Genre: Jazz
Label: Venus


Phil Woods Chasin' The Bird Single-Layer Stereo Japanese Import SACD

Phil Woods

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This Single-Layer SACD can only be played on a Super Audio CD Player!

Alto Sax Legend on SACD!

Jazz alto saxophonist, clarinetist, bandleader, composer and four-time Grammy Award winner Phil Woods studied music with Lennie Tristano, who influenced him greatly, at the Manhattan School of Music and at the Juilliard School. His friend, Joe Lopes, coached him on clarinet as there was no saxophone major at Juilliard at the time. Although he did not copy Charlie "Bird" Parker, he was known as the New Bird, a nickname also given to other alto saxophone players such as Sonny Stitt and Cannonball Adderley. In the 1950s, Woods began to lead his own bands. Quincy Jones invited him to accompany Dizzy Gillespie on a world tour sponsored by the U.S. State Department. A few years later he toured Europe with Jones, and in 1962 he toured Russia with Benny Goodman.

After moving to France in 1968, Woods led the European Rhythm Machine, a group which tended toward avant-garde jazz. He returned to the United States in 1972 and, after an unsuccessful attempt to establish an electronic group, he formed a quintet which was still performing, with some changes of personnel, in 2004.

Woods earned the top alto sax player award almost 30 times in Downbeat magazine's annual readers' poll. His quintet was awarded the top small combo title several times. Perhaps his best known recorded work as a sideman is a pop piece, his alto sax solo on Billy Joel's 1977 hit "Just the Way You Are". He also played the alto sax solo on Steely Dan's "Doctor Wu" from their 1975 album Katy Lied, as well as Paul Simon's "Have a Good Time" from the 1975 album Still Crazy After All These Years.

"Phil Woods is at the peak of his powers during these 1997 sessions for Venus, leading his regular quintet (Brian Lynch, Bill Charlap, Steve Gilmore, and Bill Goodwin) through a set of songs he's played for decades, along with some originals likely written for this outing. The alto saxophonist navigates Charlie Parker's 'Chasin' the Bird' and 'Charlie's Wig' with the finesse of the master that he is. The interplay between the leader and Lynch in the former tune indicates that the younger musician is a force to be reckoned with. They also work well together in the dissonant 'Israel,' long a favorite of boppers. Woods' unaccompanied introduction to 'Everything Happens to Me' is simply breathtaking. Woods is also a fairly prolific composer. 'Autumn Thieves' is a barely disguised reworking of the standard 'Autumn Leaves' (also indicating his love of puns in the title) that swings nicely. The source of the rapid fire 'Clinicology' is a little less obvious at first ('Cherokee'), though little doubt remains once the quintet gets cooking. Lynch contributed 'Tribute to Blue,' a strutting, yet very lyrical hard bop vehicle. Charlap, who has since left the group to lead his own trio, is one of the greatest pianists of his generation. Gilmore and Goodwin have continuously worked with Woods since 1975; enough said." - Ken Dryden, AllMusic

"There was a very specific reason why Phil played on nearly every album I've made since 1956, because he not only was the best jazz alto sax player there was, he was a truly beautiful person. It is an understatement to say Phil Woods was one of the greatest jazz alto-saxophone players to ever set foot on this planet." - Quincy Jones

• Super Audio CD
• SACD Stereo SACD Layer
• This Single-Layer SACD can only be played on a Super Audio CD Player! It will NOT play on conventional CD Players!
• Made in Japan


Phil Woods, alto sax
Brian Lynch, trumpet
Bill Charlap, piano
Steve Gilmore, bass
Bill Goodwin, drums

1. Chasin' The Bird
2. Israel
3. Everything Happens To Me
4. Autumn Thieves
5. Charlie's Wig
6. Tribute To Blue
7. Clinicology

Recorded at Red Rock Recording Studio on October 13, 14, 15, 1997

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