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Rhythm & Blues

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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
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Originally consisting of saxophonists David Murray, Julius Hemphill, Oliver Lake and Hamiet Bluiett, the World Saxophone Quartet is one of the finest and most unusual small combos in jazz today. The Quartet began performing as a unit in 1976, inspired by Ed Jordan, head of Music at New Orleans Southern University. Jordan had heard the saxophonists in their individual groups, and hired them to ... Read more in Amazon's World Saxophone Quartet Store

Visit Amazon's World Saxophone Quartet Store
for 23 albums, photos, discussions, and more.

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Nonesuch
  • ASIN: B000002H79
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #144,250 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. For The Love Of Money
2. Let's Get it On
3. I Heard That
4. Loopology
5. (Sittin' on) The Dock Of The Bay
6. Messin' With The Kid
7. Try A Little Tenderness
8. Nemesis
9. Night Train

Editorial Reviews

When Hamiett Bluiett's baritone sax honks out the riff from the O'Jays' "For the Love of Money," it's clear that not only are several genre fences being run down, the World Saxophone Quartet is having the time of its life driving the bulldozer. Not that Rhythm and Blues, a set of six soul and blues classics matched with three originals, lacks subtlety. A ruminative, slowed-down "Let's Get It On," the natural encore hand- clapper "I Heard That" (one of Bluiett's two compositions here), and "Night Train," the James Brown-by-way-of-big-band mover--just three sublime highlights--help make this a gleeful, deeply felt work of very, very human art. --Rickey Wright

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ken Yates on February 2, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Before the chorus of the first song For the Love of Money it is easy to forget that you are listening to just four guys playing saxes. Then Julius Hemphil's laughing vocalizations and Hamiet Bluiett's virile rhythm bump bumping remind you they stand alone, four geniuses and just saxes. They don't need more. 'Let's Get It On' plays a beck and call of pensive proposition and sexual overtures. On 'Try A Little Tenderness' David Murray and company start smooth, close to the original melody then Mr. Murray's solo explores the variations of tenderness and the rest of the group join in the adventure. Very sensual, easily the most fascinating covers of these two classics I've ever heard. Hamiet Bluiett's "Nemesis" is my favorite, familiar, suspicious, curious and slightly mysterious everything a nemesis should be. This is a bold, fun, brassy, and soothing collection of wonderful reinterpretations of R&B cornerstones and original gems. Covet this CD!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Alistair McHarg on December 4, 2006
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
For many, the word - quartet - evokes images of four hopelessly well-scrubbed nerds in straw hats and striped shirts belting out antique cornpone harmonies so precisely arranged a mistake would be welcome.

For the longhairs out there, a quartet can only mean four distinguished, academy types in evening dress sawing away at fiddles of various sizes, conjuring melodies penned by long-dead European men who dressed funny. (With the exception of the Kronos Quartet, of course, in which case the music was composed recently and is certain to terrify the dogs, even those in the next county.)

Almost nobody hears the word - quartet - and thinks of four men playing saxophones of various lengths.

When the WSQ blew onto the scene, (yes, blew), they brought a revolutionary approach to improvisational jazz along with them. Those unfamiliar with the free jazz movement embodied by the likes of Ornette Coleman and Albert Ayler will hear only a maelstrom of undisciplined squawks and squeals. But the irony with WSQ is that their music is so intentional and rigidly controlled, (often tightly scored), that it resembles chamber music much more closely than the pure improvisation of say, late Pharaoh Sanders.

This CD finds WSQ at their most accessible; those curious about this absolutely inspired force of nature would do well to start here. These covers just don't sound like covers at all, they've been reinvented. Let's Get It On is downright reverential, Try A Little Tenderness is equally lovely, and Dock Of The Bay gets a treatment so loving it makes one nostalgic for Otis.

As sweet as the ballads are, the WSQ always finds time to cook, and Messin' With The Kid, Night Train, and For The Love Of Money work the R&B groove hard. The original tracks, I Heard That, Loopology, and Nemesis are easily on a par with the other offerings. An absolutely exquisite CD.
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