Thursday, August 10, 2006

Listen here

Eddie Harris : Freedom Jazz Dance
The In Sound (Atlantic, 1965)

Les McCann & Eddie Harris : Compared To What
Swiss Movement (Atlantic, 1969)

It's amazing to listen a jazz funk version of 'Compared To What', here performed by the pianist Les McCann with Eddie Harris on sax. When I bought 'Swiss Movement' it was the only version I known. Since I also discover Della Reese and Roberta Flack covers. Della Reese's covers sounds like soul funk. Roberta Flack covers is nearest to Les McCann / Eddie Harris's version. Roberta Flack play it on First Take released in 1969. 'Compared To What' appeared on Les Is More released in 1967, she's credited there, I don't know on which track(s), but she plays piano
(a few months before cutting her first record for Atlantic).

With 'Freedom Jazz Funk' I discover what soul-jazz would means. Moreover, Smiles Miles, second album of the Miles Davis Quintet released in 1966, is directly inspired by 'Freedom Jazz Dance'. Although his work was recognized belatedly, Eddie Harris had an enormous influence on the emerging new generation of musicians in the 70's and he's still a reference for all jazz-funk lovers. One year later he was recording 'The In Sound', Herbie Hancock feat. on Blow Up soundtrack... but I prefer his Fat Albert Rotunda's album is so good.

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