SONG OF THE DAY Art Blakey – Come Out & Meet Me Tonight

PrimaryMy love for drumming and rhythm was made for songs such as these! I don’t know much about Art Blakey’s music, not because I don’t like it, but I’ve just never investigated it enough. Today’s song was something I caught on the radio the other day and I took to it for its cheer, not to mention it’s rapturous, joyous percussion ..but Art Blakey was a drummer after all!!

Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA in 1919, Art Blakey was a jazz drummer, composer and bandleader. Though it wasn’t drumming that got him into music originally! Blakey had mastered the piano at a very young age and had planned on playing this throughout his musical career! This was until a very unexpected turn of events changed everything!!

In the early 1930’s, while gigging at the Democratic Club in Pittsburgh, Arts’ piano career came to an abrupt end when he was ordered onto the drums to make way for pianist Erroll Garner. This demand was issued by nightclubs’ owner, as Blakey later on often recalled, but it actually did him a favour! As a result, the young drummer became the student of legendary drummer and bandleader, Chick Webb

When he returned to Pittsburgh in 1937, Art Blakey then formed his own band, backing pianist Mary Lou Williams and in 1939 he joined and toured with pianist Fletcher Henderson for 3 years. Following this he joined (jazz singer/bandleader) Billy Eckstine’s band, playing with the likes of Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and Sarah Vaughn. When Eckstein disbanded his group in 1947, Blakey organised the a rehearsal band called the Seventeen Messengers and in 1948 he visited Africa where he learned polyrhythmic drumming and was introduced to Islam, taking the name Abdullah Ibn Buhaina.

As his career progressed in the 1950’s, he went on to perform with the likes of Miles Davis, Clifford Brown and Horace Silver. Blakey and Silver connected and formed the Jazz Messengers. This band soon evolved into Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers! His career spanned over thirty years and in that time he released a wealth of records! Today’s song is taken from an early album called, Orgy In Rhythm – Volume Two. Issued in 1957, this offering contains four tracks, all of which were recorded live on March 7th 1957! Come Out & Meet Me Tonight most definitely lives up to the record’s title and if you are all about the beats, this is for you!

Check it out above and if you fancy a listen to the whole album, I’ve included this below!

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