Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
A little known gem from the hardbop era.
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Combine the hardbop perfection of Art Blakey with the busy, high energy intensity of Mingus, mix in some infamous Monk time signatures, and you have the incredible early to mid-sixties work of Booker Ervin. If he had recorded for Blue Note, he would have been as popular as Wayne Shorter or Lee Morgan. Though he lacks Shorter's modal sensibilities and he never falls fully into the heavy rythmic grooves of Morgan, he manages to harvest the territory between hardbop and free jazz (ala Jackie McLean) without ever straying from his swinging, bluesey roots."
Booker's Got Groove
Michael B. Richman | Portland, Maine USA | 03/04/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Recorded during the same session that yielded "The Blues Book" and featuring an early version of a signature song from "The Space Book," Booker Ervin's "Groovin' High" is an essential companion to those who love the aforementioned classic "Books." "Groovin' High" was recorded on June 30, 1964 with Carmell Jones (trumpet), Jaki Byard (piano 1, 3 & 4), Gildo Mahones (piano 2), Richard Davis (bass) and Alan Dawson (drums) ably supporting Ervin. The opening cut, "The Second #2," was actually the first recording of "Number Two," the amazing leadoff track from the magnificent "Space Book" album, and it is taken at an even brisker pace here. Dizzy Gillespie's "Groovin' High" is next and Gildo Mahones brings a strange Monk-like twist to the piece. The Ervin original "Bass-IX" is third and is a warped sort of blues, similar in feel to the tunes on "The Blues Book." Last is a very brief (under three minutes) version of the standard "Stella By Starlight" that wraps things up. "Groovin' High" is quite short and I wonder why OJC couldn't have added the last track from "The Trance" (and skipped that release altogether -- see my review of "The Trance") to this session to fill up the space. But as is, this is a great disc to fill in the gaps in your Booker Ervin collection."