Legendary keyboard player/composer JOE SAMPLE has entertained in all realms of jazz for more than four decades. Like many jazzmen of his time, Sample started out playing hard bop, but went electric during the fusion era. Along with trombonist Wayne Henderson, tenor saxophonist Wilton Felder, and drummer Stix Hooper, Sample launched The Jazz Crusaders in the late 1950s. Sample focused on the acoustic piano during The Crusaders’ early years, but placed greater emphasis on electric keyboards when the band turned to jazz/funk in the early 1970s and dropped the “Jazz” from its name. After collecting numerous gold and platinum albums over the course of nearly three decades, The Crusaders’ last recording was Life in the Modern World in 1987.
1978’s Rainbow Seeker marked Sample’s first official solo album as a leader. His lyrical, introspective, and highly rhythmic compositional approach celebrated the beginning of what is known today as “contemporary jazz,” and since the release of Spellbound in 1989, his first Warner Bros. album, the pianist has become one of the most enduring artists of the genre.
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Joe Sample, piano
Jay Anderson, bass
Larry Aberman, drums