Otis Redding’s third album, and his first fully realized album, presents his talent unfettered, his direction clear, and his confidence emboldened, with fully half the songs representing a reach that extended his musical grasp. More than a quarter of this album is given over to Redding’s versions of songs by Sam Cooke, his idol, who had died the previous December, and all three are worth owning and hearing. Two of them, “A Change Is Gonna Come” and “Shake,” are every bit as essential as any soul recordings ever made, and while they (and much of this album) have reappeared on several anthologies, it’s useful to hear the songs from those sessions juxtaposed with each other, and with “Wonderful World,” which is seldom compiled elsewhere.
"…A lot of bang for the buck."
Jimmy Scott, was an American jazz vocalist famous for his high countertenor voice and his sensitivity on ballads and love songs. Lionel Hampton gave him the nickname "Little Jimmy Scott" because he looked young and was short and of slight build. His phrasing made him a favorite of artists including Billie Holiday, Ray Charles, Frankie Valli, Dinah Washington, and Nancy Wilson.
Spectacular playing by Higgins accompanied and backed by Jay Leonhart on bass and Mark Taylor on drums. I will confess that my favorite drummer who was frequently a member of Higgins' trios was Joe Ascione, but Taylor is perfect on this album. If you are a Higgins fan, then you are probably familiar with Leonhart who is almost telepathically connected to Higgins.