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Live In London

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Album Review

Tubby Hayes was not as well known outside of Europe because he rarely recorded outside of England and he died prematurely at the age of 38. But this compilation of live recordings made informally by Les Tomkins at Ronnie Scott's in London during 1964 and 1965 features the late tenor saxophonist at the top of his game. He devours the furious "Opus Ocean" (written by Clark Terry, who also appeared on Hayes' sole Columbia LP in 1961), excelling with an unaccompanied solo in the middle of it. He follows with driving interpretations of "A Weaver of Dreams," "Nobody Else But Me," and "On Green Dolphin Street," displaying his love of standards from the Great American Songbook. But it is the 20-minute workout of "By Myself," in which Hayes takes his time in getting around to the theme of this standard, that leaves the most lasting impression. The various rhythm sections are all first-rate, with high praise for trumpeter Jimmy Deuchar in "Opus Ocean." Although this non-professional recording was obviously not intended to be issued when it was made, the sound is surprisingly good. The CD concludes with Tomkins conducting a friendly, humorous interview with Hayes. This previously unissued disc adds an important chapter to the legacy of Tubby Hayes. Highly recommended.


Born: 30 January 1935 in London, England

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s

One of England's top jazz musicians of the 1950s and '60s, Tubby Hayes was a fine hard bop stylist on tenor and occasionally vibes and flute. A professional at 15, Hayes played with Kenny Baker and in the big bands of Ambrose, Vic Lewis, and Jack Parnell during 1951-1955. He led his own group after that, and started doubling on vibes in 1956. Hayes co-led the Jazz Couriers with Ronnie Scott (1957-1959), and appeared in the U.S. a few times during 1961-1965. He headed his own big band in London, sat...
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Live In London, Tubby Hayes
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