At The Village Vanguard
CAT # OJCCD-204-25
1. Looptown 5:05 2. Letter From Home 1:55 3. Girl Of My Dreams 13:56 4. 63rd Street Theme 6:16 5. Smokey Blues 6:35 6. 9:20 Special 5:11 7. Bingo Domingo 5:56 8. You Are Too Beautiful 5:10
Junior Mance began his recording career during the early heyday of something known as "soul jazz"--a volatile mixture of blues, bebop, and gospel forcefully exemplified by bands like those of Cannonball Adderley and Horace Silver, and by the compositions of Silver, Bobby Timmons, and Mance himself. This 1961 album was one of his first, taped during performances at New York's Village Vanguard (a favorite Riverside/Jazzland recording site). It came just after the end of a sideman career under leaders ranging from Lester Young and Gene Ammons to Adderley and Dizzy Gillespie. The spirit and conviction of Junior's blues-filled work here strongly demonstrates that as a "soul" pianist he was a pacesetter and not a trend-follower--and so does the fact that he has continued ever since as a powerful player in this idiom.
with Larry Gales, Ben Riley
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