Search - Curtis Fuller :: Opener

Curtis Fuller
Genres: Jazz, Pop
  •  Track Listings (6) - Disc #1


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CD Details

All Artists: Curtis Fuller
Title: Opener
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Blue Note Records
Original Release Date: 1/1/2008
Re-Release Date: 9/2/2008
Album Type: Original recording remastered
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Style: Bebop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1

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CD Reviews

Curtis Opens Up
Jack Baker | LeRoy,IL | 09/09/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Curtis Fuller made his Blue Note debut with this session from June of 1957 and the label couldn't have picked a better group of talent to back him. The Opener finds the trombonist in the company of tenor saxman Hank Mobley (reason enough for me to purchase it), pianist Bobby Timmons, bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Art Taylor. This session is incredibly solid, well deserving of being dusted off and re-released.

The album opens with the standard "A Lovely Way to Spend an Evening", with Fuller providing the only horn. I don't think I've ever heard a trombone sound as beautiful as on this piece. Mobley joins the crew on Fuller's bluesy original "Hugore". Fuller and Mobley both provide stirring solos and Curtis really drives home the point with the recurring theme. This piece really cooks. The group tackles Oscar Pettiford's "Oscalypso", which as indicated by the name is awash in island rhythm, provided ably by Taylor. Mobley sits out "Here's to My Lady", another romantic vehicle for Fuller's expressive trombone. Paul Chambers also turns in a nice solo and Timmons gets to shine as well, but the trombone rightfully has center stage here. Mobs is back for the rousing "Lizzie's Bounce", the other Fuller penned number, which lives up to its name. The album closes with a killer version of Gershwin's "Soon".

This is another fantastic entry to the RVG series and will no doubt have fans clamoring for more releases by Fuller and from Hank Mobley. Keep 'em coming Rudy!"
The Opening of a Trombone Legend
Michael B. Richman | Portland, Maine USA | 09/03/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Available previously only as an expensive import or as part of a limited edition Mosaic Records box set, Curtis Fuller's Blue Note debut finally sees the light of the day in the States as a new RVG title. The trombonist is probably best known today as the added third horn in Art Blakey's 1961-64 edition of the Jazz Messengers, or because of his essential contribution to John Coltrane's Blue Train (see my review). This session comes exactly three months prior to that legendary date -- recorded on June 16, 1957 "The Opener" features Hank Mobley on tenor sax, Bobby Timmons on piano, Paul Chambers on bass, and Art Taylor on drums. (It also features one of Francis Wolff's greatest photographs as its cover art!) The program consists of three standards, two Fuller originals -- "Lizzy's Bounce" and "Hugore" -- and bassist Oscar Pettiford's "Oscalypso." In general, what we have here is a four star blowing session, but I'll round up to five because of how wonderful it is to have this recording available for the first time. Hopefully the release of "The Opener" will open the door for the rest of Fuller's Blue Note catalog to be reissued!"
Beautiful Playing by an Overshadowed Trombonist
Roger Berlind | NY, USA | 01/20/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Curtis Fuller emerged as a major jazz trombonist in 1957 when he moved from Detroit to New York and particpated in several recordings including this one which he lead for Blue Note. While he was overshadowed in the 50s and 60s by J.J. Johnson, he is an excellent trombonist with a beautiful sound, especially on ballads. If you enjoy J.J.'s albums from this period, then you'll probably like "The Opener" by Curtis Fuller.

It's also nice to hear Hank Mobley teamed up with a trombonist instead of a trumpeter which was generally how Blue Note recorded him (e.g., with Lee Morgan, Donald Byrd, Freddie Hubbard, and Blue Mitchell)."