Frank Rosolino

Frank Talks

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In retrospect, there does not seem to be enough Frank Rosolino on disc, which is one reason why this one is so valuable. Taken from a club date at the Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen during what was to be the trombonist's last European tour, this full-length document features Rosolino alone with the very compatible Thomas Clausen Trio for five numbers, on which Rosolino stretches at length. (None of the tracks are less than ten minutes.) For those who admire this extraordinary performer, this recording is a lovefest, with the trombonist in great shape, taking long, exciting solos. The sound quality is excellent, too. While all the pieces are ones with which Rosolino was highly familiar, and had played on numerous occasions, these versions are virtually definitive in that he is the only horn, backed only by a fine rhythm trio, and there are no time limitations. Rosolino was an original stylist, something that is fully evident here. He ran up and down the slide with incredible speed, agility, and range in a much rougher way than the popular and influential light doodle-do tonguing approach of, say, Carl Fontana. Rosolino had it all: range, an endless flow of ideas, a machine-gun delivery, and emotional depth. On Thelonious Monk's upbeat "Straight No Chaser," he performs with an amazing facility, while on "How About You?," he showcases his ballad artistry. Rosolino is sometimes remembered for the way in which he died, but this album forces listeners to remember him for the way he performed: joyously and even euphorically.

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