Sunday, June 22, 2014

Hank Mobley - The Classic Blue Note Collection 1955-1961 (Enlightenment, 2014)

Tenor saxophonist Hank Mobley never quite got the recognition he deserved in his lifetime. He had sideman stints with Art Blakey and Miles Davis, but his biggest impact was as a bandleader recording scores of records for Blue Note in the 1950’s and 1960’s, 26 records in all according to Wikipedia. Beginning with the album Hank Mobley Quintet and then culminating with two of his finest albums Workout and Soul Station, this collection works well for what it is. This is a collection of recordings that really give a prime example of the hard bop aesthetic of Blue Note records. Since this is an “out of copyright” collection, where other countries are able to release music that they do not need to license the music officially from Blue Note because of copyright laws expire sooner than in the USA, the music is pumped out without anything in the way of liner notes or sessionography. Presumably the music was lifted directly from previous Blue Note and Mosaic re-issues of Mobley’s catalog, but you get what you pay for with the music only and nothing in the way of Blue Note’s famous photography and liner essays. So, if you are interested in getting most of Mobley’s early recordings in one big slab, this may be the way to go, but you’ll need to do your own investigations in Mobley’s discography to receive further information. But perhaps you should also keep your eyes out for the Blue Note CD’s themselves. Because as these out of copyright packages at their bargain basement prices flood the market, it can discourage the record companies who hold the original copyright from investing the more well produced packages which will have complete information and re-mastered recordings from the original session tapes. Classic Blue Note Collection: 1955-1961 - amazon.com

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