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Reflections: Steve Lacy Plays Thelonious Monk

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Album Review

All of soprano saxophonist Steve Lacy's early recordings are quite fascinating, for during 1957-1964, aspects of his style at times hinted at Dixieland, swing, Monk, and Cecil Taylor, sometimes at the same time. For this CD reissue (a straight reproduction of the original New Jazz LP), Lacy teams up with pianist Mal Waldron, bassist Buell Neidlinger, and drummer Elvin Jones for seven Thelonious Monk compositions. The typical standbys (such as "'Round Midnight," "Straight No Chaser," and "Blue Monk") are avoided in favor of more complex works such as "Four in One," "Bye-Ya," and "Skippy"; the sweet ballad "Ask Me Now" is a highpoint. Lacy always had an affinity for Monk's music and, even nearly 40 years later, this set is a delight.

Customer Reviews

Sam Macy told me to buy this

this cd is fantastic--only Wynton plays Monk has achieved such an amazing representation of Monk's phrasing. On Monk's Dream, monk hardly starts any songs, leaving it to the sax. unselfish and perfect--- five thumbs up, two toes.

Biography

Born: July 23, 1934 in New York, NY

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

One of the great soprano saxophonists of all time (ranking up there with Sidney Bechet and John Coltrane), Steve Lacy's career was fascinating to watch develop. He originally doubled on clarinet and soprano (dropping the former by the mid-'50s), inspired by Bechet, and played Dixieland in New York with Rex Stewart, Cecil Scott, Red Allen, and other older musicians during 1952-1955. He debuted on record in a modernized Dixieland format with Dick Sutton in 1954. However, Lacy soon jumped over several...
Full Bio