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Jimmy Smith – Back at the Chicken Shack (1963)

January 3, 2019

[Album 628/1001]

“Take me back, back to the shack…I know where we need to go, back to the shack”
– =w=eezer, Back to the Shack

Do you find that certain instruments inevitably take you back to certain times/places? Even places you’ve never been?

For example, the accordion.

If you can somehow not immediately picture an evening in Paris, I’m impressed.

Or a Hammond B-3 organ? chickenshack

Until recently, thanks to Booker T. & the M.G.’s, I’d picture large quantities of green onions.

Though now when I hear the Hammond, while still picturing agriculture, I find myself transported to Jimmy Smith’s chicken shack.

I quite like the juxtaposition in the album art: though “incredible” isn’t exactly modest, the photo with the animals (while seated at animal level) suggests much more humility.

I gather this album was recorded in 1960 and then finally released in 1963. Why it was cooped up for 3 years, I’m not sure, as I can’t see this recording being classified as anything less than grade A quality.

And that seems to be the pattern on the 1001 list for albums that have been shelved for a couple of years prior to release, such as The Modern Lovers & Tonight’s The Night.

Unlike farm products that are best served fresh, perhaps some music productions just need to age a bit before being consumed?

In any event, if like me, you find yourself in the mood for some Hammond B-3 jazz, I know where we need to go.

Back to the Shack.


Verbalize the Positive

Speaking of green onions, last year when grocery shopping, I found myself reaching for green onions in the produce section beside Rob Baker (guitarist of the Tragically Hip).

As I’ve found with all the incredible members of the Hip, they have no trace of ego when out and about in town!

From → 1960s

  1. Great LP this one!

  2. Tom Morwood told me about this one. Said I need it!

  3. I’ve been on the look out for this one… seems to be one of those albums a record collection needs to have.

    • I wouldn’t mind one day having a Hammond organ among the instrument collection at home too!

      • I hear that! Not sure how the neighbours would react, but I’m sure they’d be fine cause, well, who doesn’t love the sound of a Hammond!?

  4. “Why it was cooped up for 3 years, I’m not sure”

    I see what you did there

  5. OMG if I just ran into a Hip member like that I’d just hug him right there in the produce aisle.

    • I did wave to him once downtown when we were walking with our respective families – forgetting that he didn’t know me. He kindly returned the wave anyways!

  6. I have some Jimmy Smith on LP and will get to it in my series eventually. Not sure if I have this one, though. Maybe?

  7. Jimmy Smith’s catalogue is massive. Like really huge in the way that only prolific jazz musicians can produce. I’m not sure how many one needs, but this is certainly a good one. Another fave is ”The Sermon”, especially if you are into the groove (man). Spread your wings, jazz brethren!

  8. Cool story about the HIP…
    U/Bob n Onions!

    • My thanks Deke – if you’re buying groceries in Kingston, chances are you’ll run into one of us!

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Youssou N’Dour – Immigrés (1988) | 1001albumsin10years
  2. 1960-1964 | 1001albumsin10years

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