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His Majesty King Funk / Up With Donald Byrd

Grant Green & Donald Byrd

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Album Review

This single Verve CD reissues the complete contents of two unrelated LPs: Grant Green's His Majesty King Funk (great title) and Up with Donald Byrd. Unfortunately, the music overall is not as rewarding as Green and Byrd's work of the period for Blue Note. Green is OK with a quintet that includes tenor saxophonist Harold Vick and organist Larry Young, but the material (mainly fairly simple funk riffs) is disappointing. Trumpeter Donald Byrd has a potentially strong group with both Jimmy Heath and Stanley Turrentine on tenors along with pianist Herbie Hancock and guitarist Kenny Burrell. However, the three- or four-voice Donald Byrd Singers and the arrangements by Claus Ogerman weigh down the date. Each album watered down its music to an extent in hopes of gaining commercial success, but neither really caught on. The results are interesting but somewhat forgettable.

Customer Reviews

groovy

grant green grooves, as does this album. GET IT!

Classics!

Great playing of these Jazz Classics. Highly worthwhile album to have with quite a list of players on it. Really good stuff here.

Grant Green and his Majesty King Funk and up with Donald Byrd

Absolutely the best Jazz and Funk, God Bless Jazz America

Biography

Born: June 6, 1935 in St. Louis, MO

Genre: Jazz

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

A severely underrated player during his lifetime, Grant Green is one of the great unsung heroes of jazz guitar. He combined an extensive foundation in R&B with a mastery of bebop and simplicity that put expressiveness ahead of technical expertise. Green was a superb blues interpreter, and while his later material was predominantly blues and R&B, he was also a...
Full Bio