Quincy Jones

Plays Hip Hits

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By 1963, Quincy Jones' music was at a crossroads. Still jazz-oriented, Jones' work with a studio big band was clearly aimed at trying to sell records rather than play creative jazz. On this LP, Jones leads an orchestra through a dozen then-recent jazz "hits," including "Comin' Home Baby," "Exodus," "Cast Your Fate to the Wind," "Take Five" and "Watermelon Man." There are some fine short solos by the likes of trumpeter Joe Newman, guitarist Jim Hall, Zoot Sims on tenor, altoist Phil Woods and (on "A Taste of Honey") even Rahsaan Roland Kirk. However, the performances all clock in around three minutes, and the jazz players take solos that often only count as cameos. Pleasant but not particularly substantial music.

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