2. The Man I Love
3. The Major And The Minor
4. That's the Groovy Thing
5. Eight Forty-Five Stomp
7. Earl Blows a Fuse
9. Seven Steps
10. Don't You Do It
12. I'm Getting Sentimental Over You
13. The Moon Is Low
14. Lover Come Back To Me
16. Ain't Misbehavin'
18. The Very Thought Of You
19. What, No Pearls?
20. Smoke Rings
21. Deep Purple
22. Off Shore
23. The Waves of the Danube
24. Night and Day
25. Cocktails for Two
26. When Your Lover Has Gone
Earl Bostic – Alto sax
Many jazz fans may think
of Earl Bostic as a one-hit wonder, since
his recording of Flamingo is so well-known
as to cast the rest of his career into shadow.
In fact he was a highly-regarded musician,
arranger and composer who played for the likes
of Benny Moten, Don Redman and Lionel Hampton
before finding success with his own small
groups playing such hits as Temptation,
Sleep and Flamingo.
Certainly the hard-driving
alto sax blowing on Flamingo is typical
of many tracks on this selection of recordings
from 1945 to 1955, with Bostic taking centre-stage
with his forceful, buzzing sax style, which
often resorted to single-note honking and
oft-repeated riffs. Yet he could also create
subtler music, as in Cherokee where
his important sideman Gene Redd states the
tune on the vibraphone while Bostic weaves
interesting counter-melodies around the theme.
At other times (as in Off Shore), Earl’s
alto is so rhapsodic that it may remind you
of Freddy Gardner. And Bostic’s band was a
hotbed of talent, with such names as John
Coltrane, Blue Mitchell, Stanley Turrentine
and Jimmy Cobb appearing among the personnels.
Earl Bostic was one of the
pioneers of jazz-based rhythm-and-blues, with
a style that is often reminiscent of Louis
Jordan and sometimes of such unbridled sax
soloists as King Curtis and Arnett Cobb. Some
tracks here suffer from the prominence of
Bostic, so that many of his sidemen hardly
get a look-in. On the other hand, it is a
joy to hear a musician who played with such
unbridled power and skill.