Afterglow Jazz and American Popular Song

Soulmates: Ben Webster and Joe Zawinul

This week on Afterglow we’ll feature Ellingtonian tenor saxophonist Ben Webster and future Weather Report keyboardist Joe Zawinul on the 1963 album Soulmates.

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Soulmates Album Cover

Photo: Album Cover

Tenor saxophonist Ben Webster and keyboardist Joe Zawinul's 1963 album Soulmates. This was the first leader date the saxophonist had done in five years and one of the last albums he’d record in the United States before leaving for Europe to become an expatriate.

This week on Afterglow we’ll feature the 1963 album Soulmates, featuring Ellingtonian tenor saxophonist Ben Webster and future Weather Report keyboardist Joe Zawinul.

This was the first leader date the saxophonist had done in five years (discounting a with-strings session for Reprise) and one of the last albums he’d record in the United States before leaving for Europe to become an expatriate.

Zawinul had been playing with Cannonball Adderley’s band and was letting Webster live in his apartment at the time. Along with trumpeter Thad Jones, bassist Richard Davis, and drummer Philly Jo Jones, they produced a stellar mainstream jazz LP, featuring a number of Webster and Zawinul original compositions, in addition to classics such as “Like Someone In Love,” “Travlin’ Light,” and former Webster boss Duke Ellington’s “Come Sunday.”

We’ll also hear music from Johnny Hartman, Nina Simone, Gladys Knight, Irene Kral, Lee Morgan, and others.

Music Heard On This Episode

There Used to be a Ballpark
Frank Sinatra — Ol' Blue Eyes Is Back (Reprise, 1973)
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There Used to be a Ballpark
Frank Sinatra — Ol' Blue Eyes Is Back (Reprise, 1973)

Notes: Also on the 4-CD Sinatra Reprise collection.

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Israel
Bill Evans — Explorations (Riverside/OJC, 1961)
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Stairway to the Stars
Johnny Hartman — I Just Dropped By to Say Hello (Impulse, 1963)

Notes: Illinois Jacquet on tenor sax.

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Falling In Love Again
Nina Simone — The Colpix Years (Rhino)
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Half the Perfect World
Madeleine Peyroux — Half the Perfect World (Rounder, 2006)

Notes: New release.

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Willow Weep for Me
Dizzy Gillespie — Verve/Philips Small Group Sessions (Mosaic, 1959)

Notes: Junior Mance on piano.

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Since I Fell For You
Gladys Knight — Before Me (Verve, 2006)

Notes: New release.

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Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out to Dry
Irene Kral — Better Than Anything (Fresh Sounds, 1963)

Notes: With the Junior Mance trio.

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Little Girl Blue
Diana Krall — From This Moment On (Verve, 2006)

Notes: New release.

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Day In, Day Out
Diana Krall — From This Moment On (Verve, 2006)

Notes: New release.

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Desert Moonlight
Lee Morgan — The Rumproller (Blue Note, 1965)
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Too Late Now
Ben Webster/Joe Zawinul — Soulmates (Riverside, 1963)
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Soulmates
Ben Webster/Joe Zawinul — Soulmates (Riverside, 1963)

Notes: Ben Webster composition.

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Come Sunday
Ben Webster/Joe Zawinul — Soulmates (Riverside, 1963)

Notes: Duke Ellington composition.

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The Governor
Ben Webster/Joe Zawinul — Soulmates (Riverside, 1963)

Notes: Title refers to Webster's nickname for Ellington.

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Frog Legs
Ben Webster/Joe Zawinul — Soulmates (Riverside, 1963)
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Travlin' Light
Ben Webster/Joe Zawinul — Soulmates (Riverside, 1963)
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Like Someone in Love
Ben Webster/Joe Zawinul — Soulmates (Riverside, 1963)
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Evol Deklaw Ni
Ben Webster/Joe Zawinul — Soulmates (Riverside, 1963)

Notes: What does that spell backwards?

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Eighty One
Bill Frisell/Ron Carter/Paul Motian — Bill Frisell/Ron Carter/Paul Motian (Nonesuch, 2006)

Notes: New release. Ron Carter/Miles Davis composition.

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In a Silent Way
Miles Davis — Complete In a Silent Way Sessions (Columbia/Legacy, 1968)

Notes: Joe Zawinul composition.

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David Brent Johnson

Born in Indianapolis, Indiana, David Brent Johnson moved to Bloomington in 1991. He is an alumnus of Indiana University, and began working with WFIU in 2002. Currently, David serves as jazz producer and systems coordinator at the station. His interests include literature, history, music, writing, and movies.

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