Keep On Keepin On
Although a featured trumpet soloist with Buddy Rich and Mel Lewis, John Marshall is probably better known these days in Germany, where he has enjoyed a secure job with the Cologne Radio Big Band for the last four years. A highly skilled player with roots in early bebop, Marshall brings to this date a fresh insight on what it means to play modern jazz with a sense of swing. Equally rewarding is Jesse Davis, a young altoist who, by virtue of his ferocity of expression alone, would seem a deserving recipient of the Bird/Sonny/Cannon/Phil torch. For this reason, he is one to be watched closely in the future. The excellence of the rhythm section throughout should also be noted, for in pianist Tardo Hammer, bassist John Goldsby, and drummer Leroy Williams we have a unit that is as responsive to the needs of the horn soloists as it is to its own priorities. Beware the dark rust of the back cover photo art, though, for it obscures most of the faintly printed titles.