La Monte Young, generally regarded as the father of musical minimalism, is one of America’s most important contemporary composers–and one of the most elusive. Early on Young eschewed the conventional musical institutions of publishers, record labels, and venues, in order to create compositions completely unfettered by commercial concerns. At the same time, however, he exercised profound influence on such varied figures as Terry Riley, Cornelius Cardew, Andy Warhol, Yoko Ono, Velvet Underground, Brian Eno and entire branches of pop music. For half a century he and his partner and collaborator, Marian Zazeela, have worked in near-seclusion in their Tribeca loft, creating works that explore the furthest extremes of conceptual audacity, technical sophistication, acoustical complexity, and overt spirituality.
This is a true classic. Altoist Art Pepper is joined by an 11-piece band playing Marty Paich arrangements of a dozen jazz standards from the bop and cool jazz era. Trumpeter Jack Sheldon has a few solos, but the focus is very much on the altoist who is in peak form for this period. Throughout, Pepper sounds quite inspired by Paich's charts which feature the band as an active part of the music rather than just in the background. Highlights of this highly enjoyable set include "Move," "Four Brothers," "Shaw Nuff," "Anthropology," and "Donna Lee," but there is not a single throwaway track to be heard. Essential music for all serious jazz collections. This edition add two additional versions of "Walkin'" and one of "Donna Lee" to the original program.
Tenor-saxophonist Johnny Griffin is showcased with a ten-piece group on this CD reissue of a Riverside LP which is augmented by a previously unreleased version of "Wade in the Water." The repertoire is a bit unusual with some spirituals (including "Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen" and "Deep River"), a tune apiece by Bobby Timmons ("So Tired") and Junior Mance, and three originals from Norman Simmons who arranged all of the selections. Trumpeter Clark Terry and trombonists Matthew Gee and Julian Priester have some short solos but the emphasis is on the leader who is in typically spirited and passionate form.