Hank Mobley – Jazz Message of Hank Mobley, Volume.2 {Savoy} “mono”


Review by Jim Todd (allmusic.com)

Impressive lineups, both in the front line and the rhythm section, fuel the two 1956 sessions on this Savoy reissue. The players are committed, the writing is good, and the performances reward repeated listening. The result is a worthwhile precursor to the industry-standard hard bop Mobley would later record for Blue Note.Lee Morgan, then 18, joins Mobley on two tracks that have pianist Hank Jones, bassist Doug Watkins, and drummer Art Taylor in the rhythm section. Even if Morgan at this time was audibly still growing as a trumpet player, his poise, execution, and resourceful imagination were already the tools of a master. Donald Byrd, on form and playing with crispness and authority, moves into the trumpet chair for the three remaining tracks. This time it’s Barry Harris on piano, Kenny Clarke on drums, and Watkins (again) on bass. The influence on Mobley of swing era tenors, from Lester Young to Illinois Jacquet, can be clearly heard on these tracks. Mobley’s respect for and understanding of the pre-bebop style serve him well in his contribution to the development of the predominant jazz style that followed bebop. In addition to three Mobley originals, there is a blues by Thad Jones and another from Watkins. The standout track is Mobley’s “Space Flight,” a bright, up-tempo bop number that has memorable solos from Mobley, Byrd, Harris, and Clarke. The recording on this CD is very good but, as is common on Savoy reissues, the running time isn’t long — 32 minutes in the case of this jazz message.

Tracks:
01 – Thad’s Blues
02 – Doug’s Minor B’ Ok”
03 – B. for B.B.
04 – Blues Number Two
05 – Space Flight

Personnel:
Hank Mobley – tenor saxophone
Lee Morgan, Donald Byrd – trumpet
Hank Jones, Barry Harris – piano
Doug Watkins – bass
Art Taylor, Kenny Clarke – drums

Recorded on November 7 and July 23; 1956

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Hank Mobley – Jazz Message of Hank Mobley, Volume.1 {Savoy} ”mono”


Review by Scott Yanow (allmusic.com)

Other than a Blue Note date from the previous year, this CD contains tenor saxophonist Hank Mobley’s first two sessions as a leader. With trumpeter Donald Byrd, either Hank Jones or Ronnie Ball on piano, Wendell Marshall or Doug Watkins on bass, drummer Kenny Clarke and (on three numbers) the unusual altoist John LaPorta, Mobley performs a mixture of originals and standards. The results (highlighted by “There’ll Never Be Another You,” “When I Fall in Love” and “Budo”) are a swinging hard bop date. Nothing all that unusual occurs and the CD clocks in at an average LP’s length but the swinging music is easily recommended to straight-ahead jazz fans and (unlike many of Denon’s Savoy reissues), these two sessions are brought back complete.

Tracks:
01 – There’ll Never Be Another You
02 – Cattin’
03 – Madeline
04 – When I Fall in Love
05 – Budo
06 – I Married an Angel
07 – The Jazz Message (with Freedom for All)

Personnel:
Donald Byrd – trumpet
Hank Mobley – tenor saxophone
John LaPorta – alto saxophone
Ronnie Ball, Horace Silver – piano
Doug Watkins, Wendell Marshall – bass
Kenny Clarke – drums

Recorded on February 8, 1956 and January 30, 1956.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Grant Green – Latin Bit {Blue Note}[RVG]


Review by Scott Yanow (allmusic.com)

Grant Green, being known mainly as a soul-jazz guitarist, eventually gravitated into the popular boogaloo sound, a derivation of Latin music. The Latin Bit is the natural bridge to that next phase, though a bit premature for most in 1961-1963, even relative to the subsequent bossa nova craze. Pianist Johnny Acea, long an underrated jazzman, is the nucleus of this session, grounding it with witty chops, chordal comping, and rhythmic meat. The Latino rhythm section of drummer Willie Bobo and conga player Carlos “Patato” Valdes personify authentic, seasoned spice, while at times the chekere sound of Garvin Masseaux makes the soup too thick. At its collective best, the group presents a steady, serene, and steamy “Besame Mucho” and the patient, slow, slinky, sultry “Tico Tico.” Just a small step below is a classy take on Charlie Parker’s “My Little Suede Shoes,” a premier jazz bebop (emphasis) tune with a Latin undertow and Green’s tiniest staccato phrases, slightly marred by the overbearing constant chekere, but still classic. “Mambo Inn” is played inaccurately, but forgivable. “Mama Inez” ranks high for its calypso-infused happy feeling and wry stop-start lines. The straight-ahead hard bopper “Brazil” and lone soul-jazz tune, “Blues for Juanita,” display the single-note acumen that made Green’s style instantly recognizable. Tacked on the end are two selections with pianist Sonny Clark and tenor saxophonist Ike Quebec. While Clark is not known for Latin or soul-jazz, he’s quite good, while Quebec, who emphasized Brazilian rhythms in the last years of his life, plays hip secondary harmonies on the bossa nova-flavored “Granada,” but is in the complete background and a non-factor on the pop tune “Hey There.” This CD always yielded mixed results for staunch fans of Green, but a revisit shows it to be a credible effort, even if slightly flawed in part.

Tracks:
01 – Mambo Inn
02 – Besame Mucho
03 – Mama Inez
04 – Brazil
05 – Tico Tico
06 – My Little Suede Shoes
07 – Blues for Juanita
08 – Grenada
09 – Hey There

Personnel:
Grant Green – guitar
Ike Quebec – tenor sax (#8 & 9)
Johnny Acea (#1-7), Sonny Clark (#8 & 9) – piano
Wendell Marshall – bass
Willie Bobo – drums
Carlos “Patato” Valdes – congas
Garvin Masseaux – chekere (#1-6)

Recorded on April 26 (#1-7) and September 7 (#8 & 9), 1961
at the Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Ernestine Anderson – My Kinda Swing {Mercury}


Review by Ken Dryden (allmusic.com)

Ernestine Anderson was 32 years old at the time of this 1960 session, not long before her career inexplicably fell into the doldrums. This album finds her in great form, supported by a cast of musicians including Clark Terry, Hank Jones, Yusef Lateef, Ernie Royal, Frank Rehak, and Kenny Burrell, with terrific arrangements by Ernie Wilkins. She achieves the perfect balance in her interpretation of “Trouble Is a Man,” a masterful ballad written by Alec Wilder, and she’s clearly in her element in the hard-rocking blues “See See Rider.” Terry’s striking trumpet almost provides a contrasting vocal alongside Anderson during “All My Life,” while her understated approach to a quick run through “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)” showcases Jones and Burrell. Lateef’s oboe adds to the exotic flavor of “Lazy Afternoon.”

Tracks:
01 – My Kinda Love
02 – Trouble is a Man
03 – See See Rider
04 – Moonlight in Vermont
05 – Land of Dreams
06 – Black Moonlight
07 – All My Life
08 – Mound Bayou
09 – I’ll Never Be the Same
10 – It Don’t Mean a Thing (if it Ain’t Got That Swing)
11 – Lazy Afternoon
12 – They Didn’t Believe Me

Personnel:
Ernestine Anderson – vocals, with Ernie Wilkins’s Orchestra including:
Ernie Royal, Clark Terry – trumpet
Frank Rehak – trombone
Yusef Lateef – tenor sax, flute, oboe
Tate Houston – baritone sax
Mac Ceppos – violin
Hank Jones – piano
Kenny Burrell – guitar
Art Davis – bass
Willie Rodriguez – percussion
Charlie Persip – drums
Ernie Wilkins – arranger & conductor

Recorded late 1960 in New York City.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, scans

Joe Henderson – Relaxin’ at Camarillo {Contemporary}[OJC]


Review by Scott Yanow (allmusic.com)

Originally on Contemporary, this CD reissue teams the great tenor Joe Henderson with pianist Chick Corea, either Tony Dumas or Richard Davis on bass, and Peter Erskine or Tony Williams on drums. The repertoire includes two songs by Corea, Henderson’s “Y Todavia la Quiero,” the standard ballad “My One and Only Love,” and Charlie Parker’s “Relaxin’ at Camarillo.” This informal session has plenty of fine solos from the two principals and is recommended to fans of advanced hard bop.

Tracks:
01 – Y Todavia La Quiero
02 – My One and Only Love
03 – Crimson Lake
04 – Yes, My Dear
05 – Relaxin’ at Camarillo

Personnel:
Joe Henderson – tenor saxophone
Chick Corea – piano
Tony Dumas, Richard Davis – bass
Peter Erskine, Tony Williams – drums

Recorded at Contemporary Record Studio, Los Angeles; August 20 and December 29, 1979.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork