Grant Green's 1964 STREET OF DREAMS date with organ guru Larry Young is an entirely different affair than TALKIN' ABOUT, the session the pair recorded earlier that year. It features four lengthy meditations that find Green and Young (not to mention vibraphone viscount Bobby Hutcherson) unfurling thoughtful, low-key riffs that establish an autumnal, introspective feel, as opposed to the more hard-bop-tinged tracks on the previous album. Green may be known as a master of soul jazz, but STREET OF DREAMS proves he's got plenty more strings to his bow, and sounds oddly contemporary, as though it could have been released on a label like ECM some 20 years later.
Larry Young, one of the most significant jazz organists to emerge after the rise of Jimmy Smith, is heard on this limited-edition six-CD set at the peak of his creativity. Formerly available as nine LPs, the set includes the original Larry Young albums Into Somethin', Unity, Of Love and Peace, Contrasts, Heaven on Earth, and Mother Ship, while drawing from the compilations 40 Years of Jazz, The History of Blue Note (Dutch), The World of Jazz Organ (Japanese), and The Blue Note 50th Anniversary Collection Volume Two: The Jazz Message, and also including guitarist Grant Green's Talkin' About, Street of Dreams, and I Want to Hold Your Hand.
Street of Dreams was designed as a project for Patti Austin to sing her favorite songs, regardless of genre. True, there are a couple of later songs here, usually including two co-written by Vaneese Thomas, but the heart of the album is in interpretations of "The Look of Love," "Street of Dreams," "Someone to Watch Over Me," "'Till There Was You," "I Only Have Eyes for You," "For Once in My Life," and "IGY (What a Beautiful World)." Although the arrangements can get a little too clean and synthesized (much of the album sounds as if it was recorded with DX-7s), Austin is in terrific form throughout, breathing life into songs that have been recorded numerous times. It's a fine latter-day effort from a fine singer.