Sunday, October 2, 2011

Paul Desmond - Skylark

Moving over to the CTI label with Creed Taylor, Paul Desmond injects a bit of the 1970s into his sound, obtaining agreeable if not totally simpatico results. Here, the cool altoist is teamed with the progressive-slanted drumming of Jack DeJohnette (who might have been too busy a drummer for his taste), and Bob James' electric and acoustic pianos, with Ron Carter as the bass anchor, Gene Bertoncini on rhythm guitar, and, most interestingly, another individualist, Gabor Szabo, on solo electric guitar. For the first and only time, even taking into account the most inspired moments of Jim Hall, Desmond is not the most interesting soloist on his own record, for it is Szabo who most consistently draws you in with his mesmerizing incantations over vamps from the rhythm section. For those who missed it the first time, Desmond remakes "Take Ten" -- without the Middle Eastern elements -- "Romance de Amor" is eventually dominated by Szabo, and the inclusion of "Was a Sunny Day" proves that Desmond's involvement with the music of Paul Simon in 1970 was not a passing infatuation. Don Sebesky is credited with the "arrangements" but his orchestrating hand is not felt except for a single solo cello (George Ricci) in an adaptation of Purcell ("Music for a While"). It's a cautious change of pace for Desmond, although the fiercer context into which he was placed doesn't really fire his imagination. - by Richard S. Ginell, AMG

Artist: Paul Desmond
Album: Skylark
Year: 1973
Label: CTI (SBM, 1997)
Runtime: 53:49

1.  Take Ten (Paul Desmond) 6:08
2.  Romance de Amor (Traditional) 5:21
3.  Was a Sunny Day (Paul Simon) 4:00
4.  Music for a While (Henry Purcell) 6:45
5.  Skylark (Hoagy Carmichael/Johnny Mercer) 4:52
6.  Indian Summer (Al Dubin/Victor Herbert) 9:40
7.  Music for a While (Henry Purcell) 5:56
8.  Skylark (Hoagy Carmichael/Johnny Mercer) 5:39
9.  Indian Summer (Al Dubin/Victor Herbert) 5:28

Paul Desmond (Alto Saxophone)
Gabor Szabo (Guitar)
Gene Bertoncini (Guitar)
Bob James (Piano and Electric Piano)
Ron Carter (Double Bass)
Jack DeJohnette (Drums)
Ralph McDonald (Percussion)
George Ricci (Cello)


  1. A huge thanks for this one!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. One of my favorite albums on CTI. Any chance of a re-up?

  3. Thanx itr, appreciate the time for re-up!



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