Monday, 2 November 2009

Freddie Hubbard ''Mistral''

Freddie Hubbard

( LP Liberty Records, 1980 )
Catalog # LT 110 JP

01 - Sunshine Lady (7:18)
02 - Eclipse (7:08)
03 - Blue Nights (7:17)
04 - Now I've Found Love (6:53)
05 - I Love You (7:27)
06 - Bring It Back Home (7:55)

Freddie Hubbard - trumpet, flugelhorn
Phil Ranelin - trombone
Art Pepper - alto sax
George Cables - piano, electric piano
Peter Wolf - synthetizer
Roland Bautista - guitar
Stanley Clarke - bass
Peter Erskine - drums
Paulinho Da Costa - percussions
Recorded at Ocean Way Recording, Hollywood CA, September 15, 17, 18 and 19, 1980

Compared to his live performances, this studio recording is a disappointment. Altoist Art Pepper and keyboardist George Cables have a few spots but the arrangements are a bit commercial, the originals (three by trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and one apiece from Cables and bassist Stanley Clarke) are forgettable and no one sounds like they are sweating. This LP is one of Hubbard's lesser efforts.
By Scott Yanow (AMG)

Freddie Hubbard waxed many high-caliber yet shamefully forgotten records for Columbia from 1974 to 1979. Remarkably, none of them sold particularly well - which is why he was dropped by the label in 1980 - and today, too few are to be found on CD. Mistral, recorded in September 1980, is the first studio album the trumpeter recorded after leaving Columbia and in many ways continues heading down the path he charted while there. Maybe that's why this excellent album is also a footnote buried deep in the trumpeter's legacy. It's never been issued on CD either.
Recorded for the Japanese label East World (and later issued in the US by Liberty, an EMI label hardly known for issuing jazz), there is a slick West Coast feeling to this album that's as endearing as it is enjoyable. Perhaps it is the addition of legendary West Coast alto saxist Art Pepper into a mix that finds pianist George Cables, bassist Stanley Clarke and drummer Peter Erskine in the rhythm section. All the tunes have a relaxed, laid-back feeling (what Scott Yanow snidely refers to as "no one sounds like they're sweating"), even on the up-tempo "Bring It Back Home." While there is a casual air of familiarity in the program, all involved sound as if they are enjoying themselves and each other's company. . . .

By Pier

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