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Is Freddie Hubbard's Columbia Material Available Anywhere?

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hmm, Gleam must have some substance to it if it was Japan only, as do the Japan only Herbie's of the period, and the VSOP albums. would like to hear it.

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"Take It To The Ozone" has got to be one of the most monster burners ever recorded. Freddie used to do that one live all the time. He'd just tear it apart, all over the horn, sometimes starting off way up in the upper register and just keeping the pyrotechnics going for endless choruses. 80s Hub's chops were infinite. I'd pay $100 to see Freddie live play like that again.

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"Take It To The Ozone" has got to be one of the most monster burners ever recorded. Freddie used to do that one live all the time. He'd just tear it apart, all over the horn, sometimes starting off way up in the upper register and just keeping the pyrotechnics going for endless choruses. 80s Hub's chops were infinite. I'd pay $100 to see Freddie live play like that again.

Yeah, on those nights when he was really on, it was jawdropping unbelievable. I have to laugh at the people around here who think he was at his best on Blue Note in the 1960s.

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I bought "Liquid Love" back in the late 70's (or early 80's) on 8 track tape! Haven't heard in some time and wonder if I'd still like it. I haven't seen it reissued on cd yet... :)

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Yeah, on those nights when he was really on, it was jawdropping unbelievable. I have to laugh at the people around here who think he was at his best on Blue Note in the 1960s.

Exactly. Freddie in the early-mid 80s might have been the baddest m/f in the world. His stage presence alone was worth the price of admission. There are those few who exist in another universe and all you can do is wonder how they aspired that high. Freddie said when he was coming up he used to never go to sleep, non-stop practicing.

That's why life must be so sad for him now. Despite all the ugly rumours, Freddie's downfall was probably trying to play too high too loud too many years with a lower-middle register embouchure. He used powerful airflow to do it but introduced so much scar tissue into his lips that it's impossible for him to play anymore.

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I can remember being a little disappointed with Hubbard's performances in the late CTI period (the group with Junior Cook, George Cables and Lenny White) - he would begin every solo in the upper register and stay there, and his beautiful tone sometimes got lost. But not TOO disappointed... (Those were the days - routinely catching a group like that in a local club.) (Hubbard usually had an electric piano and bass when he came to town - once it was Michael Moore on bass, of all people. But I caught that edition once at the Vanguard - all acoustic, Alex Blake on bass. Did he figure the New York audience was more sophisticated?)

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I can remember being a little disappointed with Hubbard's performances in the late CTI period (the group with Junior Cook, George Cables and Lenny White) - he would begin every solo in the upper register and stay there, and his beautiful tone sometimes got lost. But not TOO disappointed... (Those were the days - routinely catching a group like that in a local club.) (Hubbard usually had an electric piano and bass when he came to town - once it was Michael Moore on bass, of all people. But I caught that edition once at the Vanguard - all acoustic, Alex Blake on bass. Did he figure the New York audience was more sophisticated?)

For a player who had one of the most beautiful sounds (maybe the most beautiful) in the lower and especially the middle registers, it was really too bad he got caught-up in the upper register obsession. I mean , on a good night , Hub could even play above double C all night ....

.... he wasn't a Faddis or a Sandoval or a Ferguson (that is, huge volume and sound and playing technically correctly) but he could play up above double G consistently and mix these impossible notes into fast-paced improvs. In his prime, he had the best overall register of any of the great improvisers on trumpet.

But more than once I saw him walk on stage after the head (allegedly with no warm up) and pop a double-C to start .... not too smart.

If you listen back on the Blakey sessions, Hub would frequently flub upper register stuff - he'd recover quickly, but it could sound bad. He was pushing too hard. You listen to a player like Lee or Woody and they rarely attempted anything out of their assured range.

Then in the 70s on the CTI stuff, something happenned and he could do all these trick lip trills and his upper register was a little thin but much more consistent, then by the 80s he was a monster all over the horn.

I've read Freddie went to some of the best embouchure / endurance specialist teachers in the world in an effort to regain his chops, but to no avail.

I wonder when someone does the Freddie bio if he'll reveal all. There are a lot of crazy rumours out there. But like I said, I think it was long-term physical deterioration. I mean, look at Diz in the 40s and then the 50s. His chops basically self-destructed in 10 years. Sure, he learned how to play a different style, but when you listen to his tone in the 50s you can hardly believe it's the same player.

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Then in the 70s on the CTI stuff, something happenned and he could do all these trick lip trills and his upper register was a little thin but much more consistent, then by the 80s he was a monster all over the horn.

Do these early 80s recordings capture the Hubbard you're talking about? I'm guilty of not really listening to FH after Red Clay. Maybe time to rethink that.

Freddie_Hubbard2002-07-04.jpg

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c893946kyuy.jpg

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No.

Then in the 70s on the CTI stuff, something happenned and he could do all these trick lip trills and his upper register was a little thin but much more consistent, then by the 80s he was a monster all over the horn.

Do these early 80s recordings capture the Hubbard you're talking about? I'm guilty of not really listening to FH after Red Clay. Maybe time to rethink that.

Freddie_Hubbard2002-07-04.jpg

f13866fz627.jpg

c893946kyuy.jpg

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My favorite 1980s Freddie Hubbard recordings are these:

Outpost (Enja)--quartet recording.

Temptation (Timeless)--quartet with Kirk Lightsey as co-leader

Sweet Return (Atlantic).

Bolivia.

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this is a wicked-good early 80s live recording:

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Yeah, get the Keystone Bop stuff. Also, during that era you can find Freddie playing amazing improvs as a sideman on many many LPs. I don't have a list right now 'cause all mine is on vinyl and I don't know what's available. Plus, the VSOP stuff was great.

Do you have Red Clay and Straight Life ... ? Those two will wear out your player.

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I love Red Clay. Especially the live version by the CTI All Stars. Anybody who thinks jazz was dead by 1970 isn't listening. That stuff is electrifying.

If Freddie was still playing in the 80s like he was in the early 70s, then I've got some shoppping to do!

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the Keystone Bop recordings are excellent. Some wonderful playing by Jo Hen and Booby ;-). John makes some very good points about the stylistic changes Hub went through. His early 60's recordings expressed a wonderful warm midrangey tone and fluid ideas... the CTI stuff well, his chops were just crazy, though sometimes I feel his ideas were limited amongst the whinnying lip trill, and screaming high notes, throughout the 70's period. then the 80's a bit of everything. Though on recordings like "Night of the Cookers" I can hear him getting into more of that high note stuff a bit more easily. Think I'll play "Face to Face" now :)

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On record, at least, I don't think Hubbard ever gave a bad performance, whatever the setting or period. Even his youthful appearance on the Wes Montgomery "Pacific Jazz" album is first-rate. (His sideman appearances are often just as strong as the sessions where he's the leader - is there a better solo than his on "Maiden Voyage?") His "Columbia" albums have been lost in the shuffle (I think it's the only label where his material hasn't resurfaced) (even "Soul Experiment" has been out a couple of times), but his playing on them is up to the usual standards.

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Is there a better solo than his on "Maiden Voyage?"

Or "Dolphin Dance", or "One Finger Snap", or...

His "Columbia" albums have been lost in the shuffle (I think it's the only label where his material hasn't resurfaced) (even "Soul Experiment" has been out a couple of times), but his playing on them is up to the usual standards.

I agree. It's just that on the weakest LPs (like Liquid Love) the source material doesn't allow him to stretch to his usual standards.

Edited by Kari S

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Is there a better solo than his on "Maiden Voyage?"

Or "Dolphin Dance", or "One Finger Snap", or...

When I try to show someone what jazz is about, I play his solo on the Impulse version of "Aries". And "Oliloqui Valley" was my answering machine greeting for a long time.

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High Energy has a funk version of "Crisis" that is really cool.

To me, the best of the 70s "commercial jazz" by the "old guard" that is so widely reviled today took the basic forms of Hard Bop and simply replaced the underpinnings with something more "of the times". No harm there, imo. Actually, I dig it.

The worst of it, however, took the basic content of Hard Bop and simply replaced it with something more "of the times". Yuck. Boo. Etc.

Freddie did a bit of both, no?

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I've read Freddie went to some of the best embouchure / endurance specialist teachers in the world in an effort to regain his chops, but to no avail.

This isn't true at all. He's talked to a few but has never sat down with anyone

I wonder when someone does the Freddie bio if he'll reveal all. There are a lot of crazy rumours out there. But like I said, I think it was long-term physical deterioration. I mean, look at Diz in the 40s and then the 50s. His chops basically self-destructed in 10 years. Sure, he learned how to play a different style, but when you listen to his tone in the 50s you can hardly believe it's the same player.

Yes, well put. I absolutely agree that most of the problem is long-term physical deterioration though of course there were other factors as well. I've said this many times. There wasn't a trumpeter who played longer, harder, faster and higher than Freddie so there really is no other example of how that much playing over such a long period of time can have on a trumpet player. I doubt anyone would have lasted as long. Freddie still has some very good nights though. Even at his best these days, it's a long way from what it was but I'd still rather listen to that than most trumpet players out here now. The phrasing and the complexity of the lines can still be astounding at times. My only hope as we continue to work together is that he gets more consistent with what he has left. That should be more than enough for most of us. Freddie did some tours with Dizzy toward the end of his life and Freddie said there were nights when he could hardly play but every once in a while he could still bring it and it was a joy to hear.

But more than once I saw him walk on stage after the head (allegedly with no warm up) and pop a double-C to start .... not too smart.

Yes, this kind of thing probably didn't help much. Part of the problem was the his schedule would be so tight sometimes that he would literally step off a plane onto a stage at times and didn't have time to warm up. He definitely was over-worked and it caught up with him.

As for Gleam, it's a mix of the best and worst of his Columbia years but it's well worth seeking out. The tunes are Put it in the Pocket, Ebony Moonbeams, Betcha By Golly Wow, Spirits of Trane, Kuntu, Midnight at the Oasis and Too High. I love most of it but as with Night of the Cookers, perhaps the percussion solos are a bit long at times.

Edited by david weiss

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David:Did you grow up in Berkeley? Berkeley High?

Edited by johnagrandy

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David:Did you grow up in Berkeley? Berkeley High?

No, I'm actually from New York, born and raised in Queens. I've had a lot of associates though who went to Berkeley High, they've really produced a great number of fine musicians there, like Craig Handy and Benny Green.

Edited by david weiss

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David:Did you grow up in Berkeley? Berkeley High?

No, I'm actually from New York, born and raised in Queens. I've had a lot of associates though who went to Berkeley High, they've really produced a great number of fine musicians there, like Craig Handy and Benny Green.

Craig Handy

Bennie Green

Charlie Hunter

Will Bernard

Josh Redman

Steve Bernstein

Peter Apfelbaum

Dave Ellis

Scott Amendola

Jay Lane

Ambrose Akinmusire

John Findlayson

John Schott

way more but my mind is shot right now

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Check out this hilarious ad from 1978... A gem! Columbia's marketing dept. sure knew what they were doing. :D

hubbardad6ph.th.jpg

(click for larger)

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And what about "Skagly" ??????????

(Personal Admission Of Guilt: I bought this LP on day one.)

Edited by johnagrandy

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Freddie did some tours with Dizzy toward the end of his life and Freddie said there were nights when he could hardly play but every once in a while he could still bring it and it was a joy to hear.

Reading this brings back fond memories. The one time that I've seen Freddie live he was sharing the stage with Dizzy for a Charlie Parker anniversary tribute. Freddie's lip was pretty impressive that night and his big sound filled the RFH. Dizzy scored big by pacing and phrasing his solos to perfection. Also on the bill were Art Pepper, Curtis Fuller, Lee Konitz, John Lewis, Slam Stewart and Roy Haynes.

Edited by sidewinder

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