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5.0 out of 5 stars Jimmy Smith - possibly not as you know him!, 18 Mar 2010
Dr.D.Treharne (Exeter, Devon, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: House Party (The Rudy Van Gelder Edition) (Audio CD)
You probably need to treat yourself to Jimmy Smith's "The Sermon" to fully appreciate what was happening here. This was the product of two sessions from August 1957 and February 1958 in which a group of excellent jazz musicians got together in a studio and produced a set of tracks in which they not only sound as if they're enjoying themselves but produce some great solo and ensemble work.Sitting in the middle is Jimmy Smith who probes, cajoles and relaxes so that the sidesmen get equally as much space to develop ideas as the nominal leader himself. So this is not Jimmy Smith in trio form - this him in jazz mode producing a series of extended tracks - indeed track 5, Charlie Parker's "Confirmation" is also a bonus track for the CD reissue, which has been remastered and enhanced the fidelity of the album, which I also have on vinyl.It's difficult to pick favourites, because all the tracks demand close attention, however personal favourites are "Blues after all", a Kenny Burrell composition, which has some belting solos from not only Smith but Lee Morgan, Curtis Fuller and perhaps best of all, Curtis Fuller. "Au Privave" features Lee Morgan, but also Tina Brookes,and especially at his very best Lou Donaldson.
Sometimes on this album it's difficult to remember that Smith, in order to release himself from his Blue Note contract produced a series sometimes lacklustre albums, but this the complete antithesis of those, a musician at the top of his jazz form enjoying making stimulating and exciting music firmly in a jazz mode.Worth every penny!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great jazz party; a great jam session., 29 Jun 2014
This review is from: House Party (The Rudy Van Gelder Edition) (Audio CD)
As on the partner album, "The Sermon" (which is the better of the pair if you choose not to acquire both) we find Jimmy in the company of eight excellent musicians for his house party. Not all musicians feature on every track.

This album has five good length tracks (6 - 15min). The longest two, "Au Privave" and "Confirmation", both Charlie Parker tunes, the band is a sextet: JS (organ), Lee Morgan (t), Lou Donaldson (alto), the under-recorded Tina Brooks (tnr), Kenny Burrell(g) and Art Blakey (d).

"Just Friends" and "Blues After All" also features a sextet, this time we have JS, with Morgan, Curtis Fuller (tmb), George Coleman (sax), Donald Bailey (d). The guitarist on "Friends" is Eddie McFadden, and on "Blues", Burrell.

The remaining track is a quartet feature for Donaldson (with JS, EM,DB), "Lover Man".

So we have five cracking numbers, all taken at medium tempo, with everyone given adequate solo time, and everyone playing at their best. In other words a fine "jam session" typical of the period (1957 - 1958).
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House Party (The Rudy Van Gelder Edition)
House Party (The Rudy Van Gelder Edition) by Jimmy Smith (Audio CD - 2000)
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