Q - 7/95, p.1484 Stars
- Excellent - "...captures the flawed genius that is Allen Toussaint..."
Producers: Allen Toussaint, Marshall Sehorn, Jerry Wexler, Charles Greene.
Compilation producers: Bill Bentley, Charlie Springer.
Personnel: Allen Toussaint (vocals, acoustic guitar, harmonica, piano, background vocals); Mac Rebennack (guitar, organ); George Plummer, Vincent Toussaint, Teddy Royal, Terry Kellman, Charles Moore , Larry Carlton, Leo Nocentelli (guitar); Lon Price (flute, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone); Jim Moore (flute, tenor saxophone); Gary Brown (saxophone, tenor saxophone, electric saxophone); Earl Turbinton (alto saxophone); Fred Kemp, Alvin Thomas (tenor saxophone); Carl Blouin, Red Tyler (baritone saxophone); Clyde Kerr (trumpet, flugelhorn, French horn); Francis Rousselle, Steve Howard (trumpet); Lester Caliste (trombone); Richard Tee (piano); Art Neville (organ); Walter Payton (upright bass, electric bass); George Porter, Jr. (electric bass); Clyde Williams, Ed Greene, Fred Staehle, Jeff Porcaro, Joe Lambert, John Boudreaux (drums); Alfred "Uganda" Roberts, Squirrel (congas); Victor Feldman, Paulinho Da Costa (percussion); Sharon Neborn, Deborah Paul, Etta James, Joan Harmon, Julia Tillman Waters, Maxine Willard Waters, Merry Clayton, Rosemary Butler, Venetta Fields, Bonnie Raitt (background vocals).
Audio Remixers: Dee Robb; Paul Wexler; John Stronach; Lee Herschberg.
Liner Note Author: Don Snowden.
Recording information: Cherokee REcording Studios, Hollywood, CA; Dimension Sound Studio, Los Angeles, CA; Jazz City Recording Studio, New Orleans, LA; Sea-Saint Recording Studio, Inc, New Orleans, LA.
Director: Allen Toussaint.
Photographer: Sydney Byrd.
Arranger: Allen Toussaint.
One of the most important--and most underappreciated--figures in the development of the New Orleans soul sound, Allen Toussaint has worked as a composer, arranger, producer, and session musician for countless Crescent City artists ranging from Fats Domino to the Meters. Toussaint also cut a string of albums under his own name, and had a healthy stint with Reprise in the 1970s that yielded some of his best solo work. THE ALLEN TOUSSAINT COLLECTION gathers the best of his Reprise material and acts, consequently, as a superb introduction to the man's myriad talents.
Though many of Toussaint's best-known songs are absent (these were mostly hits for other artists), the set list impresses. The mellow feel of "From a Whisper to a Scream" shows the harder edge of Toussaint's work with other '70s artists giving way to a sophisticated groove. His flair for hooks ("Am I Expecting Too Much?"), in-the-cut funk ("Last Train"), and soaring melodies ("Southern Nights"--later a huge hit for Glen Campbell) are all here. Toussaint's understated singing and elegant piano playing grace every track, and the arrangements and production are impeccable as always. A gem of refined Southern R&B, this set is highly recommended for fans of funk and soul.