Freedom - Kenny Burrell's hidden masterpiece

Freedom - Kenny Burrells hidden masterpiece



This swinging album led by Kenny Burrell, the great guitarist from Detroit, was first released in Japan in 1980. Recorded in 1963 & 1964 for Blue Note, the tapes sat in the vaults untouched until they were discovered 16 years later by Michael Cuscuna.  (Mr. Cuscuna, one of the heroes of the Jazz music world, plumbed the vaults of Blue Note for decades and brought us many previously unissued gems that make one wonder why Alfred Lion, the founder, and Producer of Blue Note, seemed to have forgotten about them.)  This very hard to find record was reissued on vinyl by Music Matters Jazz in 2011. The music, loaded with melody after melody, swings, constantly inviting toe-tapping and a smiling. 


The title – FREEDOM – is beautiful, of course. The struggle for freedom that defined the years 1963/64 remains unfinished. Sixty years later, we enjoy the music, but the struggle continues.  


Musicians: Kenny Burrell – guitar, Seldon Powell – tenor & baritone sax, Stanley Turrentine – tenor sax, Hank Jones – piano, Herbie Hancock – piano, Milt Hinton – bass, Ben Tucker – bass, Ossie Johnson – drums, Bill English – drums, Ray Barretto – Congas.


Recorded: March 27, 1963, April 2, 1963, October 22, 1964

Venue: Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, USA

Engineer: Rudy Van Gelder

First released: 1980 (Japan only)

Music Matters Jazz vinyl re-issue: 2011


Listen to Freedom here



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