King Curtis’s Robust Saxophone Singles

Saxophonist Curtis Ousley played on songs by Buddy Holly, Aretha Franklin, and John Lennon, but he also made some cool instrumental records for himself.


The great saxophonist Curtis Ousley was an essential part of classic recordings by everyone from The Coasters and Buddy Holly to Aretha Franklin and John Lennon, but he also made some cool instrumental records for himself. Ranging from 1958 to 1971, The Complete Atco Singles features plenty of robust-but-tasteful blowing, sometimes on meaty R&B tracks (“Jump Back,” “Memphis Soul Stew”), and sometimes on surprisingly appealing covers of other people’s hits (“Ode to Billie Joe,” “Whole Lotta Love”). Among the intriguing obscurities is the dreamy 1959 single “Heavenly Blues,” a foray into lounge music produced by Leiber and Stoller. If King Curtis’ solo work was an afterthought, it was consistently entertaining regardless.

Courtesy of Real Gone Music

REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

payment methods

REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate