In honor of PMAC’s Annual Jazz Night concert “Celebrating 80 Years of Blue Note Records,” we are kicking off a blog series that will be highlighting some of our faculty’s favorite Blue Note albums.
“Choosing a ‘favorite’ Blue Note record is a tough call. I chose a Blue Note album that lit a fire in me that’s still burning; “Sonny Rollins, More From the Vanguard”. This was a re-issue of “A Night at the Village Vanguard” – a live album recorded at the famous Village Vanguard in 1957. I got a copy of this record when I was in high school and I wore that sucker out on my cheesy turntable. My favorite track at the time was “Four” which was one of the outtakes from the original session and featured Sonny doing his incredible jazz dance with Wilbur Ware on Bass and Elvin Jones on drums. Sonny sounds like he’s going to POP his saxophone! He’s bouncing in and out and over and around the harmony of “Four” like only he could at this time. Elvin Jones and Wilbur Ware are right there with Sonny at every turn; dodging, driving, hiding, boppin’ and dropping. I played this track over and over trying to figure out what Sonny was doing. His sound. His rhythm. Where he played in the beat. I made a lame attempt at transcribing parts of his solo back in the day too. I should have kept those scribbles but now they’re etched into the mix.” – Matt Langley
Come back next week to see our next blog and featured Blue Note artist!
Check out our Spotify Playlist of Sonny Rollins, Live at the Vanguard!