Hubbard - Trumpet
Vincent Herring - Alto sax
Javon Jackson - Tenor sax
Gary Smulyan - Baritone sax
Robin Eubanks - Trombone
Stephen Scott - Piano
Peter Washington - Bass
Carl Allen - Drums
1. One of a Kind
3. Spirit of Trane
4. The Song My Lady Sings
5. Off Minor
6. All Blues
7. D minor Mint
8. One for Cannon
album has been reissued at a significant time, as Freddie Hubbard sadly
died at the end of 2008, aged 70.
came to prominence in the 1960s and played with Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers
and a huge number of other famous jazz musicians, including Max Roach,
Herbie Hancock, Oliver Nelson, John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman - as
well as leading his own groups.
album was recorded for the Music Masters label in 1995 - three years
after Freddie disastrously split his lip, which became infected. This
seriously diminished his previous talent for brilliant playing and its
effects are regrettably noticeable on this album. His trumpet still
speaks out with authority but his solos tend to consist of fragmentary
passages which fail to cohere. although there are flashes of the old
Hubbard in occasional startling runs. And he could still vary his tone
effectively from outspoken to mellow.
album is to a great extent saved by the excellent musicians that Freddie
assembled for the session, which pays tribute to four jazzmen whose
initials and nicknames make up the CD title - Miles (Davis), (Thelonious)
Monk, (John Col)trane and Cannon(ball Adderley). Two tunes are dedicated
to each of these musicians. Freddie actually wrote four of the pieces
himself, starting with One of a Kind, a tribute to Miles Davis,
which Hubbard originally composed for the VSOP album. It opens
the album with a bang. The first solo comes from pianist Stephen Scott,
who provides some fine playing throughout the CD. Hubbard's solo displays
some of his old fire, and Javon Jackson adds some swirling tenor sax.
next two tracks are dedicated to John Coltrane: his famous tune Naima
(where Hubbard proves he could be soulfully mellifluous) and Freddie's
composition Spirit of Trane, which captures Coltrane's wild abandon.
Charles Lloyd's The Song My Lady Sings and Hubbard's One for
Cannon are tributes to Cannonball Adderley, with Vincent Herring
appropriately delivering eloquent alto sax on both numbers.
Minor is by Thelonious Monk, and Freddie Hubbard's rather halting
solo seems well-suited to such a dislocated tune. D minor Mint
is another homage to Monk - written by Hubbard but arranged by David
Weiss, who helped Hubbard make some later recordings like New Colors
and On the Real Side.
Blues is, of course, one of Miles Davis's most famous compositions,
with Hubbard's trumpet quavering but inspiring. Vincent Herring's alto
is much more fluent, gliding across bar-lines, and equally worthwhile
solos are added by Javon Jackson and Stephen Scott.
of the leader's understandable difficulties, this album is not necessarily
the best way to remember Freddie Hubbard, although it may be a salutary
lesson to brass players not to try too hard.