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Live At the Montreux Jazz Festival

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Album Review

Phil Woods' recordings with his short-lived European Rhythm Machine are among the most adventurous of his career, though few of them have been available in the CD era. This 1969 concert at the Montreux Jazz Festival features the alto saxophonist with pianist George Gruntz, bassist Henri Texier and drummer Daniel Humair in a wide ranging set. Gruntz's "Capricci Cavaleschi" begins with slash-and-burn solos by both Woods and Gruntz before giving way to Texier's soft solo, which is backed by Humair's hand drumming. Liner note writer Leonard Feather's bluesy tribute to Charlie Parker, "I Remember Bird," is revisited by Woods with gusto. Carla Bley's samba-flavored "Ad Infinitum" is especially appealing, while a blazing (though brief) run through Herbie Hancock's "Riot," features the leader's almost screaming sax (backed initially only by Humair) closes the set with a flourish. Long unavailable, this rewarding album was finally reissued on CD in the summer of 2003.

Customer Reviews

Riot

Great song. Phil Woods wails in this upbeat and fast paced master piece. Some of his best work. I think a player does his best in front of a live audience. Worth every penny.

Biography

Born: November 2, 1931 in Springfield, MA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

One of the true masters of the bop vocabulary, Phil Woods had his own sound beginning in the mid-'50s and stuck to his musical guns throughout a remarkably productive career. There was never a doubt that he was one of the top alto saxophonists in jazz, and he lost neither his enthusiasm nor his creativity through the years. Woods' first alto was left to him by an uncle, and he started playing seriously when he was 12. He gigged and studied locally until 1948, when he moved to New York. Woods studied...
Full Bio
Live At the Montreux Jazz Festival, Phil Woods
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