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Tenorman Import

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Audio CD, Import, December 27, 2011
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (December 27, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: EMI Japan
  • ASIN: B005V4GLE4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #696,919 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By C. Katz on November 2, 2008
Format: Audio CD
Well maybe that is a misnomer.It is a West Coast LP on the fantastic Cult ,impossible to find Jazz West label (another must is the Jack Sheldon two-fer now on CD).This is is east coast in ti's sound and only LP ever led by MJQ allum Lawrence Marable.While nominally he is leader the star is the Texas Tenor James Clay (man so many greats from Ornette to Jacquett came from the big T).And after all it is called Tenorman.James Clay only had two LP's under his own name (one with Nat Adderley and Victor Feldman et all "A Double Dose Of Soul" is a Classic.Another with Cannonball is one to pass on).

But this 1956 LP is a classic not only because of Clay (who here was a fresh faced 20 year old) but because of presence of the always great Sonny Clark.Rounding out band is Jimmy Bond on bass and the titular leader Lawrence Marable.How good is it?INCREDIBLE.It combines the east-west coast feel perfectly.The rip into 1) Devil In The Deep Blue Sea 2)"Easy Living" brings the pace down a bit but not the inventive lines of all 3)"Minor Meeting" by Sonny Clark (which has become a minor standard by now) is incredible) 4)Herb Geller's "Airtight" 5)A beauty of a a "Willow Weep For Me" 6) a rare one (maybe only recorded here) A Sonny Clark tune "Three Fingers North" 7)Loverman 8)Marbles (for Marable-get it?) and ending with "It's alright with me.
Now how good is this from this guy who probably looking at his ratings of all 5 stars would probably give "The Best Of Perry Como Sings) at least 4?Well last original copy I saw sell on Ebay was $3K!!!!!!It has to be more than rare to get that price.
And her the best thing.You can get this either as is or get a compilation long overdue called "Tenorman:James Clay The Kid From Dalls" by the great Fresh Sounds label.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Guillaume Gilbert on July 12, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Before emi japan released this product part of their jazz re-release program, I had never heard about this album, as I had never heard about most albums on the Jazz West label as well, for it's mostly out of print since long ago.
Anyway I was intrigued by a quartet album(as I particularly like small combo jazz) featuring James Clay on tenor sax that was released on a West Coast jazz label in the 50's so I bought it and I was blown away. This is "classic" modern jazz at it's best. An album as good as most classics of the era. It displays delicate romanticism as well as hard swinging improvisations. Any serious jazz collection needs it.The Sound of SonnyArt & PerceptionConte Candoli QuartetCharlie Parker: A Studio Chronicle 1940-1948The Complete Original Quartet Recordings
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Format: Audio CD
The term "Texas tenor" became a trade-mark worn by great '40s tenor players like Illinois Jacquet and Buddy Tate, usually connoting a hard-sounding, tough and no-holds-barred approach to playing the instrument. Spare the niceties like a carefully polished, burnished sound or a gentrified Prez-Getz approach. But just because such a player could occasionally sound "raw" didn't mean that he was any the less tender or musically nourishing; if you're a jazz fan who likes his steak bloody rare, chances are you'll appreciate the meaty sound and always earthy, bluesy, no-nonsense sound and consistently melodic, inventive solos of a somewhat later example of the breed, James Clay.

This one has been in my collection since college, and I'm happy to have a working turntable and the original LP, without paying the high tariff of the once-again out-of-print CD import. James Clay was largely overlooked and forgotten throughout the '70s and '80s, but he suddenly surfaced in NYC around 1990. Fortunately, it was drummer extraordinaire Billy HIggins who, as I recall, remembered him and saw to it that he was first fitted with a new set of teeth and next supplied with a decent Mark 6 (actually, I'm not sure about the Mark 6 part). In any case, the ensuing recording vindicated Higgins' better judgment, as Clay sounded better than ever, despite a protracted hiatus, or period of obscurity and neglect. If you can find the date (the title eludes me at present and is somewhere in my attic), it would certainly make a suitable complementary book-end to this early recording by an under-appreciated yet superb and unfailingly soulful player.

[Later: the referenced album is "I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart" and is going for prices that make ordering it seem preferable to tearing apart my attic.]
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