Saturday, December 10, 2016

Houston Person - 1971 - Houston Express

Houston Person 
Houston Express

01. Young Gifted And Black 5:15
02. The Houston Express 5:48
03. Enjoy 4:55
04. Give More Power To The People (For God's Sake) 3:40
05. Chains Of Love 7:30
06. Just My Imagination 5:35
07. Lift Every Voice 5:40

Guitar:Billy Butler
Piano: Paul Griffin
Flute, Saxophone: Harold Vick
Baritone Saxophone: Babe Clarke
Trombone: Garnett Brown
Trombone: Jack Jeffers
Trumpet: Ernie Royal
Trumpet: Money Johnson
Trumpet: Thad Jones
Trumpet: Cecil Bridgewater
Piano: Ernie Hayes
Bass: Gerry Jemmott
Congas: Buddy Caldwell
Drums: Bernard Purdie
Organ: Jimmy Watson
Tenor Saxophone: Houston Person

By 1971, funk was flavour of the month. Jazz was no longer as popular as it once had been. So, on Houston Express, Houston Person and a band that included drummer Bernard “Pretty” Purdie and guitarist Billy Butler, fused musical genres.

Houston Express was essentially an album of funk, jazz and R&B. It was quite different to Houston’s previous albums. However, Houston and Bob Porter realised the importance of moving forward musically. They realised that if a musician stands still, they risked becoming irrelevant. There was no chance of this happening to Houston.

When critics heard Houston Express, they hailed it one of Houston’s finest albums. The constant reinvention of Houston Person was working. He was still commercially successful in an era when jazz’s popularity was plummeting. That took some doing. However, Houston managed to do this. Would his success last though?

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