Search - John Quintet Handy :: Live at Yoshi's Night Spot

Live at Yoshi's Night Spot
John Quintet Handy
Live at Yoshi's Night Spot
Genres: Jazz, Pop
  •  Track Listings (4) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (3) - Disc #2


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CD Details

All Artists: John Quintet Handy
Title: Live at Yoshi's Night Spot
Members Wishing: 2
Total Copies: 0
Label: Kingston Records
Original Release Date: 1/1/2007
Re-Release Date: 4/24/2007
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Styles: Modern Postbebop, Smooth Jazz, Bebop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 184554261220, 608691940126, 4013284000570

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CD Reviews

Tough to capture magic twice
Tyler Smith | Denver, CO United States | 03/01/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This is a tough set to review. It must be said that its mere release is exciting. Handy is badly underrecorded, he's terrific live, he's captured at a premier jazz spot, and -- this is the most significant point -- the recording reunites the band he assembled to play at the 1965 Monterey Jazz Festival, where he and his mates put on one of the great shows in jazz history. Those who have not heard it are directed immediately to "Live at the Monterey Jazz Festival." This 2-CD set even reprises "Spanish Lady" and "If Only We Knew," the two songs captured from the 1965 performance. We get, 30 years later, the same endlessly flowing and technically flawless alto playing from Handy, bolstered by Michael White's heavy, rhythmic attack on violin and Jerry Hahn's angular and inventive guitar lines. In fact, there are two versions of "Spanish Lady," one of the most intoxicating and freeing tunes in the modern jazz repertoire.We also get Handy's take on the saxophone standard "Body and Soul." On this and several other tunes in the set we are treated to his solo flights, which are pretty much unparalleled in the business, for my money. Two key tunes from his great second Columbia LP of the '60s also get treatments: "Blues for a High-Strung Guitar" and "Dancy Dancy." Add the hugely underrated basist Kon Thompson and drummer Terry Clarke to the mix and you have one fabulous band -- and one that still possesses an incredible amount of musical rapport.The only problem, for me anyway, is that the performance overall feels too much like a retrospective on Handy's career. The live performance at Monterey and all of the LPs originally released on Columbia had -- and still have -- an absolutely fresh feeling, a sound that left a unique imprint on jazz. Listening to the band at Monterey and to later ones Handy put together, you never knew what was coming next. He moved effortlessly through free-, funky-, bluesy-, boppish-, rock- and even folk-flavored sections.Listening to this set, I didn't have that same feeling of anticipation. I can appreciate the power of the playing, but I don't get the sense of surprise that characterizes so much of Handy's earlier playing and recordings. I was particularly disappointed by the inclusion of the second version of "Spanish Lady" on the second disc. I expected a brand-new take on the tune, but that didn't happen. The playing was great, but it wasn't much different from the first version.If you buy this CD having never heard Handy before, you'll undoubtedly think, "What is this guy talking about? This band is incredible!" And you'll be right. But for those of us who have heard them before, the CD is proof that catching lightning in a bottle twice is almost impossible to do."