Willis "Gator" Jackson

Together Again!

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On the five tracks of Together Again!, recorded with three separate lineups in 1959-1960, the Willis Jackson-Jack McDuff-speared combo offers respectable early soul-jazz, if not too different from many other Prestige-overseen sessions of the early '60s. They show their bop chops to good advantage on "Three Little Words" and "Tu' Gether"; take a slightly bluesier groove on "Glad 'a See Ya'"; and slow way down for a make-out mood on the cover of Rodgers & Hammerstein's "It Might as Well Be Spring." It's the slow-walkin'-tempoed "This'll Get to Ya," though, that gives them their greatest chance to stretch out, lasting ten minutes, and adding Buck Clarke on conga to the standard sax-organ-guitar-bass-drums lineup. All of the tracks are included on the 2003 Prestige CD reissue that's also titled Together Again!, which is a little more complicated than the standard expanded CD reissue; it combines all the tracks from Together Again! and the Jackson-McDuff-helmed sequel, Together Again, Again, though the songs are sequenced in the order in which they were recorded, not the order in which they were presented on the original LPs.

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