Friday, September 15, 2017

Clark Terry & Thelonious Monk

Clark Terry got on Thelonious Monk's radar somewhere back in 1956. In December of that year, after a falling out with the alto player Ernie Henry, Monk hired Terry to replace Henry on the version of "Bemsha Swing" found on the masterwork Brilliant Corners. From there, Monk and Terry occasionally worked together, but this was the one full record that they made. On one hand, it seems to have been put together quickly, using top rate musicians to record some Terry originals (with one track Monk brought to the session) in "blowing session" fashion. Like the best of such sessions, though, there are some special moments, and those with an interest in Monk or Terry (or drummer Philly Joe Jones, making one of his few recordings with Monk) should seek this out.
Monk fans will want this for the rediscovery of the track "Let's Cool One", the sole Monk composition on the album. This fact alone distinguishes this, as after the early fifties, Monk usually only appeared on the side if recording his compositions. That says something about his respect for Terry, and he gifts this record with a great, up to that point somewhat lost song, one that quickly became a standard in his live sets (including great Five Spot reading with Johnny Griffin later that year). Terry fans will note the presence of the title track, which jump starts the album in fine fashion, as well as the curious, foreboding closer "Very Near Blue" and intricate "Moonlight Fiesta" and a few other, less distinct jams. Best of all may be the second track, "One Foot in the Gutter", which features some unusual changes, especially in the bridge near the end. Throughout, the interesting sound of the flugelhorn proves the right horn sound for Monk (who rarely played with trumpets). The deeper tone matches well with his unique comping, and shows that, had Monk liked the flugelhorn quartet as much as the tenor sax one, he could have started something new here. Ultimately, that's not the direction he went in, and this becomes an interesting side road on a long journey, one that is well worth exploring.

Source :

Clark Terry
Thelonious Monk

In Orbit


1 In Orbit (Terry)   4:43
2 One Foot in the Gutter (Terry)  7:22
3 Trust in Me (Ager, Schwartz, Wever)  4:33
4 Let's Cool One (Monk)  4:56
5 Pea-Eye (Terry)  4:31
6 Argentia (Terry)  6:15
7 Moonlight Fiesta (Mills, Tizol)  2:36
8 Buck's Business (Terry)  3:26
9 Very Near Blue (Cassey)  3:04
10 Flugelin' the Blues (Terry)  7:00


Clark Terry - flgh
Thelonious Monk - p
Sam Jones - b
Philly Joe Jones - dr

Recorded in New York City ; May 7 and 12, 1958.


rowgatien said...

Great Stuff THANKS

Anonymous said...

Awesome post. Thanks a million.

jazzcat1228 said...

Thank you, Mel!

deGallo said...

Thank you.

Jazzsoulman said...

Thank You

Manuel Dueñas said...

Great post! But how can I have the password?

aroonie said...

Thanks Mel. Now got the other half. And to the previous on pw above right!

ProfessorCalculus said...

Thanks Mel.

Melanchthon said...

Sant Yago said...

por favor, la contraseña?

Kovina Kris said...

Very happy to upgrade my lossy version of this cool pairing. Thank you Mel!