Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Ultimate Bop: “Miles Davis/Collectors Items”

By Devon (Doc) Wendell In my late teens, my goal was to find the ultimate bop recordings. I was an obsessive “completist” of the works of Bird, Sonny Rollins, Bud Powell, Monk, Dizzy Gillespie, Fats Navarro, Dexter Gordon and of course Miles Davis. The harder and more complex the music was, the better. There are… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Ultimate Bop: “Miles Davis/Collectors Items”

Doc Wendell’s Prescription for Bebop: “Clifford Brown and Max Roach at Basin Streets” (Emarcy)

 By Devon Wendell Although I despise the whole concept of “desert island discs,” top ten, twenty, or 100 “Greatest” lists and that kind of lazy and pedantic journalism, I do accept the fact that there are certain recordings that I simply cannot live without. The Clifford Brown/Max Roach Quintet is the perfect band of the… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription for Bebop: “Clifford Brown and Max Roach at Basin Streets” (Emarcy)

Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Hard-Bop Trumpet: Donald Byrd’s ”Byrd In Hand” (Blue Note)

By Devon Wendell I’ve had this deep, lifelong obsession with the trumpet. I’ve written about some of the greatest musicians to ever pick up the instrument like Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Fats Navarro, Freddie Hubbard, Kenny Dorham, Art Farmer, Clifford Brown, and Wild Bill Davison, to name a few. I’d trade my right foot and… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Hard-Bop Trumpet: Donald Byrd’s ”Byrd In Hand” (Blue Note)

Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Monk: “Thelonious Monk – Thelonious Himself” (Riverside)

By Devon Wendell Thelonious Monk has been labeled “The High Priest of Bebop.” Yes, Monk’s contributions to the bebop era were essential in the development of the music. But Monk was so much more than that. No one played piano like him or thought the way he did when composing or covering even the most… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Monk: “Thelonious Monk – Thelonious Himself” (Riverside)

Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Bass BeBop: Paul Chambers: “1st Bassman” (Vee Jay Records)

By Devon Wendell Paul Chambers or “Mr. P.C.” was one of the most prolific and inventive bassists to emerge from the hard-bop era. His presence was so strong on classic albums by Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Cannonball Adderley, J.J. Johnson, Sonny Rollins, Art Pepper, Bill Evans, and Thelonious Monk, (to name only a few) that… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Bass BeBop: Paul Chambers: “1st Bassman” (Vee Jay Records)

Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Saxophone Bop: “The Johnny Griffin Sextet” (Riverside)

By Devon Wendell By 1958, Johnny Griffin was known as the fastest tenor saxophonist to emerge from the hard-bop era. Griffin’s dexterity combined with his ability to make you feel every soulful note that he played made him one of the most spectacularly brilliant and original musicians in the world. Griffin had replaced John Coltrane… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Saxophone Bop: “The Johnny Griffin Sextet” (Riverside)

Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Bop: Sonny Rollins’ “Worktime” (Prestige)

By Devon Wendell To many critics and part-time jazz enthusiasts; Saxophone Colossus is considered to be Sonny Rollins’ greatest studio recording. Yes, Colossus brought Rollins much worldwide acclaim, but it also overshadowed one of Rollins’ most masterful recordings: Worktime, recorded a year earlier on December 2, 1955. Saxophone Colossus was much more accessible. Even non-jazz… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Bop: Sonny Rollins’ “Worktime” (Prestige)