Ruth Brown joins the big band of Thad Jones and Mel Lewis – in
a set that's a real standout in
the career of all three artists! Thad and Mel already have a pretty great groove going at this point – a large ensemble approach to jazz, yet one that's swingingly soulful – very much on a par with some of Gerald Wilson's hip work of the same time at time. And adding in
Ruth Brown's vocals is a great choice – as she not only needs a great showcase like this for her amazing voice, but also because she really helps unlock a soulful sort of energy that the group always had in
their instrumental music. The approach is a bit like some of Etta Jones' best 60s recordings – a nice shift for Brown – and titles include "Black Coffee", "Fine Brown Frame", "You Won't Let Go", "Trouble In Mind
", and "Be Anything (But Be Mine)".
(Original gatefold pressing. Cover has some wear.)