This second Eric Dolphy release from Impro-Jazz marks an essential addition to the incomparable reedman's discography, as it contains two of the rare occasions in which Dolphy was captured on film. Both of these clips feature Dolphy performing with the Charles Mingus Sextet. The first shows Dolphy in a rehearsal with the band, which explains the inclusion of two different takes of Mingus' "So Long Eric". For the rehearsal's third and final tune, the band begins playing Mingus' composition, "Meditations".
This release presents, for the first time ever on a single set, all of the music recorded by the Eric Dolphy Quartet in Denmark on September 6 & 8, 1961, which originally appeared on three separate LPs: Eric Dolphy in Europe Vols. 1 to 3 (Prestige PR7304, PR7350 and PR7366). Further versions of “Laura” (unaccompanied) and “When Lights Are Low” as well as a short take on Thelonious Monk’s “52nd Street Theme”, recorded a few days earlier in Sweden, have been added here as a bonus.
n the development of jazz's avant-garde movement, the late Eric Dolphy remains a pivotal figure. While he expanded the range and possibilities of the alto saxophone and bass clarinet–his technique drew upon vocalized sounds from both those instruments–Dolphy remained grounded in the bebop movement. Simply put, he clung to the swinging theme-solos-theme structure while his innovative, soaring solos embraced freedom. STOCKHOLM SESSIONS is taken from a Swedish television program on which Dolphy and his quintet performed in 1961, and captures Dolphy at his peak. His solos on alto sax and bass clarinet are unfettered, passionate, and hearty, and his flute is possessed of beautiful classical refinement. The band also features some crackling trumpet from Idrees Sulieman and sharp playing from a pair of Scandinavian pianists.
In 1963 (probably July, though some sources place the dates in May or June), Eric Dolphy recorded some sessions in New York with producer Alan Douglas, the fruits of which were issued on small labels as the LPs Conversations and Iron Man. They've been reissued a number of times on various labels, occasionally compiled together, but never with quite the treatment they deserve (which is perhaps why they're not as celebrated as they should be). In whatever form, though, it's classic, essential Dolphy that stands as some of his finest work past Out to Lunch. ~ AllMusic
This recently-discovered release is certainly the jazz find of the year so far in 2007. In much the way that John Coltrane/Thelonious Monk Live at Carnegie Hall and, to some extent, the live Coltrane document One Up, One Down, Cornell 1964 brings a major piece of jazz history into focus in the best way possible–with an actual recording that documents it.
For years, Last Date was thought of as Eric Dolphy's final recording until Unrealized Tapes (from nine days later) was released; Dolphy passed away only 18 days after performing this music. This LP from the European West Wind label features the great Dolphy on alto and bass clarinet with a sextet that includes trumpeter Donald Byrd, tenor saxophonist Nathan Davis and a French rhythm section performing four of his compositions including the otherwise unknown "Springtime." Eric Dolphy collectors will have to get this gem.