Ike Quebec – Heavy Soul
- Release details
Blue Note Classic Vinyl Edition on 180-gram LP
There may not be a more apropos album title in all of recorded music than tenor saxophonist Ike Quebec's 1961 classic Heavy Soul. The session marked a comeback for a crucial player in Blue Note history. Quebec had recorded a series of 78s for Alfred Lion in the 1940s and also served as a talent scout who encouraged Lion to record important figures of the emerging bebop scene including Thelonious Monk and Bud Powell.
After a difficult period through the 1950s, Lion began to reintroduce Quebec's music to jazz fans in 1959 with a series of 45 jukebox singles that were well received and inspired Lion to put the saxophonist back into the studio for a full album session. So, in November 1961 Quebec brought a 4-piece band into Van Gelder Studio that included Freddie Roach on organ, Milt Hinton on bass, and Al Harewood on drums. The resulting 8-song set is a soul jazz masterclass with Quebec's robust tenor conjuring a variety of moods from the rhythmic drive of swinging originals like "Acquitted" and "Que's Dilemma" to slow-tempo stunners including "Just One More Chance," "Brother Can You Spare a Dime," and "I Want A Little Girl."
A remarkable reading of "The Man I Love" leads into the sultry title piece, which practically drips with soul, but it's the album closer which delivers a showstopper. With Roach and Harewood laying out Quebec and Hinton converse in a duo setting on a spellbinding performance of "Nature Boy" that reverberates in the listener's soul long after the last note has faded.
This Blue Note Classic Vinyl Edition is stereo, all-analog, mastered by Kevin Gray from the original master tapes, and pressed on 180-gram vinyl at Optimal.