Everland Jazz return with their latest batch of gorgeously-packaged editions of some of the more overlooked entries in Strata East’s rich catalogue. The Descendants Of Mike And Phoebe (named for two actual South Carolinian slaves from which four of the six members are descended) released this lone album in 1974. Most of the tracks are led by Grace Lee Mims’ heavenly soprano, lending an overtly political (“Attica”) and spiritual (the title track) tone to an already heavy album anchored by the soulful modal stylings of bassist Bill Lee (Spike Lee’s dad!!) and pianist Consuela Lee Moorehead. We keep going back to three instrumental pieces following the intro suite: Bill Lee’s bass on “Coltrane” is just about as deep as it gets; a solid tribute to the late great sax titan and right up there with Alice’s “Something About John Coltrane.” “Chick Chick” and “Well Done, Weldon” (more tributes to jazz greats?) are on the level with the finest uptempo modal jazz on the label. Black vinyl pressing comes housed in high-gloss replica pic sleeve with printed inner sleeve, recommended.
- music label: Everland Jazz 2017
reviewed by nick nightingale 12/2017