Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series Vol. 40 - Zurich 1959

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This Swiss Radio Days album features two pre-eminent modern jazz exponents - tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins with his Trio (Henry Grimes on bass and Pete La Roca on drums) - and pianist Horace Silver with his Quintet (Blue Mitchell on trumpet, Junior Cook on tenor saxophone, Alvin Taylor on bass and Louis Hayes on drums). These tracks embody the quintessence of small group modern jazz. Theodore Walter "Sonny" Rollins was born in New York City on September 7th, 1930 and came into prominence when he won the Down Beat Critics' Poll as New Star in 1957. He was a
pioneer of the hard bop school of jazz. In the early 1970s he began a regular sequence of
tours in Europe. And, from 1973 onwards, he made frequent visits to Europe, playing at major
festivals and winning widespread acclaim. He also composed some memorable jazz themes,
including "Alfie's Theme" (from the film "Alfie"), "Sonnymoon For Two", "The Cutting Edge"
and a most notable version of the West Indian melody, "St. Thomas".
Horace Ward Martin Tavares Silver was born in Norwalk, Connecticut on September 2nd 1928.
He studied saxophone in high school and played local gigs on saxophone and piano. Stan Getz
heard him on piano in 1950 and hired him to tour with the Getz quintet. In 1951, Silver moved
to New York City and, over the years, he worked and recorded with Art Blakey, Terry Gibbs,
Coleman Hawkins, Oscar Pettiford, Bill Harris, Lester Young, Kenny Dorham, Miles Davis, Milt
Jackson, Art Farmer, Al Cohn, Lee Morgan and Hank Mobley - among many others.
A prolific composer, his originals include "Senor Blues", "Sister Sadie", "Filthy McNasty",
"Song For My Father", "Opus De Funk", "The Preacher" "Doodlin' ", "Home Cookin`" and
"Come On Home".
In 1954, Silver won the Down Beat New Star award in the magazine's Critics' Poll. He died in
September 1979.

Sonny Rollins
Walter Theodore "Sonny" Rollins (born September 7, 1930) is an American jazz tenor
saxophonist, widely recognized as one of the most important and influential jazz musicians. A
number of his compositions, including "St. Thomas", "Oleo", "Doxy", "Pent-Up House", and
"Airegin", have become jazz standards.
Rollins was born in New York City to parents from the United States Virgin Islands. The
youngest of three siblings, he grew up in central Harlem and on Sugar Hill, Harlem, receiving
his first alto saxophone at the age of seven or eight. He attended Edward W. Stitt Junior High
School and graduated from Benjamin Franklin High School in East Harlem. He has said that a
concert by Frank Sinatra at his high school, accompanied by a plea for racial harmony,
changed his life. Rollins started as a pianist, changed to alto saxophone, and finally switched to
tenor in 1946. During his high school years, he played in a band with other future jazz legends
Jackie McLean, Kenny Drew and Art Taylor.

Horace Silver
Horace Ward Martin Tavares Silver (September 2, 1928 - June 18, 2014) was an American jazz
pianist, composer, and arranger, particularly in the hard bop style that he helped pioneer in
the 1950s. After playing tenor saxophone and piano at school in Connecticut, Silver got his
break on piano when his trio was recruited by Stan Getz in 1950. Silver soon moved to New
York City, where he developed a reputation as a composer and for his bluesy playing. Frequent
sideman recordings in the mid-1950s helped further, but it was his work with the Jazz
Messengers, co-led by Art Blakey, that brought both his writing and playing most attention.
Their Horace Silver and the Jazz Messengers album contained Silver's first hit, "The Preacher".
After leaving Blakey in 1956, Silver formed his own quintet, with what became the standard
small group line-up of tenor saxophone, trumpet, piano, bass, and drums. Their public
performances and frequent recordings for Blue Note Records increased Silver's popularity,
even through changes of personnel. His most successful album was Song for My Father, made
with two iterations of the quintet in 1963 and 1964. Several changes occurred in the early
1970s: Silver disbanded his group to spend more time with his wife and to concentrate on
composing, he included lyrics in his recordings, and his interest in spiritualism developed. The
last two of these were often combined, resulting in commercially unsuccessful releases such as
The United States of Mind series. Silver left Blue Note after 28 years, founded his own record
label, and scaled back his touring in the 1980s, relying in part on royalties from his
compositions for income. In 1993, he returned to major record labels, releasing five albums
before gradually withdrawing from public view because of health problems. As a player, Silver
transitioned from bebop to hard bop by stressing melody rather than complex harmony, and
combined clean and often humorous right-hand lines with darker notes and chords in a nearperpetual
left-hand rumble. His compositions similarly emphasized catchy melodies, but often
also contained dissonant harmonies. Many of his varied repertoire of songs became jazz
standards that are still widely played. His considerable legacy encompasses his influence on
other pianists and composers, and the development of young jazz talents who appeared in his
bands over the course of four decades.


TCB The Montreux Jazz Label
Sonny Rollins Trio & Horace Silver Quintet
Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series Vol. 40 - Zurich 1959
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