An uptempo blues

Johnny Griffin and Kenny Clarke

An all-star quartet jams a Griffin blues

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Johnny Griffin was one of the great tenor-saxophonists, famous for playing perfectly coherent solos at blazing tempos but also infusing ballads with warmth.

Griffin, who was based in Chicago in the 1950s, spent much of the later part of his life living and playing in Europe where his passionate bebop-based solos were always appreciated.

This film clip, from around 1967, teams Johnny Griffin with an all-star quartet that includes pianist Kenny Drew, bassist Jimmy Woode and drummer Kenny Clarke.

The uptempo blues has short solos from each of the participants, giving viewers a particularly good opportunity to see Kenny Clarke in action.

-Scott Yanow


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