best, backing Hawkins on two numbers attributed to Walter "Foots" Thomas, himself a capable tenor saxophonist. The piano introduction to "Driftin' on a Reed" clearly contains seed syllables, as it were, of Monk's beautiful melody "Ask Me Now." Almost exactly three years transpired before Monk began recording as a leader for the Blue Note label, introducing both a brand-new repertoire and an imaginative method for interpreting established jazz standards. Joined by bassist Gene Ramey and steam-heat drummer Art Blakey, Monk used a wild bop front line of trumpeter Idrees Sulieman with saxophonists Danny Quebec West and Billy Smith. Nine days passed and the rhythm section returned to the studio to produce six trio recordings of incredible intricacy and depth. A brief figure that emerges at the tail end of Monk's cheerfully eccentric treatment of George and Ira Gershwin's "Nice Work If You Can Get It" prefigures a portion of "In Walked Bud," proving that Monk's music, like all music, is constantly predicting and reviewing itself. The calm lyricism of "April in Paris" suggests elements of both Bud Powell and Duke Ellington. On November 21, 1947, Monk and Blakey, joined by trumpeter George Taitt, alto saxophonist Sahib Shihab, and bassist Bob Paige created four cornerstones of progressive music, the most famous of which -- "'Round Midnight" -- was co-composed by the great Cootie Williams. Four sides recorded in July of 1948 act as an exciting closer for this invigorating disc as Milt Jackson's vibraphone mingles wonderfully with John Simmons, Shadow Wilson, and Thelonious Monk. While Monk's Blue Note recordings are widely available, this compilation is extra special for the inclusion of those two Hawkins sides, which serve as a swinging prologue to 18 consecutive milestones of early modern jazz.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/12/1999
  • Label: JAZZ ARCHIVES
  • UPC: 723723679222
  • Catalog Number: 159502

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Flyin' Hawk (2:50)
  2. 2 Driftin' on a Reed (3:05)
  3. 3 Humph (2:53)
  4. 4 Evonce (3:05)
  5. 5 Suburban Eyes (3:02)
  6. 6 Thelonious (3:01)
  7. 7 Nice Work If You Can Get It (3:02)
  8. 8 Ruby, My Dear (3:09)
  9. 9 Well, You Needn't (3:00)
  10. 10 April in Paris (3:23)
  11. 11 Introspection (3:13)
  12. 12 Off Minor (3:02)
  13. 13 In Walked Bud (2:56)
  14. 14 Monk's Mood (3:08)
  15. 15 Who Knows? (2:42)
  16. 16 'Round Midnight (3:09)
  17. 17 Evidence (2:35)
  18. 18 Misterioso (3:22)
  19. 19 Epistrophy (3:07)
  20. 20 I Mean You (2:46)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Thelonious Monk Primary Artist, Piano
Coleman Hawkins Tenor Saxophone
Gene Ramey Bass
Denzil Best Drums
Art Blakey Drums
John Simmons Bass
Idrees Sulieman Trumpet
Danny Quebec West Alto Saxophone
Shadow Wilson Drums
Bob Paige Bass
George Taitt Trumpet
Technical Credits
Milt Jackson Vibe Master
Ike Quebec Composer
Idrees Sulieman Composer
Jean Buzelin Cover Design
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