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Thursday, 23 May 2019

Lynn Hope - The Maharaja Of The Saxophone (King LP 717)





















Side 1:
01. Tenderly
02. Rose Room
03. Body And Soul
04. Sands Of The Sahara
05. Blue And Sentimental
06. Shockin'

Side 2:
01. Oo Wee
02. A Ghost Of A Chance
03. Full Moon
04. Little Landslide
05. Stardust
06. Juicy





This is a "reconstruction" of Lynn Hope's King LP which was released in January 1961. The sides were recorded over two sessions in March 1960. Four singles from the sessions were released during 1960 (details below) and then came this album ... and then Lynn Hope faded from the music scene.

These are Lynn's last recordings and they don't sound all that different from his earlier Premium and Aladdin recordings. There's a re-recording of his big hit "Tenderly" and a tremendous slice of heated exotica in "Sands Of The Sahara." The presence of Earl Bostic's vibes player Gene Redd helps keep that slightly strange and exotic vibe going on certain tracks.

Lynn Hope has long been one of my favourite R&B sax players, always earthy yet with a hint of something strange just behind the curtain. There's a link below to a previous post (2009) I wrote on him which has a brief summary of his career. There is also a post on Crownpropellor's blog which has some fantastic photos of Lynn from a 1953 copy of Ebony magazine. The below-the-line comments are also very interesting as his daughter informed blog readers that her father had passed in February 1993.

Another comment on Crownpropellor's post refers to the short story / reminiscence by Amiri Bakara (LeRoi Jones) based around a gig by Lynn Hope. Titled "The Screamers", the story can be found in the Penguin collection "The Portable Beat Reader" (ed. Ann Charters). I came across a suitably beat up copy a couple of years ago in a local charity shop. So let us bring this part of the post to an end with a suitable quote from the story (imagine Lynn's band bomp, bomp, bomping on an R&B standard such as "Night Train" or "Harlem Nocturne" while dancers grind slowly against each other in a packed and seedy club) -

"He stomped his foot and waved one hand. The other hung loosely on his horn. And their turbans wove in among those shadows. Lynn's tighter, neater and bright gorgeous yellow stuck with a green stone. Also those green sparkling cubes dancing off his pinkies. A-boomp bahba bahba, A-boomp bahba bahba, A-boomp bahba bahba, A-boomp bahba bahba, the turbans sway behind him. And he grins before he lifts the horn ... "

The Trax 'n' The Fax

Cincinnati, 4th March 1960:
Lynn Hope (tenor sax) with - Gene Redd (trumpet, vibes); Jamie Palmer (piano); Fred Jordan (guitar); Clarence Mack (bass); Philip Paul (drums) -
Juicy
Tenderly
Full Moon
Shockin'
A Ghost Of A Chance
Body And Soul

Cincinnati, 28th March 1960:
Personnel as above except Edwyn Conley replaces Clarence Mack on bass -
Blue And Sentimental
Rose Room
Sands Of The Sahara
Little Landslide
Oo Wee
Stardust

Lynn Hope singles on King -

Tenderly / Full Moon - King 5336 - issued April 1960.
Sands Of The Sahara / Body And Soul - King 5352 - issued June 1960.
A Ghost Of A Chance / Little Landslide- King 5378 - issued August 1960.
Shockin' / Blue And Sentimental - King 5431 - issued December 1960.

King LP 717 "Maharaja Of The Saxophone" issued in January 1961.

Also on the blog:

"Lynn Hope And His Tenor Sax" - Aladdin sides. Posted 12th October 2009. I've added a new Mega link to the post as Zippyshare seems to be disappearing from EU countries.

More of the 1953 Ebony article can be read here - Muslims and Jazz in 1953.

My thanks to the original uploaders of the cover and label scans.

5 comments:

The Magnificent Goldberg said...

Hey, I've been interested in Lynn Hope ever since I read that Leroi Jones story, 'The screamers' in the sixties. Never heard of Lynn Hope when I read it and assumed it was fiction - except I DID know about Jug and Gator - against an authentic background. Then I started finding his records. Got 'em all now, I think, one way or another.

"The screamers' was in a compilation of 'The new American writing', none of which, apart from Leroi's item, was even slightly to my taste - so I junked it forty-something years ago.

Al

boogiewoody said...

Sounds like the Penguin collection might be better as it has Kerouac, Bukowski, Mailer among many others. Anyway I've only dipped into it. I bought it because I accidentaly opened it at the "The Screamers" while browsing in the shop. Just had to buy it of course!

BW

Bob Mac said...

Thank you BW. Really enjoying these old King LPs reconstructions. Interesting how turbans were quite popular with many jazz/R&B performers in the 1940s-1950s.

The Magnificent Goldberg said...

The anthology I had also had Mailer, Kerouac, the guy who wrote 'Walk on the wild side' I think, - they were all famous modern writers. I just didn't like them.

Al

carlos said...

Muchas gracias por todo. Y por los nuevos enlaces de MEGA, saludos desde EspaƱa.