Donald Byrd (tp) Pepper Adams (bs) Duke Pearson (p) Laymon Jackson (b) Philly Joe Jones (d) Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, May 2, 1961
Breaking all my rules again. Its not an original Blue Note pressing, only a West Coast reissue by Liberty/ United Artists, but a great record and will be replaced when I can find an affordable original. Its got a corner cut-out (how cheapskate can you get?) and a few clicks (perfectionists turn away) which I forgive, as its a great track on which Pepper Adams excels and everybody gets into the groove.
This is a terrific album due not least to the contribution of Duke Pearson on piano, whose broad musical canvas and melodic flow fits perfectly against Byrd’s muted trumpet, while Pepper fulfils the role of the absent tenor sax with the upper register of his baritone, and provides contrast to Byrds burnished trumpet lines.
These black/ light blue labels are pretty good sonically and preferrable to the solid blue label United Artists pressings. Like many United Artists reissues this bears the RVG STEREO inscription in the runout, indicating source the original stampers – by now a little worn.
The postman has brought some interesting finds, more of which later.