This 2000 release titled Thank You, Joe! Our Tribute to Joe Henderson represents Arkadia's fourth in a series of "tributes" to jazz artists who have made a conspicuous difference to this constantly evolving musical art form. On this recording, seasoned veterans such as trumpeter Randy Brecker and pianist Joanne Brackeen coalesce with some of the more prominent stars to emerge out of the '80s and '90s jazz scene for a hearty tribute to the great saxophonist Joe Henderson.
While Joe Henderson rose through the ranks during the '60s he did not enjoy the fame and success that several of his peers were receiving, yet Henderson gradually emerged as a gifted stylist who melded a silken, atmospheric tone with distinctive and altogether enviable chops. Additionally, the saxophonist has garnered a reputation as a shrewd and rather prolific composer. Here, the music of Joe Henderson serves as the framework for this upbeat and smartly produced set featuring some of the artist's more recognizable compositions. With the bossa nova-tinged "Mamacita," pianist Eric Reed, trumpeters Randy Brecker and Terrell Stafford, and tenor saxophonist Javon Jackson pursue poetic lyricism and impassioned soloing while Brecker and Stafford alternate and trade vicious fours on the bop burner, "The Kicker." Overall, the musicians engage Henderson's aura with bold enthusiasm and conviction as they eternalize the saxophonist's significance via strong soloing and finely crafted arrangements that sustain interest throughout.