Gloria Coleman

Sweet Missy

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One of the last surviving jazz organists of the 1960s, Gloria Coleman actually started her career as a bassist and occasional pianist. In 1960 she switched her focus to organ, working with Sonny Stitt. Although she has not recorded that extensively in her career, she is a powerful player and has not lost anything through the decades. Sweet Missy, her first recording in a while, has her leading a trio with either Eric Johnson or Calvin Keys on guitar and George Coleman, Jr.or Deszon Claiborne on drums. Five selections have her husband, the great tenor saxophonist George Coleman, making the group a quartet and Dr. Lonnie Smith (heard on piano rather than his customary organ) sits in on "Put 'Em in a Box, Tie 'Em with a Ribbon." However the main star throughout is Gloria Coleman. She sings on a few of the numbers in an expressive and conversational style that recalls the late Etta Jones. Her organ playing swings soulfully and, whether it is her original "Martin's Rhumba," Shirley Scott's "Blues Everywhere," or two versions of Charlie Parker's "Confirmation," Gloria Coleman is in prime form throughout this happy set.

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