A Dedication to
Hank Mobley is one of the great saxophone players in jazz. While
his name might not be as recognisable as say, John Coltrane or perhaps
Dexter Gordon, he has a legion of fans in the jazz world. The reason
might be hard to explain; his playing is never at the same cutting edge
as many other players, and his personality is obscure, if not to say ordinary.
Unfortunately, in the "celebrity" obsessed culture of today, that last
sentance might be perceived as an insult. It isn't, of course, Hank
Mobley had more than his fair share of problems with drugs, but he never
seems to have worn those experiences on his sleeves, unlike many other
musicians. In any case, as with the very best jazz musicians, what
counts most about Hank Mobley is the music, and only the music. His
playing is very down-to-earth and accessible without being bland or derivative.
Anyone wishing to discover some of what jazz is "really about", could do
a lot worse than start with some of his albums. They don't, by themselves,
define all of what jazz can be about, but you will get a very good idea.
Hank Mobley is very much his own man, with his own sound and his own style.
You can take it or leave it. He is by far my favourite player.
Current albums in my collection:
Jazz Message Vol. 2
No Room For Squares
A Slice Of the Top
Much more info, and a complete album list, is available from the All
(Scans of Album covers to come shortly.)