Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Senior Cookin - Good Cookin / Somethin's Cookin
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Samuel Chell | Kenosha,, WI United States | 03/09/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Another one of jazz' obscurities, Junior is fast disappearing from memory, apart from the appearance of his name on some popular Horace Silver recordings. It doesn't help matters that his producers got hung up on making each of his recordings some sort of word play on his last name, assuring that the albums would all blur in consumer consciousness. This compilation of Junior's two best albums (imo) amounts to a highly impressive cook book. (I've already played it more than Shorter's "Speak No Evil," "JuJu," and "Footprints Live" put together.)"Good Cookin'" features Junior as a sole horn as well as with three other horns, arranged by Slide Hampton. The first number, Slide's "J.C.", is as impressive a composition as it is a slashing, climactically executed two-chorus solo by Junior. Next, on "I'm Getting Sentimental Over You," Junior's ragged, brambly-bush sound undermines any sentiment while his note choices are frequently inspired and good-humored (suggesting he would have made an interesting complement to Monk).The second session on this collection--"Somethin's Cookin"--is a superior recording in every sense, from Junior's solid and sensitive solo work to the admirable support of the all-star rhythm section to the song selections to the beautifully balanced sound (wish I could say the same for all recordings on the curiously uneven Muse label). He recorded "Fiesta Espanol" on his last, courageous recording session but not to as great an effect as on this earlier date.Junior is the epitome of the "no-nonsense" modernist. His rhythm is symmetrical and his articulations clean, reflective of his early influence, Sonny Stitt. But his note choices are thoughtful, economical, and more reminiscent of Lester than Stitt or Coltrane. His sound is ragged and robust--"masculine" but not to the point of being testosterone-soaked or overcompensating. Unlike lesser players, his tone is his medium, not his message. Admittedly, I haven't heard everything by Junior, but this is the best of what I've come across. His heroic last session--"You Leave Me Breathless"--is also a worthy pick-up but not equal to his playing on this double set.Sadly, very little of Junior's remains in print, including this album. Look for it."