This four-disc box from London's JSP Records collects an astounding 100 songs recorded by John Lee Hooker in Detroit from the years 1948 to 1952, including his first two sides ever, the signature tunes "Boogie Chillen" and "Sally Mae." Most of the tracks here are done solo, with Hooker's ever-present foot-stomping, although a few feature other musicians on loose-limbed blues boogies. Since Hooker never significantly altered his style during his long career, these first recordings set the stage for all that came after, and he arguably never sounded fresher or better. Four discs worth of this throwback Mississippi bluesman will be severe overkill for casual listeners, but diehard Hooker fans will find this box set absolutely essential.
One of his finest '90s recordings, Chill Out balances the guitar-glitz of Carlos Santana's guest shot on the karmic title cut with a handful of profoundly deep Hooker solo performances. Among those are new versions of his standards "Tupelo" and "Annie Mae," and the soulful "If You've Never Been in Love," where expert slide-man Roy Rogers provides subtle accompaniment to Hooker's spontaneous storytelling. The band numbers that bookend the album are weak, relying on Hooker's strong vocal presence to overcome sketchy writing. Van Morrison, pianist Charles Brown, and M.G.'s leader Booker T. Jones also lend a hand. But Hooker doesn't need anybody's help to get to the passionate heart of his blues. One last note: Anton Corbijn's CD-booklet photographs of ol' Johnny Lee are terrific.
John Richard Handy III is an American jazz musician most commonly associated with the alto saxophone, although he also plays tenor and baritone saxophone, saxello, clarinet, oboe, and sings. Handy first came to prominence while working for Charles Mingus in the 1950s. In the 1960s, Handy led several groups, among them a quintet with Michael White, violin, Jerry Hahn, guitar, Don Thompson, bass, and Terry Clarke, drums. This group's performance at the 1965 Monterey Jazz Festival was recorded and released as an album; Handy received Grammy nominations for "Spanish Lady" (jazz performance) and "If Only We Knew" (jazz composition)…
This is a wonderful, warm-hearted, and effortlessly virtuosic live recording by one of the finest living exponents of pre-bop small-ensemble jazz. With pianist Ray Kennedy and bassist Martin Pizzarelli (and on two songs joined by vocalist Grover Kemble), singer and guitarist John Pizzarelli runs through a generally lightweight but thoroughly charming set of standards, homages, funny stories, and the occasional original tune; the fast tunes are light and frothy, the ballads smooth and gentle, and even the moments that are less than utterly inspired work together with the album's highlights to create a very satisfying whole…
For this very special release in The Book of Angels series, Zorn has brought together five of the most acclaimed musicians in modern jazz to perform nine of his most distinctive and lyrical compositions. Truly a jazz supergroup, these five master musicians explore Zorn's beautiful and exotic tunes with profound melodic and harmonic knowledge and a depth of feeling that is a joy to hear. One of the most breathtaking CDs in the entire Masada series—a touch of the sublime from the beautiful new Masada Quintet!
John Lee Hooker developed a “talking blues” style that became his trademark. Though similar to the early Delta tradition, his metrically free approach and unique sound would make him a staple of the Detroit blues tradition. Often called the “King of the Boogie,” Hooker's driving, rhythmic approach to guitar playing has become an integral part of the blues. His thunderous electric guitar sounded raw, while his basic technique was riveting.
Just prior to signing with RCA/Novus, John Pizzarelli recorded two sets for Chesky that featured him playing in the swing style that he would soon make quite popular. Although joined by all-stars (pianist Dave McKenna, bassist Milt Hinton, drummer Connie Kay, his father, guitarist Bucky Pizzarelli, and flugelhornist Clark Terry) rather than his regular trio, Pizzarelli's likable vocals and relaxed guitar solos are not overshadowed. In fact, this is a delightful date, with memorable renditions of such songs as "I'm An Errand Boy for Rhythm," "Lady Be Good," "The Best Man," "Gee Baby Ain't I Good to You" and "Candy." Easily recommended to John Pizzarelli fans.