Any time you have three jazz masters live on stage together, tearing into a set of bop standards, it’s going to be a good thing. And this album, featuring Oscar Peterson on piano, Milt Jackson on vibes and Ray Brown on bass, fits that bill.
Following up on a 1999 release of selections from the group’s performance over Thanksgiving weekend at New York City’s Blue Note in 1998, “What’s Up?: The Very Tall Band” features nearly an hour’s worth of additional numbers from that same engagement.
While each of these titans already had a lifetime of accomplishment behind him at this point, they still sound nearly as fresh and vibrant as they did in the Fifties. Drummer Karriem Riggins, from Brown’s regular band, takes advantage of the opportunity to accompany, laying down a pulsing foundation and sounding just as inspired as the stalwarts with whom he was sharing the stage. A great release.