John Coltrane – Blue Train {Blue Note}[MFSL]

Review by Lindsay Planer (

Although never formally signed, an oral agreement between John Coltrane and Blue Note Records founder Alfred Lion was indeed honored on Blue Train — Coltrane’s only collection of sides as a principal artist for the venerable label. The disc is packed solid with sonic evidence of Coltrane’s innate leadership abilities. He not only addresses the tunes at hand, but also simultaneously reinvents himself as a multifaceted interpreter of both hard bop as well as sensitive balladry — touching upon all forms in between. The personnel on Blue Train is arguably as impressive as what they’re playing. Joining Coltrane (tenor sax) are Lee Morgan (trumpet), Curtis Fuller (trombone), Kenny Drew (piano), Paul Chambers (bass), and Philly Joe Jones (drums). The triple horn arrangements incorporate an additional sonic density that remains a trademark unique to both this band and album. Of particular note is Fuller’s even-toned trombone, which bops throughout the title track as well as the frenetic “Moments Notice.” Other solos include Paul Chambers’ subtly understated riffs on “Blue Train” as well as the high energy and impact from contributions by Lee Morgan and Kenny Drew during “Locomotion.” The track likewise features some brief but vital contributions from Philly Joe Jones — whose efforts throughout the record stand among his personal best. Of the five sides that comprise the original Blue Train, the Jerome Kern/Johnny Mercer ballad “I’m Old Fashioned” is the only standard; in terms of unadulterated sentiment, this version is arguably untouchable. Fuller’s rich tones and Drew’s tastefully executed solos cleanly wrap around Jones’ steadily languid rhythms. Without reservation, Blue Train can easily be considered in and among the most important and influential entries not only of John Coltrane’s career, but of the entire genre of jazz music as well.

01 – Blue Train
02 – Moment’s Notice
03 – Locomotion
04 – I’m Old Fashioned
05 – Lazy Bird

Lee Morgan – trumpet
Curtis Fuller – trombone
John Coltrane – tenor sax
Kenny Drew – piano
Paul Chambers – bass
Philly Joe Jones – drums

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Kenny Drew Trio – Recollections {Timeless}

01 – Golden Earrings
02 – Les Parapluies de Cherbourg
03 – The Gentle Rain
04 – Chateau en Suede
05 – In Your Own Sweet Way
06 – Copenhagen Blues
07 – Summer Knows
08 – A Foggy Day
09 – Suddenly it’s Spring
10 – Old Danish
11 – Recollections

Kenny Drew – piano
Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen – bass
Alvin Queen – drums

Recorded May 14, 15, 1989 at Easy Sound Studio, Copenhagen

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Kenny Dorham – Whistle Stop {Blue Note} “Analogue Productions”

Review by Scott Yanow (

Kenny Dorham was always underrated throughout his career, not only as a trumpeter but as a composer. The CD reissue of Whistle Stop features seven of his compositions, none of which have been picked up by any of the “Young Lions” of the ’90s despite their high quality and many fresh melodies. Dorham teams up with tenor-saxophonist Hank Mobley (who he had recorded with previously along with Art Blakey and Max Roach), pianist Kenny Drew, bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Philly Joe Jones for a set of lively, fresh, and consistently swinging music. This is a generally overlooked near-classic set.

01 – ‘Philly’ Twist
02 – Buffalo
03 – Sunset
04 – Whistle Stop
05 – Sunrise in Mexico
06 – Windmill
07 – Dorham’s Epitaph

Kenny Dorham – trumpet
Hank Mobley – tenor sax
Kenny Drew – piano
Paul Chambers – bass
Philly Joe Jones – drums

Originally released in 1961.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork