Originally posted on April 1, 2008
Jazz guitarist Grant Green was one of the more important players in the ‘60s and yet he doesn’t get enough credit, then or now. Perhaps part of the reason is that he made so many albums for Blue Note that perhaps his best work is lost in the pile.
One I am listening to right now is OK but might qualify as part of the excess music making. It’s called Feelin’ the Spirit and features Herbie Hancock and Billy Higgins along with Grant. There’s nothing wrong with this disk. Grant puts together a program of rearranged spirituals and the band does its best to inject some soul into the proceedings. Grant’s sound is as usual—it’s what mainstream electric guitarists sounded like in the mid-sixties. If he had somehow shown more of an influence of the Chicago bluesmen, who cranked their amps and bent more notes, it might have worked better. But then he wouldn’t have sounded like Grant Green. It’s nice enough and there’s nothing awful about it. It just isn’t his best.