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The organ combo in jazz has, in recent times, experienced a resurgence in interest. Young and old players alike continue to be fascinated by the power and expressive capability of the Hammond B3. Two albums, recorded over 35 years apart, share not only the classic sound but also two musicians!
Ximo Tebar is a young Spanish guitarist who certainly heard the classic organ trio and trio-with- horn recordings of Jimmy Smith. Tebar has played with the likes of Johnny Griffin, Benny Golson and Louie Bellson and his fluid single lines call to mind the George Benson organ recordings. His own tunes are simple reminders of the timelessness of the form. The title track suggests "Killer Joe and his ballad "Come To Me is a slow sexy blues.
This is a conventional program with some blues, some standards and some funk, but Tebar manages to make it sound fresh. He uses the stalwarts of this genre - Dr. Lonnie Smith and Idris Muhammad - and then, on three tracks, adds the eternal bop-cum-blues alto saxophone sound of Lou Donaldson. Donaldson's rich and varied career has shown that he is a music survivor - one who has mastered the complexities but never lost his ability to swing and his feeling for the blues. His originals - "Midnight Creeper and "Blues Walk were both Blue Note album titles for him and they retain their dated, funky charm and the primal wail of the Donaldson saxophone.
Lou Donaldson has made many recordings in his career and many of them dig into popular dance grooves but even at his most commercial, Donaldson is never any less than engaging as a soloist and as a leader. Say it Loud! is his take on the James Brown brand of funk. The Water label has licensed this album and retained the proud and funky African American women for the cover. The album is outright dance music with the use of the now outdated Varitone attachment to obtain a more "electric sound. But the playing - by everyone including great trumpeter Blue Mitchell, organist Charles Earland, guitarist Jimmy Ponder and again drummer Idris Muhammad (here under his given name Leo Morris) - is uniformly spirited, designed to tell a story and make us feel good. Donaldson's tunes invite us to boogaloo and he adds two more conventional blowers - Gershwin's "Summertime and Ellington's "Caravan . This album is a natural extension of the series of Lou's Blue Note recordings that began with Alligator Boogaloo.
Tracks: Goes Blue 6:04; I Love You 6:01; Laura 5:53; Days Of Wine And Roses 7:56; Invitation 8:22; Midnight Creeper 6:31; Come To Me 7:35; Blues Walk 6:41
Personnel: Ximo Tebar: guitar; Dr. Lonnie Smith: organ hammond B3; Idris Muhammad: drums; Lou Donaldson: alto sax
Say It Loud!
Tracks: 1 Say It Loud (I'm Black and I'm Proud) Brown, Ellis 7:32; 2 Summertime Gershwin, Gershwin, Heyward 5:49; 3 Caravan Ellington, Mills, Tizol 5:22; 4 Snake Bone Donaldson 9:31; 5 Brother Soul Donaldson, Spencer 8:17
Personnel: Lou Donaldson: Alto Sax; Charles Earland: Organ; Blue Mitchell: Trumpet; Leo Morris: Drums; Jimmy Ponder: Guitar