Jazz Grooves part 1

Here are some interesting jazz/latin grooves from famous jazz standards. Some of this tunes come from the hard-bop era and drummers like Papa Jo Jones, Kenny Clarke, Max Roach, Vernell Fournier are the masters of this latin oriented groove. Enjoy 🙂


Jazz Grooves

The first groove is the famous calypso “St Thomas” played by Max Roach on the studio album Saxophone Colossus by Sonny Rollins.

Another Max Roach work is “George’s Dilemma” from the album Study in Brown by Clifford Brown & Max Roach quintet recorded in 1955. The tune is a AABA form with latin feel on the A section and swing feel (with kicks on the head) on the bridge. The latin groove is related to the Mambo Bell pattern, with cross-stick on 2 and small-tom on 4 (played on the first e second quavers).

Similar to George Dilemma groove there is another tune with this feel.The tune is  “A Night in Tunisia”  from the album Our Man in Paris by saxophonist Dexter Gordon recorded in 1963. The drummer is the legendary Kenny Clarke, listen and enjoy.

Full House by Wes Montogomery is a live album recorded on June 25, 1962. The drummer is Jimmy Cobb, on the track “Full House” he plays on the intro of the tune a 3/4 latin groove. The right-hand plays on the floor tom shell and the left hand moving around the tom and the cross-stick, hi-hat plays on 2 and 3.

The next album I chose is “Poinciana”  by the pianist Ahmad Jamal. On the titled-track, Vernel Fournier plays a New Orleans oriented groove with an open-handed technique, left-hand plays on the hi-hat and right-hand plays (with a mallet) on the snare and on the floor tom. The tune is amazing, a masterpiece.

From the studio album, The Sidewinder by Lee Morgan the self-titled track is a nice example of playing in the gap (not swing but not straight eights), Billy Higgins is a master of this feel. Lee Morgan plays an amazing solo and for me, this tune is a good way to introduce someone to jazz…

In 1976 Art Pepper recorded the album The Trip after a long period of inactivityThe title track of this album (an original composition by Art Pepper) is a 3/4 tune with an impressive Elvin Jones on drums.



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