Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Walter Davis Jr.|
In Walked Thelonious
Genres: Jazz, Pop
"A legacy....a visitation" - CD Review (*****) Out of print since 2000, this is one of Walter Davis's best CDs. The reissue has been re-mastered using JVC's processing. Many critics agree that this may be Walter Davis's b... more »
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"A legacy....a visitation" - CD Review (*****) Out of print since 2000, this is one of Walter Davis's best CDs. The reissue has been re-mastered using JVC's processing. Many critics agree that this may be Walter Davis's best recording. Is is certainly his most personal, and certainly his best sounding!
Joseph P. Reel | Pacific Grove, California United States | 05/19/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Walter Davis, Jr. labored long and suffered much frustration before completing this tribute to his friend and mentor Thelonious Monk. Whether his reported late night visitation from Monk's ghost provided the final breakthrough is taken literally or as a manifestation of Davis' subconscious, Walter often plays like a man possessed on this solo recording.
Prior to hearing this performance, I had a long-held belief that the only other pianist who did justice to Monk originals was the late Bud Powell (also Davis' early friend and mentor). My bias was changed dramatically after hearing this CD. No self-conscious imitator, Davis is like a heat-seeking missile scoring a direct hit on the inner core of Monk's music. Shorn of unnecessary embellishments, Davis plays all the selections with bare-boned intensity. He attacks the keyboard as if he were commanding it not to strike a single false note.
Davis' penetrating gaze in the included black and white photo borders on scary and appears to be the visual counterpart of 'Round Midnight's final dark chords, which sound like they resonate somewhere deeply in Earth's core.
This CD is often difficult to find at a reasonable price, but is certainly worth looking for."
One of a kind (well, no more than two)
Samuel Chell | Kenosha,, WI United States | 01/21/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's somewhat surprising that Walter Davis. Jr., regarded as closer to the mind and music of Bud Powell than perhaps any other pianist, would select Thelonious for this solo piano project. To say that he's "channeling" Monk might be doing the performer an injustice, overlooking the hours of study and woodshedding required by Walter to make the session as true to the presiding genius as possible.
Going with no fewer than 15 Monk compositions, Walter makes these Monk tunes more accessible to the pianist, the Monk fan, and the patient listener than Monk himself. As a pianist, I go to these performances as a reference point on Monk.
The producer/engineer, Pierre M. Sprey, provides insightful liner notes about Walter himself, a musician so engrossed in his muse that he practically invited untreated diabetes and high blood pressure to take him from us at a relatively early age. One area Sprey (unfortunately most critics as well) neglects to say anything about is the extraordinary compositional genius of Davis Jr. (yet to be equalled, to my ears). Although his initial recording session, "Davis Cup," is disappointing, he would in the 1970s contribute to the Art Blakey book the most original and exciting compositions performed by the Messengers and, for that matter, most other ensembles (counting Golson's tunes, Miles, Weather Report, etc.)."
True to the spirit of Monk
Pauldog | St. Paul, MN USA | 12/19/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"While this album is not a self-conscious imitation of Monk, it does sound uncannily like Monk himself. In the liner notes, Davis says that he was "visited" by the late master Thelonious while working on the album, and I'm inclined to believe it.Davis picked some of the hardest pieces from the Monk songbook, and there are a few I had never heard before.Highly recommended for Monk fans, and anyone who wants to hear some first-rate solo versions of some of Monk's more intricate tunes."