Sonny Rollins was surprised when a long-lost tape of his Carnegie Hall debut was discovered among the Voice of America's huge collection of recordings at the Library of Congress. The AP reports that after listening to the tape, the tenor saxophonist got inspired to return to Carnegie to mark the 50th anniversary of that historic concert.
So tonight, Rollins will be performing the same three songs; "Moritat," "Sonnymoon for Two," and "Some Enchanted Evening" that the then 27-year-old saxophonist played with bassist Wendell Marshall and drummer Kenny Dennis at his first Carnegie concert on Nov. 29, 1957.
The concert tape had been lost until 2005 when Larry Appelbaum, a jazz specialist at the Library of Congress, discovered a set of tapes in the Voice of America music collection simply labeled "sp. Event 11/29/57 carnegie jazz concert (#1)." Those tapes also included a historic recording of pianist Thelonious Monk's quartet with saxophonist John Coltrane, which became one of 2005's most important jazz releases.