Reference: FSRCD 612
David Fathead Newman was best known for his long association with Ray Charles, but there was much more to him, as this succinct and panoramic coverage of his talents as a jazzman reveals. His bright, buoyant tenor, despite the apparent Sonny Rollins and John Coltrane influences, has moments of humor and timbre that suggest Lockjaw Davis.
The first album The Sound of the Wide Open Spaces!, introduces a quintet with Newman and fellow Texan James Clay, both on tenor, swinging hard, generating a tremendous amount of excitement and emotional involvement, with Clay adding his rich, sensitive touch on flute.
The second album, Straight Ahead, features a quartet showcasing Newman not only on tenor, but also on alto and flute, with the alto performances firm and convincing and the flute outings equally persuasive. Pianist Wynton Kellys role is a key one, amounting at times to a virtual duet with Newman. In fact, the accompaniment in both dates is impressive, as would be expected from such major league players as Kelly, bassists Paul Chambers and Sam Jones, and drummers Charlie Persip and Art Taylor, who offer impeccable drive, ideas and energy throughout.
01. Wide Open Spaces
02. They Cant Take That Away from Me
03. Some Kinda Mean
04. Whats New?
06. Batistas Groove
08. Night of Nisan
09. Cousin Slim
11. Congo Chant
Total time: 78:06 min.
Tracks #1-5 from the Riverside album RLP 1178.
Tracks #6-11 from the Atlantic album SD 1366.
Personnel on "The Sound of the Wide Open Spaces!":
David Newman (ts), James Clay (ts, fl on #4), Wynton Kelly (p), Sam Jones (b) and Art Taylor (d).
Recorded at Reeves Sound Studios, New York, on April 26, 1960.
Personnel on "Straight Ahead":
David Newman (ts on #6 & 9, as on #7 & 11, fl on #8 & 10), Wynton Kelly (p), Paul Chambers (b) and Charlie Persip (d).
Recorded in New York, on December 21, 1960.
Original sessions supervised by Jualian 'Cannonball' Addderley / Nesuhi Ertegun, and engineered by Jack Higgins / Tom Dowd.
Produced for CD reissue by Jordi Pujol.
24-Bit Digitally Remastered