Wednesday, 31 October 2012

1960 Wes Montgomery - The Incredible Jazz Guitar of Wes Montgomery

Info: John Lesley 'Wes' Montgomery was born in March, 1923 in Indianapolis, Indiana, into a family of musicians, his brothers Monk and Buddy both played jazz and recorded a number of albums as The Montgomery Brothers. Although he played a four-string tenor guitar at the age of twelve, it wasn't until his late 20's that he began playing a six string, learning from radio recordings of his idol, guitar player, Charlie Christian. As he developed he became one of the great modern jazz guitarists, and many outside the genre cited him as a huge influence on them, such as Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix and Joe Satriani. Amongst his contemporaries he was also held in equally high esteem, and played and recorded with Cannonball Adderley and Jimmy Smith, and was also asked by Thelonius Monk to join his band after a jamming session, which he forewent to continue with the Montgomery Band. Purists favour his early works up to the mid 1960's, following which his sound became for popular and commercially very successfully as he reached a wider audience between 1965-1968. Tragically, on 15th June, 1968, he awoke one morning and told his wife that he felt quite ill, before collapsing and dying of a heart attack in his hometown of Indianapolis, aged just 45. The above album, The Incredible Jazz Guitar of Wes Montgomery, is #5 for 1960 on, and my preferred tracks would be opener 'Airegin' and the above video track, 'Four on Six'.

Track Listing:

1. Airegin
2. D-Natural Blues
3. Polka Dots & Moonbeams
4. Four on Six
5. West Coast Blues
6. In Your Own Sweet Way
7. Mr. Walker
8. Gone With The Wind 

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