1. Strode Rode
    Sonny Rollins
  2. Trinkle Tinkle
    Thelonious Monk
  3. Little Willie Leaps
    Miles Davis
  4. Pensativa
    Clare Fischer
  5. Evidence
    Thelonious Monk
  6. Come Rain Or Come Shine
    Harold Arlen/Johnny Mercer
  7. Epistrophy
    Thelonious Monk
  8. On A Misty Night
    Tadd Dameron
  9. Quasimodo
    Charlie Parker
Artist:Bob Martin
Recording Date:Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Recording Engineer:

 (and mixer) Antonio Feola, mastered by Derek Nash

Recording Location:

The Fish Market Studio, Willesden, London UK

Catalogue Number:HBR33007
  • Bob Martin Alto Saxophone
  • Mike Gorman Hammond B3 Organ
  • Steve Brown Drums

Bob Martin has been revered and loved by many musicians and jazz fans in the U.K. for years, and this album - his debut as leader on Hard Bop Records - as the title suggests, provides clear evidence as to why this is the case. Like one of his main influences, Sonny Stitt, Bob prefers to let his music do the talking, and has never shown any interest in pretentious concepts or schemes to hide his playing behind (which is perhaps why he isn't as well known in the jazz media as he so clearly should be). But make no mistake, Bob gets new admirers wherever he plays, and hopefully this album will make a few more!

Very much in line with this label's ethos, Bob called his favourite musicians into the studio, and without any rehearsals, called some of his favourite tunes, and just blew. The intimate trio setting is the perfect framework for Bob to stretch out and to show his mastery of the saxophone, and of the idiom. He also shows good taste in his selection of tunes, and a penchant for the work of Thelonious Monk, who would surely be pleased with these renditions of his tunes. 

His cohorts more than rise to the musical challenge. Mike Gorman (who is equally at home - and swinging - at the piano) mans the B3 Organ console with remarkable ambidexterity, and adds so much to the music that one hardly notices the lack of guitar that's usually present in an organ combo. Steve Brown, on drums, once again demonstrates why he's so in-demand, by swinging with so much energy and taste that the music is elevated to a higher level still.

To sum up, this fiercely swinging set is an excellent example of what to expect on a typical night in a London club with Bob Martin and his group at centre stage. To these ears, a very satisfying musical experience indeed; but don't take my word for it, here's the evidence, judge for yourselves!