Cannonball Adderley

Live Session!

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While Cannonball Adderley is a fine and well-known alto saxophonist, his equal partner on Live Session!, vocalist Ernie Andrews, is a more obscure figure. Andrews recorded frequently during the late '40s and throughout the '50s, but retained a lower profile during the '60s. That's one reason why Live Session!, recorded in 1964, is such a special work. Backed by Adderley, cornetist Nat Adderley, pianist Joe Zawinul, bassist Sam Jones, and drummer Louis Hayes, Andrews' warm, rich vocals offer lovely interpretations of an even dozen songs. The material cuts a wide swath across non-jazz genres, from the bluesy "Next Time I See You," to the popular "Since I Fell for You," to the fun nonsense of "Green Door." Although the instrumental work takes a backseat to the vocals, both Adderleys find room to offer pithy solos that spice up the proceedings. The accompaniment is an active one, too, with intricate piano and horns highlighting and underlining Andrews as needed. Interestingly, the songs were recorded live on two different dates, two years apart. The album nonetheless flows as a piece. Three tracks, "Come on Back," "Work Song," and "Green Door" have been added to the 2004 reissue, providing yet another reason to pick up Live Session!

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