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Third Season (1967)

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James Spaulding

Tenor saxophonist Hank Mobley recorded frequently for Blue Note in the 1960s (six albums from 1967-1970) and, although overshadowed by the flashier and more avant-garde players, Mobley's output was consistently rewarding. For this overlooked session, which was not issued until 1980 and then finally reissued on CD in 1988, a regular contingent of top Blue Note artists (Mobley, trumpeter Lee Morgan, altoist James Spaulding, pianist Cedar Walton, bassist Walter Booker, and drummer Billy Higgins) are joined by a wild card, guitarist Sonny Greenwich. The music is mostly in the hard bop vein, with hints of modality and the gospel-ish piece "Give Me That Feelin'," but Greenwich's three solos are a bonus and the performances of five Mobley originals and one by Morgan are up to the usual caliber of Blue Note's releases. Pity that this one has been lost in the shuffle. ~ Scott Yanow23-02-1967