Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
226

Red Holloway: Go Red Go!

Nic Jones By

Sign in to view read count Views
Red Holloway: Go Red Go! For disingenuous reasons Go Red Go! is a good companion for Cy Touff and Sandy Mosse's Tickle Toe which Delmark reissued in 2008. Both albums offer up straight-ahead mainstream jazz of the most worthwhile order performed by men who know the territory inside out. The crucial difference between the two is that while Touff and Mosse worked a neo-swing seam, Red Holloway and friends offer up soul-jazz of a kind that doesn't denigrate the term. Regardless of such differences both sets put a smile on the face and give even the heaviest heart a lift.

In the past Holloway has served time in the bands of both Brother Jack McDuff and George Benson, and yet he's still finding new things to say. On the understandably up-tempo title track he's a man with an awful lot of living to do and a tenor sax vocabulary sterling enough to persuade even the greatest skeptic. The band is with him for the whole of the piece's less than four minute duration and it's the easiest thing in the world to imagine it pouring out of some roadside diner's jukebox circa 1960.

Holloway isn't about just the tenor sax, however. On a lengthy "Stardust" he waxes boppishly eloquently on alto, showing a resemblance to no-one who springs readily to mind. Indeed even his take on the kind of rhapsodic approach first posited by Johnny Hodges is entirely his own, although the two men do share a healthy skepticism for sentimentality even in taking such a line. On this one organist Chris Foreman exhibits a lightness of touch even while his bass is quietly propulsive. This helps to make for a performance purged of all excess in which not a second is wasted.

Remarkably the same is true of "I Like It Funky" which lives up to its title even while collective feet only ease the accelerators down slightly. The result effortlessly lifts the spirit. Guitarist George Freeman's work sounds superficially like an oblique take on Grant Green, although his blues feel is more down-home than Green's ever was. Holloway preaches in effective fashion and drummer Greg Rockingham's backbeat, at one and the same time fat and lean, lends credence to his surname.

Holloway shouts the blues too, literally, on the closing "Keep Your Hands Off Her," where his vocal is that of a man some way short of his ninth decade on this earth, and when he puts that tenor sax in his mouth again after Foreman's greasy eloquence the clouds part and the sun comes out, with warmth sufficient to reach the soul.


Track Listing: Love Walked In; I Like It Funky; Go Red Go; Deep Purple; St Thomas; Stardust; Bags Groove; Wave; Keep Your Hands Off Her.

Personnel: Red Holloway: tenor sax, alto sax; Chris Foreman: organ; Henry Johnson: guitar (1, 3-8) George Freeman: guitar (2, 9) Greg Rockingham: drums.

Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Delmark Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop For Jazz

Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Go Red Go!
Go Red Go!
Delmark Records
2009
buy
Coast to Coast
Coast to Coast

2004
buy
Coast to Coast
Coast to Coast
Fantasy Jazz
2003
buy
[no cover]
Red Soul
Continuum Records
1966
buy
[no cover]
Wives And Lovers /...
Continuum Records
1964
buy
[no cover]
Shout Brother / No...
Continuum Records
1964
buy
Frank Sinatra Frank Sinatra
vocalist
Sonny Rollins Sonny Rollins
saxophone
George Benson George Benson
guitar
Marcus Printup Marcus Printup
trumpet
Jimmy Smith Jimmy Smith
organ, Hammond B3
Gene Harris Gene Harris
piano
Lou Donaldson Lou Donaldson
saxophone
Hank Crawford Hank Crawford
sax, alto
Jackie McLean Jackie McLean
sax, alto

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.