Tuesday, March 25, 2014

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Charles Earland

Artist:Charles Earland
Song:More Today Than Yesterday
Album:Black Talk!

Organist Charles Earland started out in the 60s apprenticing under the legendary Jimmy McGriff. He started recording as a leader in 1969 on Prestige Records. Though he had some success in the mid-70s as a disco artist, I think most jazz fans will be interested in his Prestige recordings. Earland's mix of jazz and soul earned him the nickname The Mighty Burner. He was born May 24, 1941 in Philadelphia. His dad played alto sax and as a teen, he played in a band with Pat Martino on guitar, Lew Tabackin on tenor sax and Frankie Avalon on trumpet. After attending Temple University, Earland toured as a sax player for Jimmy McGriff. He learned to play the Hammond B-3 organ during intermissions. So he switched to the organ and recorded an album with Martino and drummer Bobby Durham. He joined Lou Donaldson's band until he signed as a solo artist with Prestige Records. Black Talk! was Earland's Prestige debut in 1969. I'm sure it will remind jazz fans of more famous organists like Jimmy McGriff and Jimmy Smith and Earland doesn't do anything new. But Black Talk! is available as a budget CD and is worth a listen. Along with this cover of the Spiral Starecase hit More Today Than Yesterday, Earland also covers Aquarius from Hair. Musicians are Virgil Jones on trumpet, Houston Person on tenor sax, Melvin Sparks on guitar, Idris Muhammad on drums and Buddy Caldwell on congas. Earland left Prestige in 1975 to record disco for Mercury. He had some chart success especially in England with songs like Let The Music Play in 1978. He also recorded jazz for Muse Records. Earland also recorded for Columbia, Milestone and High Note. Earland quit music when his wife Sheryl died in 1985. But he returned in the 90s until he died of heart failure on Dec. 11, 1999 at age 58. Here's a video for More Today Than Yesterday by Charles Earland.

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