Buddy Tate & White Label: Tate’s Delight

In the 1970s the Texas tenorman left a 21-year residency in Harlem to freelance, including this swinging 1982 date with a Danish combo


After nine years with Basie, followed by a 21-year residency at Harlem’s prestigious Celebrity Club, Buddy turned freelance in the mid-70s and toured extensively on the European circuit.

The famous Texan tenorman was much in demand as star guest on sessions such as the one issued here. He’s accompanied by the very capable Danish quintet White Label in a live and unrehearsed jam session, as part of the Holstrebo jazz festival, in September 1982.

Tate’s booting big-toned tenor bustles authoritatively through the upbeat On Green Dolphin Street, the trio backing perhaps a touch over-busy. A more relaxed all-round swing is achieved as things settle down with In A Mellow Tone. In this track, and in the following Mood Indigo, there’s a rare opportunity to hear Buddy’s incisive and mellow full-toned clarinet, richly expressive. He’s back on tenor on Basie’s Jumpin’ At The Woodside, driving and wailing vigorously, and backed enthusiastically by lively rhythm support, with fine bass and piano contributions.

On the last three tracks, Buddy’s joined by Pederson’s light-toned trumpet, neat and nimble, and Sondergaard’s spirited and creative alto. Four-bar exchanges between the front horns help to build up an exciting head of steam in Charlie Parker’s Now’s The Time and Lester Leaps In, with an entertaining all round spontaneous feel.

A rare Tate vocal on his closing original Tate’s Delight is another titbit of interest to any specialist collector. All in all a very enjoyable release, capturing the veteran star still swinging powerfully, and supported with spirit and style by the Danish musicians. 

(1) On Green Dolphin Street; (2) In A Mellow Tone; Mood Indigo; (1) Jumpin’  At The Woodside; (3) Now’s The Time; Lester Leaps In; (4) Tate’s Delight (She’s Got It) (56.29)
(1) Tate (ts); Ole Matthiesson (p); Niels Præstholm (b); Ove Rex (d). Holstebro, Denmark, 25 September 1982.
(2) as (1) except Tate (cl).
(3) as (1). Add Paul Valdemar Pederson (t) and Jens Søndergaard (as).
(4) as (3) except Tate (ts, v).
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