Jimmy Smith wasn't the first organ player in jazz, but no one had a greater influence with the instrument than he did; Smith coaxed a rich, grooving tone from the Hammond B-3, and his sound and style made him a top instrumentalist in the 1950s and '60s, while a number of rock and R&B keyboardists would learn valuable lessons from Smith's example.
Verve's Great Songs/Great Performances series is yet another attempt in a seemingly never-ending stream of them to repackage – and hopefully resell – their vast catalog of jazz and blues. They're super cheap in both cost and presentation, but the music is almost always stellar. Jimmy Smith's Plays the Hits volume is no exception. These eight selection are covers of tunes by the Rolling Stones (" Satisfaction"), Fats Domino ("Blueberry Hill"), Don Covay ("Chain of Fools") James Brown ("Papa's Got a Brand New Bag"), Otis Redding ("Respect"), Al Green ("Let's Stay Together"), and others. It's a groove lover's cheap dream.
Some have said that Bucket! is the sound of organist Jimmy Smith punching the clock, checking in for a routine shift at work. But the man who added the Hammond organ to the postbop jazz vocabulary punches the clock in a way that few on their best days can match. In a classic organ jazz trio formation with drummer Don Bailey and guitarist Quentin Warren, this 1963 session reveals some interesting choices from the leader. ~ Amazon
In 2000 when Blue Note upgraded 1958's House Party as part of the label's superior Rudy Van Gelder series, they augmented the title with a ten-plus minute driving blow of Charlie Parker's "Confirmation" as a well-chosen bonus track. Now the effort is bookended by some primal Bird, which was always a forte of the assembled coterie. ~ AllMusic
Jimmy Smith, who re-defined jazz organ in the 1950's and 1960's, never recorded a bad album (although he did record some mediocre ones after 1970). This album will please many Smith fans for its selection of classic tunes and disappoint some Waller enthusiasts. ~ Amazon
Respect/Livin’ It Up, a two-on-one release from Verve Select, brings together two classic albums from Jimmy Smith, the world’s premier jazz-soul organist. Smith became a star with Verve Records in the mid-1960s. He leaned on superb big band arrangements by Oliver Nelson, a change from his earlier, small-group recordings on Blue Note. With Respect in 1967, Smith did something that thrilled his fans: he returned to a small group setting in Rudy Van Gelder’s now-legendary studio with his old Blue Note guitarist Thornel Schwartz, as well as Eric Gale, bassists Ron Carter and Bob Bushnell, and drummers Grady Tate and Bernard Purdie.
2009 release from the Jazz great containing Smith's complete classic Sermon sessions, in chronological order, together for the first time ever on a single set. These are his only preserved collaborations with Lee Morgan, the formidable trumpet player whose life came to a tragic end after being shot by his girlfriend at the tender age of 33. Tenor saxophonist Tina Brooks is also featured here. The outstanding reedman would pass away at the age of 42 after a life of drug addiction and self abuse. The great Jimmy Smiths was a Jazz musician whose performances on the Hammond B-3 electric organ helped to popularize this instrument.