Selection: Evening in Casablanca (Gryce)
Lush romantic ballad from the “Alone Together” school of late night listening.
Art Farmer (t) Gigi Gryce (as) Duke Jordan (p) Addison Farmer (b) Philly Joe Jones (d) recorded Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, NJ, October 21, 1955
Britain declares State of Emergency due to National Rail Strike. British Newspapers not printed for one month due to strike. With perfect timing, the first pocket transistor radios available, making it possible to catch up the latest news and cricket score on the move, though not on trains, which didn’t.
Music: Moving forward a decade, the personal development and self-help psycho-babble in the Sixties counselled people to nurture their “inner child” – an appealing idea to one struggling with the transition to adult life. I urge you instead, to unleash your inner grandfather. Somewhere in there, underneath that cool urban hipster exterior, is a friendly old man who has done growing up, is at peace with the world, freed from the urge to change it, instead, enjoying the simple pleasures in what limited time remains, from his armchair, pipe and slippers. Sod the whinny little me me me brat and let loose your inner grandfather. Exchange grown-up pressures for some moments of peaceful contentment.
And this is just the music to unleash grandpa. Gorgeous music, simply about where you place the notes. Farmer’s melodic sense is poignant and affecting, Gigi Gryce is eloquent and tasteful working the changes, a smooth perfect partnership, in their follow-up recording to When Farmer Met Gryce. Duke Pearson adds the romantic colourings, while Art keeps it in the family with brother Addison on bass, all recorded in Rudy’s home studio. You can almost see the curtains. Savour a different time and place, music offering a refuge from the surrounding industrial turmoil, a haven of peace within reach of your armchair.
Vying for the title Worst Cover Ever – “Music for that Wild Party.” – mom ‘n’ dad dancing, bottles of exotic drinks from that early Mediterranean holiday before the era of long-haul. Graphic artist Disley has grafted the legend “Afore ye go” – the slogan of Bells Scotch Whisky …… on to a port decanter. All typically British and hopeless.
Vinyl: UK Esquire 32-037 release of PRLP 7017 Art Farmer Quintet; 164 gm vinyl,
All is not as the Esquire cover suggests: the Prestige cover is an more honourable effort.
Note the 39/7 1/2d price on back cover, due to higher rate of 50% purchase tax applying at this time, as LP’s were rated as “luxury items”, ensuring only the more wealthy could afford them. Good thinking.
Source: London Record store