(May 5, 2013): George Russell Sextet – Ezz-Thetics

From the 1961 album, Ezz-Thetics.  More a composer and theorist than player, George Russell is captured here on piano with some cutting-edge talent.  Russell received a MacArthur “Genius” Award in 1989 for his contributions to music and this classic LP shows why.  The other five players are Don Ellis (trumpet),Dave Baker (trombone), Eric Dolphy (alto sax and bass clarinet) — whose treatment of “’round Midnight” is sparkling — Steve Swallow (bass), and Joe Hunt (drums).  According to the liner notes, this piece is dedicated to “the late, great heavyweight boxing champion of the world, Ezzard Charles”.

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