Cannonball: Black Messiah (The Black Messiah), P. Bouk ("in Europe")
Marc Russo: Spin (Yellowjackets "The Spin")
Bob Berg: Steppin' (Steppin)
Kenny Garret: Giant Steps
Unknown: April in Paris, Phil Nimmons (Canadian Scene via Phil Nimmons)
Phil Woods: everything on Jazz Mission to Moscow
Thomas Chapin: everything on Sky Piece
Not sax, but one of the best solos ever recorded:
McCoy Tyner: Naima (McCoy Tyner plays Coltrane)
with the current guys I'd have to say:
Chris Potter: Lift (Lift: Live @ the VV)
Mark Turner: anything
Joshua Redman: The Cross (Kurt Rosenwinkel's Deep Song)
Jerry Bergonzi: Have you Met Miss Jones, Just Friends (both on numerous albums, my favorites on the two Live Gonz! albums)
Charles Lloyd: Tales of Rumi (although the Sangam recording is AMAZING [saw them live last November at the Library of Congress, best show i've ever seen] I'd have to say that i'm going crazy over the recording on his album Canto)
Cannonball - 74 Miles Away (on "Cannonball Plays Zawinul") and Work Song (on "Nippon Soul")
Dexter Gordon - Society Red
(with thanks to some of the responders to my other thread on a similar topic... )
Cannonball: Freddie the Freeloader and Flamenco Sketches
Coltrane: But Not for Me (particularly near the end - on My Favorite Things)
Antonio Hart: Ruby My Dear (on Hargrove's Diamond In the Rough)
Phil Woods: Just The Way You Are
Coltrane's solo near the end of "But Not for Me" is the closest thing I have ever heard to what seems to be a soloist thinking of two different melodies at the same time, and playing them both (using only one horn).
Cannonball - Lover Man, Easy to Love
Kenny Garrett - I have a bootleg of him playing Cherokee w/a big band ... so sick.
Michael Brecker - Giant Steps, Bootleg Body and Soul
Coltrane - Naima, Night has a thousand eyes
- Gerald Albright: Georgia On My Mind, from Live at Birdland West
- Zoot Sims (on soprano): Pennies, from Heaven, from Blues For Two (with Joe Pass)
- Dexter Gordon: Ernie's Tune, from Ballads (originally from Dexter Calling)
- Eric Marienthal, The Way You Look Tonight, from Walk Tall: Tribute to Cannonball Adderley
- Stanley Turrentine: Since I Fell for You, from Ballads: Stanley Turrentine
I'm with SaxColossusJR. The first time I heard Countdown, my brains were so melted they were running out of my ears.
There are so many choices, but I have to think about the times that I listened to a record for the first time and had that sense of disbelief. Wether they are great solos or not after repeated listening, they still sat you back in your seat like that guy in that ad for Memorex... Is it live or is it Memorex?
Lenny Pickett's solo on Knock Your Self Out, Tower of Power, Live and in Living Color
I'll second Bob Berg on Steppin'--unreal tenor/drums choruses. I would add Johnny Griffin on The Way You Look Tonight from A Blowin' Session--even Trane sounds out of his depth next to Griffin on this one.
l definitely second the Lenny Picket "Knock Yourself Out" solo. It was a huge influence on my R&B playing style. 300 measures of pure love... if you really listen to it you can hear all sorts of foreshadowing throughout. Great spontaneous creativity there.. and I think he was only 18 at the time.
Another great solo: Phil Woods - "Cheek to Cheek" from "Live at the Showboat". Possible Phil's best recording (IMHO).
A lot of great solos have been mentioned in this thread!
On Buddy Rich's Mercy Mercy album Don Menza's tenor solo on Channel One Suite, especially the cadenza, is absolutely amazing. If you haven't heard it yet, you are missing out on an amazing display of musical and technical brilliance.
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