Label: Pure Pleasure / RCA – PPAN LPM2712 – 180 Gram Virgin Vinyl
Pure Analogue Audiophile Mastering by Ray Staff at Air Mastering London
Limited Edition – Pressed at Pallas Germany
Coleman Hawkins and Sonny Rollins each virtually defined the tenor saxophone for his respective generation. To hear the two of them interacting freely is a deliciously exciting experience. Hawkins is able to cut loose like never before. Sometimes the two collide, locking horns and wrestling happily without holding back.
Any serious jazz tenor sax fan, owes themselves a listen to this momentous meeting between Sonny and the Hawk in glorious remastered audiophile mono. It’s Ali vs. Frazier, with each retaining their championship belts. Sound 5/5 Audiophile Audition
This is a memorable meeting of a pair of genial giants – Sonny Rollins, who has been called again and again the boss of the modern tenor sax, and Coleman Hawkins, who is the father of jazz saxophone playing.
Each has made enormous contributions to jazz improvisation, beyond the limits of his instrument. The sum total of their work forms the impressive foundation for this once-in-a-lifetime album.
This recording is extraordinary in every sense, and not merely in that it marks the first time (except for a brief on-stage appearance at the 1963 Newport Jazz Festival, which inspired this studio recording) that these great musicians have played together. Each has blended his own strong personality with the other’s, yet neither has lost his individuality. Where one reaches into the other’s ‘bag’, it is done with musical logic and respect; always, the goal of a cohesive duet relationship is uppermost in each of their minds. And perhaps the most extraordinary aspect of this album is that neither musician plays safe; each exercises his powerful imagination throughout, running all the risks entailed in daring improvisation – but gaining also the satisfactions inherent in such an approach.
Since the 1963 recording of Sonny Meets Hawk was an old school meeting between the modern jazz tenor giant, and the pre-bop father of the jazz tenor, Pure Pleasure Records on their audiophile LP edition decided to stay old school. They are issuing a remastered mono version instead of stereo, as well as sticking to the original six tracks featuring Sonny and Coleman, and not including the additional three tracks included on the stereo CD issue on RCA. Those tracks had Don Cherry on trumpet taking the place of Hawk.
Recorded July 1963 in RCA Victor’s Studio B, New York City. Mickey Crofford und Paul Goodman Production: George Avakian