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OK, for reasons I can't possibly defend, I don't happen to have very much Eric Dolphy. What are your favorites, and why?? (And don't just say "get the whole Prestige box set!!", cuz I'm not sure I'm ready to take that leap yet, especially with $$$ tight at the moment.)

I think my entire Dolphy collection (thus far) consists of the following, which I have ranked in terms of how much I like them...

1. Iron Man (mine is on Celluloid CD circa early 1990's, but what is the best/most-complete version of this material?)

2. The Illinois Concert (BN) / Out to Lunch (BN) / Other Aspects (BN)

3. Outward Bound (OJC)

4. Last Date (can't remember if I still have this, but I know I had it at one time, maybe still do?)

Getting back to "Iron Man" - is there a complete "Iron Man" sessions release anywhere?? I know that there are at least a couple more tracks from this session (these sessions?) beyond what's on my CD, which I think only has 5 tracks. Is there any single CD that collects all the "Iron Man"-related tracks that have Woody Shaw on them?? Also, my "Iron Man" CD is somewhat lacking in the sonics department - is it just the material, or the crappy early 90's issue I have??

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Rooster, if you don't have the Eric Dolphy/Booker Little at the Five Spot

albums, you have not heard Dolphy!! This was one of the nights in jazz

when everything jelled: the players, the tunes, the audience, the recording.

to make it an essential purchase. I've had the albums since they were released

and I keep getting back to them and enjoy. This was one extraordinary

quintet (the rhythm section was Mal Waldron/Richard Davis/Ed Blackwell)

There are plenty more great Dolphy albums but you won't get better than

this July 1961 date.

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Before you run out and by the Five Spot disks, STOP!

Buy the complete Eric Dolphy on Prestige instead. This box has all the Five Spot recordings and much, much more truly exceptional music at a budget price, in fact only roughly twice what you would pay to get the Five Spot music on three single 30-minute disks.

It is one of the best boxes of music in existence. But don't take my word for it. Just listen to all of my witnesses who will post below. :g

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John L. is ABSOLUTELY right. Since I have all those Dolphy albums

in their original Prestige/New Jazz releases, did not think about that box.

But since evrything is there, it looks like box is the MUST purchase.

And you're in for a treat when you LISTEN to Booker Little!

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another witness :g

the Dolphy Prestige was one of my first box-sets and still one of my favorites.

You'll not only find the Five Spot date there, but (listing only highlights):

- Far Cry (another lovely date with Booker Little)

- Out there

- Mal Waldron's "Quest" (with Booker Ervin)

- Ron Carter's very nice "Where"

- two Oliver Nelson sessions of which the second ranks easily as equal to "Blues & the Abstract Truth" (that's another essential purchase, if you don't have it already)

- a nice pairing of Dolphy with Ken McIntyre for the latter's "Looking Ahead"

and the "In Europe" albums which concerning Dolphy are fine (the local rhythm section is not quite up to his playing, but they try - then there's a nice long duo with Chuck Israels)

indeed an essential!


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This is probably heresy, but I don't care for Eric Dolphy. I do, however, like Booker Little.

I have sold off/traded all my Eric Dolphy, except for stuff where he played as a sideman. To me, the best Dolphy I've ever heard was his contributions on Coltrane's Village Vangard sessions.

I am not saying that the guy is without originality or talent, but I just don't care for him. I also strongly feel that Joe Henderson outblows him on "Point of Departure."

My favorite Booker Little is "Booker and Friends" (if I've quoted it correctly here.) Just great playing and great compositions. He played like he knew he didn't have much time left.

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Another witness...

Agree with everything that's been said so far. I reckon Dolphy's an incredibly consistent performer on record, but perhaps would stay clear from the 'In Europe' material to start with. Absolutely NOTHING to do with his playing; just the rhythm sections are not too great..!

Do you have 'Mingus at Antibes'? If you like Mingus and his sidemen, this is an opportunity to hear Dolphy in a context you're happy with. I always feel that Dolphy's dates as a leader have a sound all of their own, which is maybe what makes them harder to get into (and all the more astounding when you do!).

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Getting back to "Iron Man" - is there a complete "Iron Man" sessions release anywhere?? I know that there are at least a couple more tracks from this session (these sessions?) beyond what's on my CD, which I think only has 5 tracks. Is there any single CD that collects all the "Iron Man"-related tracks that have Woody Shaw on them?? Also, my "Iron Man" CD is somewhat lacking in the sonics department - is it just the material, or the crappy early 90's issue I have??

We had this discussion on the old homestead porch.

The complete session has been issued but it takes two cds

The tracks are

Iron Man


Come Sunday

Burning Spear

Ode to Charlie Parker

Jitterbug Waltz

Music Matador

Love Me

Alone together

I settled for a 2CD set on jazz world called The Eric Dolphy Sound, the tracks are separated as above

This issue is "filled " out by two tracks claimed to be unissued, which is false

1 Wherever I Go is a Chico Hamilton quintet

2 Stormy Wearher is Dolphy with Mi8ngus.

These sessions seem to have been released a number of times on a variety of labels

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Just found the post, and I agree with all pro-Dolphy sentiments.

I hate to add pressure if money is tight, but the box sure is great. But, if you need your appetite whetted, go for that Jazz World issue of Iron Man/Conversations--it's called "DolphySound."

Along with "At Antibbes" (possibly my favorite Mingus), another great one including Dolphy is Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus" on Candid...

Mr. Gitlin--who did you see Dolphy with? When? Am I jealous? Yes!

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I've always like Dolphy much.

But I've never listen to an album of his who was completely satisfying.

I'll like very much some tracks in each of his records but never the whole record as an entity.

I think than his best work where with Coltrane, Mingus & Hill (Joe Henderson is a hell of a tenor, that sure but he doesn't "outblows" Dolphy at any moment on "Point of Departure". It's Dolphy who gave sound and charactere to the session and makes Andrew Hill compositions alive).

IMO, I think than his best work ever is to find on the two Mingus on Candid: "Charles Mingus presents Charles Mingus" and the self-title "Mingus".

On the last, the version of "Stormy Weather" who start as an incredible duet between Ming and Dolphy could symbolise jazz in his whole.

In his album under his name, I think than his most greatest take is his solo version of Alone Together on bass clarinet who is as thrilling, mysterious and incredibily modern today than ever.

I think than, if he didn't died so young (36, even Ken Vandermark is older than him today!) it will have grown bigger and bigger because, as it concerns his recording career, it was just beginning to start.

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This is crazy. No one has even mentioned Out To Lunch!

I don't think I'm alone, but I may be. This is a masterpiece in 'modern' music. It changed my entire concept of jazz. I am constantly floored by Eric Dolphy's original approach to improvisation, but his composing on this album is absolutely one of a kind.

This was my introduction to Eric Dolphy. I bought the album because of the drummer! What a discovery.

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  • 4 months later...

Yeeeehaaaa!!! I had to revive this thread cuz I just picked up 'Eric Dolphy at the 5 Spot w/ Booker Little Vol. 1' This is my first exposure to the 5 Spot dates and this one absolutely KILLS. :excited: Booker Little was a MONSTER!! :rhappy: Kind of an unorthodox style but clean as hell ever so fluid.

My first impressions of the rhythm section is that they had some great chemistry during these performances. I can really sense it in the second tune, Bee Vamp.

I know, I know I need to get the box, and about 4 others but sadly, that won't happen anytime soon. <_<

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A year ago I went on a Dolphy tear and have now amassed 16 filed under his name and have at least another 15 titles that he takes part in. There are still few a few more I need to get!

I didn't buy the box as I wasn't sure at the time that I would like him that much. I know you don't want to hear "buy the box," but I know should have.

Some favorites include:

Mingus Revenge ('64 Paris concert) - The opening notes of "Peggy's Blue Skylight" will melt your mind. I love '64 live Mingus for the Dolphy.

The other "Out" album Out There - I love it for 3 especially beautiful songs "Serene," "Feathers," and the other one escapes me.

The 5 Spot discs cause they rock! And if those get you hooked on Booker Little then you'll want to pick up Far Cry.

Mal Waldron's The Quest often sneaks its way into the player. It features another fine Booker; Mr. Ervin on tenor. I can't really describe the why other than it's an immensely satisfying session.

Hmmm, so many of my favorites are on the box. :rolleyes:

I tend to be drawn to his bass clarinet work (love the 1st 2 tracks on the IL Concert for that reason) and while normally I don't think I like the flute I certainly enjoy his playing. The Berlin Concert features a gorgeous "God Bless This Child" on bass clarinet btw.

Oh, there are other recordings too. Once he gets under your skin he can especially dangerous to the pocketbook. So get the box and spent some now to save yourself some dough later! ;)

Edited by Quincy
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I am that great guy of which impossible speaks! He's the one who turned me onto Dolphy with a mix cd. As I plan to get all the songs on it, and if impossible's feelings aren't hurt, I'll gladly pass this cd on to anyone curious. PM me with your address. I myself got the Prestige set (can't go wrong, squire), George Russell's Ezz-thetics and Candid Dolphy. Expecting Blue Note's Other Aspects any day now. It seems to be a hodge podge of stuff as is Candid Dolphy, but that's not a bad thing. HEY IMPOSSIBLE, do you have something called Unrealized Tapes? It's supposedly his most recent last date (6/11/64) & At The Gaslight Inn?

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NEWS! Universal France has reissued the "The Great Concert Of Charles Mingus" (recorded on April 19, live at the Theatre des Champs-Elysees, in Paris), formerly issued as 3 LPs on America, now on a beautiful digipack 2Cd-set, with two previously unreleased tracks : "A.T.F.W." (which stands for for Art Tatum Fats Waller) and "So Long Eric", a tune Mingus had dedicated to Dolphy when he had learned that Dolphy had decided to stay in Europe at the end of the tour.

It seems that Universal did some research to find the best sources, which have been restored to get the best sound.

Dolphy playing is really great on this one too!

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According to Jazzmataz Fuel have released a two CD set called This is Eric Dolphy.

It appears to be another reworking of the " Iron Man " sessions.. a must for Dolphy fans, and generally not well presented complete on CD. There have been some but generally extra material as on the Sounds version ( the Mingus track was OK, but the Hamilton addition was totally out of place.)

Fuel seem to be offerring the original Douglas(?) tracks only.

I have no experience with Fuel CDs.. but this might be the one to get.

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