He's a drumming deity, a skilled composer, and a savvy arranger. And guess what? Jack DeJohnette also knows how to put a killer band together. For his masterpiece, SPECIAL EDITION, DeJohnette kept his recording unit small and choice: saxophonists Arthur Blythe and David Murray and bassist Peter Warren. DeJohnette gets the most out of this compact group by varying instrumental textures -- Murray doubles on bass clarinet and Warren on cello, while the leader slips piano and melodica into the mix. Exceptional writing and arranging don't hurt either. DeJohnette's fascinating "One for Eric," "Journey to the Twin Planet," and "Zoot Suite" shuffle tempos and moods, while the uncommon arrangements of John Coltrane's "Central Park West" and "India" brilliantly transform these classics. Throughout, Blythe and Murray -- both relative new kids on the block as far as the general public was concerned -- give early displays of their thoughtful and lusty playing. Still, SPECIAL EDITION remains DeJohnette's show -- his conceptual smarts color this jewel's every note.
Performance CreditsJack DeJohnette Primary Artist,Synthesizer,Guitar,Piano,Drums,Keyboards,Mellophonium,Melodica
Arthur Blythe Alto Saxophone
Peter Warren Bass,Cello
David Murray Bass Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Technical CreditsJack DeJohnette Producer
Manfred Eicher Executive Producer
Tony May Engineer
Klaus Detjen Cover Design
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Hear Jack play those drums. This way cool album is bookended by two mindbending avant-garde pieces: the bouncy, moving One For Eric and the twisting Journey To The Twin Planet. WARNING: Do not listen to this if you don't like avantgarde jazz.
To me, this record is a classic. As a group SE picks up where Miles left in the late sixties. The best acoustic band since then. In his compositions, DeJohnette makes clear references to Eric Dolphy - especially "Out to Lunch". And the two horns, Blythe and Murray, are just stunning, incapsulating the whole story in modern jazz in their solos. It has to be one the top ten albums of the last century.