- It’s Only a Paper Moon
- Out of the Blue
- Almost like being in Love
- In a Sentimental Mood
- No Moe
- The Stopper
- Friday The 13th
- Hackensaw, N J
- With a Song in My Heart
- Newk’s Fadeaway
- Time on My Hands
- This Love of Mine
- Slow Boat to China
- Mambo Bounce
- I Know
Tracks 1 to 4 come from a session recorded on Oct
5th 1951, on which I strongly suggest Miles Davis was the
leader; he certainly plays trumpet on them. This is a nice clean bebop
sextet with Rollins on tenor and Jackie McLean on alto. Art Blakey,
who was such an influence on rhythm sections of the time, drives it
along. Dig turns out to be Sweet Georgia Brown under another name,
but everyone solos well and it is nice to hear Miles playing so well,
before jazz rock and contemporary music claimed him! On all of these
tracks it is obvious that Rollins is going to grow into the great
saxophone colossus he is today, on a couple of them however, he could
have done with a better reed. This is a good little bebop band however
and these tracks are all very enjoyable.
Tracks 5 to 8 have Rollins in the company of what
either was, or became the Modern Jazz Quartet. These tracks are also
excellent and the combination of two players as exciting as Rollins
and Milt Jackson will always produce a good result.
The next 2 tracks have Rollins playing with the Thelonious
Monk Quartet, the first track is a very poor recording, but the second
is much better and worthier of this combination of great men.
Tracks 10 to17 features Rollins with Kenny Drew –
Piano, Percy Heath – Bass and & Art Blakey – Drums. This is another
fine session and Sonny Rollins is great form throughout, always adventurous,
always looking for something new and des tined to become the star
of the jazz world he is today.
The last track is a curious one, Miles Davis is on
piano, but he does not solo and the track ends abruptly, it sounds
like the pianist had just turned up!
Overall this is a good portrait of Sonny Rollins,
but only from 1951 to 1953!