Thursday, July 23, 2009

Roosevelt Sykes - Feel Like Blowing My Horn

For Abe, amazing joyous blues from Mr. Sykes.

"This loveable pianist and singer sustained a long recording and performing career, the last decades of which he was frequently heard as a soloist. Although this was an artistically defendable position and Sykes made the most of the solo context, he was quick to admit in interviews that he was most known as a bandleader in his romping, stomping days, and these were bands that featured horns and arrangements of a style somewhere between Kansas City and New Orleans. Producer Bob Koester gets kudos for bringing about a studio session for Sykes involving such a group later in his career. What a great combination of players is involved, including the brilliant guitarist Robert Jr. Lockwood, the crack rhythm section of Dave Myers and Fred Below, and two horn players whose affiliation with the bandleader goes back to the '30s and '40s. One of them, trumpeter King Kolax, is a name who frequently shows up in discographies of jazz great John Coltrane, who played in the Kolax band when he was a whippersnapper. These legendary players hardly sit on their laurels; they use the opportunity to lay down really beautiful music, the rocking and fun-loving spirit of Sykes looking down on all of it like some kind of barbecue munching holy spirit. One of the best recordings on the Delmark label, and that is saying a mouthful." - Eugene Chadbourne


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