The logical followup to the piece below about Chris Byars’ hero Lucky Thompson is a piece by Thompson. Here’s a film from Paris in 1959 at the Blue Note. The rhythm section is Bud Powell, piano; Pierre Michelot, bass; Jimmy Gourley, guitar; Kenny Clarke, drums. The compostion is Dizzy Gillespie’s and Charlie Parker’s “Anthropology.” The video clip ends before the tune does, but this is a rare opportunity to see the great tenor saxophonist in action with a band of his peers.
Make that two pieces by Thompson. This is from a 1957 French television broadcast. The song is “I’ll Remember April.” Michelot and Clarke are again in the rhythm section. This time the pianist is Martial Solal. Thompson’s ingenious exploitation of the chords is an example of the harmonic inventiveness that won him the admiration of musicians from the 1940s to this day.