Prestige Meets …   ... ... ... ... ... ...

REVIEW   DownBeat  /  March 15, 1962

Roland Kirk with Jack McDuff
Kirk’s Work

Prestige 7210


Rudy Van Gelder Remasters
Prestige 65th Anniversary Vinyl Series
Buy it on Amazon

German critic Joachim Berendt once said of Kirk, “He has all the wild, untutored quality of a street musician coupled with the subtlety of a modern jazzman.”

As a tenor saxophonist, Kirk is in the hard-swinging groove generally associated with many of the tenor men who came out of bop. It is his other instruments, the strich and the manzello, that impart the “street” flavor, especially when he is playing them simultaneously and/or with tenor, as on Three for Dizzy.

This multiplicity, plus McDuff’s charging organ, make this LP sound as if there is a bigger band present. Listen to Sixty-Eight; McDuff’s backgrounds are very effective, and he plays his best solo of the album. He’s no Jimmy Smith, but he does have a lot of spirit and works well with Kirk.

As a flutist (Funk Underneath) Kirk also shows himself to be distinctive. While playing flute, he produces a parallel voice, not by humming as do Sam Most and Yusef Lateef, but by singing and growling in his throat.

Occasionally, he gives a short “wheeee” on the siren whistle that hangs around his neck. Its effect is somewhat whimsical and not overdone at all.

There are a lot of blues, major and minor, in this set, but they are not wearing. Additional balance is supplied by a tender mood on Too Late Now and the inclusion of Whoopee and Waltz (done in 4/4, the latter is a good use of unlikely material). All in all, this is a cooking set. —Ira Gitler

Kirk’s Work: Three for Dizzy; Makin’ Whoopee; Funk Underneath; Kirk’s Work; Doin’ the Sixty-Eight; Too Late Now; Skater’s Waltz.
Personnel: Kirk, tenor saxophone, strich, manzello, flute, siren; Jack McDuff, organ; Joe Benjamin, bass; Arthur Taylor, drums



The Prestige Sweepstakes entry period is officially over.

Thanks to everyone who participated.


The sweepstakes will begin on June 1, 2014.

All entries must be received by 11:59 p.m. EST on November 30, 2014.

To enter this sweepstakes, complete the required fields on the entry form located online at

Entrants are limited to one entry per person.