Yusef Lateef - The Blue Yusef Lateef
Yusef Lateef - The Blue Yusef Lateef
Yusef Lateef - The Blue Yusef Lateef
Yusef Lateef - The Blue Yusef Lateef

Yusef Lateef - The Blue Yusef Lateef

VAT included in price for European Union countries, may be adjusted based on delivery country at check out.
Average shipping time : 2 to 4 working days. Shipping is free within European Union (except for specific territories) above 99€ purchase up to 50kg. Shipping costs on quote above 50kg – quote request to be send to : contact@audiosoundmusic.com. No return policy for countries outside of European Union

Tenor Saxophone, Flute, Shanai, Tambura, Koto, Percussion, Vocal (A4) – Yusef Lateef [click here to see more vinyl featuring Yusef Lateef]

Backing Vocals – The Sweet Inspirations (A1, B1)

Guitar – Kenny Burrell [click here to see more vinyl featuring Kenny Burrell]

Alto Saxophone – Sonny Red

Bass – Cecil McBee  [click here to see more vinyl featuring Cecil McBee]

Drums – Roy Brooks

Electric Bass – Bob Cranshaw

Harmonica – Buddy Lucas

Piano – Hugh Lawson

Trumpet – Blue Mitchell [click here to see more vinyl featuring Blue Mitchell]

Viola (String Quartet) – Alfred Brown (A2), James Tryon (A2), Selwart Clarke (A2), Kermit Moore (A2)

String Quartet conducted by William Fischer

String arrangement by Yusef Lateef (A2)

Written by Yusef Lateef (A1 to B1, B3-4), Hugh Lawson (B2)


1 LP, standard sleeve

Original analog Master tape : YES

Heavy Press : 180g

Record color : black

Speed : 33 RPM

Size : 12'’



Record Press : Pallas

Label : Speakers Corner

Original Label :  Atlantic

Recorded April 1968 at RCA Studios, New York City

Engineered by Ray Hall

Produced by Joel Dorn

Originally released in 1968

Reissued in 2020


Tracks :

Side A :

                1. Juba Juba

                2. Like It Is

                3. Othelia

                4. Moon Cup

Side B :

                1. Back Home

                2. Get Over, Get Off And Get On

                3. Six Miles Next Door

                4. Sun Dog


Reviews :

Though there is some confusion about what happened to the 32 Jazz label, producer Joel Dorn's other project, his label M, is following closely in its footsteps; unique packaging and a wealth of fine material licensed from Dorn's years as a jazz producer at Atlantic Records seems its sole M.O.. On The Blue Yusef Lateef, listeners get an amazing chapter from the late '60s, an amazing period when everything in the world of jazz was changing. Lateef was big on concept recordings. He and Dorn did no less than ten during their tenure together at Atlantic. This one examines, in a painterly way, all the different ranges of emotion contained within the blues genre. With a band that included Detroit jazz gods Roy Brooks on drums and Kenny Burrell on guitar, Blue Mitchell on trumpet, Hugh Lawson on piano, Sonny Red on alto, Bob Cranshaw on electric bass, and a very young Cecil McBee on acoustic bass, you get the idea that Lateef was after something different. Lateef performs on not only his tenor and flute, but bamboo and pneumatic flutes, tamboura, koto, and others; Lateef was exploring the outer reaches of the blues as they might appear and appeal to Eastern as well as Western cultures. From the opening moments in "Juba Juba," everything comes in one package -- the slow, snaky groove only the blues can provide, with the Eastern scale modalities and polyphony attached via Lateef's flute and Brook's percussion. But before becoming too ethereal, Mitchell chimes in with a barrelhouse muted trumpet and Buddy Lucas wails a shuffle on harmonica. There is also an unidentified female gospel chorus humming in the background -- reminiscent of the Staples at their spookiest. Next up is the even-more Eastern-tinged "Like It Is," sounding like it was left off "Blues from the Orient." Lawson's minor key explorations and Brooks' spontaneous actions with a variety of percussion instruments usher in a groove that only Lateef could create. It is very slow, harmonically complex, and lush in a manner that suggests exotica sans the corniness of Les Baxter. It quietly roars with a melodic polytonality courtesy of Lateef's tenor, joined by Lawson's striking mode changes in his solo. Then comes the barrelhouse romp of "Othelia," the Japanese psychedelia of "Moon Cup," and the samba-fied bluesiana of "Back Home," citing Afro-Cuban pop Machito arrangements inside a Brazilian carnival-chant created of vocal overtones and greasy rhythms. You get the picture. The Blue Yusef Lateef is one wild album. In sound, it is the very best the '60s had to offer in terms of experimentation and accessibility. This is blues you can dance to, but also meditate to and marvel at; a pearl worthy of the price. » AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek

Yusuf Lateef was a leading representative of world music, long before world music was known as such in the jazz, pop and rock community. He integrated all kinds of oriental instruments in his jazz music, such as the koto, bamboo flute and tambura and also – as in this case – in his blues compositions. His saxophone playing is also flawless too and full of wonderful textures, hard and impulsive at one moment, cool and exotic at the next.

On this album Lateef explores, in a painterly way, the border areas of the blues, in all their various guises and addresses both eastern and western cultures. "Juba Juba" begins with a drumbeat on a slave ship, the tempo builds up slowly and agonizingly, and is only penetrated by Lateef’s plaintive flute and background voices singing »freedom, freedom, freedom«. After such a gloomy beginning the classical blues number "Like It Is" comes over like a breath of fresh air, with its superb string quartet as the foundation. The R&B contributions on the other tracks testify to Lateef’s skilled excursions into the realm of the blues, while the truly adventurous tracks such as "Back Home" and the mystic, Chinese odyssey "Moon Cup" weave a magical net of sheer pleasure. "The Blue Yusef Lateef" is in every possible way absolutely breathtaking. It is a milestone as a jazz album. As a blues album it is quite unique. But as a musical work of art it is a glorious and genial masterpiece.


Ratings :

Allmusic : 4 / 5, Discogs  4,39 / 5, Rate Your Music 3,69 / 5

Recently viewed