Max Roach

The Max Roach 4 Plays Charlie Parker

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The music here finds drummer Max Roach dropping the piano out of his quintet for the first time and performing with a pianoless quartet. With the departure of Sonny Rollins (who is replaced on three songs apiece by either Hank Mobley or George Coleman), Roach's group (which also featured trumpeter Kenny Dorham and either George Morrow or Nelson Boyd on bass) was temporarily without any major innovators (outside of the leader). So it was perfectly fitting that Roach would look backward and perform six of Charlie Parker's compositions. Highlighted by "Yardbird Suite," "Confirmation," and "Ko Ko," this set is generally fine although the lack of a piano is really felt on some of the material.

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