Sunday, July 03, 2022

People Everywhere Just Wanna B3: Dr. Lonnie Smith 80

A week went by, and now it's July... so it's time to give you some music to go with that Stinkfoot.
And what better way to commence the extravagance than with the 80th birthday of a legend's legend, who left us at the end of last year but who shall never, ever be forgotten?

Considered by not a few to be the greatest organist of all time, today's birthday guy began with George Benson in the mid-1960s, and began recording solo LPs soon after.

He then joined Lou Donaldson's band, sprinkling burning Hammond over all those bumpin' late Sixties platters like Midnight Creeper and Mr. Shing-a-Ling on Blue Note... records that are still considered formative entries in the Acid Jazz canon today.

Later on, he'd occasionally guest with Sweet Poppa Lou, but at the end of the 1960s he went solo for good, with ultra-classic albums like Turning Point, Think! and Move Your Hand hitting the shelves.

From there it seemed he never stopped, moving to the Groove Merchant label for more deeply funky sessions and seemingly never leaving the global Jazz touring circuit.

He recorded and released his last album in 2021, part of which was a collaboration with Iggy Pop.

Then he passed away suddenly, last September at the age of 79.

This is his first birthday since his death, and a milestone eightieth to boot, so I was not gonna miss paying tribute to the great Dr. Lonnie Smith.

To celebrate this ultimate Maestro of the B3, we have a full, unexpurgated and wonderfully captured collaboration and career overview from 2015, where the Doctor gets down with the HR Bigband on their home turf in Frankfurt.

Don't sleep on the other soloists in this either, because in addition to Lonnie's fiery organ, they about torch the place using mostly just brass instruments and a guitar.

Dr. Lonnie Smith & HR Bigband
Hessischer Rundfunk Sendesaal
Frankfurt, Germany

01 Backtrack 
02 When Johnny Comes Marching Home 
03 announcement 
04 Ue o Moite Arukō   
05 announcement  
06 People Make the World Go Round 
07 announcement 
08 The Beehive 
09 Come Together 
10 Too Damn Hot 
11 Dapper Dan 
12 announcement 
13 Frame for the Blues 
14 band introductions 
15 Mellow Mood 
16 announcement 
17 Pilgrimage 

Total time: 1:59:35
disc break goes after Track 08

Dr. Lonnie Smith - Hammond B3 organ & vocals
Heinz Dieter Sauerborn, Tony Lakatos & Stefan Weber - saxophones
Benjamin Steil - soprano saxophone & clarinet
Rainer Heute - baritone saxophone
Frank Wellert, Thomas Vogel, Martin Auer & Axel Schlosser - trumpets & flugelhorns
Günter Bollmann, Peter Feil, Christian Jaksjö & Wolf Schenk - trombones
Martin Scales - guitar
Thomas Heidepriem - bass
Paul Höchstädter - drums
Mike Holober - conductor & announcements

digital off-air capture of a 2021 Italian Radio3 RAI FM broadcast
Italian FM announcer removed, with digiskip and diginoise in Track 01 repaired -- and right channel boosted 0.75 dB throughout -- by EN, July 2022
865 MB FLAC/July 2022 archive link

There was a nasty digiskip I looped out of existence in the first song, but apart from boosting the right channel a little bit throughout the whole two hours, it didn't need many major renovations.

I've got quite the month planned, and I'll try not to overdo it, but for now I wanted to make sure proper homage was paid to the good Doctor Lonnie Smith, born this day in 1942 and forever a go-to physician when you need your organs operated upon.--J.

7.3.1942 - 9.28.2021

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