Tina Brooks – True Blue {Blue Note}[xrcd]


Review by Scott Yanow (allmusic.com)

Although a four-LP Mosaic box set purportedly includes every recording led by the obscure but talented tenor saxophonist Tina Brooks, this 1994 CD has previously unreleased alternate takes of “True Blue” and “Good Old Soul” that Mosaic overlooked. Brooks is teamed with the young trumpeter Freddie Hubbard (on one of his earliest sessions), pianist Duke Jordan, bassist Sam Jones, and drummer Art Taylor for a set dominated by Brooks’ originals. None of the themes may be all that memorable (“Nothing Ever Changes My Love for You” comes the closest), but the hard bop solos are consistently excellent.

Tracks:
01 – Good Old Soul
02 – Up Tight’s Creek
03 – Theme for Doris
04 – True Blue
05 – Miss Hazel
06 – Nothing Ever Changes My Love for You

Personnel:
Freddie Hubbard – trumpet
Tina Brooks – tenor sax
Duke Jordan – piano
Sam Jones – bass
Art Taylor – drums

Recorded June 25, 1960; at Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ.
Year: 2009, Style: Hard Bop

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Freddie Hubbard – The Body & The Soul {impulse!} “Analogue Productions”


Review by Michael G. Nastos (allmusic.com)

At age 25, Freddie Hubbard made inroads into modern jazz most trumpeters could not imagine, much less come through with. As a soloist, one of Hubbard’s crowning achievements in his early period was this recording on which he teamed with Wayne Shorter, marginally as a performer but prominent in the role of arranger/conductor for his first time ever. Utilizing a septet, 16-piece big band, and orchestra plus stings to play concise, tight tunes, Shorter provides the backdrop to employ Hubbard’s bold toned trumpet and all of its devices in a full display of his powerful melodic talents. Yeoman Reggie Workman plays bass on all selections, with drummer Louis Hayes in the seven-piece combo, and great work from Philly Joe Jones in the larger bands. Interestingly enough, the three tracks with the smaller ensemble are the most interesting, due to the presence of Eric Dolphy, Curtis Fuller, Cedar Walton, and Shorter on the front line. “Clarence’s Place” is a post-bop jewel with spiky brass accents and Dolphy’s ribald and outre alto sax solo contrasting Shorter’s relatively reserved tenor, “Dedicated to You” is a wisp of a tune, while “Body & Soul,” an atypical choice for the opening selection, is a straight read of the classic ballad with a chart that sounds larger than the small horn section, and a wavering flute via Dolphy. The big band does an unusual soul-jazz treatment of the Brazilian number “Manha de Carnaval” flavored by Robert Northern’s French horn, while “Aries” is a hard bop show stopper with two-note accents buoying Hubbard’s great lyrical lines, and goes further into hard bop with “Thermo” as the horns demand attention with the trumpeter as an afterthought. The string section, ten pieces strong, joins the big band on the film noir type Duke Ellington piece “Chocolate Shake,” the stock “I Got It Bad,” and “Skylark,” with its soft clarion intro bubbling underneath with the violins, violas, and cellos. The manner in which this recording is programmed is thoughtful in that it lends to the diversity of the project, but is seamless from track to track. Dan Morgenstern’s hefty liner notes also explain the concept behind this ambitious project, one which did not compare to any of Hubbard’s other recordings in his career. Therefore it stands alone as one of the most unique productions in his substantive discography, and a quite credible initial go-round for Shorter as an orchestrator.

Tracks:
01 – Body and Soul
02 – Carnival (Manha de Carnaval)
03 – Chocolate Shake
04 – Dedicated to You
05 – Clarence’s Place
06 – Aries
07 – Skylark
08 – I Got it Bad and That A’int Good
09 – Thermo

Personnel:
Wayne Shorter – tenor sax (leader & arranger)
Freddie Hubbard – trumpet
Bob Northern, Julius Watkins – frenchorn
Cedar Walton – piano
Joe Jones – drums
Reggie Workman – bass
Melba Liston, Curtis Fuller – trombone
Jerome Richardson – baritone saxophone
Eric Dolphy – alto saxophone
etc.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Paul Chambers – Go [2CD] {VeeJay}


Review by Michael G. Nastos (allmusic.com)

The first of two Vee Jay label dates by the acclaimed modern jazz bassist Paul Chambers is a fine exercise in hard bop, split between showcasing his compositions and famous standards. Alto saxophonist Cannonball Adderley and trumpeter Freddie Hubbard are on the front line, perhaps for the only time in their storied careers, and work well for the most part. Pianist Wynton Kelly and either drummers Philly Joe Jones or Jimmy Cobb complete the quintets. The advantage in buying this reissue is that the second CD is comprised exclusively of outtakes from the originally issued tracks, and many of them have extended solos. Of the covers, “There Is No Greater Love” features a chuckling and cajoling Adderley, very happy for the fortune smiling on him, while “Just Friends” has the two horns playing this chestnut pretty much straight, with counterpointed stop-start techniques chirping at the rhythm section, and a young Hubbard offering his best solo. “I Got Rhythm” brings Cobb to the team, as a modal base from Kelly and Chambers buoys the wailing horns. Of the originals, Hubbard and Adderley sound mismatched on the 6/8 to 3/4 calypso-swing “Julie Ann,” where their harmonics don’t quite synch up. Their teamwork pays off royally during “I Heard That” and the classic hard bopper with Cobb “Ease It,” where the tempo persists, but the horns grow quieter and quieter in mezzo piano range to near nothingness — the epitome of cool. There’s another classic here, as “Awful Mean” is emotionally neither, but instead cures Adderley’s brief once-through melody statement into a vintage shuffle. The alternate take of this one is two-and-a-half minutes longer. “I Heard That” is called a “remake” though the original is just fine, and the second “remake” of the ballad “Dear Ann” (one of three attempts included) extends Chambers on his arco bowed bass melody, both pieces adding a ramped uptempo. This recording and 1st Bassman offer different aspects of Chambers as a leader, with the latter album having him take on more responsibility as a lead melodicist. After having played with the game changing bands of Miles Davis and John Coltrane, Chambers died far too young ten years hence in January of 1969, but left behind a memorable 15-year legacy, well represented by this recording where he was in his early prime.

Tracks – Disc One (Master Takes):
01 – Awful Mean
02 – Julie Ann
03 – There is No Greater Love
04 – I Heard That
05 – Dear Ann
06 – Shades of Blue
07 – Just Friends
08 – Ease It
09 – I Got Rhythm

Tracks – Disc Two (Alternate Takes):
01 – Awful Mean (take 4)
02 – I Heard That (remake take 1)
03 – I Heard That (take-8)
04 – Dear Ann (remake take 2)
05 – Dear Ann (take 3)
06 – Just Friends (take 6)
07 – I Got Rhythm (take 2)

Personnel:
Freddie Hubbard – trumpet
Cannonball Adderley – alto sax
Wynton Kelly – piano
Paul Chambers – bass
Philly Joe Jones, Jimmy Cobb – drums

Recorded in New York City, February 2 and 3, 1959

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Herbie Hancock – Maiden Voyage {Blue Note} “Analogue Productions”


Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine (allmusic.com)

Less overtly adventurous than its predecessor, Empyrean Isles, Maiden Voyage nevertheless finds Herbie Hancock at a creative peak. In fact, it’s arguably his finest record of the ’60s, reaching a perfect balance between accessible, lyrical jazz and chance-taking hard bop. By this point, the pianist had been with Miles Davis for two years, and it’s clear that Miles’ subdued yet challenging modal experiments had been fully integrated by Hancock. Not only that, but through Davis, Hancock became part of the exceptional rhythm section of bassist Ron Carter and drummer Tony Williams, who are both featured on Maiden Voyage, along with trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and tenor saxophonist George Coleman. The quintet plays a selection of five Hancock originals, many of which are simply superb showcases for the group’s provocative, unpredictable solos, tonal textures, and harmonies. While the quintet takes risks, the music is lovely and accessible, thanks to Hancock’s understated, melodic compositions and the tasteful group interplay. All of the elements blend together to make Maiden Voyage a shimmering, beautiful album that captures Hancock at his finest as a leader, soloist, and composer.

Tracks:
01 – Maiden Voyage
02 – The Eye of the Hurricane
03 – Little One
04 – Survival of the Fittest
05 – Dolphin Dance

Personnel:
Freddie Hubbard – trumpet
George Coleman – tenor sax
Herbie Hancock – piano
Ron Carter – bass
Anthony Williams – drums

Originally released in 1965 on Blue Note as BST-84195.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork