Pianist Junior Mance originally released these albums in 1966 on the Atlantic label; they were then combined in 2000 for the first time on CD by the Collectables label. Harlem Lullaby is a haphazard recording with a revolving-door rhythm section that is marred by Mance's insistence to occasionally utilize a harpsichord instead of piano. By contrast, I Believe to My Soul is a horn-laden affair with Mance sticking to piano; appearances from David "Fathead" Newman, Frank Wess, and Joe Newman also help make this the better date of the two. Neither album is essential, but they will be of interest to collectors of mid-'60s mainstream soul jazz.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Al Campbell