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Essence [Import]

Don Ellis Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: CDN$ 18.32
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5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Innovative Jazz Skillfully Played May 29 2011
By Ron P
Format:Audio CD
This CD by Don Ellis features Paul Bley on piano, Gary Peacock on bass, Nick Martinis on bass and Gene Stone on drums. It's an attempt by an excellent group of musicians to stretch the jazz idiom with one foot firmly planted in the bop and post-bop styles and one foot stepping into experimental jazz. My favourite cuts are an Ellington composition called Johnny Come Lately, a beautiful heartfelt version of Angel Eyes, an incredibly fast version of Lover and a very interesting cut called "Form", where the musicians play a rhythmic motif on cue and then improvise on a tonal centre rather than chord changes. This is a standout album - you'll be really surprised at the quality of the playing and the compositional innovation.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Early Sixties Trumpet Mastery April 5 2010
By Bruce A. Kaplan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Never having been too excited by Don Ellis's best-known recordings with his big band, I had no idea that Don Ellis made music in a quite different vernacular as he did on this early-sixties recording with Paul Bley and Gary Peacock. Originally released in 1962 on Pacific Jazz, this shows an articulate and confident trumpeter mining the post-bop and free jazz field. The pairing with Bley is particularly felicitous.

Included are a very fresh sounding Ellington tune, "Johnny Come Lately," and "Ostinato," which hints at the work he would later do exploring complex time signatures with his big bands of the the later sixties and on. The Ellis originals are all highly exploratory, and takes on Carla Bley compositions ("Donkey") are always welcome. The album ends with a blistering version of the Rodgers and Hart tune, "Lover".

For my taste, this is a more satisfying Don Ellis than the much better known big band recordings present. Thanks to all involved for the reissue.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1962?! Sept. 29 2011
By C. C. Peterson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Paul Bley had recently launched Ornette Coleman et al. into their (relatively) near-earth orbit, and here he and Don Ellis take things considerably further out. Ellis sounds both classically informed and rooted in swinging-jazz history, and you can hear him already playing around with microtonal smears that look forward to the 4-valve quarter-tone trumpet he played a few years later. He plays all kinds of stuff that would sound fresh today if played by somebody like Dave Douglas. Pretty impressive in the context of 1962!
1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ellis at his best! May 12 2009
By Big Bill - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This is fantastic stuff - way into the future at the time. If you are a JaZz lover you can't do without this CD.
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