Monday, December 20, 2010

The Butler Did It...

During one of my lessons in Toronto years ago, Terry Clarke once referred to Frank Butler as "The West Coast Philly Joe Jones". While I'm not terribly familiar with Butler's drumming lately I've really enjoyed his playing on a Curtis Counce album recommended to me by bassist Kieran Overs entitled "Carl's Blues". Check out the solo drum track entitled "The Butler Did It".

Butler also appeared on the West Coast sessions found on the Miles Davis album "Seven Steps to Heaven" (also featuring pianist Victor Feldman on those tracks with Butler). Of course the other half of the album featured Tony Williams and Herbie Hancock but the outakes are available on a box set released by Columbia and you can hear Frank Butler and Victor Feldman playing different versions the same tunes that were eventually recorded with Tony Williams on drums and Hancock on piano.

It's really quite revealing and interesting to compare the different versions & different rhythm sections, especially with Frank Butler taking a more traditional bop approach to tunes like Seven Steps to Heaven and Joshua then comparing that to Tony's unique, unconventional (at the time anyways) and, of course, ground breaking approach.

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