Mac Gollehon

Smokin' Section

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Part of a series of recordings cut live at New York's Half Note, this date features trumpeter Mac Gollehon leading a group also including baritonist Ronnie Cuber, pianist John Hicks, bassist Ron McClure, drummer Victor Jones and, on four of the nine numbers, guitarist Jeff Golub. It is obvious from the start that Gollehon is a high-powered performer who enjoys playing every chorus with every thing he has. Nat Adderley's "Sticks" and Lee Morgan's "Short Count" are given somewhat ferocious treatment with Gollehon screaming/whistling on his horn in spots and Cuber showing just how muscular a player he can be. The trumpeter's minor blues "Boulevard" is a bit calmer, while John Hicks' "Little Princess" (which sounds like it could have come from McCoy Tyner) builds and builds to an explosive level. While Gollehon's "The Shocker" is mentioned in the liner notes as being a "tender duet" played as a flugelhorn-piano duet, Gollehon's fire (which is barely kept beneath the surface) is obvious. Rockish romps through another blues-based tune, Jimi Hendrix's "May this Be Love" and a crazy rendition of "Sunshine of Your Love" conclude the set with the same intense energy with which it began. One does not look for subtlety on this record by Mac Gollehon, who has been involved in extensive studio work but considers Lester Bowie to be a major inspiration. This is not jazz to relax by but music that will excite listeners. Powerful stuff.

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