Reissued June 4, 2021
from Bluenote (Tone Poet Series)
The Witch Doctor, originally recorded in 1961 and not released until 1969, Art Blakey enlisted a stacked roster for his backing band, the Jazz Messengers. The lineup was rounded out by legendary trumpeter Lee Morgan and saxophonist Wayne Shorter who would go on to play a key role in Miles Davis’ Second Great Quintet and form the legendary jazz fusionists, Weather Report. This album falls in with the hard-bop style that was ubiquitous at the time, but makes some forays into the decade to come with Morgan and Shorter exchanging clever horn lines throughout the album that add a soulfulness and playfulness to these swinging tracks.