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Thinking Of Home (1970)

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Woody Shaw

For what would be his final of over 20 Blue Note albums, tenor saxophonist Hank Mobley uses a sextet that also includes trumpeter Woody Shaw, the obscure guitarist Eddie Diehl, pianist Cedar Walton, bassist Mickey Bass, and drummer Leroy Williams for a typically challenging set of advanced hard bop music. For the first and only time in his career, Mobley recorded a "Suite" (consisting of "Thinking of Home," "The Flight," and "Home at Last"); the remainder of the set has three of his other attractive originals plus Mickey Bass' "Gayle's Groove." This music was not released for the first time until 1980. It is only fitting that Hank Mobley would record one of the last worthwhile Blue Note albums before its artistic collapse (it would not be revived until the 1980s) for his consistent output helped define the label's sound in the 1960s. Mobley's excellent playing and the adventurous solos of Woody Shaw make this hard-to-find LP (his last as a leader) one to hunt for. ~ Scott Yanow