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Belated birthday shoutout to Andrew Hill, whose extraordinary Blue Note run deserves to be spoken of with the same reverence as Dexter Gordon. Or Wayne Shorter. Or Herbie Hancock. Or…well, you get the idea. What a unique voice in jazz…cerebral, powerful, emotive, and untethered to traditional approaches to time. Hill delighted in pushing boundaries until he established new ones, then broke through those and began the cycle again. This record blows my mind, with cascades of notes emerging from unexpected places, taking form, and then dissolving into something else entirely…the effect is mesmerizing. With ‘Andrew!!!’, Hill turns avoiding-the-obvious into a full-contact sport. That said, he never goes over the edge into totally free playing, even when his knottier compositions have elusive tonal or rhythmic centers. Melodies are implied rather than obvious, and time signatures follow rules seemingly of Hill’s own making. Still there’s nothing arbitrary about Hill's approach—he delivers lines thoughtfully yet soulfully, and while his music can be dense and challenging, if you’re willing to listen with open, adventurous ears you’ll find much of it has an ethereal, mysterious beauty; even when your brain is spinning a rainbow beachball like an overworked MacBook trying to process it all. The sheer number of melodic waypoints throughout ‘Andrew!!!’ is both delightful and overwhelming. I recommend spending some time with this record to get the most out of it and you’ll be richly rewarded. Recorded 25 June, 1964 at Van Gelder Studios with John Gilmore (tenor saxophone) Bobby Hutcherson (vibraphone) Andrew Hill (piano) Richard Davis (bass) & Joe Chambers (drums). #rarerecords #andrewhill #bobbyhutcherson #joechambers #richarddavis #johngilmore #jazzrecordcollector

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