Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Jazz, Pop
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A showcase for the "middleweights"
Stan J. | Boston MA | 01/17/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Although the personnel on the date was the Horace Silver Quintet minus one, with Cedar Walton replacing Horace on piano, it's clear that Mitchell is in charge. He picked the tunes (two pretty standards, and five interesting originals written by jazz musicians) and has more solo space here than on a typical Silver record. He's in excellent, driving form as is tenor player Junior Cook, who shows his Trane side as mentioned in the liner notes. Walton is a less frenetic soloist than Horace, but his subtle comping behind the other solos is a treat. The tunes are outstanding - I'm wondering why I hadn't previously heard of Tom McIntosh, who wrote two of them, including the Trane-ish title cut. None of these five players is particularly flashy (Silver being by far the flashiest player in the HSQ) but rather they are all consistently subtle, lyrical, and swinging, and they play well together."
This album definitely takes the CUP!!!!
JoeyD | los gatos, ca | 03/10/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I couldn't believe just how great this recording was the first time I heard it. So, ergo, I listened to it again. And again. And again... In fact, it's become slowly but surely one of my favorite jazz albums in my collection. Mitchell and Cook give excellent performances. Mitchell is so soft and silky, so serene on this beautiful album. This is the best I have ever heard him! Also, Junior Cook, yes I know I am being cliche here - COOKS! He sounds like a more lyrical version of John Coltrane. The guy is simply brilliant and compliments Mitchell and the rythm section perfectly. If it's not his best ever performance then it's right up there.
Oh yes, that rythm section of Cedar Walton, Gene Taylor and Roy Brooks give A+ plus performances. It's impossible to really single out one given performance because they sound so damn perfect to me. You can tell that these guys had something to prove when they cut this in 1962. I love them with Horace Silver, but I gotta tell you that this is right up there with just about everything Horace has done with the same exact group (sans Cedar of course). I don't know, maybe it's just me and my ears, but this is one of the most inspired recordings I have ever heard. And that, is the real reason why it is so great in my humble, novice, jazz fanatic opinion.
Five Stars, yes indeed!!"
Michael B. Richman | Portland, Maine USA | 01/17/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"From 1959-1964 Blue Mitchell played trumpet in what was arguably Horace Silver's greatest quintet. (At the very least, it was his best since the original Jazz Messengers.) This was also a very popular group, so they made numerous recordings for Blue Note and toured for months at a time, which left Mitchell and his bandmates little time to pursue potential solo projects. But in August 1962, Blue had some time to record "The Cup Bearers" for the Riverside label, for whom he had made some first rate albums in the late 50s -- "Big Six," "Out Of The Blue," and "Blue Soul" -- all of which I have previously reviewed. "Cup" breaks from the hard-bop tradition of these three titles, and establishes a more modern sound akin to, not surprisingly, Horace Silver's Quintet. This is only natural considering the band on this date is the Silver group -- Blue, Junior Cook on tenor sax, Gene Taylor on bass, and Roy Brooks on drums -- with Cedar Walton replacing Silver on piano. Oddly, the liner notes go to great lengths to distance "Cup Bearers" from Silver's Blue Note output from this period, but nearly four decades later, their similarities is "Cup's" greatest strength in my opinion. This album falls nicely between Silver's "Tokyo Blues" and "Silver's Serenade," and fans of those discs will be enjoy bearing the cup."