March 4, 2015

Kenny Dorham - Trompeta Toccata (1964)

After stepping out of his comfort zone on the post bop masterpiece Point Of Departure, Kenny Dorham recoiled to a more familiar hard bop foundation, but he shows off what he learned from Andrew Hill and Eric Dolphy. Who can deny his playing (especially those first notes) is on the fringes of some really forward thinking stuff?

Trompeta Toccata features a surprising line up. Everyone expects Joe Henderson as Dorham's saxophonist of choice, but the matchup of conservative Tommy Flanagan and the avant-garde's leading bassist Richard Davis is quite unreal. The bass/piano solo at the end of The Kicker is fascinating as we hear Flanagan thinking off the bop style while Davis is doing his usual crawls and jumps. Albert Heath brings some warm flavors to the session and matches the horns' intensity and Davis's razor sharp playing, he does an exceptional job at holding this lineup together and I always love hearing him jump in after Dorham's Toccata introduction.

Trompeta Toccata combines the post-bop of Our Thing and In 'N Out and the flavorful touch of Page One and Una Mas. Kenny Dorham's Swan Song is fantastic indeed and displays all of the styles he was involved in throughout his career.


Trompeta Toccata