Wednesday, December 05, 2012


Classic Quincy Jones from the 60s – a pair of records that really show why his jazz skills were unlike anyone else! Quincy Jones Plays Hip Hits is a very groovy record that was done with a feel that's somewhere in between his Big Band Bossa album and his best 60s soundtrack work! The format is simple – Quincy picks a sweet batch of jazz semi-hits from the early 60s, plays them with a nice mix of soul jazz arrangements, and works with a great ensemble filled with wonderful players – including Roland Kirk, Budd Johnson, Seldon Powell, James Moody, and Jerome Richardson on reeds; Lalo Schifrin and Patti Brown on piano, Jim Hall on guitar, Clark Terry on trumpet, and Melba Liston on trombone – plus lots of great percussion at the bottom, helping bring some Latin energy to the grooves at points.

Tunes are familiar, but all given a great Quincy Jones twist – and titles include "Gravy Waltz", "Jive Samba", "Walk On The Wild Side", "Bossa Nova USA", and "Watermelon Man". Golden Boy is a sweet bridge between Quincy's big band recordings and his groovier soundtrack work of the mid 60s – as the record combines straight jazzy grooving with some of the cooler elements of Quincy's soundtrack scores, like stepping strings, wordless voices, and a breathy mellow groove that floats across the disc in a wonderful way! Aiding Quincy in the album are a host of top-line jazz players – including Eddie Lockjaw Davis, Jerome Richardson, and Phil Woods on saxes – plus Freddie Hubbard on trumpet, Al Grey on trombone, and Jim Hall on guitar! Although titled after the show Golden Boy, only a few cuts here are from that musical – and the rest include Quincy Jones originals and some cool covers, given the Q twist. Titles include "Seaweed", "The Witching Hour", "Hard Day's Night", "The Sidewinder", and "Theme From Golden Boy", done in 2 versions, both great! ~ Dusty Groove

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