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Album Review

One of Art Blakey's final recordings as a leader features two separate pianists (Benny Green and Mulgrew Miller) and two bassists (Leon Lee Dorsey and Lonnie Plaxico) taking part, along with the guest appearance of former Jazz Messenger Freddie Hubbard. Blakey was going deaf near the end of his life and sounds a tad tentative at times, while Hubbard's return may have been more to improve his chops (which had been in question after his experiments with fusion). The trumpeter seems rejuvenated by working with his former boss and his latest crop of Young Lions, who also include tenor saxophonist Javon Jackson. Hubbard brought along a new composition, the funky "Feel the Wind," along with two older works, the snappy "Arietis" (misspelled "Arieties" by the label) and his well-known waltz "Up Jumped Spring"; he is in fine form throughout the session. The youngsters also prove themselves, with Jackson playing at a level beyond his years. Green and Dorsey are on the first session, which also features a brisk reading of "Off Minor" and an overly dramatic "Embraceable You." Miller and Plaxico take over for a medley of ballads by the trio and a slash-and-burn performance of Charlie Parker's "Big Foot."

Customer Reviews


Vintage Blakey & Hubbard at it's best!


Born: April 7, 1938 in Indianapolis, IN

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

One of the great jazz trumpeters of all time, Freddie Hubbard formed his sound out of the Clifford Brown/Lee Morgan tradition, and by the early '70s was immediately distinctive and the pacesetter in jazz. However, a string of blatantly commercial albums later in the decade damaged his reputation and, just when Hubbard, in the early '90s (with the deaths of Dizzy Gillespie...
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