CHARLES TOLLIVER BIG BAND:
Trumpeter/composer/bandleader Charles Tolliver co-founded the Strata-East label with pianist Stanley Cowell, in 1971, but it's been a long time since we heard his underappreciated genius. This CD falls into the "where have you been?" category. It features a big band that includes Cowell, pianist Robert Glasper, saxophonist Billy Harper, bassist Cecil McBee, and drummer Victor Lewis. Save for a Gil Fuller-like rendition of Thelonious Monk's "'Round Midnight," the remaining six tracks are penned by the leader. Picking up from his big band charts from the 70s, this ensemble, driven by Tolliver's bravura Hub-toned trumpet lines, swings and sings with a propulsive, pan-generational sound. "Rejoicin'" is a spirited waltz, contrasted by the evocatively voiced, Trane-style "Mournin' Variations" and the Latin-tinged bopper "Suspicion," with Tolliver's son Ched on guitar. Tolliver may have been out of sight, but he certainly wasn't out of swing. --Eugene Holley, Jr.
The Following Tracks Appear On The Disc...
Hit the Spot - Charles Tolliver
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