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Robben Ford knew all there was to know about the blues pentonic scale before he was 20 years old.
Anthology: The Early Years
catalogs a pre-Yellowjackets, pre-Miles Davis, teenaged Robben Ford. This is significant because, Ford, at this time (between 1972 and 1976), shows more aptitude for the Blues than players do twice his age. This current compilation is based on four releases Ford made for Avenue Jazz (now codistributed with the Bethlehem archive). Thirteen of the nineteen tracks are recorded live. Original releases of this music are:
Robben Ford— Discovering The Blues Live (Avenue Jazz 72727, 1972)
Robben Ford— Sunrise (Avenue Jazz 75630, 1972)
Robben Ford— Schizophonic (Avenue Jazz 71624, 1976)
Jimmy Witherspoon/Robben Ford— Witherspoon & Ford Live (Avenue Jazz 71262, 1976)
All of the music is standard fare, but it is particularly well-performed standard fare. Ford's band here is a crack outfit with perfect time and color. If the blues were a Swiss Watch, Robben Ford would be the watchmaker. But Ford does not restrict himself to the blues alone. He pulls out his childhood talent of the tenor saxophone for some credible, Coltrane-influenced blowing the jazz standards "Eighty-One" and "You Don't Know What Love Is". Ford's composing is sprite and informed, serving as a prelude to his work with The LA Express and Yellowjackets.
It is hard to believe that this most youthful Robben Ford is almost 50 years old. He started with a prodigious gift and grew it into the talent expressed on his more recent Tiger Walk and Supernatural.
Track Listing: (Disc 1) Sweet Sixteen; You Drive A Hard Bargain; Raining In My Heart; Blue And Lonesome: Red Rooster; Eighty-One; Miss; Miss; Sunrise. (Total Time: 58:52). (Disc 2) Oh Gee; You Don't Know What Love Is; Everyday I Have The Blues; It's My Own Fault; Ladies' Choice; Hawk's Theme' S-K Blues; Low Ride; Softly Rolling; Stella And Frenchie; Goin' Down Slow. (Total Time: 58:52).
Personnel: Robben Ford: Guitar, Tenor Saxophone, Vocals; Jimmy Witherspoon: Vocals; Paul Nagel: Keyboards; Stan Poplin: Bass; Jim Baum: Drums.
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop. But nothing has touched my artistic sensiblities like JAZZ! Two years ago I moved to Sarasota, FL where I renewed my focus on my singing career and I was so impressed with the quality, quantity and generousity of talented jazz musicains in the Suncoast area. I soon partnered with piano legend Billy Marcus and his trio with Don Mopsick and Stephen Bucholtz. What a blast working with these guys and having them back me up on my first jaz album, Here's To You... which was just released on October 1st. I can't wait to see where the coming year brings me! Check out syniacarrolljazz.com