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Thelonious In Action

Rate It! Avg: 4.5 (27 ratings)

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Thelonious In Action album cover
01
Light Blue
5:14  
02
Coming On The Hudson
5:24  
03
Rhythm-a-ning
9:25  
04
Epistrophy (Theme)
1:06  
05
Blue Monk
8:31  
06
Evidence
8:49  
07
Epistrophy (Theme)
1:07  
08
Unidentified Solo Piano
1:54  
09
Blues Five Spot
9:56  
10
In Walked Bud/Epistrophy (Theme)
10:57  
Album Information
EDITOR'S PICK // LIVE

Total Tracks: 10   Total Length: 62:23

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Original Album

safhandle

Coming on the Hudson and Light Blue were first recorded on this album. The first time that TM has been recorded "live" out the studio.

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2 Thumbs Up for Griffin

ambientscott

Another thumb for Griffin. I think the two saxophonist who had best approaches to Monk's music were Griffin and Rouse. I think they both bested even Coltrane and Rollins in a Monk setting.

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Griffin's Sax

Haines

Johnny Griffin plays sax here, and his performances make or break each number. On the first two tracks, when Monk and Griffin duet, Griffin sounds overwrought and out of sync. However, on track three, "Rhythm-a-ning," Monk steps out altogether for several choruses and lets Griffin wail w/o an anchor. On track three alone, Griffin's playing needs to be heard. The sound quality is quite good and well worth the ticket.

eMusic Features

0

Six Degrees of Thelonious Monk’s Genius of Modern Music, Vol. 2

By Kevin Whitehead, Contributor

It used to be easier to pretend that an album was its own perfectly self-contained artifact. The great records certainly feel that way. But albums are more permeable than solid, their motivations, executions and inspirations informed by, and often stolen from, their peers and forbearers. It all sounds awfully formal, but it's not. It's the very nature of music — of art, even. The Six Degrees features examine the relationships between classic records and five… more »

0

Six Degrees of Thelonious Monk’s Genius of Modern Music, Vol. 2

By Kevin Whitehead, Contributor

It used to be easier to pretend that an album was its own perfectly self-contained artifact. The great records certainly feel that way. But albums are more permeable than solid, their motivations, executions and inspirations informed by, and often stolen from, their peers and forbearers. It all sounds awfully formal, but it's not. It's the very nature of music — of art, even. The Six Degrees features examine the relationships between classic records and five… more »

1

House Party Starting: Playing Herbie Nichols

By Kevin Whitehead, Contributor

Ask a jazz fan about Herbie Nichols, and the reaction is likely to be either, "He's a genius," or "Who?" The pianist and composer is the paradigm of a genius neglected in his own time. Nichols's classic mid-'50s sides for Blue Note were all but forgotten when he passed at 44 in 1963. A.B. Spellman memorialized him with a chapter in 1966's Four Lives in the Be-Bop Business, but he didn't get much respect till… more »

2

The Rise and Fall of Lucky Thompson

By Kevin Whitehead, Contributor

A few years ago, Italian saxophonist Daniele D'Agaro was visiting Chicago, and a critic friend put on a fairly obscure record to stump him. D'Agaro listened for about three seconds, said: "Lucky." Good ears. He knows the distinctive sound of Lucky Thompson after he started hanging out in Paris and playing sumptuous tenor saxophone ballads recalling old idol Don Byas's Parisian sides. On "Solitude" and "We'll Be Together Again," from Lucky in Paris 1959, his tenor's… more »

0

The Not Necessarily Happy Horns of Clark Terry

By Kevin Whitehead, Contributor

Can a musician's reputation be harmed by the persistent paying of a compliment? Clark Terry has a warm, plump, utterly distinctive sound on trumpet and its chubby pal the flugelhorn. He's rhythmically assured at any tempo, and has a deep feeling for the blues. But some writers fixate on how he has "the happiest sound in jazz," as if one trait defines his art. To be fair, it's not a rep he's run away from, having… more »

They Say All Music Guide

Although the contents of the original Thelonious in Action vinyl comes from the August 7, 1958 show, the CD reissue, which was released three decades later, incorporates over 20 minutes of extras from a July 9 gig that had been previously rejected by the artist. While in exceptional form, Monk is far from casting the only or even the brightest light during these unforgettable sides. Joining him on-stage at the legendary Five Spot club are: Johnny Griffin (tenor sax), Ahmed Abdul-Malik (bass), and Roy Haynes. It’s unfortunate that this unit did not remain together for any length of time as they are able to launch Monk’s compositions into some fairly significant places. Johnny Griffin’s aggressive performance style incorporates a lyrical and melodic undertone perfectly complementing Monk’s sporadic inflections. “Coming On the Hudson” features Griffin weaving his magic around the melody while providing a decisive Coltrane-esque counterpoint to which Monk precariously locates his responses. The intensity of “Rhythm-A-Ning” lifts the whole combo after quickly developing the chorus. Griffin builds line upon melodic line, after which Monk responds in kind by adding distinct punctuations of his own. So powerful is Griffin’s onslaught, Monk can be heard indicating more than once that Griffin should indulge in another verse. After a ragged but right beginning, “Evidence” becomes transcendental with Griffin, Monk, Malik, and Haynes — who is frenetically brilliant throughout — diving into solos which envelop the melody and ultimately expand the unique patterns and motivations. The CD reissue contains a supplementary (if not definitive) take of “In Walked Bud” from an earlier live recording session that is available in its entirety on the Complete Riverside Recordings box set. – Lindsay Planer

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