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Reviewers: Don Mather, Dick Stafford, Marc Bridle, John Eyles, Ian Lace, Colin Clarke

Johnny Hammond:Breakout

LTI Records 5051682



    1. It’s Too Late
    2. Workin’ On a Groovy Thing
    3. Never Can say Goodbye
    4. Blues Selah
    5. Breakout
    6. It’s Too Late

Tracks 1 to 5

Johnny Hammond – Organ Hank Crawford – Alto Eric Gale – Guitar Airto Morieira – Percussion Billy Cobham – Drums Danny Moore – Trumpet Johnny Williams – Fender Bass Grover Washington – Tenor


George Benson replaces Gale Freddie Hubbard replaces Danny Moore Stanley Turrentine replaces Grover Washington

Creed Taylor who founded CTI records knew in the 1970’s just what the public wanted and through his company, he gave it to them. By the 1980’s however he had lost the midas touch and the label was sold to Epic which is now part of SONY.

This is a typical Taylor production, every musician is a star and the titles selected to have the broadest appeal, this brought commercial success but to me at the expense of not always hearing the individual musicians to best advantage. Track 6 is a case in point, I felt quite excited as I waited for the solos from the likes of Freddie Hubbard and Stanley Turrentine, unfortunately there isn’t any. They are only present to play the theme statement! On the other tracks Grover Washington and Hank Crawford fare a little better, but not that much better! The Hammond organ dominates throughout and in this sense Johnny Hammond is the same as Jimmy Smith and Jack McDuff, only Shirley Scott seems to have a sense of proportion on the instrument.

The music is however well played as you would expect when all the players are top instrumentalists, but the organ domination makes it all sound much the same.


Don Mather




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