Herbie Mann

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Hold On, I’m Comin’ Recorded Live at the 1972 New York & Montreux Jazz Festivals by Herbie Mann

Atlantic Records, 1972

tracklist/faves
A1. (Gimme Some of That Good Old) Soul Beat Momma
A2. Never Can Say Goodbye
A3. Respect Yourself
B1. Memphis Underground
B2. Hold On, I’m Comin’

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Herbie Mann is a name I’ve heard from music nerds around LA as well as floating in the wind around my college’s music school, but I never thought anything of it. Those crazy jazz students with their crazy hippie jazz idols. I picked up this record because of the intricate cut-out cover and detailed inner photos, not at all realizing that this was a live Herbie Mann record (I don’t read any of the LP sleeves when I buy them, makes cratedigging more fun.) This was actually the first of two fully flute-centric records I have bought, and this one is not half bad. 

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The cliff notes for other people like myself who never cared to look up the legend Herbie Mann: he’s a prolific flautist who can keep a riff going in the big leagues with a full String-Cheese-Incident-style backing band. He wasn’t so much a hippie as he was a young Jewish boy from Brooklyn, born in the heart of the Great Depression. He pursued a career in music, which I am sure perplexed his parents, who themselves grew up in Russian and Austrian households. He is credited as one of the founders of the jazz-fusion movement, which is more than enough to justify all the murmurs I’d heard of him. I see you, jazz kids. I see you. 

I’m not much into jam bands, (nor live albums if we’re being realistic,) but putting this show on in the background is well worth it. The performance is enduring, with jams lasting on average eight minutes long. The flute is exciting, but also makes for a perfect house-cleaning soundtrack. And if you need a lot of attention and positive reinforcement like I do, then you’ll take the emphatic applause at the end of each movement in stride. Maybe I’ll start cleaning my apartment more often with this type of response. Or maybe not. 

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