Frank Wess The Long Road
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- Released: October 10, 2000
- Originally Released: 2000
- Label: Prestige Records
- 1.Southern Comfort
- 2.Blue Skies
- 3.Gin's Beguine
- 4.Blues For Butterball
- 5.Summer Frost
- 6.Dancing In The Dark
- 8.The Lizard
- 9.Little Me
- 11.Cold Miner
- 12.Poor You
- 13.The Long Road
2 LP's on 1 CD: SOUTHERN COMFORT (1962)/YO HO! FRANK WESS/POOR YOU, LITTLE ME (1963).
Includes liner notes by Nat Hentoff and David A. Himmelstein.
Digitally remastered by Kirk Felton (2000, Fantasy Studios, Berkeley, California).
Personnel: Frank Wess (tenor saxophone, flute, alto flute); Oliver Nelson (tenor saxophone); George Barrow (baritone saxophone); Albert Aarons (trumpet); Tommy Flanagan (piano); George Duvivier (bass); Osie Johnson (drums); Ray Barretto (congas).
Producer: Esmond Edwards.
Recorded at the Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey on March 22, 1962. Originally released on Prestige (7231).
YO HO! FRANK WESS/POOR YOU, LITTLE ME:
Personnel: Frank Wess (tenor saxophone, flute); Thad Jones (trumpet); Gildo Mahones (piano); Buddy Catlett (bass); Roy Haynes (drums).
Producer: Ozzie Cadena.
Recorded at the Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey on January 24, 1963. Originally released on Prestige (7266).
Personnel: Frank Wess (alto flute, tenor saxophone); Oliver Nelson (tenor saxophone); George Barrow (baritone saxophone); Thad Jones, Al Aarons (trumpet); Gildo Mahones, Tommy Flanagan (piano); Osie Johnson, Roy Haynes (drums); Ray Barretto (congas).
Audio Remasterer: Kirk Felton.
Liner Note Author: Nat Hentoff.
Recording information: Englewood Cliffs NJ (03/22/1962-01/24/1963).
Arranger: Oliver Nelson.
From Count Basie and Billy Eckstine to Clark Terry and Toshiko Akiyoshi, Frank Wess has a long resum‚ when it comes to playing with big bands. No discussion of his history would be complete without some mention of his big-band credentials, especially his association with Basie from 1953-1964. But at the same time, there is also a lot to be said for hearing the saxman/flutist stretch out in smaller combos, which is exactly what he does on 1962's Southern Comfort and 1963's Yo Ho! Poor You, Little Me. In 2000, Fantasy reissued those two Prestige dates back to back on the 68-minute CD The Long Road. This disc finds Wess leading two very different combos; on Southern Comfort, he leads an octet that is arranged by Oliver Nelson, and on Yo Ho! Poor You, Little Me, he leads a quintet that employs trumpeter Thad Jones, pianist Gildo Mahones, bassist Buddy Catlett, and drummer Roy Haynes. Both albums are solid bop outings, and both of them give Wess plenty of room to stretch out on both tenor sax and flute. The jazzman, who was in his early forties when these sessions were recorded, is as appealing on lyrical, melodic items like "Poor You," "Summer Frost," and "Gin's Beguine" as he is on something as funky and hard-swinging as "Blues for Butterball." The Long Road is among the many Wess CDs well worth having in your collection. ~ Alex Henderson
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