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Author of Funny Valentine, an acclaimed new biography of the jazz trumpet player and singer, Chet Baker.
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Friday, 30 August 2019 19:55

Tubby Hayes - Grits, Beans and Greens, The Lost Fontana Sessions

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Fifty years fade fast.

Unquestionably the finest album of 2019 so far is at once a classic and brand new. The ‘Lost Masterpiece’ from long-gone saxophonist Tubby Hayes loses nothing for its 50 years lost.

The purists can enjoy Hayes on vinyl, the way he would have appeared if the 1969 tapes hadn’t been mislaid. For those of us welded to earphones, Grits, Beans and Greens: The Lost Fontana Sessions are also available on CD and a deluxe CD.

Forget Hayes’ iconic status and his sad demise at the age of just 38 in 1973. Forget all the stories about excess. Just enjoy this incredible – genuinely, unbelievable writing and playing from all those involved – album. After just a few weeks of release, Tubby Hayes is right where he should be, at the top of charts and respected for his musical achievements.

I have a favourite track already, although the rest is on repeat. You Know I Care is a stonking ballad. It’s Hayes at his most lyrical with that stunning tone and dexterity. 

Listen to You Know I Care here:

For those new to Hayes, he is acknowledged as Britain’s first modern jazz star. He played adeptly, brilliantly and convincingly alongside some of the biggest names of jazz in his fairly brief career, including Quincy Jones, Charles Mingus, Duke Ellington and Ella Fitzgerald. This new release was once assumed to have been destroyed and the finding and digital mastering gives a fine introduction to one of Britain’s most outstanding sax players.

Simon Spillett, himself an outstanding and award-winning British jazz saxophonist and author of Hayes’ 2017 biography The Long Shadow Of The Little Giant: The Life, Work and Legacy of Tubby Hayes, 2017 said: “Sometimes when tapes than have been lost or rumoured to exist finally surface there is a touch of anti-climax or the need to ‘spin’ them in a way that makes them more important than they are.

“These sessions, on the other hand, are absolute classics in every regard. It’s an album that can sit equally alongside the best Coltrane, Rollins or Dexter Gordon LPs. It really is a lost masterpiece, make no mistake.”

 

Grits, Beans And Greens: The Lost Fontana Studio Session 1969

1CD, 1LP & Digital. 5 tracks of what would have been the final album

1. For Members Only (take 2) [6.26]

2. Grits, Beans and Greens (take 4) [6.09]

3. Rumpus (take 1) [7.30]

4. You Know I Care (take 2)

5. Where Am I Going? (take 3) [9.16]

 

Philips Studios, Stanhope Place, London, Tuesday June 24th, 1969

10.30am – 1.30pm

Tubby Hayes (tenor sax); Mike Pyne (piano); Ron Mathewson (bass); Spike Wells (drums)

Producer: Terry Brown

Engineer: David Voyde

 

Grits, Beans And Greens: The Lost Fontana Studio Sessions 1969 [Complete Sessions]

2CD Deluxe + digital. The complete sessions. 18 tracks including alt. takes, studio chatter + the May 1969 studio session (with Louis Stewart on guitar). In recording date & tape order.

CD1

1. Where Am I Going – (Take 1) May 27th, 1969 [08:27]*

2. Where Am I Going – (Take 2) May 27th, 1969 [07:37]*

3. Where Am I Going – (Take 3) May 27th, 1969 [08:03]*

4. Grits, Beans and Greens – (Take 1) [05:44]

5. For Members Only – (Take 1) [07:25]

6. Where Am I Going? – (Take 1) Breakdown [04:18]

7. For Members Only – (Take 2) Full Version [06:34]

 

CD2

1. Where Am I Going – (Take 2) [06:18]

2. Grits, Beans and Greens – (Take 2) Breakdown [00:57]

3. Grits, Beans and Greens – (Take 3) [06:21]

4. Rumpus – (Take 1) Full Version [07:45]

5. Where Am I Going – (Take 3) Full Version [09:41]

6. Rumpus – (Take 2) Breakdown [00:31]

7. Rumpus – (Take 3) Breakdown [00:17]

8. Rumpus – (Take 4) [07:22]

9. Grits, Beans and Greens – (Take 4) Full Version [06:19]

10. You Know I Care – (Take 1) Breakdown [01:06]

11. You Know I Care – (Take 2) Full Version [07:05]

 

* recorded at Philips Studios, Stanhope Place, London, May 27th, 1969

Tubby Hayes (tenor sax); Louis Stewart (guitar); Ron Mathewson (bass); Spike Wells (drums)

Remaining tracks recorded at Philips Studios, Stanhope Place, London, June 24th, 1969

Tubby Hayes (tenor sax); Mike Pyne (piano); Ron Mathewson (bass); Spike Wells (drums)

Producer: Terry Brown

Engineer: David Voyde

All compositions by Edward Brian ‘Tubby’ Hayes except for:

You Know I Care – written by Columbus Calvin ‘Duke’ Pearson

Where Am I Going – written by by Seymour Kaufman aka Cy Coleman/Carolyn Leigh

All arrangements by Edward Brian ‘Tubby’ Hayes

 

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