In honor of PMAC’s Annual Jazz Night concert “Celebrating 80 Years of Blue Note Records,” we continue our blog series that highlights some of our faculty’s favorite Blue Note albums.
Russ Grazier is next up to tell us about his favorite Blue Note Artist and Album. There is a theme among the PMAC faculty, that it is incredibly difficult to select just one Blue Note album as a favorite!
“It’s difficult to choose one ‘favorite’ Blue Note album, but the release that has likely had the biggest impact on me as a musician is Cannonball Adderley’s ‘Somethin’ Else‘ from 1959. In many ways this is just as much a Miles Davis album as Adderley’s – Miles picked most of the tunes, solos first several times, and composed the title track. It’s also one of the last times Davis appeared as a sideman on an album, his career having skyrocketed by this point.
The opening track arrangement of Autumn Leaves is considered by many (myself included) as the best all-instrumental recording of the piece – which is saying a lot since it’s one of the most recorded jazz standards of all time. One For Daddy-O was composed by Cannonball’s brother, Nat, and of all the works on the record sounds the least like Miles and the most like the Adderley brothers
Recorded in 1958, this album emerged during a zenith moment in jazz history, arriving on the scene just before Miles’ seminal album “Kind of Blue,” and Brubeck’s “Time Out.” For me it’s all about Cannonball’s alto. I’m always looking for inspiration from other alto players, and Cannonball is the post-Bird artist I connect with the most. His effortless fireworks on the instrument are remarkably balanced with cool lines that are just plain hip. Give it a listen.” – Russ Grazier
Check back Monday to find out what the next Blue Note album is to make our list!