Some incredible early work from John Coltrane – 3 sessions recorded under the leadership of Paul Chambers, and even done before Coltrane's more famous work with Miles Davis! First up is material from the Imperial album Chamber's Music – led by Chambers, and one of the earliest small group sessions with Coltrane – a very spare batch of bass-heavy tracks with an incredibly relaxed groove. Chambers is at the full peak of his youthful talents, and solos quite a bit next to spare piano fills by Drew. Trane's tone is loud and raw, with more blue
siness than you'd expect – and we mean that in a good way! Titles include "Dexterity", "Trane's Blue
s", and "Eastbound". Added to these are 3 more tracks from a really wonderful Massachusetts session in 1956 – recorded for Transition Records – and featuring Coltrane and Chambers with Pepper Adams, Roland Alexander, and Donald Byrd – playing, long, blue
sy, almost-improvised tunes that include "Trane's Strain", "High Step", and "Nixon Dixon & Yates Blue
s". Last up are more tracks from the album Whims Of Chambers – again recorded under Chambers' leadership, this time for Blue Note
in 1956 – with a group that includes Donald Byrd, Kenny Burrell, and Horace Silver. The writing is great, and the group has a nice dark edge that gives the session a slightly different sound than other Blue Note
albums from the time. Chambers leads off with the bass on most tracks, kind of putting the work at an off-center pace that really gives it a fresh feel – and which makes it different from the straighter bop sound of his albums as a leader on Vee Jay. Tracks include "We Six", "Dear Ann", "Tale Of The Fingers", and "Omicron". CD features 11 tracks in all – quite possibly not all of the tracks from the albums, but the important Coltrane ones.
(Out of print.)