World Saxophone Quartet: Take the A Train (1986)

 |   |  <1 min read

World Saxophone Quartet: Take the A Train (1986)

One of the most innovative and sometimes daring jazz groups around, World Saxophone Quartet was an implosion of individual talents: Julius Hemphill (alto), Oliver Lake (alto), David Murray (tenor) and Hamiet Bluiett (baritone).

Each of them had come into jazz from an angle of post-bop and often free playing, and their subsequent careers took them in very different directions again, notably Lake who recorded some reggae-influenced, almost jazz-pop albums in the Eighties.

And for their album World Saxophone Plays Duke Ellington, from which this is lifted, they paid a distinctive tribute to one of the jazz greats.

But even in this piece, a miniature masterpiece of layered lines and ensemble playing, you can hear those free elements coming through.

Hard to believe also, but a version of the WSQ (with others sitting in for Hemplill who left due to illness and died in '95) is still sometimes performing today, almost 35 years after they first formed.

And check out who they are playing in the clip below. 

For more oddities, one-offs or songs with an interesting backstory check the massive back-catalogue at From the Vaults.

.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   From the Vaults articles index

The Beatles: Twist and Shout/Mr Moonlight (1962)

The Beatles: Twist and Shout/Mr Moonlight (1962)

In 1977, after years of rumours about it and litigation, the album The Beatles: Live! at the Star Club in Hamburg, Germany; 1962 appeared. For those -- like John Lennon, ironically -- who believed... > Read more

Big Boy Groves: Bucket o Blood (1962)

Big Boy Groves: Bucket o Blood (1962)

Most songs inviting you to club promise a great night with dancing and drinking and fun times to be had. Ervin Groves from San Diego promising nothing of the sort with this song. In fact this... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

ANTONY BEEVOR INTERVIEWED (2003): The Anatomy of War; Berlin 1945, Baghdad 2003

ANTONY BEEVOR INTERVIEWED (2003): The Anatomy of War; Berlin 1945, Baghdad 2003

In the final weeks of the siege, battle-weary troops defending the capital were forced back through the inner suburbs by tanks and artillery. They fought out of fear of capture, and some from... > Read more

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT . . . DEUTSCHE WERTARBEIT: Presenting, the one and only . . .

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT . . . DEUTSCHE WERTARBEIT: Presenting, the one and only . . .

For way more than a decade, the sole album attributed to Deutsche Wertarbeit – which translates from the German as “German Craftsmanship” or “German quality” –... > Read more