Benny Golson leads a talented team of players/composers, many of whom were members of the original Jazz Messengers at various times from the 50's through the 80's, in a tribute to one of the greatest players and leaders in all of jazz history, Art Blakey.
During his time, Art Blakey was one of the most important drummers in jazz, but his role as the leader of bands in which the finest players of each new generation cut their teeth will go down in jazz history. From 1947 to 1990, Blakey led the Jazz Messengers, a band which served as a home for more outstanding musicians than any other band in jazz history.
In celebration of the lasting impact of Blakey's legacy, saxophonist and composer Benny Golson reunited a group of former Messengers, each of whom represents a different period of the band's history, for a series of performances. The band, which includes fellow Messenger alumni trumpeter Terrence Blanchard, trombonist Curtis Fuller, pianist Geoff Keezer and bassist Peter Washington alongside drummer Lewis Nash, was recorded live at the Iridium in New York City.
It was Blakey's uncanny knack to bring out the best in himself and others, and the love and respect generated from his unrivaled leadership, that led Golson, an early Messenger, to reunite this group of veterans for the splendid live recording.