Lee Konitz with Warne Marsh (CD) ~ Lee Konitz (Artist) and Warne... Cover Art

Lee Konitz With Warne Marsh

By: Lee Konitz, Warne Marsh

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Lee Konitz Artist Snapshot:

While bebop was the jazz avant-garde of the late 1940's, there was a parallel movement about the same time as pianist Lennie Tristano and alto saxophonist Lee Konitz unofficially led the school of cool jazz. While preeminent alto icon Charlie Parker burned hot and bluesy (while still abstract), Konitz had an altogether drier, more cerebral, and subdued approach. Besides Tristano, he performed and recorded with Miles Davis, and bandleaders Claude Thornhill and Stan Kenton, before finally establishing himself as a leader. As his career extends into the `00s, Konitz is one of the few players of his generation who still stretches himself. Ever contemporary, he's recorded unaccompanied; with straight-ahead trios and quartets, etc.; and with string sections; and has engaged in totally free improvisation with the U.K. collective Company (often featuring Derek Bailey).

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MP3 Downloads
DISC 1 for Lee Konitz With Warne Marsh Album By Lee Konitz Amazon.com
1   Topsy Buy
2   There Will Never Be Another You Buy
3   I Can't Get Started Buy
4   Donna Lee Buy
5   Two Not One Buy
6   Don't Squawk Buy
7   Ronnie's Line Buy
8   Background Music Buy

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Product Notes

There aren't a whole lot of occasions to hear Lee Konitz's '50s-era telltale alto saxophone. So this 1956 date, which couples Konitz with Warne Marsh on tenor sax, is a great window on the Lennie Tristano school of improvisation. The melodies are all cushioned by blurred tones and bending shapes, and Marsh and Konitz's unison playing is jointly silken. They amaze with their very un-Basie-like read of "Topsy" and their equally un-Bird-like read of "Donna Lee," typically a vehicle for pyrotechnics. This stuff was assailed by some in the 1950s and '60s for its seemingly cerebral abstractions and avoidance of emotional intensity. And it still sounds "cool" by comparison to the "hot" sounds of bebop, but Konitz and Marsh exercise a kind of calmed creativity that seems to avoid the emotion-intellect question altogether, dropping the listener into a low-key but by no means low-intensity display of excellence. --Andrew Bartlett

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