Specially priced two-CD set includes bonus disc with previously unreleased material!
"As you listen to these pieces, these wonderful gems from the master bassist, imagine what his personality was like. If you were lucky enough to have had conversations with him, you'll see his face, hear his laugh, know how he entertained us from the stage." —John Clayton, from the liner notes
When bass giant Ray Brown passed away last summer at age 75, he left an enormous gap in the jazz pantheon. Brown's final trio recording, Walk On, is a tribute to the man. Featuring pianist Geoffrey Keezer and drummer Karriem Riggins, Walk On also reflects the wide-ranging strengths of all three musicians.
The ten-track session sees the trio debuting new music by Brown ("Ray Brown Suite," a ten-minute piece in three movements), and reanimating jazz standards ("Stella by Starlight," "Honeysuckle Rose") and classics ("America the Beautiful," "You Are My Sunshine"). Recorded during the same sessions as Some of My Best Friends Are...Trumpet Players and Some of My Best Friends Are...Guitarists, the set showcases some of Keezer's finest work with Brown, shooting sparks with the master one last time.
This specially priced two-CD set also includes a bonus disc of previously unreleased Ray Brown recordings. Its ten cuts feature "Down By The Riverside," Hoagy Carmichael's "Stardust" and "The Nearness of You," Thelonius Monk's "Evidence," Duke Ellington's "In a Mellow Tone" and Monty Alexander's "Woogie Boogie," as well as two Brown originals.
"We recorded the first disc in January 2000," says Elaine Martone, Brown's longtime producer. "Ray was in fine form, and we were goofing around. I left a whole package of Hershey's Kisses on his stand to sweeten him up! Geoffrey had just announced to me that this was his final stint with the Trio. As you'll hear, he was absolutely brilliant on the date. I have constructed these discs so that the first thing you hear is Ray's beautiful rendition of 'America, the Beautiful' and the last thing heard on disc two is Ray saying 'Amen.' I was cognizant of what Ray would want while putting this recording together. Ray's wife, Cecilia, and his 'adopted son,' John Clayton gave me their input and their blessings."
The two-disc package includes liner notes written by three-time Grammy nominated bassist/composer/conductor John Clayton. Clayton was also a key member of Brown's SuperBass summits.
Before he died in July 2002, Ray Brown reigned as the king of jazz bassists for over five decades and graced perhaps more recordings than any other musician in jazz history. Bursting upon the New York bop scene in 1945, the Pittsburgh native played with Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and Bud Powell. He toured with Jazz at the Philharmonic, then led a trio to back Ella Fitzgerald and, in 1951, joined the Oscar Peterson Trio.
Brown's thirteen-year association with Telarc began in 1988, when he appeared on Big Band Hit Parade. He went on to record nineteen discs for the label. Walk On marks Telarc's last recording of the Ray Brown Trio, and the trio's final recording with Keezer, who stepped down about a month later and was replaced by pianist Larry Fuller.
Walk On proves that no one played the bass like Ray Brown.