Jackie McLean

4-5-And-6-LP-OJC-056

4, 5 And 6

  • Release Date: 29 Jul 2014
  • OJC-056

Before Jackie McLean made some of the great jazz albums of the 1960s for Blue Note, he recorded for the Prestige label. 4, 5 and 6 is the best of all his pre-Blue Note sessions. Recorded over two dates in July 1956, the album features future Blue Note colleague Donald Byrd joining in on trumpet for the album's two originals Abstraction and Contour (penned by Kenny Drew and Mal Waldron respectively). Another Blue Noter, tenor-saxophonist Hank Mobley, even makes it a sextet on Ch… MORE

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Jackie McLean is a Professor of Music in Hartford, Connecticut, but he is still a world-class player who tours annually in Europe and Japan. This… More

McLean and Bill Hardman were, at the time, frontliners in Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers. On three of the five numbers they are joined by Ray… More

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ABOUT JACKIE MCLEAN

Jackie McLean

 

Jackie McLean has long had his own sound, played slightly sharp and with great intensity; he is recognizable within two notes. McLean was one of the few bop-oriented players of the early '50s who explored free jazz in the '60s, widening his emotional range and drawing from the new music qualities that fit his musical personality.

The son of guitarist John McLean (who played guitar with Tiny Bradshaw), Jackie started on alto when he was 15. As a teenager he was friends with such neighbors as Bud Powell, Thelonious Monk and Sonny Rollins. He made his recording debut with Miles Davis in 1951 and the rest of the decade could be considered his apprenticeship. McLean worked with George Wallington, Charles Mingus and Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers (1956-58). He also participated on a string of jam session-flavored records for Prestige and New Jazz which, due to the abysmal pay and his developing style, he has since disowned. Actually they are not bad but pale compared to McLean's classic series of 21 Blue Note albums (1959-67). On sessions such as One Step Beyond and Destination Out, McLean really stretches and challenges himself; this music is quite original and intense yet logical. McLean also appeared as a sideman on some sessions for Blue Note, acted in the stage play The Connection (1959-61) and led his own groups on a regular basis. By 1968, however, he was moving into the jazz education field and other than some SteepleChase records from 1972-74 (including two meetings with his early idol Dexter Gordon) and an unfortunate commercial outing for RCA (1978-79), McLean was less active as a player during the 1970s. However in the 1980s Jackie McLean returned to a more active playing schedule (sometimes with his son René McLean on tenor), recording for Triloka, Antilles and most recently (with a renewed relationship) with Blue Note -- without losing the intensity and passion of his earlier days. ~Scott Yanow, All Music Guide