Benny Golson: Horizon Ahead


When Benny Golson leaves this earth, who’s gonna be left from the halcyon days of hard bop? He’s written a ton of jazz standards, carrying with him a living history that needs to be passed on, which he does on this wonderful session with fellow jazz vets Mike LeDonne/p, Buster Williams/b and Carl Allen/dr. He sticks to the tenor here and doesn’t add any new compositions, willing to let his warm and mellow tenor do the talking and interpreting. He caresses  the melodies of Ellington  pieces such as “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore” and a sublime “Mood Indigo” and lets the themes do all of the work as he simply adds texture and depth like a true master confident in his sound. A duet with Williams on “Lulu’s Back in Town” makes you beg it never ends, while the blues come in rich hues on “Night Shade.” A cute dissertation by Golson on the perspective on jazz drumming leads into a spotlight for Allen on the snappy and conversant drum seminar on “Out of the Darkness, and Into the Night.” History, perspective and class are all in abundance here. Can we bottle this?

High Note Records

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