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Sonny Rollins' "St. Thomas"


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When I searched for a vocal version of "St. Thomas" I came across Mark Murphy's version, calling it "Down St. Thomas Way", credited to Ray Passman and Herb Wasserman. Virtually identical.

Any stories on this? Who really wrote it? Or did they all copy it from some Calypso tune - "Fire Down Below", which Randy Weston and Ted Curson recorded, is pretty similar. :w:huh:

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randy weston's fire down there is featured on 1955's get happy with the randy weston trio. it's unmistakably the same melody rollins later used for st. thomas. although it employs calypso rhythms, to my ears ted curson's fire down below from 1962 has a different melody. i don't doubt that the basic theme is derived from the danish folk song mike cites. i just think it's interesting to realize that as great as it is, st. thomas was not the first jazz treatment of this wonderful melody.

Edited by jazzshrink
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