Monday, January 13, 2020

This Week In Jazz: Moanin'

"Moanin'" is to jazz as "Spoonful" is to blues. And rock for that matter. Written by pianist Bobby Timmons, the tune began as an eight bar warm-up Timmons would play between songs. (I'm thinking, Ed Norton and "Swanee River," but that's just me.) Benny Golson, the tenor sax player in Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers encouraged Timmons to add a bridge and voila, a jazz standard was born in 1958. Soon after, the amazing vocal trio Lambert, Hendricks & Ross added lyrics and "Moanin'" became more popular than ever.

While I like the Jazz Messengers version of "Moanin'," I really love the Lambert, Hendricks & Ross version.The tune has a similar feel and melody to John Coltrane's "Blue Train," and probably a dozen more bluesy jazz tunes I'm not thinking of at the moment, and though Blakey's take is fine, it's the trio's phrasing and harmonies that send this baby flying.

Here are both for your listening pleasure.


buzzbabyjesus said...

It's great seeing Jazz on Burning Wood. Keep it up.

Anonymous said...

one of my jazz blind spots was vocalists until a friend gifted this very Lambert Hendricks & Ross album to my wife. There's never nothing left to be discovered.

Bill said...

I like the LH&R version. Makes me think I should listen to them some more.

I'm cautiously dipping my toe in your jazz waters. Rock/pop/whatever has always spoken to me more, so my inclination has always been to go there first. But I'm willing to try new things in 2020!

Michael Giltz said...

"Everybody's Boppin'" is a great compilation and an ideal intro to that trio! Gimme that wine!

Anonymous said...

Hello, please remain seated,

What a great performance! I love the Jazz Messengers classic version but had never heard this before. I’ve heard a couple of LH&R songs before and I don’t know why I never dug deeper. Spotify, here I come. Thanks for the tip.


Post script:

But I *did* correctly guess the trumpet player’s name on that record (he said somewhat obnoxiously). Good god, Sweets was a tasty player.

M_Sharp said...

I liked all the jazz posts so far, keep 'em coming.