In 1999, I produced several webcasts live from Birdland for the now-defunct Global Music Network, including one night with the original Saxophone Summit, featuring Michael Brecker, Joe Lovano, and David Liebman. I recently posted the group’s 25-minute, uncut version of John Coltrane’s “Locomotion.”
As you can see and hear, they were playing exceptionally well that night, but then again, they played that way every night. It’s not uncommon for such a configuration to result in a saxophone battle, with the participants inspired to try and top their collaborators. Not so here, as the collaboration inspired the three saxmen to ascend, musically. The joy of this collaboration was heartfelt.