Cannonball Adderley

Jump for Joy

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Something of a companion album to the earlier Julian Cannonball Adderley and Strings, Jump for Joy sounds like it could be outtakes from the same sessions in terms of its orchestral-quality arrangements, but this is very much its own album. Jump for Joy is Adderley's reinterpretation, circa 1958, of a Duke Ellington stage musical from 1941. A minor artifact in the Duke's long career, Jump for Joy is nonetheless a marvel, a response to Porgy and Bess that Ellington thought was a more accurate portrayal of African-American life. Adderley and arranger Bill Russo update the tunes into the then-current post-bop jazz vernacular but otherwise leave them alone for the simple reason that they don't need any embellishment. Hearing Adderley's often thrilling, always well-constructed alto sax improvisations over tunes like the standard "I Got It Bad and That Ain't Good" is reason enough for the album to exist, and although Russo's orchestral flourishes occasionally threaten to overwhelm the soloist (especially on the closing "The Tune of the Hickory Stick"), they're always at the very least charming examples of '50s jazz-pop arrangements.

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