Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Milestones

Hank Mobley

162 posts in this topic

Indeed.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 27.5.2022 at 9:14 AM, mhatta said:

I heard there were several "come back" attempts for Hank in the 80s.  I guess this is the last (or near last) live recording?  Rusty indeed, but not bad for a man who only had one lung at this point...

 

How to say: It´s almost a miracle that Hank Mobley at that stage of health (only one lung, and bad teeth) could blow a single note. I also suppose that he didn´t have the money to buy a really good instrument. I remember that once he said he would look for a "decent saxophone".......

Of course, that bad sound quality doesn´t help much and some unsure intonations ar coroborated through the fact that the tape player wavers badly. 

I remember when I was a teenager and we had a club gig and I asked a friend to record the stuff on tape player it also sounded bad, because you don´t hear the real groove, it often sounds like mud. And this is not only due to poor musicians. A friend managed to get a little tape recorder with integrated mike into the 1976 Mingus performance in Vienna and it also sounds that way.....

But even if Mobley´s saxophone sound is weak and unsure, you hear that his musical mind was intact and with more physical ability it would have sounded great. For someone who knows the secrets of Mobley´s imagination, he will recognice that a great musical mind is working, physically in terrible shape and with a bad axe, but yet he thinks music.

When I lead a series of jam session there was a really weak saxophonist sittin in on each occasion and he had a similar sound .... not due to illness but to lack of knowledge of the instrument.....but other than Mobley his lines also were weak. He played "Softly like a morning sunrise" or "Footprints" from sheet and the improvisations was only the same "hoo-bah hoo-bah doo-bah". I could have killed that guy since he also placed his beer on the piano. Once I shouted at him that if he doesn´t know to play, at least he should have respect for the instrument....

I assume that Mobley didn´t even have a health insurance, with some good medical help, a new dantura and healthy food he could have had some more years. Man, to dye that way ....not in the 1920´s but in 1986 is really a drag....

P.S.: Does somebody know why he had only one lung ? (cancer ????). Once I have heard that Curtis Fuller also was operated on lung had remained with only one lung.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not a medical doctor, but guessing tobacco. Dude liked to smoke. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Holy Ghost said:

Not a medical doctor, but guessing tobacco. Dude liked to smoke. 

Yeah maybe. There is almost no photo of Hank without a cigarette. 


You can enjoy tobacco, but you should not "eat" it like peanuts....., so maybe it was lung cancer or emphysema (Dexter also had emphysema and throat cancer and almost sure liver cirrhosis due to excessive drinking). 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the_philadelphia_inqu63jzm.jpg

from the Philadelphia Inquirer, 23 October 1983... The continuation on page 24 is very brief: 

like you used to?" He smiled warmly. "It will probably happen." Then he pointed toward the sky and looked up. "If He let's me"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, Niko said:

the_philadelphia_inqu63jzm.jpg

from the Philadelphia Inquirer, 23 October 1983... The continuation on page 24 is very brief: 

like you used to?" He smiled warmly. "It will probably happen." Then he pointed toward the sky and looked up. "If He let's me"

Thank you so much for sharing this with us. But I´m glad to read here, that Mobley was not "homeless" like some press reports stated. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Niko said:

the_philadelphia_inqu63jzm.jpg

from the Philadelphia Inquirer, 23 October 1983... The continuation on page 24 is very brief: 

like you used to?" He smiled warmly. "It will probably happen." Then he pointed toward the sky and looked up. "If He let's me"

Thank you for posting this.

(And may I say, they didn't need the super short continuation. That paragraph about the no-name "cutting" contest begs for a trim.)

2 hours ago, Gheorghe said:

Thank you so much for sharing this with us. But I´m glad to read here, that Mobley was not "homeless" like some press reports stated. 

I think this demonstrates that at the time, Hank was not homeless. But I believe the reports were that he was "sometimes homeless."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know that this story confirms that Mobley was not having money problems nor that he had a steady place to live. Not many people will admit to either condition in life, especially the guys from Hank's generation. I bet if the interviewer asked him how he was feeling, he'd probably say he was "fine". That's all my dad ever said until the day he died.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Gheorghe said:

Yeah maybe. There is almost no photo of Hank without a cigarette. 


You can enjoy tobacco, but you should not "eat" it like peanuts....., so maybe it was lung cancer or emphysema (Dexter also had emphysema and throat cancer and almost sure liver cirrhosis due to excessive drinking). 

This dude got him beat. Who's got that dude beat?  Mal Waldron. That's who. Every fucking cover, he's smoking. Think that dude lived, breathed and dreamt about cigarettes.  Only time I think when it comes to puffing big time is Blakey, or that Elvin Jones and Richard Davis Impulse record, where they're smoking like there's another carton more to smoke.   That whole album cover is smothered  in smoke. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, bresna said:

I don't know that this story confirms that Mobley was not having money problems nor that he had a steady place to live. Not many people will admit to either condition in life, especially the guys from Hank's generation. I bet if the interviewer asked him how he was feeling, he'd probably say he was "fine". That's all my dad ever said until the day he died.

Yeah. Knowing what he left us, a treasure, this is sad. I can't imagine not having his records in my listening realm. He really gave us everything and left everything in return. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This dude lived jazz (Miles, Lou, Pepper, Chet, Gerry...) This life is tough. Abandonment, how do you want to call it, the "industry" turned their back on Hank. 80's, blah.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Interesting article here on one of Hank’s tenors - reputedly given to Ronnie Scott in the late 60s (‘68?) and recently bought by the fine UK tenor, Art Themen.

I think Art is playing Swanage in July so hopefully he will give this tenor an ‘airing’.

Mobley Tenor Article

Edited by sidewinder

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.