Jun 11, 2011

Mal Waldron - My Dear Family

barabara sounds sez:
The great Mal in somber mood here on this late-period (1993) offering. Apart from the opening track – a fine take on Footprints featuring some nice work by Grover Washington Jr (yes indeed) – just about everything is slowed down and very introspective. Just perfect for an overcast rainy-season afternoon or in the wee hours with a bottle of good whiskey at your elbow...

Allmusic seems to think it's a bit of a downer, but the cd universe reviewer gets it spot on. Make your own mind up, though. Note: this is the JP version that was issued on the Alfa label, hence the different artwork – if "art" is the right word for this handsome scribble with crayons :-)

a review on cd universe sez:
Yet another exemplary set by pianist and composer Mal Waldron. The core trio (Waldron, drummer Pheeroan akLaff, bass player Reggie Workman) is occasionally augmented by trumpet player Eddie Henderson and Grover Washington Jr. The opening number – the only one to include all five players – is a bracing arrangement of Wayne Shorter's Footprints. It's followed by Waldron's own Left Alone, a composition he originally performed with Billie Holiday in the '50s. The set is a judicious mix of Waldron originals and smartly surprising covers (including Jean Pierre by Miles Davis). The production is clear and warm, with a natural ambiance and full sonic range.

allmusic (matt collar) sez:
It is a joy to hear him (Washington) stretch out a bit on this straight-ahead session. His supple tone mixes well with trumpeter Eddie Henderson and both musicians take full harmonic advantage of performing with the moody and expansive Waldron. The only disappointment here is the overall somber quality of the selections. Despite an inspired version of Footprints and an unexpected choice in the funky Jean Pierre, the album lags... Waldron could have earned more kudos with his inclusion of the Japanese traditional song "Sakura Sakura" – an interesting foray into world jazz – if he had only bookended it with some bright up-tempo numbers. Still, this is a superbly performed album by stellar, world-class musicans and should please most hardcore jazz fans.

Mal Waldron: piano; Eddie Henderson: trumpet, flugelhorn; Pheeroan akLaff: drums; also Grover Washington, Jr.: soprano sax

track listing:
Footprints; Left Alone; Sassy; Sakura Sakura; Here's That Rainy Day; Jean-Pierre; Red Shoes;My Dear Family


Anonymous said...
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H.K said...

just what I needed today... thanks mal!

KingCake said...

Lovely - hard to believe how many rare Waldron sessions have shown up in the blogosphere lately

taro nombei said...

@ H.K
you're welcome!

taro nombei said...

@ KingCake
It's great to see this renewed interest in the great — and under-appreciated — Mal Waldron. And a lot of that is thank to all the shares over on your place!
I'm glad to make a small contribution to the cause :-)
Thanks for visiting!

Rob said...

More Mal! Unbelievable. So good to see this come to the light of day. Thank you.

taro nombei said...

@ Rob
You're very welcome!

Bacoso said...

Never enough Mal...Cheers TN!

Eric said...

I'm beginning to think that Waldron recorded as much as Oscar Peterson.....to much more frequently surprising results. Thank you for this offering.

Otis Foster said...

Wonderful - thanks for giving Waldron his due.


Bender said...

Thanks a lot!

Anonymous said...


taro nombei said...

too good not to re-up:


Anonymous said...

thanks and praise!!!