Cannonball Adderley gave up his own band in 1957 when he had the opportunity to become a sideman in Miles Davis' epic ensemble with John Coltrane, eventually resulting in some of the greatest jazz recordings of all time (including Milestones and Kind of Blue). Davis returned the favor in March of 1958, appearing as a sideman on Adderley's all-star quintet date for Blue Note, and the resulting session is indeed Somethin' Else. Both horn players are at their peak of lyrical invention, crafting gorgeous, flowing blues lines on the title tune and "One for Daddy-O," as the rhythm team (Hank Jones, Sam Jones, Art Blakey) creates a taut, focused groove (pianist Hank Jones' sly, intuitive orchestrations are studies of harmonic understatement). Adderley's lush, romantic improvisation on "Dancing in the Dark" is worthy of Charlie Parker or Johnny Hodges, while the band refurbishes "Autumn Leaves" and "Love for Sale" into cliché-free swingers. And "Alison's Uncle" puts a boppish coda on Somethin' Else, one of the most gloriously laid-back blowing sessions of the hard bop era.
Somethin' Else Review
by Rovi Staff