BENNY GOLSON: That’s Funky

Catalog# 70743

UPC# 602267074321

Benny Golson: Tenor sax;

Monty Alexander: Piano

Nat Adderley: Trumpet

Ray Drummond: Bass; Marvin “Smitty” Smith: Drums


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“Five Stars! – This album is 50 minutes of great jazz you will want to own. Benny Golson at his best!” – Lee Prosser,

Legendary Jazz Saxophonist and hit Composer Benny Golson and his All-Star cohorts (Nat Adderley, Monty Alexander, Ray Drummond, and Marvin ‘Smitty’ Smith) capture the heart of Funk on this stirring Arkadia Records album, “Benny Golson: That’s Funky”. Golson has put together a menu of tunes that represent some of Jazz music’s greatest hits, creating some of the Funkiest moments of the Century.

…thoroughly infectious! Worthy interpretations that sound fresh without sentimentality or overt pretensions.” – John Murph, Jazztimes

When most people think of Funk, it’s generally associated with R&B stars such as George Clinton (and his Parliament/Funkadelic bands), or the Godfather of Soul, James Brown (whose former band members include Funk Royalty such as Maceo Parker, Pee Wee Ellis and Fred Wesley).

…a pleasure to listen to from beginning to end. This effort seems to be a labor of love…” – CD Revolutions- June 2000

Well before the Clinton’s and Brown’s of music made their presence felt during the 60s, Hardbop Grandpop Horace Silver was the first to pull Funk out of the closet and call it by name with his classic “Opus De Funk” during the 50s. In a sense, this action made it “acceptable” for this Blues based sensibility to be recognized in Jazz in a formal way. Silver wasn’t the only voice laying down this sound, coaxing fans out of their seats to joyous romping and nodding their heads to funky rhythms. There were other architects who helped to build this brand of music and spread the funky word. Among them is Philadelphia born and bred saxophonist Benny Golson.

…a groove-y workout for the horns backed by Ray Drummond’s prowling bass and Marvin “Smitty” Smith’s rumbling drum fills. (Golson) contributes two of the album’s high points: “Mississippi Windows” combines sweet gospel with the bluesy moans of Golson and (Nat) Adderley, while “Blues March” uses Smith’s Art Blakey inspired rolls as syncopated springboards for sharp horn formations.” – Matthew S. Robinson, The Boston Globe

“Benny Golson: That’s Funky”, from Arkadia Records, is not only a testament to the authors of some of the finest Jazz compositions, but also a recording of some of the funkiest performances of the past Century.

Song Selection:

1. Mack The Knife (Funky Version) (Kurt Weill) 5:38
2. Moanin’ (Bobby Timmons) 7:59
3. Sidewinder (Lee Morgan) 6:12
5. Mississippi Windows (Benny Golson) 8:17
6. Work Song (Nat Adderley) 6:22
7. Moritat (Modern bebop version) (Kurt Weill) 6:01
8. Blues March (Benny Golson) 8:38

Benny Golson: Tenor sax
Monty Alexander: Piano
Ray Drummond: Bass
Marvin “Smitty” Smith: Drums
Nat Adderley: Trumpet

Monty Alexander appears courtesy of Concord Records.

All songs arranged by: Benny Golson
Total Time: Approx 50 minutes

About Benny Golson:

Multi-talented and internationally famous jazz legend, – a composer, arranger, lyricist, producer – and tenor saxophonist of world note, Benny Golson was born in Philadelphia, PA on January 25, 1929.

Raised with an impeccable musical pedigree, Golson has played in the bands of world famous Benny Goodman, Dizzy Gillespie, Lionel Hampton, Earl Bostic and Art Blakey.

Composer/Arranger/Performing Artist:

Few jazz musicians can claim to be true innovators and even fewer can boast of a performing and recording career that literally redefines the term “Jazz.” A prodigious writer, Golson has written well over 300 compositions. Benny Golson has made major contributions to the world of music with such jazz standards as:

“Killer Joe”, “I Remember Clifford”, “Along Came Betty”, “Stablemates”, “Whisper Not”, “Blues March”, “Five Spot After Dark”, and “Are you Real”

Benny Golson is the only living jazz artist to have written 8 standards for jazz repertoire. These jazz standards have found their way into countless recordings internationally over the years and are still being recorded.

He has recorded over 30 albums, including six for Arkadia Records, in the United States and Europe under his own name and innumerable ones with other major artists.

For more than 60 years, Golson has enjoyed an illustrious, musical career in which he has not only made scores of recordings but has also composed and arranged music for:

Count Basie, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Sammy Davis Jr., Mama Cass Elliott, Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, Lionel Hampton, Shirley Horn, David Jones and the Monkees, Quincy Jones, Peggy Lee, Carmen McRae, Anita O’Day, Itzhak Perlman, Oscar Peterson, Lou Rawls, Mickey Rooney, Diana Ross, The Animals (Eric Burden), Mel Torme, George Shearing, and Dusty Springfield.

His prolific writing includes scores for hit TV series and films:

“M*A*S*H”, “Mannix”, “Mission Impossible”, “Mod Squad”, “Room 222”, “Run for Your Life”, “The Partridge Family”, “The Academy Awards”, and “The Karen Valentine Show”, Television specials for ABC, CBS and NBC. Television specials for BBC in London and Copenhagen, Denmark. Theme for Bill Cosby’s last TV show, and A french film ‘Des Femmes Disparaissent” (Paris)

He has written music for national radio and television spots for some of the major advertising agencies in the country. Some of these commercials were for:

Borateem, Canada Dry, Carnation, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Clorox, Dodge, General Telephone, Gillette, Heinz Foods, Jack in The Box, Liquid Plum’r, MacDonald’s, Mattel Toys, Monsanto, Nissan, Ohrbachs, Ore-Ida Frozen Potatoes, Parliament Cigarettes, Pepsi Cola, and Texaco.


Benny Golson has absolute mastery of the jazz medium. He has not only blazed a trail in the world of jazz but is passionate about teaching jazz to young and old alike. He has lectured at the Lincoln Center through a special series by Wynton Marsalis. He has lectured to doctoral candidates at New York University and to the faculty at National University at San Diego.

Honored with doctorates from William Paterson College, Wayne, NJ and Berklee School of Music, Boston, MA, Dr. Golson has also conducted workshops and clinics at:

  • Appalachian University, Boone, NC
  • Berklee School fo Music, Boston, MA
  • Eastman School of Music, Rochester, NY
  • Howard University, Washington, DC
  • Julliard School of Music, New York, NY
  • Manhattan School of Music, New York, NY
  • New England Conservatory
  • Paris Conservatory, Paris, France
  • Rutgers University, New Orleans, LA
  • Stanford University, Stanford, CA
  • University of Denver, Denver, CO
  • University of Idaho, Moscow, ID
  • University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Lawrence University Conservatory of Music, Appleton, WI
  • William Paterson College, Wayne, NJ

Golson’s musical odyssey has taken him around the world. In 1987 he was sent by the US State Department on a cultural tour of Southeast Asia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Burma, Singapore. Later, Philip Morris International sent him on an assignment to Bangkok, Thailand to write music for the Bangkok Symphony Orchestra.

A live performer who consistently knocks audiences off their feet, Benny Golson has given hundreds of performances in the USA, Europe, South America, the Far East and Japan for decades. Benny is also working on a major college textbook and his autobiography.

This humble musical giant continues to impress critics, fans and fellow musicians with his prodigious contributions to the world of Jazz.

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