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Chris Flory - Word On The Street $12.95


Chris Flory - Guitar, Mike LeDonne - Hammond B-3 Organ, Mark Taylor - Drums

When I Grow To Old To Dream - 1935 by Sigmund Romber,
 used   in films The Night Is Young and Deep In My Heart.
Snibor - 1949 by Billy Strayhorn.
Comes Love - 1939 by Sam H. Stept, Charles Tobias, Lew Brown.
Crazy, He Calls Me - 1949 by Carl Sigman.
Going To Meetin' - by Don Patterson.
Taps Miller - by Count Basie, B. Clayton and B. Russell.
I'm A Fool To Want You - 1951 by Jack Wolf, Joel Herron and     Frank Sinatra.
You Don't Know Me At All - 1996 by Chris Flory.
Don't You Know I Care - 1944 by Duke Ellington.
The Touch Of Your Lips - 1936 by Ray Noble.

Listen to CD Tracks

     It was a pleasant surprise when Jamey D. Aebersold called me last spring to tell me that he was an admirer of my playing and asked if I would be interested in making a recording for his Double-Time label. He particularly liked the cuts on my 1990 Concord Jazz CD, "For All We Know," which used organ, and he proposed that I do a whole CD in that format for him.

    My natural choice on organ was Mike LeDonne, who played both organ and piano on my earlier CD. Mike and I have known each other and played together on and off for over fifteen years, working for established older players like Benny Goodman and Ruby Braff and for our successful friend and peer and mutual friend Scott Hamilton. Mikeís own career as sideman and leader has blossomed in the last few years.  I feel privileged to have him on this album.

    I played several concerts in Europe with British drummer Mark Taylor, and I was delighted to find out that he had moved to New York. When Mike LeDonne recommended Mark as a good drummer for this trio, I knew he was just what I needed. His broad experience and solid, supportive playing rounds out the group perfectly.

    There are some jazz fans who feel that the Hammond organ is too "lowbrow" for use in small group jazz. Iíve never felt that way, as a jazz guitarist (and since the 1940ís that usually means electric guitarist), I feel that there is a natural tonal affinity between electric guitar and organ. The work of guitarist Bill Jennings and organist Wild Bill Davis has been a big influence on my playing. Guitarists like Grant Green, Billy Butler, and Kenny Burrell have had great, soulful collaborations with various great organists - Jack McDuff, Jimmy Smith, Bill Doggett, to name a few, and for me, Wes Montgomeryís work with organist Mel Rhyne is some of his best.

    At the same time, given the opportunity to make my own organ-trio recording, Iíve tried to use material not commonly associated with classic organ-guitar pairings. Iíve drawn from diverse sources that have deeply influenced my playing:  the work of Billie Holliday, Roy Eldridge, Duke Ellington, and others - and I think the result is something original. Here is a little bit about the tunes on the CD:  I got the idea of taking "When I Grow Too Old To Dream" at a brighter, medium-up tempo from a version that Roy Eldridge did in 1960. Both ballads, "Crazy, He Calls Me" and "I'm A Fool To Want You" were inspired by Billie Holliday. "Snibor" is a little known Billy Strayhorn composition that Dukeís band recorded in 1949; I always loved the melody and the mood of the tune - just to play the song, not to blow twelve choruses on it. Mike LeDonne suggested the Don Patterson blues, "Goin' To Meetin'." I guess this tune is typical funky organ-guitar material and was meant to be that way. I donít think I could have made this recording without playing at least one solid medium-tempo blues. Make no mistake, I love playing stuff like this and hope it shows. The other bluesy feeling cut on this album is an original:  "You Don't Know Me At All." The Count Basie head, "Taps Miller," gives us all a chance to dig in on an up-tempo tune. Drummer Mark Taylor really propels the rest of us on this one and gives us some nice fills on the shout chorus. The two Latin-tempo tunes of the set are very different in mood. "Don't You Know I Care" is a 1944 Ellington composition that Dukeís band played originally as a slow ballad and later as a bossa-nova. Both versions featured Johnny Hodges playing the melody beautifully. Once again, for my own version, just playing and phrasing the melody was reason enough to do the tune. With "Comes Love" the mood and purpose is much different - the melody is more of a sketch and the simple chord changes gave us room for some hard-driving soloing. The standard, "The Touch Of Your Lips," was the closing tune of the session. Iím proud of my solo on this one - I think the whole band gets a warm, cohesive feeling, just right for the end of a really enjoyable session.

    I want to thank Jamey D. Aebersold for making this project possible. Thanks also to engineer Fred Kevorkian at Sear Sound for giving me a sound I really liked, and to Mike LeDonne and Mark Taylor for their great playing.

    This album is dedicated to Duke Robillardand to the memory of Emily Remler.
 Chris Flory - Oct. '96

 Organ groups have made something of a comeback in the last couple of years, and Chris Flory acknowledges the fact in an original fashion with this well-balanced recording. Instead of the usual surfeit of shouting blues, there are standards, stirring numbers from the Ellington and Basie repertoires, ballads and a considerable variety of tempos, all delivered by a trio notable for it's ease and rapport.

 Stanley Dance
 author of The World of Count Basie