Sam Rivers: Fucshia Swing Song

Album review
Sam Rivers: Fucshia Swing Song

Sam Rivers

Fuchsia Swing Song

Label: Music Matters
Media: LP
Genre: Jazz

Years ago I heard the Sam Rivers trio at a miniscule San Francisco jazz club; it remains one of the most memorable live music experiences of my life, even though until I’d heard the Mosaic set listed below, Rivers wasn’t really on my radar screen. Whether this brilliant composer and saxophonist is on yours or not, I urge any jazz lover to consider Music Matters’ superb reissue of Rivers’ 1965 Blue Note debut, Fuchsia Swing Song. With Jaki Byard (piano), Ron Carter (bass), and Tony Williams on drums, Rivers’ tenor sax speaks freely and eloquently, yet with great focus. His tone richly textured and throaty, his style smart yet earthy. His six tunes for this album range from the energetic bop of the title track, to more laidback blues-based numbers in which his band mates prove muy simpatico. Other highlights include the sizzling “Luminous Monolith,” the lovely ballad “Beatrice,” and the gently swinging “Ellipsis.” The recording is among the best from Van Gelder’s solid-state years: immediate and dynamic, with an organic balance, tonal naturalness, and vivid sense of four guys making music in the same space together. 

More Info

  • primary artist, Sam Rivers
  • LP

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