Monday, June 28, 2010

Pharoah Sanders - Oh Lord, Let Me Do No Wrong

Although Pharoah Sanders was originally considered a firebrand, thanks to his wild early free jazz work in the '60s, his later records are actually more in the tradition of players like his one-time leader John Coltrane and, especially, Rahsaan Roland Kirk. The title track from this 1987 session could have been on any of Kirk's Atlantic albums, a mixture of gospel sway and free jazz honk that builds into a hypnotic swoon under Leon Thomas' rich baritone vocals. (Thomas also appears on his own composition, the blues "If It Wasn't for a Woman," and the closing "Next Time You See Me.") On the extended, relaxed take of Coltrane's "Equinox," Sanders doesn't try to copy his former boss' phrasing, but there's certainly a Coltrane-like elegance to Sanders' lyrical solo. In fact, Sanders' playing on the standard "Polka Dots and Moonbeams," which also features a lovely Vince Guaraldi-like piano solo by William S. Henderson III, is downright pretty. Oh Lord, Let Me Do No Wrong is a mellow and peaceful set by a player who no longer needs to make noise; whether old-school fans will appreciate this is debatable. - by Stewart Mason, AMG

Artist: Pharoah Sanders
Album: Oh Lord, Let Me Do No Wrong
Year: 1987
Label: Zillion (1989)
Total time: 43:44

1.  Oh Lord, Let Me Do No Wrong (Pharoah Sanders/Leon Thomas) 5:35
2.  Equinox (John Coltrane) 9:24
3.  Polka Dots And Moonbeams (Johnny Burke/James Van Heusen) 6:14
4.  If It Wasn't For A Woman (Pharoah Sanders/Leon Thomas) 4:41
5.  Clear Out Of This World (Al Dubin/Jimmy McHugh) 13:56
6.  Next Time You See Me (Earl Forest/Bill Harvey/Herman Parker) 3:54

Pharoah Sanders (Tenor Saxophone)
Donald Smith (Electric Piano)
William Henderson (Piano)
Tarik Shah (Double Bass)
Greg Banoy (Drums)
Leon Thomas (Vocals) - 1,4,6

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