Prince Albert – Kenny Dorham
This riff on the changes of All The Things You Are has become something of a standard in its own right. Kenny Dorham trumpet solo and Hank Mobley tenor sax solo transcriptions also available.
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- Recording: The Jazz Messengers - At The Cafe Bohemia, Vol. 1
- Recorded on: November 23, 1955
- Label: Blue Note (BLP 1507)
- Concert Key: A-flat
- Vocal Range: , to
- Style: Swing (medium)
- Trumpet - Kenny Dorham
- Tenor Sax - Hank Mobley
- Piano - Horace Silver
- Bass - Doug Watkins
- Drums - Art Blakey
- Bobby Watson Quintet at the Festival Jazz à Foix 2012: Bobby Watson, alto sax; Jim Rotondi, trumpet; Harold Mabem, piano; John Webber, bass; Joe Farnsworth, drums
- Rare footage of baritone sax legend Cecil Payne performing Kenny Dorham's Prince Albert, with guitarist Joe Carter and bassist Phil Bowler on a 1985 TV show.
The next preserved quintet performances are in Paris, France, at Salle Pleyel on May 8, 9, 14 or 15, and the Colisee Movie Theatre, Roubaix, France, on May 12, 1949. On May 15, with James Moody (tenor sax) replacing Charlie Parker, the group recorded four tracks, one of which was the first recording of Prince Albert. It looks like this session could be the first recording session that drummer Max Roach could claim as a leader, although some of these tracks have also been issued with Al Haig or James Moody as leader.
Kenny Dorham made a few changes to his composition, but saved the next recording for the first recording of the classic Jazz Messengers (at the Cafe Bohemia). Since then, quite a few jazz artists have recorded Prince Albert..
For a more recent take on the same changes, check out pianist Don Friedman's Almost Everything.
Trumpeter Kenny Dorham trumpet was the first soloist, and our excerpt starts with his solo break. As you can hear, this rhythm section loved to play together. With a bass player like Doug Watkins laying down such beautiful in-the-pocket walking, the soloists and the rest of the rhythm section were free to engage in a playful and stimulating dialog. Watkins really grounded everything, leaving Blakey free to go any direction he pleased under the soloist. There are some challenging Blakey explorations, but the rhythm section doesn't hit any figures together until the last section of Kenny's second chorus.
Hank Mobley's tenor tenor sax solo excerpt starts with his entrance in the second measure of his chorus and continues into the middle section, which was Latin during the melody. Now, during the middle section, the rhythm section shifts to 3/4 (three against two). To start the second tenor chorus, the rhythm section gives Hank a syncopated 2-feel background. In the second eight, the drums and piano play double-time feel while the bass continues to walk normally. For the middle section of Hank's third chorus, the drums and piano are back to double-time feel, while the bass still walks at regular tempo. The rhythm section starts Hank's fourth chorus with more of a 1-feel. It might seem that exotic rhythm section adventures like those described above, under a solo, would be very distracting and risky. In this case, though, the soloists are inspired to new heights. Exceptional musicians making exceptional music.
August 30, 1924 – December 15, 1972
Trumpeter/composer Kenny Dorham was very much on the jazz scene from the mid-1940s through most of the 1960s. He worked and recorded with all the major figures in the modern jazz movement, which includes the legendary Billy Eckstine big band, Dizzy Gillespie, Art Blakey, Bud Powell, Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk and Max Roach as well as Kenny Clarke, Sonny Stitt, Fats Navarro, J.J. Johnson and many other giants of that period. Read more...