Cornet Chop Suey – Louis Armstrong
From 1926, this tune exemplifies the virtuosic playing of Louis Armstrong. Not too known for this era of his career, Armstrong is most remembered for his later work, such as Hello Dolly and What a Wonderful World. However, this style of playing had major influences on what was to come, prompting others to play and further affect the music. The players on this tune are Louis Armstrong – Either Trumpet or Cornet (not known), Kid Ory – Trombone, Johnny Dodds – Clarinet, Lil Armstrong (Louis’ wife) – Piano, and Johnny St. Cyr – Banjo.
Tenderly – Clifford Brown and Max Roach
This recording is from 1954. Players on this tune are Clifford Brown – Trumpet, Max Roach – Drums, Teddy Edwards – Tenor Saxophone, Carl Perkins – Piano, and George Breadsaw – Bass. This is a textbook example of great ballad playing. Note how Brown plays “turnarounds,” which are the measures at the end of a jazz form (check out 2:25). These turnarounds help the tune get from the end of the form back to the top, by sometimes changing keys or just using chords that want to resolve to the key that the tune is in.
Lotus Blossom – Freddie Hubbard and Woody Shaw
This tune off of the 1985 record Double Take showcases the talents of both Freddie Hubbard and Woody Shaw, masters of the hard-bop era of jazz. One characteristic of both Shaw and Hubbard’s playing are their use of big intervals between notes, unlike the flowing lines of bebop. Their technical and sophisticated styles of playing fit together well, ultimately contributing to a great recording. The musicians on the album are Freddie Hubbard and Woody Shaw – Trumpet, Kenny Garrett – Alto Saxophone, Mulgrew Miller – Piano, Cecil McBee – Bass, and Carl Allen – Drums.