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Our Delight (Live)

Jimmy Forrest & Miles Davis

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Album Review

In 1992, Prestige/Fantasy combined both of Miles Davis' Live at the Barrel LPs on a 74-minute CD titled Our Delight. For hardcore collectors, the release of Our Delight was very good news. However, there are various reasons why this CD can hardly be called essential. The performances, which find Davis and tenor saxman Jimmy Forrest joining forces in a St. Louis club called the Barrel, are competent and likable but not mind-blowing. And the sound quality, although listenable, is not great (by early-'50s hi-fi standards). So when you add those things up, there is no way that Our Delight should be recommended to anyone who isn't a serious collector. Nonetheless, these performances are not without historic value. Davis and Forrest (who are joined by a St. Louis rhythm section that consists of pianist Charles Fox, bassist John Mixon, drummer Oscar Oldham, and an unknown percussionist) did not play together very much, and Our Delight gives listeners a rare chance to hear them playing side by side on familiar standards like "All the Things You Are," Tadd Dameron's "Our Delight," and Dizzy Gillespie's "A Night in Tunisia." The CD also contains a dusky performance of the ballad "What's New," although ballads are not a high priority. And the type of funky, groove-oriented soul-jazz and honker music that Forrest was famous for is excluded; the musicians don't perform "Night Train" (the saxman's biggest hit), and they stick to a bop/standards program. Our Delight certainly isn't bad, but it doesn't deserve five-star praise either (unlike much of the bop and cool work that Davis offered in the '50s). Even so, collectors will find Our Delight to be interesting — shortcomings, flaws, and all.

Biography

Born: January 24, 1920 in St. Louis, MO

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s

A fine all-round tenor player, Jimmy Forrest is best-known for recording "Night Train," a song that he "borrowed" from the last part of Duke Ellington's "Happy Go Lucky Local." While in high school in St. Louis, Forrest worked with pianist Eddie Johnson, the legendary Fate Marable, and the Jeter-Pillars Orchestra. In 1938, he went on the road with Don Albert and then was with Jay McShann's Orchestra (1940-1942). In New York, Forrest played with Andy Kirk (1942-1948) and Duke Ellington (1949) before...
Full Bio
Our Delight (Live), Jimmy Forrest
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