|For the first time on CD!
This 2 CD set charts the exciting early years of Steve Lacy, playing progressive Dixieland and swinging mainstream jazz on a soprano saxophone with extraordinary freshness, vigor and personal style, when he exploded onto the mid-50's jazz scene. To hear Steve play the multi-toned modern figures and extended line on an instrument usually associated with Sydney Bechet is always a stimulating experience. Of his extraordinary approach to the instrument, Lacy said: "As Charlie Parker increased the technical and expressive possibilities of the alto, Milt Jackson, the vibraphone, Kenny Clarke, the drums and Jimmy Blanton, the bass, one of my personal aims is to do the same for the soprano." On hearing these sessions, we think you'll agree that he managed to do just that.
"During the preparation of this production Steve Lacy sadly passed away in Boston on Friday, June 4, 2004. He maintained a vigorous teaching and performing schedule right up until his last month. He continued to produce works of startling originality, and was considered one of jazz's most prolific recording artists. Fifty years after he made his first recordings, it is obvious now that Steve Lacy took that challenging instrument and made it his own. He'll be missed."
Tracks 1-8: Steve Lacy (ss, cl on 5, 8, 9, 12 & 14), Dick Sutton (tp), Rai Anderson (tb), Don Sitterlex (bs), Mark Trail (b), Bill DeHay (d). New York City, August 8, 1954
Tracks 9-16: John Welch replaces Anderson (tb), Frank Caputo replaces Sitterlex (bs). New York, November 24, 1954.
Tracks 1-6: Steve Lacy (ss), Tom Stewart (th), Dave McKenna (p), Whitey Mitchell (b), Al Levitt (d). Recorded New York City, February 1956
Tracks 7-10: Steve Lacy (ss), Tom Stewart (th), Herbie Mann (fl,ts), Joe Puma (g), Whitey Mitchell (b), Bill Bradley or Al Levitt (#7) (d). Recorded New York City, February 1956.
Tracks 11-15: Steve Lacy (ss), Don Stratton (tp), Tom Stewart (th), Joe Puma (g), Whitey Mitchell (b), Gus Johnson (d). Neal Hefti arranger. Recorded New York City, April 13, 1956.
Tracks 16-20: Same but Osie Johnson (d) replaces Gus Johnson. Recorded New York City, April 23, 1956.
Tracks 21-22: Steve Lacy (ss), Tom Stewart (th), Herbie Mann (fl,ts), Joe Puma (g), Whitey Mitchell (b), Herb Wasserman drums. Recorded New York City, June 13, 1956.