Format: MP3@320 kbps
Sound Quality: FULL
Release Date: 1957
On this 1957 date, Webster is teamed up with the great Oscar Peterson Quartet. Supporting Webster on each track, this music lays «in the pocket» (as musicians would say) quite well. Much of this is due to drummer Stan Levey’s buoyant swing. Webster himself is heard on two simple blues numbers of his own penning including the title track and «Late Date.» Other songs include the standards «Lover Come Back To Me,» «Where Are You,» and «Makin’ Whoopee.» Perhaps the most riveting tune on SOULVILLE, however, is the beautiful ballad «Time on My Hands.»
Indeed, Webster is one of the most brilliant instrumental balladeers jazz has ever produced. No one can get that airy (even sultry) tone quite like Webster. Finally, as an intriguing bonus, we hear Webster perform three tunes in duet with Levey. Intriguingly, Webster plays piano on these tracks! Using an antiquated stride/boogie woogie style, Webster shows that his talent reaches beyond the saxophone.
Recorded in Hollywood, California on October 15, 1957. Originally released on Verve (8274). Includes liner notes by Barry Alfonso.
Personnel: Ben Webster (tenor saxophone, piano) Oscar Peterson (piano) Herb Ellis (guitar) Ray Brown (bass) Stan Levey (drums).
Liner Note Authors: Nat Hentoff; Barry Alfonso.
Recording information: Capitol Studios, Hollywood, CA (10/15/1957).
Photographers: Katherine Holzman Goldblatt; Burt Goldblatt.
1. Soulville (Webster) – 8:03
2. Late Date (Webster) – 7:13
3. Time on My Hands (Adamson/Gordon/Youman) – 4:16
4. Lover, Come Back to Me (Hammerstein/Romberg) – 8:26
5. Where Are You? (Davis/Pollack) – 4:41
6. Makin’ Whoopee (Donaldson/Kahn) – 4:29
7. Ill Wind (Arlen/Koehler) – 3:30
8. Who? (Hammerstein/Kern) – 2:56
9. Boogie Woogie (Webster) – 3:06
10. Roses of Picardy (Weatherly/Wood) – 2:05
Herb Ellis – Guitar
Oscar Peterson – Piano
Ben Webster – Piano, Sax (Tenor)
Stan Levy – Drums
«Thank you Mr. Webster».
By Elmo’s Firetruck
This was the first Ben Webser LP I bought–at a used record store in Berkeley, CA in the early 1970’s. I had no idea who Ben Webster was at the time–was just discovering jazz and I liked the album cover. Thirty years later there is not a week that goes by that I don’t have Soulville on the turntable or in the CD player of my car. It might not be Ben Webster’s best LP (King of the Tenors, maybe?) or his best playing (1939/40 with the Ellington band), but this record has more grit and tender, loving SOUL than any album I’ve ever owned. Sit back in your favorite chair, pour a snifter of your favorite libation, turn out all the lights, make sure nobody is home and prepare to get kicked right in the guts. One warning–don’t play this LP if your wife or girlfriend has just walked out on you–it will bring you to tears. And Stan Levey, by the way, was Charlie Parker’s regular drummer after Max Roach left and, along with Roy McCurdy is the best drummer I’ve heard live on a REGULAR basis. And the rest of the rythym section speaks for itself.