Trombonist Curtis Fuller's recordings for Savoy in the 1950s, like those of labelmates Hank Mobley, Milt Jackson, Wilbur Harden, Donald Byrd, and others, were prototypes in the development of hard bop. The next stage would come with the subsequent work of many of the same artists for Blue Note, where improved recording technique, greater attention to writing and arranging, and a more generous policy with respect to preparation and rehearsal time helped bring in the classic hard bop era of the late '50s and early '60s. On Fuller's Jazz…It's Magic, the hard bop prototype is still under refinement, but it's easy to enjoy the music in its essential elements: elegant, bluesy melodies; earthy, yet sophisticated, solo work; and fresh treatments of standards.
Curtis Harding's new album Face Your Fear is out October 27 on Anti-. New York Magazine already named the forthcoming album one of their most anticipated fall releases lauding Harding’s “scorching voice” while Clash UK hails recent new track “On and On” as “a blistering slice of dancefloor soul that recalls prime Curtis Mayfield and late 60s Motown.” The new album follows 2014’s Soul Power, on which Rolling Stone called Harding an “artist you need to know.”
aking off from 2004's Up Jumped Spring, trombonist Curtis Fuller once again reunites with a former Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers alum for a set of standards and original compositions. Joining Fuller this time is tenor saxophonist Javon Jackson, who played with Blakey from the late '80s until the drummer's death in 1990. Together they reignite the fiery, soulful Jazz Messenger aesthetic on such standout Fuller tunes as the John Coltrane-influenced "Maze" and the swinging hard boppish "A La Mode." Backing Fuller here is pianist Doug Carn, bassist Rodney Jordan, and drummer Fritz Wise.