Thursday, May 08, 2014


A trio of 70s Freddie Hubbard – all packaged together in one sweet set! First up is Keep Your Soul Together – Freddie Hubbard at the peak of his 70s powers – and one of his finest albums of the decade! The record follows strongly in the tone that Freddie set at CTI on his mighty Red Clay set – long, drawn out tracks – done with lots of electricity in the rhythms, and a very cosmic approach to the solos! The groove is funky, yet easy – featuring playing that's very open and very soulful, by a group that includes Freddie, Ron Carter, George Benson, and Hubert Laws. Titles include "Keep Your Soul Together", "Spirits Of Trane", "Destiny's Children", and "Brigitte".

Polar AC is warm and wonderful work from Freddie Hubbard – a killer of a record recorded for CTI, and one of his most soulful efforts for the label! The album's got a bit more of a human heart than some of the more cosmic sessions Freddie cut at the time – a bit more contemplative and introspective, but no less open-minded and electrically charged. The assortment of players is all top-shelf – with Billy Cobham, Airto, Lennie White, George Cables, Hubert Laws, and George Benson all backing Freddie up on the set – and titles include a great take on "People Make the World Go Round", plus "Naturally", and "Son of Sky Dive", which grooves just like its papa!

Skagly has a title that reads like a typo, but the album's a great set of smooth fusion from Freddie Hubbard – self-produced, and almost a summation of all the styles he'd mastered in the 70s! The session's never too over the top or too ambitious – just features Freddie working with a hip group in a laidback setting – blowing lean and mellow lines that almost take him back to his best CTI funk. The group features Billy Childs on keyboards, Hadley Caliman on tenor and flute, and some guest work by George Duke and Paulinho Da Costa – on titles that include "Skagly", "Rustic Celebration", "Happiness Is Now", and "Cascais". ~ Dusty Groove

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