Sunday, January 04, 2009

Sony Rollins - Live in Vienne DVD (Doxy, 2008)

It must have been amazing seeing Sonny Rollins live in an old Roman amphitheatre in France. The next best thing is to see this well produced DVD that features Rollins and a crack band performing a fine set of calypsos, standards and ballads. The great saxophonist is joined by Clifton Anderson, trombone, Bobby Broom on guitar, Bob Cranshaw on bass, Victor Lewis on drums and Kimati Dinizulu on percussion. The calypsos are Rollins' trademark and the two performed here are wonderful. The recent and timely composition "Global Warming" and the familiar favorite "Don't Stop the Carnival" are just wonderfully buoyant performances, with Rollins playing like the fearsome gladiators that must have fought in that stadium thousands of years ago. He swoops and sweeps his thrilling solos over a band that supports his every move without ever getting in the way of the action. The disc also includes lengthy version of the standard "They Say It's Wonderful" and the latter-day Rollins original "Sonny Please." This disc was very well filmed and produced with multiple camera angles that keep the band and the soloists front and center. This is a fine performance and an excellent addition to the Road Shows CD that also highlighted Sonny Rollins live concert prowess.

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