Curtis Fuller – The Opener {Blue Note}_24bit96kHz

Curtis Fuller – The Opener {Blue Note}_24bit96kHz

Hard Bop, Trombone

24bit/96kHz, FLAC tracks, Artwork (web)

800 MB.

AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

The Opener is trombonist Curtis Fuller’s first album for Blue Note and it is a thoroughly impressive affair. Working with a quintet featuring tenor saxophonist Hank Mobley, pianist Bobby Timmons, bassist Paul Chambers and drummer Art Taylor, Fuller runs through a set of three standards — “A Lovely Way to Spend an Evening,” “Here’s to My Lady,” “Soon” — two originals and an Oscar Pettiford-penned calypso. The six songs give Fuller a chance to display his warm, fluid style in all of its variations.

“A Lovely Way to Spend an Evening” illustrates that he can be seductive and lyrical on ballads, while the brassy “Hugore” and hard-swinging “Lizzy’s Bounce” shows that he can play hard without getting sloppy. His backing musicians are equally impressive; in particular, Mobley’s robust playing steals the show. In all, The Opener, along with his three earlier sessions for Prestige and New Jazz, establishes Fuller as one of the most distinctive and original hard bop trombonists of the late ’50s.

01. A Lovely Way to Spend an Evening (6:51)
02. Hugore (6:43)
03. Oscalypso (5:40)
04. Here’s to My Lady (6:43)
05. Lizzy’s Bounce (5:24)
06. Soon (5:37)

Curtis Fuller – trombone
Hank Mobley – tenor saxophone
Bobby Timmons – piano
Paul Chambers – bass
Art Taylor – drums

Produced by Alfred Lion
Recording engineer: Rudy Van Gelder
Recorded at the Van Gelder Studio, New Jersey on June 16, 1957
Cover Photo by Francis Wolff

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