Give Now

Night Lights Classic Jazz

Hank Mobley: 77 on 07-07-07

MobleyAs some posters at Organissimo have noted, tenor saxophonist Hank Mobley, if still alive, would have turned 77 today–on 07/07/07, that lucky date of destiny. Maybe Mobley, the so-called “middleweight champion” of his instrument, will posthumously reap the good fortune that eluded him in his lifetime. At least the tenor saxophonist, like fellow Blue Note recording artist Herbie Nichols before him, has been touted so much as an underrated/overlooked talent that it’s fairly safe to say he’s finally transcended the cliche. His “round sound,” as he himself once described it, has won him a number of followers among fans of 1950s and 60s hardbop, but I think he’s still neglected in another sense: his compositional strength. The Blue Note LPs that he made from 1955 to 1970 are filled with strong, vibrant originals such as “Funk in Deep Freeze,” “Peckin’ Time,” “Third Time Around,” and “This I Dig of You.” Melodic, subtle, swinging, and hip–all adjectives one can associate with the Mobley canon. On this godly day, we thank Hank for the music he bequeathed to us.

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.

View all posts by this author »

Stay Connected

What is RSS? RSS makes it possible to subscribe to a website's updates instead of visiting it by delivering new posts to your RSS reader automatically. Choose to receive some or all of the updates from Night Lights Classic Jazz:

Support For Indiana Public Media From

About Night Lights

Search Night Lights

where to hear night lights

This Week On Afterglow

Recent Releases for 2016, Part 1

Gregory Porter - Take Me To The Alley

A roundup of recent releases in vocal jazz and traditional pop, including new albums by Gregory Porter, Esperanza Spalding, and Willie Nelson.

Read more »

Afterglow is WFIU's weekly program of jazz and American popular song hosted by David Brent Johnson.

More from Afterglow »