Bobby Timmons

Got to Get It!

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Purists may blanch, but Bobby Timmons' Milestone label debut Got to Get It! is an otherwise incendiary soul-jazz date informed by an irresistible freewheeling wit, absent from the pianist's more conventionally noteworthy efforts. While the material is fairly pedestrian, ranging from obvious standards (Ellington's "Come Sunday," Monk's "Straight, No Chaser") to lightweight pop fare (Jimmy Webb's "Up, Up and Away"), what sets the record apart is the energy and enthusiasm of its performances -- Timmons, following a prolonged absence from the studio, is in fine form throughout, and his supporting is consistently vibrant, with particular credit due to the rich, velvety bass work of Ron Carter. Again, Got to Get It! is neither groundbreaking nor especially challenging (the title track, with its delightfully sassy vocal arrangement and stutter-step rhythm, more closely recalls the pioneering funk of James Brown than even the loosest definition of jazz), but its deep immersion in the groove makes for compelling listening, nevertheless.

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