egroj world: Frank Wess • Poor You Little Me
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martes, 1 de mayo de 2018

Frank Wess • Poor You Little Me

Review by Alex Henderson
In the late '50s and early '60s, Frank Wess had two careers. In addition to being a star soloist in Count Basie's big band, the saxman/flutist was recording some worthwhile albums as a leader. Wess had yet to leave the Count's employ when, in 1963, he recorded Yo Ho! Poor You, Little Me, which finds him leading a quintet that boasts Thad Jones on trumpet, Gildo Mahones on piano, Buddy Catlett on bass, and Roy Haynes on drums. For those who were used to hearing Wess in the Basie band, it was a treat to hear him in a more intimate setting. A small group meant more improvising and more stretching out, which is exactly what Wess and his sidemen do on a lyrical performance of "Poor You" as well as up-tempo Wess originals like "Cold Miner" and "Yo-Ho." Wess is heard on both tenor sax and flute, although he doesn't play any alto sax on this set.

A nice one from Frank Wess – especially because he plays a bit of tenor, which we always enjoy! Some tracks feature his usual soul jazz flute stylings, but the tenor tracks are a bit meaner and leaner – with a very nice groove. Thad Jones plays trumpet, and Gildo Mahones (always a favorite!) plays piano. Roy Haynes is on drums, giving the whole thing a nice light lyrical feel. Tracks are long – and titles include "The Lizard", "Yo Ho", "Cold Miner", and "The Long Road".

1. Little Me  [Coleman, Leigh]
2. Cold Miner  [Wess]
3. Poor You  [Harburg, Lane]
4. The Long Road  [Wess]
5. Yo Ho!    [Wess]
6. The Lizard  [Jones]

Thad Jones (tp)
Frank Wess (ts, fl)
Gildo Mahones (p)
Buddy Catlett (b)
Roy Haynes (d)

Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, January 24, 1963

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