Sandy Brown Jazz

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Jazz As Art

Sonny Rollins

There's No Business Like Show Business

from the album Worktime


When you listen to music, you sometimes conjure images in your mind. Our Jazz As Art series invites you to listen to a piece of jazz and as it plays, scroll down the page and see which of the pieces of art I have chosen comes closest to the pictures in your mind. Hopefully, this will introduce you to recordings and art works you might not have spent time with before - I find it helps if you spend time with each picture .....


Tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins recorded the Worktime album in December, 1955, with Ray Bryant (piano), George Morrow (bass) and Max Roach (drums) and it was released on the Prestige label. The recordings were made shortly after Sonny came East to New Jersey as a member of the Max Roach-Clifford Brown group. There have been a number of re-issues / compilations since it was first released, and Ira Gitler, who wrote the liner notes for the original album, says: 'There was no doubt that Rollins had put in a lot of practice time on his horn in Chicago and was seriously ready to go back to work, demonstrating how he had matured from highly promising talent of the early fifties into a supersonic Sonny .... By the tail-end of the fifties he was beginning to burn out: feeling the burden of the praise critics were now heaping upon him; dissatisfied with the conditions in the small nightclubs where he did most of his public playing; and just in need of dropping out of the rat race to explore a spirituality that was becoming an increasingly larger part of him. His famous sabbatical began at the end of 1959 and lasted into 1961 ...'

There are only 5 tracks on the original Worktime album, each of them worthy of using for this feature. Sonny's composition Paradox; Billy Strayhorn's Raincheck; Cole Porter's It's Alright With Me; and George W. Meyer/Stanley Adams/Abel Baer's ballad There Are Such Things (my favourite track) originally recorded by Tommy Dorsey. Check them out sometime.

For this Jazz As Art feature, I have chosen Irving Berlin's There's No Business Like Show Business from the album. It has a distinctive approach and seems appropriate in the light of Sonny Rollins' 1950s experience. Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

Play the music and scroll down to see which of the ten pictures I have chosen fit the music for you ...





Bernard Buffet


Bernard Buffet Clown



Natasha Sazonova


Natasha Sazonova The Dance



Jackson Pollock


Jackson Pollock Floating Mind III



Victoria Topping


Victoria Topping Medicine For Nightmares




Juan Félix Campos



Juan Felix Campus painting



Florine Stettheimer


Florine Stettheimer The cathedrals of Broadway



Wassily Kandinsky


Wassily Kandinsky painting



Pieter Bruegel The Elder


 	Pieter Bruegel the Elder The Wedding Dance



Darryl Daniels


Darryl Daniels Royal Blues Quartet



Janine Wesselmann


Janine Wesselmann Showtime




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Other pages you might find of interest :

More Jazz As Art
Video Juke Box
Tracks Unwrapped
Photographic Memories
Name That Tune

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