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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Hey! It's James Moody

Hey! It's James Moody
Cover Photo: Chuck Stewart
Cover Design: Don Bronstein
Engineer: Ron Malo
Supervision: Jack Tracy
Argo LP 666
Chess Producing Corp. - Chicago, Illinois

Recorded December 29, 1959, at Tea-Mar Recording Studios, Chicago.

James Moody -Tenor Saxophone and Flute
Johnny Gray - Guitar
Eldee Young - Bass
Clarence Johnson - Drums

Available from online vendors so I will not be posting a sample. Presented here to share the cover art and bio information.

From the back cover: The pattern of Moody's career has been a simple one, composed of three main phases. As the army took him in 1943, when he was 18, and kept him through '46, he got off to a relatively late professional start. The first major phase was his membership in the Dizzy Gillespie band of 1947; the second was a three-year stay in Europe, freelancing mainly in Stockholm and Paris. The third stage, which has lasted up to the present, has found Moody touring the U.S. as leader of his own band. Originally known exclusively as a tenor saxophonist, he began doubling on alto during the second phase and recently, as his Argo LPs eloquently attest, has been concentrating more and more on the flute.

On these sides Moody plays tenor and fate, with the backing of a rhythm section which, except for the two tracks featuring Eddie Jefferson's vocals, is painless. This, however, is not the kind of piano-bereft instrumentation that leaves Moody and his listeners of an unobtrusive but firm guide through the harmonic contours of each track.

The guitarist in question, though not yet a generally familiar name, is greatly respected among fellow-musicians who have heard him in Chicago, Johnny Gray's regular gig is the Don McNeil Breakfast Club show. Aside from his studio chores he occasionally has an opportunity for a jazz record date; he was heard previously with Moody on Last Train From Overbrook (LP 637) Gray's work is reinforced by the sturdy presence of Elder Young, the 24-year-old Chicago-born bassist who, after a long apprenticeship in the rhythm and blues field working for Chuck Willis, T-Bone Walker, et al, found a sui
table niche in the Ramsey Lewis trio, with which he has been heard in clubs and on Argo LPs.

Stella By Starlight
Indian Summer
Don't Blame Me
Last Train From Overbrook
Please Say Yes
Blue Jubilee
Woody'n You
Trouble In De Lowlands
Summer Time

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