A Swinging Affair (180Gm)
Format: LP, Vinyl
Amazingly, ‘A Swingin Affair’ was recorded two days after its brilliant predecessor in the Dexter Gordon discography – ‘Go!’. The same quartet played: Billy Higgins (drums), Butch Warren (bass) and Sonny Clark (piano). The session was recorded on 29th August 1962. Gordon’s own ‘Soy Califa’ hits a Latin groove. Gordon, lyrical as ever is matched by the band, who touch a modal groove. This is Blue Note at its finest. The tenor man is absurdly brilliant as is pianist Sonny Clark. Gordon’s version of Billie Holiday’s ‘Don’t Explain’ is suitably emotional and mournful. Sonny Clark’s piano compliments and Billy Higgins’ brushwork is stunning. The standard ‘You Stepped Out Of A Dream’ is a Hard Bop swinger that sizzles. Bassist Butch Warren’s ‘The Backbone’ has exactly that as Gordon’s muscular tenor illustrates. The ballad ‘Until The Real Thing Comes Along’ is pleasant and emotional. It is merely a precursor for the bubbling ‘McSplivens’ composed by Gordon himself. It is a brisk Hard Bop workout that is driven relentlessly by the drum playing of Higgins plus some inspired piano work from Clark. ‘A Swingin Affair’ swings on four tracks and the sombre ballad ‘Don’t Explain’ is well……stunning. Strong set throughout. Gordon is on top form and the rhythm section, a popular one at Blue Note in 1961-62 keep the pot boiling.