Ralph Peterson "Back to Stay" [SJL1006]
"...this edition of the Fo'tet is the best ever." - Four and a Half Stars – Down Beat Magazine
"Peterson is always a joy to hear and he sounds better than ever. Tenor saxophonist Michael Brecker guests on "Soul Eyes" and contributes a passionate solo on the burning title track. Back to Stay is a welcome return to recording for Peterson and one of 1999's best releases." - Greg Turner - All Music Guide
Ralph Peterson’s story is a true modern jazz story. Peterson was already making his mark while still a student at Rutgers University. Art Blakey installed him in his much-publicised two-drummer big band. He was soon active with other members of the jazz elite, touring and recording with the likes of Walter Davis Jr. John Faddis, Count Basie and Stanley Turrentine. Soon his talents were also being deployed alongside the "new" young lions. Diane Reeves, Terence Blanchard, Branford Marsalis and his very successful period with David Murray. Blue Note Records rushed to sign him as co-leader of their new "supergroup" OTB. The first (of four) OTB recording won Japan’s prestigious Swing Journal Gold Disc award in 1988. Then Peterson's world started to spin out of control. A series of traumas, many self-inflicted, started to impact both his music and his personal life. Just in time Ralph realised that he really did want to go on, that he was squandering a gift he had been blessed with. In 1997/98 Betty Carter, a shrewd judge of character and, at the time, enjoying worldwide star status, took Ralph on the road. One tour became two. The next friend to step forward was Michael Brecker. He too was aware of the magic Ralph could bring to a band and signed him for several extended tours during 1998/99.
Now we have this truly outstanding recording......Peterson is back, and he is Back to Stay.