Track Selection: The Changing Scene (Mobley)
Freddie Hubbard (tp) Hank Mobley (ts) McCoy Tyner (p) Paul Chambers (b) Philly Joe Jones (d) recorded Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, November 6, 1960
Recorded five months after Open Sesame, Hubbard absolutely on top of his game, Mobley sensationally bursting with confidence, the following week recording his own album as leader, Roll Call. Goin’ Up is total class, sublime. I have owned a Japanese pressing of it for some years and hardly ever bothering to play it as the pressing was entirely lacking in excitement. Hearing it in its full glory I am overwhelmed by it. The pressing makes the difference between wanting and not wanting to play it. All vinyl is not equal. Plastylite lives!
Cover: Blue Note 1960 glossy laminate, thick card, built to withstand decades of wear. No name written on label or cover: clearly not taken to parties.
Vinyl: BNLP 4056 original – DG both sides, 47 West 63rd, RVG machine stamp, ear, mono. Ok, do your worst, out with the Cohen Bible and tell me it’s not a First press, and I’ll cry. Lie to me if you have to!
One of a string of chance events in a London record shop that brought me face to face with this gorgeous original Blue Note, not one I have ever seen before in the flesh. And it was all down to a “missing” copy of a Mose Alison’s Esquire “Back Country Suite”.
Bringing the Mose Allison sleeve from the racks to the counter, the staff were unable to find the Esquire in the shelves, it seemed to have been misfiled. I shrugged it off – these things happen – and offered a phone number should it turn up. However they urged me to come back in a half hour, when the jazz specialist would be back from lunch. He might know where it was.
I sauntered off to Rays Jazz, picking up the promo copy of Sam Jones Soul Society in the mean time, and returned a half hour later – ” Any sign of the Mose Allison? Yes, the man was back from lunch and had found it.
“By the way, any interest in these?” he said, depositing twenty LPs on the counter. They have just come in. I arranged the sale over the phone with a guy who said they had been in his attic for thirty years. We both laughed. Yes, unplayed for thirty years, but what did you play them on forty years ago? A Dansette portable record player with a broken needle? We have all been there.
Out came the pile. Oh My God, some original Blue Notes. I feel faint!. First off a few I already had excellent originals of, damn. More duplicates, same taste as me obviously, often how it happens. Then I saw the Hubbard. I picked it out. OMG, 47 West 63rd! DG! Mint!! “It’ll be expensive” I was warned, scurrying off to do another Popsike search. Yup, these guys are professionals. He knows exactly what they are worth, and he knows I know, we both know there will be no turkey shoot. Deeper in the pile, some Monk Riversides – OMG, 1957 White label first pressings!.
We reached the end of the first pile. “More?” He said. Jeez, out came a second pile. Then a third… the thought came into my head, I wonder where the nearest Cardiac Defibrillator is? Then the airline safety announcement ” rremembering that the nearest usable exit may be behind you. Put on your own mask on before helping others with theirs” I wont be helping others, I’m outa here!.
More Popsike checks and the bill climbed vertically. With some heartsearching over the duplicates, I arrived at four must haves. Do anything for cash? I asked by way of damage limitation. “Certainly!”
It was a long walk to the nearest bank. “Is there a daily limit on cash withdrawals”? I asked a lolling assistant hoping I might want a mortgage including Payment Protection Insurance. I might need to fall back on Plan B, Never leave home without the imitation Glock water pistol and brown paper bag – “Nice bank, shame if something happened to it. Fill the bag, no one gets hurt.” Though they may get a nasty wash.
Luckily the card machine coughed up the necessary cash and I took off back to the shop at an urgent pace. My records had been washed and wrapped. As is customary in such deals, I felt it incumbent to spread twenty pound notes across the counter. A lot of the counter was covered by the time I finished..
Err, you still interested in the Mose Allison? he laughed.
Why not? I said. It’s lucky.
He threw it in.
(Photos updated: October 10, 2016)