Saturday, January 9, 2016

Toshiko Akiyoshi - Her Trio, Her Quartet

Toshiko Akiyoshi was still rather new on the American jazz scene when she recorded Her Trio, Her Quartet for the Storyville label in the mid-'50s. On five of the eight selections, she leads a quartet with alto saxophonist Boots Mussilli, former Dave Brubeck sideman Wyatt Reuther on bass, and drummer Ed Thigpen. Akiyoshi is still heavily influenced by Bud Powell at this point in her career, though she is no mere mimic of the great bop pianist. She navigates J.J. Johnson's challenging "Kelo" with finesse, while offering a fresh treatment of "All the Things You Are" that omits the introductory tag added by Dizzy Gillespie which became mandatory for nearly all bop interpreters of the standard. She gallops through "I Remember April," with Mussilli sounding very modern and not like a typical Charlie Parker clone in that era.
For the trio numbers, she utilizes Oscar Pettiford and Roy Haynes. Oddly enough, her "Pea, Bee and Lee" is based upon the chord changes to "All the Things You Are," while "Thou Swell" is easily the most conservative arrangement of the session. The Japanese CD reissue released by Tokuma in 1997 sounds as if it was dubbed from an LP rather than the original masters, as surface noise is briefly audible in spots. These are strong performances by Toshiko Akiyoshi made long before she earned widespread fame, but even this import CD has lapsed from print, making it a rather difficult release to acquire in any format.
Ken Dryden

Source :

Toshiko Akiyoshi
Her Trio
Her Quartet


1 Kelo (Johnson)  4:20
2 Salute to Shorty (Akiyoshi)  3:06
3 Pea, Bee and Lee (Akiyoshi)  3:15
4 Taking a Chance on Love (LaTouche, Fetter, Duke)  4:34
5 All the Things You Are (Hammerstein, Kern)  4:32
6 No Mon at All (Mann, Evans)  4:52
7 I'll Remember April (Raye, DePaul, Johnston)  5:30
8 Thou Swell (Rodgers, Hart)  4:55


[# 1, 2, 4, 5 & 7] 
Boots Mussulli - as
Toshiko Akiyoshi - p
Wyatt Reuther - b
Edmund Thigpen - dr 
[# 3, 6 & 8] 
Toshiko Akiyoshi - p
Oscar Pettiford - b
Roy Haynes - dr
Recorded in New York ; 1956


danair said...

Thanks very much Mel.

Albertito Jazz said...

Thanks Melanchthon!

headman said...

Wow, this is a rarity...I don't think I've ever seen it before. Needle-drop or not I'm really looking forward to hearing it.

Thank you so much for sharing it, Mel.

neil said...

Got her 1956 trio with Paul Chambers on bass, "George Wein presents Toshiko", so am up for this, mel; many thanks...

TEO said...

Thanks very much Mel!!!
Very interesting and very rare!!!

TEO said...

Thanks very much Mel!!!
Very interesting and very rare!!!

deGallo said...

Thank you.

Jaffa said...

Very nice one, Mel ! Thank you so much.

zero said...

I'm with headman on this. Whether or not this was dubbed from an LP, I'm excited to hear this rarity. Thanks!

lucky5 said...

Much appreciated, Mel!

Prof. Yaffle said...

Looking forward to giving this one a spin. many thanks.

Rodney said...

Thank you.

fcapeau said...

Great session ! many thanks, Mel.

Brush&Stick said...

Thanks very much!

FrankDell said...

Thank you for this fine rarity.

Baron said...

Thanks Mel - especially the quartet sides

Melanchthon said...

musician3 said...

SUPERB........................THANK YOU FOR ALL

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mel, fab music

Pee said...

Wow, awesome. I very much enjoy the Toshiko albums that I have which did not include this one. Thanks so much for sharing this, Mel!

Jazzsoulman said...

Thank You (already grabbed it the last time around)

AmyBRAINS said...

It's a very nice album.
Thanks a lot, Melanchthon.

Kovina Kris said...

Very cool to get this addition to the other Toshiko stuff and it look like a pretty rare one to boot. Thank you very much!