9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 5 August 2009
Beautiful, a different Hammond B3 sound than Smith, fabulous ballads, great swing, this man should have been huge but disappeared back to cook county in Illinois. Grant Green is his usual impeccable self. This magnificently Rudy Van Gelder remastered album should be in every modern jazz fans library if only to remind us of the true soul/blues style of playing that came out of a gospel tradition. Great album, great player, great loss.
on 4 March 2015
This is the second (and last) album recorded by Baby Face Willette for Blue Note, recorded just a few months after the first (1961) before effectively disappearing into obscurity, and a premature death. The personnel remain himself on Hammond organ with Grant Green (guitar) and Ben Dixon (drums).
Hammond organ exponents were the "latest thing" amongst them Jimmy Smith, Shirley Scott and Larry Young. The cause to why Willette became lost into obscurity must have been due to his personality: a discontent with city life, a wanderlust perhaps. Certainly not his lack of talent. He is an extremely competent musician who has a style that is more pianistic than that of Jimmy Smith, but still using the features of the organ.
I think that this album is a cut above his first (Face To Face). The repertoire is wider ranging including some originals (although one, "Soul Walk" sounds the same as "Blues March" to me) and some well known standards. The result an enjoyable album showcasing three fine musicians. On the album BFW is definitely the lead, whereas on "Face to Face" I felt that Grant Green was the dominany voice. Well worth buying.
The Hammond B organist Roosevelt 'Baby Face' Willette(1933-71) made a few records for BLUE NOTE & ARGO in the early 1960s and then seemed to disappear from the scene.
'Stop and Listen' is generally acknowledged to be his best album recorded in New Jersey on May 22, 1961 with Grant Green(guitar) & Ben Dixon(drums).
Willette had his roots in gospel and R & B which is evident on eight memorable tracks from this empathetic trio. Highlights include Ann Ronell's 'Willow Weep For Me', Nat Adderley's 'Work Song' and Willette's 'Jumpin' Jupiter' and the title-track.
The subtle, soulful and bluesy music on 'Stop and Listen' deserves a place in any modern jazz collection