Benny Golson, 71, has long proved his mastery of the tenor saxophone, but it should also be noted that he is equally adept at writing and arranging.
On That's Funky, Golson teams with bassist Ray Drummond, drummer Marvin "Smitty" Smith, pianist Monty Alexander and late trumpeter Nat Adderley for a nostalgic date that includes an update of Adderley's enduring "Work Song" (RealAudio excerpt) and Golson's "Blue's March" (RealAudio excerpt).
Many of the tunes here have been covered time and again, but rarely with the sparkle and joie de vivre that Golson summons from his quintet.
Golson's take on Kurt Weill's "Mack the Knife" is guaranteed to move the feet. Bobby Timmons' "Moanin' " receives some loping reggae licks from Alexander, and Adderley demonstrates his bravura on Lee Morgan's "Sidewinder."
The centerpiece of this recording though, is Golson's funk-laden "Mississippi Window" (RealAudio excerpt), inspired by his time on the road playing R&B with Bull Moose Jackson in 1951.