Thursday, August 13, 2009

"D" is for DICKERSON - Walt Dickerson

Quick. Name an outstanding world class improvising vibraphonist that isn't Lionel Hampton, Milt Jackson or Bobby Hutcherson. Gunter Hampel? Maybe. Mike Mainieri? Perhaps. What about Bill Ware, Bryan Carrott or Stefon Harris? Maybe some day. But the name that immediately comes to mind for me is Walt Dickerson. He had a long recording career (1961 well into the 80's) and, while he left a woefully small discography, the quality of his work is uniformly challenging and exciting. He was one of the first vibes players to embrace the free jazz movement and understood the possibilities of the instrument. He played it the way the best pianists and organists play their instruments - like a mini-symphony orchestra. You get a chance to hear Dickerson in several duet situations. Listen for how he fills musical space. We'll hear music Walt Dickerson recorded between 1961 and 1986. This is the playlist:

1. Relativity - 5:26 (RELATIVITY, 1961)
2. Infinite You - 7:01 (THIS IS WALT DICKERSON!, 1961)
3. You Go To My HEad - 8:20 (A SENSE OF DIRECTION, 1961)
4. Astro - 7:51 (VISIONS, 1978)
5. So Thoughtful - 4:51 (TENDERNESS, 1977)
6. Alone in the Park - 7:10 (IMPRESSIONS OF A PATCH OF BLUE, 1965)
7. The Nexus - 22:22 (TELL US ONLY THE WONDERFUL THINGS, 1975)
8. Life Rays - 4:46 (LIFE RAYS, 1986)
9. God Bless the Child - 3:54 (TO MY QUEEN, 1962)

Here are the recordings from which these selections were taken. Seek these albums/CDs/sownloads out. You will not be disappointed. I promise!


1 comment:

  1. Whoa! Slow down, Ron. Seriously, you're posting great stuff here faster than I can download and absorb it!