Good Fellas

Good Fellas 2

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Japanese drummer Yoichi Kobayashi headed an informal group called Good Fellas in the early '90s. Its music is a bit reminiscent of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, with Kobayashi being joined on the band's second recording by several impressive Young Lions, including trumpeter Philip Harper, altoist Vincent Herring, and pianist Stephen Scott. Among the many highlights are a feature for Harper on "It's You or No One," the touching "I'll Miss You," a celebratory "Welcome" (no relation to the John Coltrane song of the same name), and a driving "Quick Way." The nine originals mostly have strong melodies and appealing chord changes, leading to some fine playing by a core sextet with four guests. The overall result is an excellent hard bop set.

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