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Gongs East
Chico Hamilton
Gongs East
Genres: Jazz, Pop
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1


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CD Details

All Artists: Chico Hamilton
Title: Gongs East
Members Wishing: 6
Total Copies: 0
Label: Discovery / Wea
Release Date: 11/24/1993
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Styles: Cool Jazz, Modern Postbebop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 010467083126

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CD Reviews

Chamber Jazz Sounds
Chris Covais | 03/15/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Chico Hamilton,
Gongs East.

One of Chico's most famous albums using his famous, Quintet.

Basically I like this album. It is very pretty. I do like chamber jazz, although I prefer more agressive and up-beat jazz. I think it is very rare to find a, drummer, of all musicians, and prefer to take the route of a more quite, melodic sound. For a drummer to just give the spotlight to other musicians, not take any solos, and use brushes for the majority of the time, shows a lot about musicianship.

On that note, sometimes, I just get lost in the album. There are a few up-beat swinging tunes, like I Gave My Love A Cherry, but then I get lost in Eric Dolphy's pearcing alto sound, and a cello.

There are better albums out there with Hamilton displaying his chamber techinque. I just think this album has only a couple good tracks, but way too many songs with endless chamber phrases between an alto saxophone and a cello.

I have been dieing to get this album years before I actually did. When I first got it, I shut it down completely. Then, little by little, I began giving it a chance. I have come to like it pretty much. It's just I get tired of the classical influences in the majority of this album. I didn't buy a Bach album. I bought a Chico Hamilton album. And although I appreaciate him for not being the egotistical drummer that so many are and were, I got to have some jazz influences.
Subtle Cool
Richard B. Luhrs | Jackson Heights, NY United States | 06/21/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Former Gerry Mulligan Quartet drummer Chico Hamilton formed his own quintet in the mid-1950s and proceeded to record some of the best and most definitive music to emerge from the West Coast "cool" jazz school. He is probably better remembered today, however, for having introduced multi-reedsman Eric Dolphy to the world in the second incarnation of his band. GONGS EAST! was the first album released by that famed lineup, and it's a fine introduction to Hamilton, Dolphy and the subtler side of fifties jazz generally.
At a time when the blues-based post-bop sound ruled the jazz roost, Hamilton was exploring Asian, chamber and avant-garde classical influences, with the ironic result that the leader/drummer is the least-featured player here. Instead, it is Dolphy - in a far more restrained and accessible form than his explosive later performances would lead one to expect - and cellist Nate Gershman who hold the spotlight for most of GE!, though the whole quintet does an outstanding job of realizing Hamilton's influential and historically quite underappreciated vision. All but one of the tunes are covers (and for some reason the track listing is completely jumbled), but the unique chemistry of this unit remakes everything with its own indelible stamp as slow, quiet grooves part like a soft fog, allowing the soloists to shine before closing again with a tinkle of chimes or the distant thunder of a Chinese gong.
Now out of print, GONGS EAST! is well worth seeking out for anyone interested in fifties jazz and/or the duly celebrated musicians involved. For more from this combo, check out THE ORIGINAL ELLINGTON SUITE and Dolphy's HOT, COOL & LATIN. Those were the days, indeed!"
Beautiful Eric Dolphy / west coast cool
Charles Hobson | 11/22/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This disc was recorded in December 1958 in Hollywood CA with Eric Dolphy on alto and (especially) flute, along with guitar/cello/bass and Chico on drums. The unusual instrumentation works beautifully; at times there is a distinct East Asian sound, at other times it could be a Satie or Debussy memorial concert. Dolphy shines throughout with a clear, contemplative tone and gorgeous and really accessible solos. The whole band works together well, with Nathan Gershman on cello standing out both with his understated solos and his rhythm work. This has been on heavy rotation since I got it."