When the CTI label originally released tenor saxophonist Stanley Turrentine's Don't Mess With Mister T. in 1973, it managed to bring music to the public that served as a sign of the times, while also helping to define the times. The soul within Turrentine's horn had been at the center of his earlier successes for the label--Sugar (CTI, 1970), Salt Song (CTI, 1971) and Cherry (CTI, 1972)--but it really rose to the surface and reached its peak with this release. The Richard Roundtree-worthy expression written across Turrentine's face on the cover is a visual representation of the ...read more
Stanley Turrentine's Sugar (CTI, 1970) has always stood out as the defining album in the tenor saxophonist's post-Blue Note discography, but that recording only marked the beginning of his beautiful relationship with Creed Taylor's CTI imprint. Turrentine's time with the label spanned the first half of the '70s and produced a few other winning albums that draped his thick, soulful sound in more modern aural fabrics of the times. Salt Song (CTI, 1971) was his follow-up to Sugar and, while this album isn't cited as often as his sweet classic, the music ranks a close second when ...read more
This 1960 set is from a period which many consider to have been Stanley Turrentine's most creative. The saxophonist, who would have been 75 this month (March), was just coming out of an extended run with Max Roach's notably up-tempo orchestra. Backed here by a then-emerging powerhouse of sidemen, the set kicks off with the title track, a tersely phrased Turrentine blues composition. The straightforward rhythm section--bassist George Tucker and drummer Al Harewood--makes a perfect berth for some wide open and bouncing solos from pianist Horace Parlan and the composer's tenor sax. It's followed by an unexpected ...read more
If ever there was a horn that was a perfect pairing with the Hammond B-3, it was Stanley Turrentine's. His best work was always done in combination with an organ (usually that of his wife Shirley Scott) where he coaxed out purring, laid back melodies over simmering chords. The Prestige label would take the organ combo and run it into the ground with records destined for the jukebox, but Turrentine always kept one foot in the world of jazz, mixing soul with sophistication. Dearly Beloved is one of the best of his Blue Note records and features ...read more
Webster's dictionary defines the word soul" as someone having a strong and positive feeling and having an intense sensitivity and emotional fervor. It also says that soul is characterized by an intensity of feeling and earthiness. It defines the word funky" similarly as someone having an earthy unsophisticated style and feeling. To me they would be wise to simply put the picture of Stanley Turrentine next to both of these words and a note to just listen to this man play tenor saxophone to understand the definitions.
I first met Stanley in New York City at a rehearsal for a ...read more
With Mosaic Records expanding its horizons over the past few years, fans of many different styles have had the opportunity to expand their collections and recent Mosaic honorees have included Mildred Bailey, Eddie Condon, Bobby Hackett, Chico Hamilton, and Anita O’Day. But to those long time followers, it continues to be the hard bop verities of the Blue Note label that have often been synonymous with Mosaic’s mail order dynasty. Now, maybe it’s because so much of the catalog has already been mined by Capitol or that Mosaic has other motives for diversifying, but it seems like the Blue Note ...read more
With Sugar Stanley Turrentine finally delivered on the promise of his Blue Note albums, which were for the most part unspectacular. Following the standard blueprint of the CTI label, Turrentine runs through a handful of steamy, soul jazz workouts with some veterans from the recently deceased hard bop era as well as some up-and-comers from the next generation of electric jazz. With only three tunes on the record, everyone gets plenty of room to explore and eagerly takes advantage of it. Turrentine plays in great rolling swells like ocean waves, displaying more force and vigor than usual, while Hubbard peels ...read more