Album of the Day
Coward of the County
Ginger Baker had been a highly regarded blues and jazz drummer long before he became a star in Cream, so the progressive jazz of COWARD OF THE COUNTY should come as no surprise. Baker shares credit on the release with the Denver Jazz Quintet-to-Octet, a group featuring the percussionist, trumpeter Ron Miles and bassist Artie Moore at its core (sax great James Carter sits in on three tracks here). The playing is remarkably cohesive on the Atlantic set, with Ginger's explosive drum work mixed to the fore. Baker penned two of these songs (“Dangle the Carrot” and “Cyril Davies,” a tribute to the U.K. blues pioneer) but Miles contributes the bulk of the varied originals and proves to be as gifted a songwriter as he is an instrumentalist. Now celebrating its 20th anniversary, COWARD OF THE COUNTY is one of Ginger Baker's very best.