A reissue of Freddie Hubbard's long out-of-print 1967 Atlantic album, "High Blood Pressure." Freddie Hubbard's distinctive playing is witnessed on "I Can't Let Her Go," "True Colors" and "Latina."
Personnel: Freddie Hubbard (trumpet, flugelhorn); James Spaulding (flute, alto saxophone); Bennie Maupin (flute, tenor saxophone); Kiane Zawadi (trombone, euphonium); Howard Johnson (tuba); Kenny Barron, Weldon Irvine (piano); Herbie Lewis (double bass); Freddie Waits, Louis Hayes (drums); Roman "Dog" Broadus (congas).
Freddie Hubbard may be the quintessential hard bop/modern jazz trumpet player. HIGH BLUES PRESSURE was recorded in 1967 for Atlantic Records, but style-wise it might well be a Blue Note session--and a very fine one at that. Hubbard's tone is big, brash, fiery and blues-inflected. The wailing solos by Bennie Maupin and the under-rated James Spaulding match the intensity of the fire that Hubbard generates.
The program consists of very melodic, earthy hard-bop originals, with touches of "Sidewinder"-like funk (Weldon Irvine's "Can't Let Her Go") and just-south-of-the-border pop-Latin music ("Latina"). The title song is so catchy with its easy, loping groove one wonders why it wasn't a hit single. Unlike some jazz albums from this period, PRESSURE features great ensemble playing to go with the excellent solos--no tiresome "theme/solos/theme" or "me soloist, you back-up" stuff. This disc comes highly recommended to Acid jazz fans, die-hard Blue Note bop buffs, acoustic jazz newcomers and Hubbard fans alike.