Take Five – 1986

George Benson

The guitarist at his best

George Benson had such a strong success as a singer, starting with 1976’s “This Masquerade,” that many forgot (or never knew) that he was always a masterful guitarist.

On some of his live shows, he just hints at his skills on guitar, but that was not the case on this version of “Take Five” which has altoist Sadao Watanabe as a guest soloist.

Performing at the 1976 Montreux Jazz Festival, Benson takes a fiery solo filled with speedy runs and heated ideas that show that, when inspired, he ranks at the top among jazz guitarists.

-Scott Yanow