Fresh Sound Records
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The Modern Jazz Disciples was a group that offered a refreshing and unpretentious hard bop with deep, warm roots, performed with wit and taste. The crisp, wellblended ensembles were the platform for some superb improvising by the horn men, both of whom were exceptional soloists. Curtis Peagler was an effervescent altoist in the Parker-Stitt-Adderley mould, and his work here is outstanding for its heat and joy. The inclusion of William Kelley on normaphone—a valve trombone in the shape of an alto saxophone—and euphonium—a kind of French horn, added body to the sound. Playing in a coolly understated, linear, easy-swinging way, he complemented Peagler’s more dominant, coruscating manner. Pianist William Brown contributed some interesting solos, full of intensity, while Lee Tucker’s propulsive bass and drummers Wilbur 'Slim' Jackson or Ron McCurdy, are well integrated and non-obtrusive, completed a solid and exciting rhythm section.
The Modern Jazz Disciples weren’t together for very long and this compilation gathers together the only two albums they recorded for Prestige between 1959 and 1960.
[1-8] “The Modern Jazz Disciples”
William 'Hicky' Kelley, normaphone, euphonium (only on #5); Curtis Peagler, alto and tenor saxophones; William 'Billy' Brown, piano; Lee Tucker, bass; Ron McCurdy, drums.
Recorded at Van Gelder’s Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, on September 8, 1959
[9-15] “Right Down Front”
Wilbur 'Slim' Jackson replaces McCurdy on drums, and William 'Hicky' Kelley plays only normaphone.
Recorded at Van Gelder’s Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, on May 24, 1960
Tracklisting: 01. After You’ve Gone (Creamer-Layton) 6:02
02. Disciples Blues (Peagler-Kelley) 7:12
03. Slippin’ and Glidin’ (Baker) 5:06
04. A Little Taste (Adderley) 6:40
05. Perhaps (Parker) 5:52
06. Huk’s Delight (Franklin) 5:07
07. Dottie (Tucker) 4:32
08. Hapnin’s (Baker) 4:33
09. Right Down Front (Peagler) 5:32
10. Along Came Cheryl (Franklin) 3:50
11. Ros-Al (Peagler) 5:08
12. Autumn Serenade (DeRose-Gallup) 3:51
13. The Happy Blues (Ammons) 7:55
14. My Funny Valentine (Rodgers-Hart) 4:48
15. Kelley’s Line (Kelley) 3:33