Friday, April 16, 2010
Best Live Jazz: Davis & Griffin @ Minton's Playhouse
That's Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis and Johnny Griffin. It's fun to piece together a great live jazz set published on several different albums. Eric Dolphy and Booker Little at the Five Spot comes to mind. On January 6th, 1961, Davis and Griffin blew Minton's Playhouse in New York City out of the water. Most or all of the event is captured on two records: The Tenor Scene, and Live at Minton's.
This is gorgeous hard bop, soulful and ebullient. I confess, I can't tell who is playing which sax. I have loved Johnny Griffin for a long time. All the Lockjaw Davis stuff I have has Griffin on it, well, except for Very Saxy. That is a gem on its own.
There was a lot of Monk exposed to Griffin and Davis' exegesis on that January night. Here is one sample:
Here is the rest of the band: Junior Mance (p) Larry Gales (b) Ben Riley (d). Griffin is an under appreciated deacon in the church of Monk. Give this one a listen, download it from eMusic, and drop me a note.