'Mox Nix' by Art Farmer

Art Farmer - Modern Art

"…Thanks to his albums with George Russell, Charles Mingus, his own ‘New Jazz Conceptions’, and his exposure in the Miles Davis band, Bill Evans won the Down Beat International Critic’s Poll for the year 1958, in the New Star category.

The trumpeter Art Farmer and the tenor saxophonist Benny Golson were also New Star winner that year and Monte Kay’s (the new head of jazz at United Artists, ed.) idea was to make a sort of poll winners’ showcase. Art’s twin brother Addison joined on bass, and Dave Bailey (then with Art Farmer in the Gerry Mulligan Quartet) completed the group on drums.

The recording took place in the intimate atmosphere of the Nola Studios in New York, a vintage venue situated on top of Steinway Hall. At the end of the sessions, it was decided to issue the album under the trumpeter’s name as ‘Modern Art’.

With this quintessentially happy combo, the feeling of mutual admiration society at work came through strongly. Evans’s playing throughout was alert, exploratory, and clearly enunciated. On the leader’s blues, ‘Mox Nix’, the players’ fine credentials were displayed both singly and collectively, with Evans sparkling in rock ‘n’ roll mode on the head arrangement…”

Peter Pettinger in ‘Bill Evans: How My Heart Sings’, page 65/66

But, oooh, that beginning is so good! The piano is so not-Bill-Evans-like. The tune would sound nice as the opening of a Quentin Tarantino movie.

By the way, ‘Mox Nix’ is the American (slang)spelling of the German expression ‘macht nichts' (which means 'it doesn’t matter’) and it started being used in the US in the 1950’s by returning American soldiers who had been stationed in Germany during the post war period.

  1. jazzpages posted this