Recorded in 1961 but not released until 1979, the varied Chant is a fine representation of top trumpeter Donald Byrd's style and of the partnership of five years that he shared with baritone saxophonist Pepper Adams. Throughout these performances, Byrd's work is especially lyrical. On "I'm An Old Cowhand" and "That's All," he builds whole choruses around the melody in theme and variation style. Just ten years later, Byrd and Herbie Hancock (who appears here on one of his first ever recording dates) were separately funking up the commercial market and redefining the sound of R&B. This music remains fresh and vital well over a half a century later!
The Blue Note Tone Poet Series was born out of Blue Note President Don Was' admiration for the exceptional audiophile Blue Note LP reissues presented by Music Matters. The label brought Joe Harley (from Music Matters), aka the "Tone Poet," on board to curate and supervise a series of reissues from the Blue Note family of labels. Extreme attention to detail has been paid to getting these right in every conceivable way, from the deluxe gatefold jacket graphics and printing quality to superior mastering (all analog direct from the master tapes) by Kevin Gray to superb 180-gram audiophile LP pressings by Record Technology Inc. Every aspect of these Blue Note/Tone Poet releases is done to the highest-possible standard. It means that you will never find a superior version.
"The LPs are mastered directly from the original analog master tapes by Kevin at his incredible facility called Cohearent Mastering. We go about it in the exact same way that we did for so many years for the Music Matters Blue Note reissues. We do not roll off the low end, boost the top or do any limiting of any kind. We allow the full glory of the original Blue Note masters to come though unimpeded! Short of having an actual time machine, this is as close as you can get to going back and being a fly on the wall for an original Blue Note recording session."
- Joe Harley