JIMMY SMITH - I’m Gon Git Myself Together
Released on MGM (1971, USA)
This is the album that answers the question “can a down-home earthy, gutsy, swinging, blues-drenched jazz giant like Jimmy Smith find happiness in that spastic, hard beat, heavily amplified, eternally youthful world on the other side of the (generation) gap – Rock and Roll?” The album is successful for a number of reasons: basically, Jimmy Smith is the type of consummate artist who never gives less than his best in live or recorded situations; secondly, Jimmy has never isolated himself in any one bag because he is too aware of other idioms, other styles, other musicians, and much too hip to the reality of change; furthermore, Jimmy’s style is so close to the nitty gritty of communication that no gap is unbridgeable (…). No doubt about it, there’s a happy Jimmy Smith contained in this album – a later-day rocksmith who has his mojo working in any style he commands it to (Harvey Siders - edited).
Review on Soul Strut blog
Released in 1973 (actually 1971), the liner notes to the record state that it was Smith’s attempt to mold Rock with Jazz, something that was a bit in vogue in the late 1960s/early 1970s. I Know What I Want was written, conducted, arranged and produced by Johnny Pate. His band also backed up Smith. The song starts off with a funky guitar line before Smith’s singing, organ and the horns join in to turn the song more towards a soulful big band sound, although a big guitar solo towards the end makes sure the Rock influences are still apparent. Next up, Smith takes on a cover of Otis Redding’s (Sittin On) The Dock Of The Bay. Despite some wah wah guitar in the background, Smith’s singing really fails him on this rendition of the Soul classic. To make up for things, Uh Ruh starts off with a jammin’ little open drum break before going into an upbeat Soul-Jazz number. Dirty Roosta Booga is another fast-pace groover, and there’s another drum break intro to Need Mo, which is also good. A cover of Sugar, Sugar makes a nice end to the record as well.
I may add that I quite like the title track (I'm Gon' Git Myself Together), a solid blues and that Smith’s singing fails him again badly in Spill the Wine. Overall an uneven album but still interesting if you want to understand where the process started that yielded the fabulous live album Root Down (listen to Need Mo’).
Jimmy Smith – I'm Gon' Git Myself Together (1971)
A1 I Know What I Want 5:21
A2 (Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay 5:15
A3 Uh Ruh 2:45
A4 I'm Gon' Git Myself Together 5:30
B1 Dirty Roosta Booga 5:00
B2 Spill The Wine 5:50
B3 Need Mo' 6:16
B4 Sugar, Sugar 5:15
No detail on the personnel (Johnny Pate Orchestra).