When people ask who my favorite saxophonists are, Yusef Lateef is always among my first responses. in the solo below, you can hear why he’s so impressive to me. he’s such a patient and deliberate improviser, he reminds me of Oliver Nelson in that respect. there’s always that blues element in his lines. the thing i love most is how he shapes his notes. he constantly tweaks them with subtle tonguing, bends, smears and slurs. he also might split a note by over blowing it, or add a throaty growl to it. he constantly blurs the edges of his sound, adding a bit of ambiguity and dissonance to his lines. he sings, in other words. his solos have the quality of slow-simmering pot of something or other, sitting at the back of the stove- makes the whole kitchen smell funky..! the song “Koko’s Tune” is from Lateef’s very nice record, INTO SOMETHING which features Barry Harris on piano, Herman Wright on bass and Elvin Jones on drums. great blues head. it’s played as a trio without Harris and is a nice chance to hear Lateef stretch out like he’s sitting in his den on his favorite recliner…


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01. April 2010 by james
Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 comments

Comments (4)

  1. Dear James,
    May you and your family be well.
    You should know your kind words are appreciated.
    In an effort to market music compositions under FANA Publications and recordings/CDs under YAL records we’d like to send you their catalogs. We’re looking for retail or wholesale opportunities. Once you receive the lists please feel free to share with others.
    In peace,
    Yusef Lateef

  2. Mr. Lateef,

    Thank you so much for your message. You made my day! If there is any way that I can help you in your endeavors, I am more than happy to do so. I can be contacted at jamesmahone@yahoo.com.

    Warmest regards,
    James Mahone

  3. I discover right now your work, Eastern Sounds, and I would like to have some sheet music for sax tenor from you if possible and do it so I would like to send your message to the rest of my musician friends all over the world
    thanks for your excellency job

  4. Rui,

    Thanks for the message. Please let me know what music you are looking for and if I have it, I will get it to you, James

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