This I Dig Of You
Smoke Sessions / Smoke Sessions Records
Jimmy Cobb has just gone 90. He’s still playing beautifully. The cat swings. He has that touch. That same touch that has powered a couple of dozen albums as a leader but perhaps more importantly was there on several key records by both Cannonball and Nat Adderley, as well as albums by Paul Gonsalves, Joe Henderson, Curtis Fuller, Art Pepper and Sonny Red. Oh, and, um, the small matter of a half-a-dozen or more by Wes Montgomery and same with Wynton Kelly. Then there’s the handful of killer Coltrane records he powers and, ah, several great Miles Davis albums from the late 50s and early 60s but for brevity’s sake I’ll just point to Sketches of Spain and Kind of Blue.
Cobb is one of the guys you study. One of the true greats. One of the best jazz drummers in the history of the music.
Pianist Harold Mabern, bassist John Webber and guitarist Peter Bernstein are all longtime associates of Cobb. Here they go back to the music of Cobb’s Mob, his first working band. The title track is by Hank Mobley. You’ll also hear standards (I’m Getting Sentimental Over You) and tunes from jazz greats like Dexter Gordon (Cheese Cake) as well as sweet, simple, understated balladry (My Old Flame).
It’s a great quartet and the worlds of wisdom here shine. Lush arrangements, beautiful playing. It’s a modern jazz album built from the parts of the past that have informed all of these players – and of course so many of the intended listeners.