Mid-Nite Oil – Eli "Lucky" Thompson
One of Lucky Thompson's very few compositions in 3/4, Mid-Nite Oil is classic later Lucky with a bouncy rhythmic melody and quite a long form. Solos on the recording are on blues changes but the head changes could also be used.
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- Recording: Lucky Thompson - Lucky Strikes
- Recorded on: September 15, 1964
- Label: Prestige (PR 7365)
- Concert Key: B-flat
- Vocal Range: , to
- Style: 3/4 swing (medium up)
- Soprano Sax - Lucky Thompson
- Piano - Hank Jones
- Bass - Richard Davis
- Drums - Connie Kay
There is a 16-measure intro with the rhythm section entering one by one: first the drums (cymbal only) for four measures, then four measures adding a bass vamp, and eight measures with rhythmic piano figures over the same vamp. This intro is shown in all our lead sheets. The ending vamps shifting harmonies over a bass pedal alternating B♭ and F.
Solos on the recording use 24-measure B♭ blues changes. However, as with many Lucky Thompson songs, the head changes work just as well for soloing.
The five recording sessions that bassist Richard Davis played on in September 1964 were all recorded by Rudy Van Gelder at his recording studio in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. The first of these, on September 3rd, was one session for Gary McFarland's "Soft Samba" album. The day before the "Lucky Strikes" session, Davis was at Van Gelder's to record on Kenny Dorham's "Trompeta Toccata"; a week later he played on the two sessions for Johnny Hartman's "The Voice That Is," alongside Hank Jones and guitarist Barry Galbraith.
June 16, 1923 – July 30, 2005
Saxophonist Lucky Thompson is one of the great treasures of jazz. He was born in Columbia, South Carolina, but was raised in Detroit, Michigan. He played in local groups with Hank Jones, Sonny Stitt and others. In August, 1943, when he was 19, he left Detroit with Lionel Hampton's Orchestra, eventually arriving in New York City. Still a teenager, his first recording date was with Hot Lips Page on March 18, 1944. Later in 1944 he started recording with both Lucky Millinder and Count Basie. Read more...