The Crusaders: Wilton Felder (saxophone, electric bass); Wayne Henderson (trombone); Joe Sample (keyboards); Stix Hooper (drums, percussion).
Additional personnel includes: Randy Crawford, Josie James (vocals); Jerome Richardson (alto saxophone); Robert Bryant Jr. (tenor saxophone); Bill Green (baritone saxophone); Oscar Brashear, Bobby Bryant (trumpet); Garnett Brown (trombone); Maurice Spears (bass trombone); Larry Carlton, Arthur Adams, David T. Walker, Billy Rogers, Roland Bautista, B.B. King, Bobby Finnerty (guitar); Robert "Pops" Popwell, Chuck Rainey, James Jamerson (electric bass); Ralph MacDonald, Paulinho Da Costa, Efraim Logreira (percussion); The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
Producers include: Stewart Levine, Stix Hooper, Wilton Felder, Joe Sample.
Compilation producer: Bryan Koniarz.
Recorded between 1971 and 1981. Includes liner notes by Zan Stewart.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
This is part of the Verve Finest Hour series.
After a career that spanned the '60s with a number of releases on Pacific Jazz records as the Jazz Crusaders, the beginning of the '70s found the band dropping the jazz moniker from their name and moving toward the more commercially accessible pop/R&B crossover audience. These nine selections are taken from seven albums originally released on the Blue Thumb and MCA labels recorded between 1971 and 1979 with a live cut featuring B.B. King from 1981. The Crusaders have a lot of material still available featuring both incarnations with this compilation containing a worthy sample from the second half of their career. For a closer inspection of the earlier Jazz Crusaders, seek out Live at the Lighthouse 66 on Pacific Jazz. ~ Al Campbell