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There’s a disheartening sense of emptiness that surrounds the thought that only one member of the original crew assembled for Blue Hour is still with us, drummer Bill Dowdy. Now at the time of his recent passing, this album remains an incredibly resilient keepsake of Stanley Turrentine’s virility and spirit. The complete story of its development has never really been told until now however. After the success of his first quartet session and debut for Blue Note, Look Out!, Turrentine entered the studio in June of 1960 with The Three Sounds on board. They satisfactorily completed five tracks that were quickly forgotten. Then in December, the same line-up went back into the studio and five of the eight pieces attempted made it to the original Blue Hour album.
This double-disc Connoisseur reissue brings us both the original Blue Hour and the leftover tracks never before issued except in Japan. The match of Turrentine with pianist Gene Harris was one made in heaven. Both players held the blues at the heart of their visceral approaches. While no one would fault the initial performances included on the album, there’s much to be gleaned from the supplementary cuts, particularly the soulful groove that distinguishes “Blue Hour,” a tune that gave the album its name but was left off the original. You can never have too much of a good thing and this new reissue more than supports that precept.
Track Listing: I Want a Little Girl, Gee Baby Aint' I Good To You, Blue Riff, Since I Fell For You, Willow Weep For Me, Blues In the Closet, Just In Time, Gee Baby Ain't I Good To You (alt. take), Where Or When, Blue Hour, There Is No Greater Love, Alone Together, Strike Up the Band
Personnel: Stanley Turrerntine- tenor saxophone, Gene Harris- piano, Andrew Simpkins- bass, Bill Dowdy- drums
I love jazz because anything is possible; it has few rules and the best jazz breaks those ones. I prefer free improv because it doesn't really have any rules at all.
I was first exposed to jazz in my teens (in the late sixties).
The first jazz record I bought was Filles de Kilimanjaro by Miles Davis, shortly followed by Extrapolation by John McLaughlin.
My advice to new listeners is to listen as widely as possible and not to make snap judgments--stick with it.