Yusef Lateef: Playful Flute
Yusef Lateef (flute)
The Sounds of Yusef (Prestige OJCCD-917-2)
Yusef Lateef (flute),
Wilbur Harden, Hugh Lawson, Ernie Farrow & Oliver Jackson (percussion).
Composed by Yusef Lateef.
Recorded: Hackensack, NJ, October 11, 1957
Rating: 95/100 (learn more)
"Mohammedan leanings are shown by many bebop musicians," Life magazine reported in 1948 at the height of a short-lived bop craze. Among the first-generation boppers who embraced Islam during that period was Yusef Lateef. We mention this because, far from being the evidence of kookiness that Life implied, Lateef's spirituality has thoroughly informed his music. Exotic modes and unusual instruments reflect Lateef's unquenchable cross-cultural curiosity. Here, from opening trills to climactic passages of simultaneous humming and playing, Lateef ranges from Africa to the Amazon by way of the Middle East. A fascinating 4-minute excursion by a unique musical explorer.
Reviewer: Alan Kurtz