Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Eddie Jefferson "Letter From Home"

Eddie Jefferson

"Letter From Home"
( LP Riverside Records, 1962 )
Catalog # RLP 411

1. Letter From Home
2. Take The "A" Train
3. Billie's Bounce - (Take 4)
4. Billie's Bounce - (Take 3)
5. I Cover The Waterfront
6. Soft And Furry
7. Night In Tunisia, A
8. Things Are Getting Better
9. Keep Walkin' - (Take 4)
10. Keep Walkin' - (Take 1)
11. Body And Soul
12. Parker's Mood (Bless My Soul)

Personnel & Credits:
Eddie Jefferson (vocals)
Eddie Jefferson; Sam Jones (bass instrument)
Barry Galbraith (guitar)
James Moody (flute, alto saxophone)
Johnny Griffin (saxophone, tenor saxophone)
Arthur Clarke (baritone saxophone)
Clark Terry, Ernie Royal, Joe Newman (trumpet)
Jimmy Cleveland (trombone)
Joe Zawinul, Junior Mance, Wynton Kelly (piano)
Louis Hayes, Osie Johnson (drums)

Liner Note Authors: Orrin Keepnews; Peter Drew.
Recording information: New York, NY (12/18/1961-02/08/1962); Plaza Sound Studios, New York, NY (12/18/1961-02/08/1962).
Unknown Contributor Roles: Jimmy Cleveland; Clark Terry; Ernie Royal; Johnny Griffin; James Moody; Joe Zawinul; Wynton Kelly; Sam Jones.
Arranger: Ernie Wilkins.
** Also issued on Riverside RS 9411; Fantasy OJC 307, OJCCD 307-2.

The king of vocalese (the putting of words to pre-existing jazz instrumentals) further cemented his reputation with this fine 1961 Riverside date. Eddie Jefferson truly approached his singing with the mind of a horn player, paying particular attention to phrasing, and the form and rhythmic cadence of his applied lyrics. The result was a fun, technically intriguing take on jazz that was refreshing while also paying homage to the original tunes.
LETTERS FROM HOME features compositions by, among others, Duke Ellington ("Take the 'A' Train"), Charlie Parker ("Billie's Bounce"), and Dizzy Gillespie ("A Night in Tunisia"). Each of these cuts shine with Jefferson's unique, bop-inflected singing, but the vocalist also makes room for Johnny Griffin's tenor sax and the alto work of James Moody on some lovely instrumental solos as well.

By Scott Yanow:
This record (which augments the original LP program with two alternate takes) is a fine showcase for vocalese master Eddie Jefferson. Backed by either a tentet or a quintet that gives solo space to altoist James Moody and the tenor of Johnny Griffin, Jefferson sings his lyrics to such numbers as "Take the 'A' Train," "Billie's Bounce," "I Cover the Waterfront," "Parker's Mood" (the latter differs from the famous lines immortalized by King Pleasure), "A Night in Tunisia," and "Body and Soul," among others. Jefferson is in prime form and these boppish renditions as a whole form a near classic.
(AMG. Copyright © 2010 All Media Guide, LLC. Content provided by All Music Guide ®, a trademark of All Media Guide, LLC. All rights reserved.)

By Celo

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