Today In Jazz

Dizzy and the Sonnys

December 19

Tenor sax history was made 56 years years ago today in New York City. Dizzy Gillespie gathered two Sonnys to a battle royale that continues to thrill. Mr.’s Rollins and Stitt were in a way similar – both virtuosos heavily influenced by Lester Young and Charlie Parker, and in a bigger way different: Stitt used a relatively set group of phrases which he shuffled ingeniously and with great hill, while Rollins did the musical equivalent of tossing the dice every time he played, never playing it safe. Gillespie knew just how to pair them off to their best advantage, and results are sublime. The Bryant brothers Ray and Tommy are on piano and bass, respectively, and Charlie Persip is the drummer.