When Horace Silver disbanded his quintet of six years in 1964, Blue Mitchell, Junior Cook and Gene Taylor decided to stay together and form the nucleus of the Blue Mitchell Quintet. The band took shape that summer with new... more »comers Chick Corea and Al Foster. Mitchell has learned wellfrom his former employer; for this debut album he kept the emphasis on consummahe ultra hip groove of the title tune to the now classic "Footprints," this is among the best. Wayne Shorter: Tenor Saxophone
Herbie Hancock: Piano; Reggie Workman: Bass; Joe Chambers: Drums« less
When Horace Silver disbanded his quintet of six years in 1964, Blue Mitchell, Junior Cook and Gene Taylor decided to stay together and form the nucleus of the Blue Mitchell Quintet. The band took shape that summer with newcomers Chick Corea and Al Foster. Mitchell has learned wellfrom his former employer; for this debut album he kept the emphasis on consummahe ultra hip groove of the title tune to the now classic "Footprints," this is among the best. Wayne Shorter: Tenor Saxophone
Herbie Hancock: Piano; Reggie Workman: Bass; Joe Chambers: Drums
souldrummer | Washington, DC United States | 07/01/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
""The Thing to Do" is a great CD! Not much of Blue Mitchell's stuff has been in print for awhile. I'm glad I hesitated on pricey out of print used copies because this CD is a deserved reissue of a classic. Blue Mitchell gained a following from his stint with the Horace Silver group and "Thing To Do" features a working, gigging band that grew out of Horace Silver's group. The band is tight and swings hard on "Fungii Mama" a catchy Caribbean tune authored by Mitchell on "I Got Rhythm" chord changes. The riffs behind each of the soloists and the smooth transitions between sections let you know that these were musicians who've gelled on the bandstand before. They then shift gears to the pretty ballad "Mona's Mood" by Jimmy Heath. Blue shows some really lyrical playing here. "The Thing to Do" is a hard swinging tune where the Horace Silver influence comes through. "Step Lightly" is a laid back swinging tune by Joe Henderson. The album ends up on a modern note with a version of Chick Corea's "Chick's Tune". All of the tunes are really strong and fans of Horace Silver, jazz trumpet, or Messengers style hard bop would be wise to check this out.The band here is incredible! Mitchell is a confident leader with a bright sound. Listening to Junior Cook away from Horace Silver, I agree with the liner notes that you can hear how his playing is related to Joe Henderson's in tone and the type of rhythmic approaches he uses. This is also a wonderful opportunity to hear Al Foster, one of my favorite drummers in one of his earliest sessions. He's always tasteful but you rarely get to hear him in such sunny hard bop surroundings. Likewise, sessions like these show that Chick Corea can swing hard in straight ahead settings away from fusion or his Akoustic Band. Fans have been waiting for this one for awhile and it delivers on every account!5 stars!"
"The Thing To Do" is Buy This CD!
Michael B. Richman | Portland, Maine USA | 06/30/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Unlike most of the recent batch of RVG releases (6/29/04), Blue Mitchell's classic "The Thing To Do" has been unavailable for years, making this remastered reissue is a most welcome addition to the Blue Note catalog. Those familiar with my reviews know how much I love this trumpeter, whether as a leader on his OJC CDs or as a sideman on Horace Silver's Blue Note titles. However, Mitchell saved his best work for his own Blue Note albums made between 1963-67. Despite this, only two of them (the other being "Down With It" -- see my review) have ever been issued as single discs, though they were collected in a limited edition box set by Mosaic.
Anyway, back to this title specifically which was recorded on July 30, 1964, and featured Blue's Silver bandmates Junior Cook on tenor sax and Gene Taylor on bass, along with drummer Al Foster. The real treat though is the inclusion of a young pianist who would become more famous than them all, Chick Corea, making only his second recorded appearance and his Blue Note debut. Corea even contributed one song, the appropriately titled closing track "Chick's Tune." The other originals include Mitchell's own soulful "Fungi Mama," two delightful songs from longtime colleague Jimmy Heath -- the title track and "Mona's Mood" -- and Joe Henderson's classic "Step Lightly," previously recorded for Mitchell's then unreleased Blue Note debut, and recast here. "The Thing To Do" is one of the truly great Blue Note sessions, undeservedly out-of-print for too many years. Now that it is available once again, "The Thing To Do" is buy this CD!"
George | New York, NY USA | 10/01/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Blue Mitchell and Junior Cook really shine on this date. It is also a great chance to hear early Chick Corea and Al Foster already playing in top form long before they became well known to a much wider audience. And Gene Taylor is clearly one of the great supporting bass players as evidenced on these tracks."
Blue blows (but sure don't suck!)
leopold alabaster | 12/01/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"one of the most lyrical, poetic minds in jazz improvisation, in this reporter's humble opinion-- great, round, chimey, bell-like tone, and serious 12 bar blues chops-- if anybody plays prettier, i don't know who it would be, and i sure wish you would introduce me-- a must-have addition to any serious (or fun) jazz collection-- this one is a no-brainer!"