Monday, September 29, 2014
Pete Eye Trio S/T Cavern Custom Recordings 1976
First, this is sought after, namely for the first track, Pete Eye's workout of "Sissy Strut." While $50 may seem like a lot for something so obscure and unassuming, the guys forking over money for it are spot on with this this tune. It's epic, challenges even the Meters. Eye's work on the keyboard is funky and light, the stand up bass keeps the song rooted in jazz, and the drums are tight, no huge breaks, but tight and well done.
From that track, the album does what Pete Eye was known for. He was a well studied piano player, showcasing most his skills surrounded by jazz arrangements. While the rest of the LP isn't as awesome as "Sissy Strut", it does show that Eye is a great piano player. Many tracks see Eye just showing off in almost a classical sense. Then there are more funk driven moments. He throws down on the organ, "Good Bait," gets bluesy on "Back at the Chicken Shack." The final three tracks "Sumthin You Got" is soulful, with vocals who I assume are Eye's. He's not an amazing singer, but gets his point across. The band does a workout of "Them Changes" which was made famous by Buddy Miles, the vocals lessen the tune, but still an enjoyable rendition. The Trio dips into rock n' roll on "Pete Eye's Boogie" which sounds a bit hooky, but the organ riffs are spectacular. Finally, all the tracks, show off the skills of his supporting artists, John Hatton on bass and Barry Gould on drums.
Eye was actually born Byron Floyd Eye in Indianapolis, Indiana. His family would move to Kansas City and Eye graduated from Central High School in KCMO. He served overseas in Korea as part of the US Navy, but after his service returned home to Kansas City to live and play in the historic jazz scene. He was well known player around town, but was sought after just as much as technician and tuner of the instrument. He sadly passed away in 2010.