1. You Don't Know What Love is
2. St. Thomas
3. Strode Road
5. Blue 7
Another great, great album. Sonny Rollins was the contender to the title of best Jazz sax player against the also great John Coltrane, but I must say that at this point in time Rollins was probably the superior one. This being before the great works of Coltrane, particularly A Love Supreme.
Everyone knows St. Thomas, even if they don't know they know it and even if they've never heard of Rollins before. However the album is packed full of great tracks, in fact all of them are pretty awesome. However, other than St. Thomas, Strode Rode has to be the definite stand-out track here.
So really enjoyable and flawlessly cool music by one of the immortal truly great virtuosos of the tenor sax. This is really an album that you need to have even if you are only very marginally interested in jazz music.
1. St. Thomas
2. Strode Road
3. You Don't Know What Love Is
"St. Thomas" is a calypso-inspired piece named after Saint Thomas in the Virgin Islands. The tune is traditional and had already been recorded by Randy Weston in 1955 under the title "Fire Down There". (In the booklet provided with the boxed set, The Complete Prestige Recordings, Rollins makes it clear that it was the record company that insisted on his taking credit.) In any case, the piece has since become a jazz standard, and this is its most famous recorded version.
St. Thomas, just witness Max Roach's solo: