Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Oleo” by Eric Dolphy

Today, I had the chance to play all three albums of Eric Dolphy’s Copenhagen concert from September, 1961. I haven’t played these recordings in many years and it was great to get reacquainted to the mastery of flute, saxophone and bass clarinet that was Eric Dolphy. The music has been released in all different ways over the years…first it was issued as three separate albums on Prestige (7304, 7350, 7366) under the title “Eric Dolphy In Europe, Volume 1,2 & 3.” My version of the three albums comes in a double album consisting of Volume 1 & 3 under the title “Copenhagen Concert” released in 1973 and an early 1970s straight reissue of the original “Volume 2″ album. The quartet consisted of Ben Axen on piano, Erik Moseholm on bass and Jorn Elniff on drums. I really wanted to post their version of the song “Hy-Fly” from the same concert which, true to its title, is a tour-de-force flute-bass duet which really does fly for 13 minutes, but I couldn’t find it on You-Tube. But if settling is listening to the group’s take on Sonny Rollins’ “Oleo,” than settling doesn’t always mean settling for second best. I first became aware of Eric Dolphy through the Frank Zappa track that paid homage to him called “The Eric Dolphy Memorial Barbecue.” While attending college in the early 1980s, some of our friends had an annual “Eric Dolphy Memorial Barbecue” in the backyard of the house they rented each year which I was fortunate enough to attend where I was exposed to some of the coolest jazz I had ever heard up to that point.

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