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The Boss of the Blues

Joe Turner

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Album Review

During an era when Big Joe Turner recordings were often surprise hits with rock & roll fans (particularly "Shake, Rattle and Roll"), he occasionally recorded no-nonsense blues-oriented jazz dates too. This reissue album matched Turner for one of the last times with the veteran boogie-woogie pianist Pete Johnson and also includes a variety of top swing players: trumpeter Joe Newman, trombonist Lawrence Brown, altoist Pete Brown, tenor saxophonist Frank Wess, guitarist Freddie Green, bassist Walter Page, and drummer Cliff Leeman. It is not surprising, considering the number of Basie-ites on the date, that the band often sounds like a Count Basie combo. Turner is in top form on remakes of some of his early tunes (including "Cherry Red," "Roll 'Em Pete," and "Wee Baby Blues"), a few traditional blues, and a couple of swing standards. This music should appeal to many listeners.

Biography

Born: November 03, 1907 in Baltimore, MD

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s

Though endlessly confused with the singer Big Joe Turner, pianist Joe Turner came from a completely different direction, following the James P. Johnson/Fats Waller stride tradition, armed with a superb technique and a fine sense of swing. Born in Baltimore, he started to learn the piano from his mother at age five and began to make a name for himself in Harlem as a teenager shortly after his move to New York in 1925. He was an accompanist to Adelaide Hall in a duo, first with Alex Hill and then Francis...
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The Boss of the Blues, Joe Turner
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