Roger Humphries & Horace Silver: Two Jazz Classics

Friday, 31 January 2014 12:41 PM Written by 

Today, PG Movie Editor Barb Vancheri discussed the new documentary on the life of Pittsburgh Jazz Legend Roger Humphries, at 70, still active in the city of his birth.  This is the article.

To add a bit to her concise reporting, it's worth noting that in a remarkable and distinguished career, Roger's mid 60's tenure with Hard Bop pianist and bandleader Horace Silver included playing on two of Silver's best known recordings, both considered jazz standards today.  Silver, called by some the "Grandpop of Hard Bop," had worked with another iconic Pittsburgh Hard Bop drummer and bandleader: Art Blakey.

Here are both numbers, just two in Roger's incredible career. Both of them kicked ass at the time, and still do.  Everyone shines, him included.

"Song For My Father" Recorded October 26, 1964, released in 1965.

Musicians: Silver, piano; Carmell Jones, trumpet; Joe Henderson, tenor saxophone; Teddy Smith bass; Roger on drums.

By the way, if the opening bass figure sounds familiar, it's because Walter Becker and Donald Fagen "adapted" it as the opening to Steely Dan's "Rikki Don't Lose That Number."

"The Cape Verdean Blues"  Recorded October 1, 1965, released in 1965

Musicians: Silver, piano; Woody Shaw, trumpet; Joe Henderson, tenor saxophone; Bob Cranshaw,bass; Roger on drums.   Trombonist J.J. Johnson is on other tracks on the album, but not this one.

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