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Quintessence
     

The Quintessence

5.0 1
by Quincy Jones & His Orchestra
 

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The Quintessence is perhaps the most accurate title ever given to a Quincy Jones & His Orchestra recording. Issued in 1961 for Impulse!, this is the sound of the modern, progressive big band at its pinnacle. Recorded in three sessions, the core of the band consists of Melba Liston,

Overview

The Quintessence is perhaps the most accurate title ever given to a Quincy Jones & His Orchestra recording. Issued in 1961 for Impulse!, this is the sound of the modern, progressive big band at its pinnacle. Recorded in three sessions, the core of the band consists of Melba Liston, Phil Woods, Julius Watkins, and bassist Milt Hinton and pianist Patricia Brown on two sessions, with bassist Buddy Catlett and pianist Bobby Scott on another. The trumpet chairs are held alternately by players like Freddie Hubbard, Clark Terry, Thad Jones, and Snooky Young, to name a few. Oliver Nelson is here, as are Frank Wess and Curtis Fuller. Despite its brevity -- a scant 31 minutes -- The Quintessence is essential to any appreciation of Jones and his artistry. The deep swing and blues in his originals such as the title track, "Robot Portrait," and "For Lena and Lennie" create staggering blends. They are beautifully warm, with edges rounded, but the brass section is still taut and punchy. The reeds cool the heat enough to give the rhythmic dialogue in these tunes its inherent strolling swing. Elsewhere, on Thelonious Monk's "Straight, No Chaser," the time is speeded up to nearly dizzying intensity, and it's played like a big band popping bebop with incredible counterpointed double solos happening between trombone, muted trumpet, and Brown's piano. Though only 2:27 in length, the piece packs an entire harmonic universe into its furious pace. Benny Golson's "Little Karen," is, by contrast, held in character: lithe, limpid, and fluid, it's the ultimate laid-back, midtempo ballad. That said, with the brass charts being notched up just enough, it's got the kind of finger-popping groove that makes it irresistible. The solo spot taken by Nelson is pure knotty bop. What is beautiful about this recording -- and every second of the music -- is that because of its brevity, there isn't a wasted moment. It's all taut, packed with creativity and joy, and without excess or unnecessary decorative arrangement. It doesn't get much better than this.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/09/2007
Label:
Verve
UPC:
0602517448179
catalogNumber:
000978202

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Quincy Jones & His Orchestra   Primary Artist,Track Performer
Curtis Fuller   Trombone
Quincy Jones   Trumpet,Conductor,Vocals,Track Performer
Thad Jones   Trumpet
Melba Liston   Trombone
Oliver Nelson   Reeds,Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Joe Newman   Trumpet
Jerome Richardson   Reeds,Saxophone,Alto Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Julius Watkins   French Horn
Patti Bown   Piano
Billy Gene English   Drums
Rod Levitt   Trombone
Ernie Royal   Trumpet
Stu Martin   Drums
Gloria Agostini   Harp
Ray Alonge   French Horn
Patricia H. Bown   Piano
Patricia Brown   Piano
Billy Byers   Trombone
James Buffington   French Horn
Buddy Catlett   Bass
Earl Chapin   French Horn
Clark Terry   Trumpet
DeRisi   Trumpet
Eric Dixon   Reeds,Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Paul Faulise   Trombone
Freddie Hubbard   Trumpet
Milt Hinton   Bass
Osie Johnson   Drums
Jerry Kail   Trumpet
Thomas Mitchell   Trombone
Clyde Reasinger   Trumpet
Bobby Scott   Piano
Frank Wess   Reeds,Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Phil Woods   Reeds,Saxophone,Alto Saxophone
Snooky Young   Trumpet
Jimmy Johnson   Drums
Tommy Mitchell   Trombone
James "JJ" Johnson   Drums
Harvey E. Phillips   Tuba

Technical Credits

Lena Horne   Liner Notes
Quincy Jones   Arranger,Composer,Producer
Frank Abbey   Engineer
Bobby Arnold   Engineer
Michael Cuscuna   Reissue Producer
Lennie Hayton   Liner Notes
Bob Thiele   Producer
Hollis King   Art Direction
Robert Flynn   Cover Design

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The Quintessence 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Flesh88 More than 1 year ago
'Quintessence' is one of Quincy's fabulous works. Constructed by the 'Master' musician; this work is an arranger's masterpiece. The musicians are artisans of the highest order. I have enjoyed this work of art over and over again. I truly recommend this album to you if you enjoy musicianship on a grand scale. Quincy is a master muscian, composer and arranger. The blending of the brass and the woodwind section along with the band truly 'swinging' with that 'hot' rhythm section is just what the doctor ordered. PURCHASE THIS WORK WITHOUT ANY HESITATION ALONG WITH MANY OF HIS ADDITIONAL ALBUMS.