Freddie Hubbard, The Artistry Of (1962)

Track Selection 1: Bob’s Place

Selection 2: The Seventh Day


Freddie Hubbard (tp) Curtis Fuller (tb) John Gilmore (ts) Tommy Flanagan (p) Art Davis (b) Louis Hayes (d) recorded Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, July 2, 1962


It is The Freddie Hubbard Sextet in top hard bop mode and a most intriguing selection of players. John Gilmore in one of his few non-Sun Ra recording sessions, Curtis Fuller, Tommy Flanagan, with the exciting Louis Hayes on drums. With all those players on board small wonder it sparkles and punches above its apparent weight.

A rare occasion I found no use for the keyboard shortcut which saves me typing “Paul Chambers (b)” on every record credit. So, Art Davis on bass. Plus ça change, plus la même chose.Just thought I’d throw in a French epigram. Not that it’s relevant, but I am  typing in France on an Azerty keyboard, which has accents on it. Everything is  maddeningly in the wrong place.

Vinyl: UK HMV CLP 1649, first release of US Impulse A27, mono.

Uninspiring cover, with Freddie managing to look glum rather than artistic and sensitive. Even less inspired title, “Artistry”? On trumpet?  He’d  look more convincing in a smock and beret, dabbing a paint brush in an artists palette. Or perhaps I have a Dizzy Gillespie cover in mind.  I nearly passed on it, but the seller kept throwing discounts at me, so against my better judgement, I took it with a bundle of records. What a nice surprise.  Lurking within this unpromising cover is a superb record and pressing

Little did I expect an Impulse! on HMV labels, and its quality makes more sense once you know its provenance is Impulse, and not a hastily put together make-weight compilation, which is what it looks like.. The EMI pressing is another surprise – pretty good. Not quite DeccaNuuMaalden, but a good job from Ee-eM-i HayesMiddlesex. Noted for future reference.

So that’s what EMI matrix numbers look like. Kept strictly to the US source catalogue number, A27, and not the local UK release number

Collectors Corner

From a favourite shop in North London, which like this record, looks most unpromising, but regularly has nice little finds.


5 thoughts on “Freddie Hubbard, The Artistry Of (1962)

  1. I need this album in the worst way! I have an uncurable Impulse collecting tick and they need to have that orange/black spine, and the orange/black labels! This LP is one of the harder first pressings to find. I think I am going to have to pay $100 or more one day for a clean copy – it is inevitable!

    On the subject of UK pressings – snagged a first (I think) stereo pressing (silver/maroon labels) of Ornette Coleman’s “Change of the Century” for $20. Sound is amazing!! US mono and stereo first pressings of this LP have routinely sounded dull and dirty in comparison – one to look for!


  2. I think I paid about fifteen quid for this one, so you have been doing very well at eight. That is nearly just the postage. They are undervalued by sellers, who are really mostly experts in rock and pop, not jazz.


    • I agree wholeheartedly about British pressings being undervalued by just about everyone. Although I prefer to own the US copies of Impulse records it is almost exclusively for the sleeves (who doesn’t want a block of orange and black on their shelf?). I have copies of Coltrane’s Ballads and the Coltrane/Ellington album on HMV and they look and sound wonderful and were attained for less than half the price of US presses in similar condition.


  3. I love the HMV issues of that period — I think the pressing and engineering quality and the covers are generally excellent. I have a number and I don’t think there’s a duff one amongst them. My Coltrane LOVE SUPREME and LIVE AT THE VILLAGE VANGUARD are HMVs; I have a couple of Ellingtons (Side by Side and Back to Back) that sound wonderful and look like they came out of the shop just a matter of weeks ago — not sixty years; an Oscar Peterson PORGY, oh and a few others.

    Now here’s something most curious: HMV sleeves wear incredibly well. My copy of Side by Side is almost as clean and bright as the day it was sold.

    And I don’t recall ever having paid more than £8 for one. That’s why I like ’em!


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