This album was recorded in October of 1962 at the legendary Jazz Workshop in San Francisco as part of a two week engagement. Mr. Roach usually traveled with his girlfriend (who became his wife), singer Abby Lincoln but not this time. This writer was there for two nights but not on the evening of the recording. The same two pieces were played every night, among many others. By this time Max Roach was playing music that had sociological and political overtones in keeping with his African-American heritage and the turbulent times in the USA. The title piece is called "Speak brother Speak" and it instrumentally depicts people standing on a soapbox in any ghetto in the USA and speaking their piece. It is in a series of movements that feature everyone in the band. The second long piece is Max Roach's arrangement of a Heitor Villa-Lobos theme called "Prelude" that displays the talents and soloing of all four band members. The tenor saxophone is played by the great Clifford Jordan and his high keening sound and melodic concept displays his deep emotional commitment to the music. On piano is Mal Waldron who reflects the influence of Bud Powell and Monk but with his penchant for hypnotic repetition. The strong bass of the lesser known Eddie Kahn is a great asset to this band as well as his soloing ability and Mr.Roach is a picture of intense fire and creativity. This recording captures one of the great moments in Jazz and furthers our tribute to Black History Month.
If I Love Again
Donald Byrd · Byrd's Word
Donald Byrd/Gigi Gryce · New Formulas from The
Red Garland · Soul Junction
Here Am I.
Donald Byrd · Byrd in Hand
Little Boy Blue
Donald Byrd · Byrd in Flight
Donald Byrd · Live at The Half Note
Speak Brother Speak!
Max Roach · Speak brother Speak!