Friday, June 05, 2020

Music for Commuting: Some Horace Silver

Horace Silver
It seems like an age since I listened to some Horace Silver. I like revisiting things every so often, and for whatever reason prompted it, the morning ride during the first couple of weeks back commuting has been with the company of Horace Silver.

Since the passing of Lee Konitz, I’ve been listening to a few of my favourite recordings of his, and while these Horace Silver albums make for a contrast, they don’t nearly strike me the way Lee does - but Silver never really hit the spot for me.

My pick of the three is Blowin’ the Blues Away followed by the tracks on Song for My Father featuring Joe Henderson. They also happen to be the recordings I was most familiar with before this revisit. A coincidence? I’m least familiar with Six Pieces of Silver… in fact, I can’t recall listening to this album before. If I had, it left little impression. But this time around I was pretty keen to hear some Hank Mobley (like Silver, the last time I really listened to Mobley was back in the music school days - Roll Call, Soul Station, Workout and some Jazz Messengers stuff). But his playing really didn’t hit the spot. It was his time feel that was bugging me (wasn’t that why Miles ditched him?) and I couldn’t remember that grating on me before. But it was nice to have some trumpeters on that I seldom listen to – Donald Byrd, Blue Mitchell and Carmell Jones.

Maybe it’s time for a revisit of Hank Mobley (it did prompt me to briefly with check in with a couple of his albums one night and they didn't bug me like Six Pieces). Eventually I might get around to a more concentrated effort... But it’s likely to be Joe Henderson before Mobley. I’ve periodically dipped into Henderson’s discography over the years, but a more focused look would be worth it.

So, it made for an interesting 10 mornings or so in the car. It definitely made a change, but I’ve probably had my fill of Silver for now.

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