Ben Webster & Johnny Hodges Sextet - The Complete 1960 Jazz Cellar Session - LP Vinyl

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The Complete 1960 Jazz Cellar Session
Ben Webster & Johnny Hodges Sextet
12" Vinyl


This 1960 set is said to be the only recording session on which Ben Webster and Johnny Hodges were the only two horn players. At least, that applies to the first dozen tracks. The last five come from an octet session recorded a year later. The first twelve were recorded at the Jazz Cellar in San Francisco; the last five were recorded somewhere in Los Angeles.

The line-up gives Webster and Hodges the chance to show their paces without much interference. In fact they had played together in the Duke Ellington Orchestra for various periods from 1935 onwards, so they knew one another closely, and their empathy comes through on these sides. You might say that Hodges is to the alto sax what Ben Webster is to the tenor. Their distinctive saxophones blend well together, even though they have slightly different styles. They both actually have a sweet legato style of playing, although Webster can get gruff and growly when he wants to. Their main similarity is that they both aim for (and achieve) mellowness of tone - and they can both swing with the greatest of ease. The staccato single notes of guitarist Herb Ellis contrast nicely with the saxists' predominantly smooth mode.

A1 Ben's Web
A2 SIde Door (Don't Kid Yourself)
A3 Blues'll Blow Your Fuse
A4 I Can't Believe That You're In Love With Me
A5 Dual Highway
A6 Big Ears
B1 Shorty Gull
B2 Ifida
B3 Big Smack
B4 I'd Be There
B5 Just Another Day
B6 Lollalagin Now

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