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Sonny Rollins: What's New?

Album Notes

Sonny Rollins Quartet: Sonny Rollins (tenor saxophone); Jim Hall (guitar); Bob Cranshaw (acoustic bass); Ben Riley (drums).

Additional personnel: H. Roberts, M. Stewart, C. Spencer, M. Burton, N. Wright, W. Glover (vocals); Candido (congas, bongos); Dennis Charles (congas); Frank Charles (bongos); Willie Rodriguez (shaker).

Producers: George Avakian, Bob Prine.

Reissue producer: John Snyder

Digitally remastered by Jay Newland (March, 1993, BMG Studios, New York). Includes liner notes by Gene Kalbacher.

Tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins returned from a self-imposed two-year sabbatical in 1962 with a fury, recording prolifically and exploring various directions from outside to inside. The five cuts on this LP were originally recorded in New York, with Rollins mixing standards and originals and providing his take on what was then an exploding trend, the bossa nova. Rollins' characteristically huge tone, relentless harmonic and rhythmic inventiveness, and fierce solos were consistently impressive. Not only did he state the melody clearly and superbly, but his ideas and pacing were remarkable; no solo rambled and his phrases were lean, thick and furious. While this wasn't in the class of Rollins' late-'50s epics, it was a well-done date. ~ Ron Wynn


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