USA, 1964, avant-garde jazz

Eric DolphyOut to Lunch: Such wonderful moments of bright horn melody bursting forth from the avant-garde landscape, and the vibraphone just holding together the cool, relaxed atmosphere. Everything about this album sounds effortless and un-reproducible. Hubbard’s trumpet and Dolphy’s flute playing off each other is probably my favorite part. So much chemistry, again coming back to the playful, charming vibraphone–an invitation to and a springboard for the other players to blow. As Dolphy himself says in the liner notes, everyone holds the line, and once the space is created, especially by Williams’ “pulse” drumming, freedom follows. But reading the liner notes just guts me. At the end, Dolphy says he’s off to Europe to play his own music and not be put down like he was in the States for doing his own thing. Said he’d be more appreciated over there in Europe. That’s where the liner notes end. On a high point of hope. Four months later he died from undiagnosed diabetes!

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