Search - Johnny Griffin :: Congregation

Johnny Griffin
Genre: Jazz
  •  Track Listings (6) - Disc #1

Japanese pressing includes one bonus track. EMI. 2008.


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CD Details

All Artists: Johnny Griffin
Title: Congregation
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Blue Note Records
Release Date: 9/20/1994
Genre: Jazz
Style: Bebop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 077778938323


Album Description
Japanese pressing includes one bonus track. EMI. 2008.

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CD Reviews

A very good company!
Jazzcat | Genoa, Italy Italy | 08/25/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The super famous Congregation with the ultra cool Andy Warhol cover has finally been reissued in the Rudy Van Gelder Blue Note series. In this album the Griff played with some very good pals, Sonny Clark (piano), Paul Chambers (uprightbass that he played even with the arch in his solos), Kenny Dennis (drums). The opener is an original by Johnny, a sort of Doxy, if you know the tune by Sonny Rollins. It is a very nice tune, a funky-blues infected tune, it has a sort of backbeat drum, "hand clapped" arrangement. The second tune Latin Quarter is a contrafact by John Jenkins (a melody based on Tangerine chord progression), is in swing time (it's not a latin), medium tempo. I'm glad there is you is a standard taken not too fast. Main spring is a fine blues, medium tempo too. It's you or noone by Styne-Cahn is the second pure standard and the fastest tune of the album. Johnny is in top form here and Sonny Clark is a good choice for him, because he is very good in comping and he is a boppish kind of sololoist. The last tune I remember you is a bonus track that was not present in the original LP of the fifties is medium tempo. I'm sure you know what kind of player Johnny was at the time. An hard bopper very into Bird's discoveries very technical, with great chops, but very near the blues feeling. This Congregation was the last of three albums Johnny recorded for Blue Note (Introducing and Blowing session were the other two). I have almost all the things Griffin recorded in the fifties and sixties. This one is surely a very consistent and interesting release."
The gunslinger takes the pulpit and despatches fewer souls.
Samuel Chell | Kenosha,, WI United States | 04/05/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Wish I could warm up to this album. The "world's fastest saxophonist" holds back on his technique, the lightning-fast articulations, double-timing, etc., but what that leaves is a pretty basic, limited rhythm-harmonic vocabulary. Eighth-note lines alternating with held top-tones and, of course, that distinctive sound. In fact, the "Little Giant's" tone has a lot in common with his namesake's, the Big Giant Dexter Gordon's--slow, "Leslie-like" vibrato and a way of "sticking" his notes in favor of smooth legato tonguing. But Dexter's behind-the-beat phrasing and logical-emotive story-telling, employing all of the tension-creating notes of a chord's extensions, is not nearly as much in evidence in Griffin's playing.

"The Congregation" is another variation on "Show Me the Way to Go Home" changes (i.e. "The Preacher"). And all of the tunes are practically interchangeable in tempo, expecially with "I'm Glad There Is You" taken at a medium rather than ballad tempo. Helping offset the homogeneity of the tempos is the happy choice of tunes, each a winner in itself. Some of the soloist's most impressive work on the date comes on "Latin Quarter," especially with its double-time chorus and concluding cadenza.

Still, I'd tend to go with one of Griff's dates with Jaws (Live at Minton's) or Ira (Blue Stroll) or the commanding "Return of the Griffin" ahead of this one. The rhythm section is predictably fine (just like the last hundred or so CDs I've purchased with Paul Chambers plus Sonny Clark, Red Garland, Wynton Kelly, Kenny Drew, or whomever). At least "The Congregation" doesn't disappoint like "A Blowin' Session," the three-tenor date that fails to live up to its promise due to an overly "hot" audio mix which, even on the remastered edition, practically makes Griffin, Coltrane and Mobley sound like three undifferentiated buzz saws."
Go, Johnny (go, go, go)
S Harrison | Atlanta, GA | 03/31/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"A really rich album from `66, this is the `99 re-issue from Japanese Blue Note/EMI/Toshiba. It is part of the "mini-album sleeve" series being redone by JBN, and features the original Andy Warhol artwork. classic! with sort of the same vibe as Rollins' Freedom Suite album. The title track is an real anthem. A bit pricey, but hey, it's an import."