Archie Shepp – For Losers

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This LP came out in 1970 or 1971 as an odd mix of music / sessions. The gems are tracks 3 and 4 : Archie Shepp accompanying a Billie Holiday impression (by Chinalin Sharpe, the wife of the alto player on the track)and cutting loose with a very striking solo on “I Got It Bad (and That Ain’t Good)”; and Archie Shepp’s soulful, pleading yet defiant dirge reading of Cal Massey’s “What Would It Be Without You”. Stunning, compelling tenor work. The long “Un Croque Monsieur” has its moments as well, although its inserted poem may sound a bit dated today (late 60′s avant garde). Cedar Walton, Wilbur Ware and Cecil Payne (baritone sax and flute) provide solid support throughout on these three tracks. Tracks 1 and 2 are from different recording sessions, with larger ensembles (including electric bass) and a pseudo commercial feel. Track 1 is a Leon Thomas vocal.

Tracklist

01. Stick ‘Em Up
02. Abstract
03. I Got It Bad (And That Ain’t Good)
04. What Would It Be Without You
05. Un Croque Monsieur (Poem For Losers)

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