Phil Woods

Leonard Feather Presents: 52nd Street with Phil Woods

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This pair of 1957 studio sessions feature two separate groups, with alto saxophonist Phil Woods, pianist George Wallington, and bassist Curly Russell involved in both dates, with most of the music drawn from the works of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie. Trumpeter Idrees Sulieman and drummer Denzil Best join them on the first five selections. Wallington and Woods share the solo spotlight following the scatted group introduction to the pianist's "Lemon Drop"(one of many bop variations of "I Got Rhythm"), while Sulieman also gets a taste. Woods and Sulieman re-create the magic of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie in a snappy take of "Ornithology." Sulieman switches to muted trumpet for an equally enjoyable take of "Anthropology." The quintet changes for the last five tracks, with Thad Jones on trumpet and Art Taylor on drums. It is not clear who contributed the little boy vocal to "Salt Peanuts," but it does not distract from this potent arrangement. Taylor's effective drumming powers the cooking version of "Shaw 'Nuff." The next-to-last track is incorrectly listed as "Billie's Bounce," it is actually "Now's the Time." Nothing groundbreaking takes place during these bop sessions, but the playing is at a consistently high level. This Mode LP has been reissued by V.S.O.P. and the Japanese CD label Tofrec, sometimes under the title Leonard Feather Presents Bop.