Recorded October 1959, Paris.
Original LP issue: Decca 153.924
Critics often complain that small-group sessions comprised of members of the Duke Ellington Orchestra are somewhat disappointing; this is definitely not the case with this session led by Clark Terry, recorded during a 1959 tour of Europe in the final month of the trumpeter’s almost eight-year tenure with the band. Fellow Ellington sidemen Paul Gonsalves, Jimmy Woode, and Sam Woodyard are present, along with Raymond Fol at the piano. Terry was one of the most gifted trumpeters to grace the Ellington band and he blossoms when he has more opportunities to solo in a small group setting like this one. Gonsalves proves to be the perfect foil for Terry as they trade lines on several of the numbers. Unlike many dates led by Ellington veterans, this one doesn’t rely heavily on songs from the vast Ellington songbook; instead, Terry includes only ‘Satin Doll’, a Monk’s tune, one by Babs Gonzales and three of his own compositions, with ‘Serenade to a Bus Seat’ (a remake of his upbeat instrumental interpretation of the hectic life of a touring musician) proving to be the most memorable.
This studio date was recorded for French Decca label and was almost impossible to find until now.
Ken Dryden / All Music
Blues for the Champ of the Champs:
Serenade to a Bus Seat:
Clark Terry (Trumpet)
Paul Gonsalves (Tenor saxophone)
Raymond Fol (Piano)
Jimmy Woode (Bass)
G. T. Hogan (Drums)
Blues for the Champ of the Champs (Clark Terry) 11’04
Clark Bars (Clark Terry) 6’57
Serenade to a Bus Seat (Clark Terry) 4’02
Panonica ou Les Liaisons Dangereuse 1960 N°2 (Thelonious Monk) 6’22
Lonely One (Babs Gonzales) 3’21
Satin Doll (Duke Ellington) 4’55
Re-mastered from a copy of the Mono Master Tapes.
Limited edition 2000 copies.
180 gr vinyl pressed by Pallas in Germany.
Deluxe high-gloss flipback album jacket.
Facsimile reissue using the original photo by JP Leloir.
Double insert using an original photo by JP Leloir from 1959.
Each record has been visually checked to prevent defects.