Interview: Sonny Rollins (Part 3) - JazzWax

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February 21, 2008


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"At the time, Sonny took a lot of heat from fellow musicians for hiring Jim Hall, a white guitarist perceived to be (albeit incorrectly) too mainstream for the avant-garde Rollins."
I've always been puzzled by references to Rollins as part of the "avant-garde." Subsequent to "The Bridge" he did veer briefly into that territory while working with Don Cherry; but in general his playing has always been highly melodic and harmonically grounded, even when working in a piano-less trio. Innovative and adventurous, yes, but so was Hall.

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  • Marc Myers writes regularly for The Wall Street Journal and is author of "Anatomy of a Song" (Grove) and "Why Jazz Happened." Founded in 2007, JazzWax is a two-time winner of the Jazz Journalists Association's best blog award.

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