John David Simon and Friends, with Clark Terry and Etta Jones
Veteran tenorman John David Simon got invaluable bandstand experience in the Illinois Jacquet Big Band and on the Philly jazz scene with B3 burners Don Patterson, Shirley Scott and Charles Earland. You can hear that seasoning in his robust Don Byas-influenced tenor style, alongside longtime friend and mentor Clark Terry and Philly drumming icon Bobby Durham on jaunty swingers like Terry’s “Opus Ocean,” “Snatchin’ It Back” and “Joonji,” the latter featuring a guest appearance by onetime Woody Herman trombonist Eddie Bert. Vocalist Etta Jones lends her silky, soulful pipes to “That Ole Devil Called Love” and “Sometimes I’m Happy,” with Simon playing Houston Person-like husky tones behind her. The 2000 recording closes on an intimate note with Simon’s “Saying Goodbye,” performed as a duet with pianist Mike Longo.