Jimmy Witherspoon (1923-1997) was one of the most versatile vocalists ever to be called a blues singer. Whether applying his distinctively resonant baritone to blues, jazz, pop, or gospel, the Arkansas-born crooner remained a model of musical relaxation. The two LPs combined on this CD present the singer in radically different environments. Blue Spoon from 1964 finds him placing his signature on blues standards including "Baby, Please Don't Go" (here titled "Back to New Orleans"), as well as some pop ballads, in stellar jazz company featuring Kenny Burrell. The following year's Spoon in London is one of the curiosities in the Witherspoon discography: It's pure mid- Sixties Brit-pop, complete with jangling guitars, bouncing beats, and a chirping chorus, albeit arranged by the American Benny Golson.
with Kenny Burrell, Roy Haynes, Eddie Kahn, Gildo Mahones