Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Zoot Sims, Gershwin Brothers|
Zoot Sims & The Gershwin Brothers (Hybr)
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
An energetic, exuberant player, tenor saxophonist Zoot Sims is perhaps best known for his membership in the famous "four brothers" sax section of Woody Herman's late-forties Herd, and for his longstanding small-group colla... more »
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An energetic, exuberant player, tenor saxophonist Zoot Sims is perhaps best known for his membership in the famous "four brothers" sax section of Woody Herman's late-forties Herd, and for his longstanding small-group collaborations with fellow tenorman Al Cohn. Yet neither of those pigeonholes do his abilities justice: Sims was a remarkably complete musician, comfortable playing everything from hard bop to swing to Dixieland. And though most clearly drawing his musical delineation from Lester Young, Sims was also capable of a raw, free-swinging style that hinted at the influence of the Texas tenor school and such boppers as Dexter Gordon and Wardell Gray. His dynamism is evident on Zoot Sims and the Gershwin Brothers: the 10-song compilation, recorded in 1975, uses such jazz improvisation stalwarts as "The Man I Love," "I Got Rhythm," "Summertime," and "Embraceable You" to showcase his absolute command of the modern jazz vocabulary. If the record label, Norman Granz's Pablo, was overly reliant on a core group of technically breathtaking but somewhat predictable players, the presence of label stars pianist Oscar Peterson and guitarist Joe Pass as sidemen here proved a blessing. --Fred Goodman
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One of Zoot's best
Bomojaz | South Central PA, USA | 12/17/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
Recorded in 1975 and one of Zoot's finest CDs. His rich, warm tone is at the fore on every tune, whether it's an up-tempo swinger like THE MAN I LOVE or I GOT RHYTHM or a slow ballad like HOW LONG HAS THIS BEEN GOING ON. All of these are familiar songs to Zoot, he's probably played most a thousand times, but he is still able to make them sound fresh. Pianist Oscar Peterson can be overpowering at times, but on this album he restrains himself and plays tasty accompaniment (his solos are excellent, too). Joe Pass is on guitar and solos nicely on what I consider the highlight track, 'S WONDERFUL. George Mraz (b) and Grady Tate (d) offer solid support throughout. This is straight ahead, solid mainstream jazz at its finest. Definitely worth checking out."
An all-star group at the peak of their powers
James A. Vedda | Alexandria, VA USA | 08/09/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Gershwin brothers could have hoped for no greater tribute. Three of the grand masters of jazz - Zoot on tenor, Oscar Peterson on piano, and Joe Pass on guitar - backed up by no less than George Mraz on bass and Grady Tate on drums, gathered in a New York studio in 1975 to offer us 11 tracks of the Gershwins' most memorable tunes. The arrangements sound fresh and the performances are inspired.
There are many great highlights on this album, so I'll just mention a couple of them. The up-tempo swing version of "The Man I Love" is a very different interpretation than the one Zoot recorded (and received high praise for) almost two decades earlier, but it is equally satisfying. There are several great swingers in this session, but if you're looking for seduction songs, grab your significant other and slow-dance to "How Long Has This Been Going On," "I've Got a Crush on You," "Someone to Watch Over Me," "Isn't It a Pity," and best of all, "Embraceable You," in which Zoot is at his most brilliant.
Dozens of Zoot Sims recordings have been released on CD, making it hard to choose among them. If you want your collection to have the best possible representation of this jazz legend in the fewest CDs, I recommend getting this one and "That Old Feeling," which includes two full albums recorded in 1956 (see my review)."
Zoot Sims - The Swinger
Donnie The B | USA | 05/27/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Recorded when Zoot Sims was 49 and obviously at the top of his form and feeling fine. Tasty piano licks and solid accompaniment are provided by Oscar Peterson. Joe Pass provides some nice guitar work, while solid rhythm is laid down by Grady Tate and George Mraz - who worked with Sims some in the 1950's, I believe. He contibutes a rare bowed solo on one of the cuts here.
Sims' inate sense of rhythm is why they called him a swinger. No matter the complexity or length of solo, Zoot would very rarely lose the beat or his "place". He had wonderful ideas of melodic composition in his improvisational work. And while he certainly can be said to have been strongly influenced by Lester Young, who was playing with Count Basie when Sims was growing up, Zoot was not a copy of anyone in his style. Most knowledgeable jazz buffs would count Zoot among the most accomplished tenor saxophonists of all time.
If you like small group jazz, this is some of the best to be had and will be enjoyed by most jazz fans."