Sonny Clark - Dial "S" for Sonny LP
Blue Note Records has announced the continuation of the Classic Vinyl Reissue Series which presents 180g vinyl LP reissues in standard packaging mastered by Kevin Gray and manufactured at Optimal. The pressings are all-analog whenever an analog source is available, with Gray mastering directly from the original master tapes. While the first 16 titles of the series focused on the best-known Blue Note classics from the 1950s and 60s, the new run of titles curated by Don Was and Cem Kurosman broadens its scope to span the many eras and styles of the legendary label's eight-decade history presented by themes: Bebop, Hard Bop, Soul Jazz, Post-Bop, Avant-Garde, The 70s, The Rebirth, and Hidden Gems.
One of the finest pianists and composers of the hard bop era, Sonny Clark seemed to arrive fully formed on his supremely swinging debut album Dial "S" for Sonny recorded for Blue Note in 1957. Clark assembled a top-flight sextet for the occasion with Art Farmer on trumpet, Curtis Fuller on trombone, Hank Mobley on tenor saxophone, Wilbur Ware on bass, and Louis Hayes on drums. Clark penned four of the album's six tunes including the moody, minor title piece, the bright, fleet-footed "Bootin' It," the feel-good theme "Sonny's Mood," and the sprightly swinger "Shoutin' on a Riff."
Rounding out the set are two standards: a stunning ballad performance of "It Could Happen To You" with Farmer delivering the opening theme and Fuller closing the piece, both with their warm, full-bodied tones, and the Gershwin tune "Love Walked In" which is a showpiece for Clark who opens with a solo intro before being joined by bass and drums for a trio performance that let's his inventive style shine.