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Morning Dance

(Jay Beckenstein)

The title track from Spyro Gyra’s 1979 sophomore album managed #24 on the Billboard pop chart, which was no small feat for an instrumental at the time.  It topped the adult contemporary chart and went to #17 in the United Kingdom.

The song was penned by Jay Beckenstein, whose alto saxophone does most of the heavy lifting here, although each instrumentalist is allowed to shine.  Marimba, percussion, and steel drums introduce the proceedings, and play an important part throughout.  Then the main melody is ushered in by the alto sax, which trades off to the marimba, followed by the electric piano, played by Dave Samuels and Jeremy Wall, respectively.  Both musicians have plenty of room to improvise.  They are rejoined by the sax and the piece builds to an exuberant conclusion.  Fans insist this still sounds as fresh today as it did in 1979.

Spyro Gyra recordings
Infinity Records INF-50,011 (IN100,050)