Eddie Harris: Listen Here
Eddie Harris (electric tenor sax)
The Best of Eddie Harris (Atlantic Jazz 1545-2)
Jodie Christian (piano), Melvin Jackson (bass), Richard Smith (drums), Joe Wohletz (percussion).
Composed by Eddie Harris.
Recorded: New York, April 20, 1967
Rating: 80/100 (learn more)
In the tumultuous half-decade since Eddie Harris's hit "Exodus" (1961), much had changed. Musicians were electrifying with a fervor unseen since the 1880s Edison-Westinghouse "War of Currents." In 1965, instrument-maker Selmer introduced its Varitone sax, which (Gimmick Alert!) sampled and synthetically doubled each note an octave lower. The summer of 1968 brought the first Varitone hit: "Listen Here" spent 6 weeks in the Top 100, peaking at #79 and fueling the scurrilous rumor that Selmer secretly bought those singles to stimulate Varitone sales. Not true. With its monotonous 2-chord vamp, James Brown-type yelps, cowbell and tambourine, "Listen Here" sold itself. It was soooo '60s!
Reviewer: Alan Kurtz