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Earl Bostic

Alto saxophonist Earl Bostic was a technical master of his instrument, yet remained somewhat underappreciated by jazz fans due to the string of simple, popular R&B/jump blues hits he recorded during his heyday in the '50s. Born Eugene Earl Bostic in Tulsa, OK, on April 25, 1913, Bostic played around the Midwest during the early '30s, studied at Xavier University, and toured with several bands before moving to New York in 1938. There he played for Don Redman, Edgar Hayes, and Lionel Hampton, making his record debut with the latter in 1939. In the early '40s, he worked as an arranger and session musician, and began leading his own regular large group in 1945. Cutting back to a septet the next year, Bostic began recording regularly, scoring his first big hit with 1948's "Temptation." He soon signed with the King label, the home of most of his biggest jukebox hits, which usually featured a driving, heavy, R&B-ish beat and an alto sound that could be smooth and romantic or aggressive and bluesy.

In 1951, Bostic landed a number one R&B hit with "Flamingo," plus another Top Ten in "Sleep." Subsequent hits included "You Go to My Head" and "Cherokee." Bostic's bands became important training grounds for up-and-coming jazzmen like John Coltrane, Blue Mitchell, Stanley Turrentine, Benny Golson, Jaki Byard, and others. Unfortunately, Bostic suffered a heart attack in the late '50s, which kept him away from music for two years. He returned to performing in 1959, but didn't record quite as extensively; when he did record in the '60s, his sessions were more soul-jazz than the proto-R&B of old. On October 28, 1965, Bostic suffered a fatal heart attack while playing a hotel in Rochester, NY. ~ Steve Huey
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: The Very Best Of Earl Bostic

1. Hot Sauce Boss

2. Temptation

3. Earl Blows A Fuse

4. Who Snuck The Wine In The Gravy

5. Choppin' It Down

6. Seven Steps

7. Don't You Do It

8. Rockin' And Reelin'

9. Flamingo

10. Sleep

11. Always

12. Lover Come Back To Me

13. I Got Loaded

14. Moonglow

15. Smoke Gets In Your Eyes

16. For You

17. Cherokee

18. Steamwhistle Jump

19. What! No Pearls?

20. Deep Purple

21. Cracked Ice

23. No Name Jive

24. Woodchopper's Ball

x

Track List: The Chronological 1949-1951

1. Sugar Hill Blues

3. Filibuster

4. No Name Blues

5. Serenade

6. Seven Steps

7. Portrait Of A Faded Love

8. Wrap Your Troubles In Dreams

9. Way Down

10. Don't You Do It

11. Merry Widow Waltz

12. Wrap It Up

13. Rockin' And Reelin'

14. September Song

15. I Can't Give You Anything But Love

16. Flamingo

17. Sleep

18. How Could It Have Been You And I

19. Always

20. I'm Getting Sentimental Over You

21. The Moon Is Low

22. Lover Come Back To Me

23. Chains Of Love

24. I Got Loaded

x

Track List: The Chronological 1948 - 1949

2. Slightly Groovy

3. Bar Fly Baby

4. Artistry By Bostic

5. Scotch Jam

7. Serenade To Beauty

8. Tiger Rag

9. The Man I Love

10. Temptation

11. Bostic's Boogie Blues

12. Joy Dust

13. Wild Man

14. Watch Where You Walk, Boy

15. Blip Boogie

16. From Midnight To Dawn

17. Swing Low Sweet Boogie

18. Earl's Imagination

19. Earl Blows A Fuse

22. Earl's Blues

x

Track List: 1945-1948

1. The Man I Love

2. Hurricane Blues

3. The Major And The Minor

4. All On

5. Liza

6. That's The Groovy Thing, Part A

7. Tippin' In

8. Baby You Don't Know It All

9. Jumpin' Jack

10. That's The Groovy Thing, Part B

11. The Barefoot Boy

12. That's The Heat You Gotta Beat

13. Let's Ball Tonight, Part 1

14. Let's Ball Tonight, Part 2

15. Away

16. Where Or When

17. Cuttin' Out

18. My Special Dream

19. I'm The Guy Who Loves You

20. Here Goes

21. Bostic's Jump

22. Earl's Rumboogie

23. Hot Sauce Boss

24. 845 Stomp

x

Track List: All His Hits

1. Thats The Groovy Thing

2. 8:45 Stomp

3. Where Or When

4. Flamingo

5. Sleep

6. Blue Moon

7. Blue Skies

8. Harlem Nocturne

9. September Song

10. Stompin' At The Savoy

12. Arrivederci Roma

13. Cherry Pink And Apple Blossom White

14. Walk On The Wild Side

Comments

Report as inappropriate
Bob & liz brown
We had such a great time dancing to his
Music in early fifty ln San Diego
Report as inappropriate
Off shore is one of my all time favorites.
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rogana1955
Gosh what fun to dance too. Once upon a time and long ago.
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Earl Bostic gave me a musical climax in Riverside, California. He kept getting higher and higher, building and building. When I thought he could go no higher, he did, giving me RAPTURE. I was still toe-tapping and flying the next day. No other musician has ever did this to me, not even Ray Charles.
Report as inappropriate
drnancyshah
Brilliance with the on topic slow swing and excellent augmentation between melodic licks. I love it.

Right now I am trying to match his solo style on my alto ax.
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1955 I had neighbor who had a colletion of 78's earl bostic and I would go next door to listen to that great sax.
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ilovemygirlf r i e n d e r i n
Aww. We have some camaraderie here.
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Robert, you are not the only white sailor who was a Bostic fan. I am a retired Navy Chief Petty Officer, who learned to love his music in the 1950's when he recorded hits like Night Train.
Report as inappropriate
San Diego-1954 concert - highlight of Navy shoreleave prior to sailing for fareast after graduating frm IC-EL School (only sailor and white as well ).
Report as inappropriate
Listened to Earl Bostic all through high school in the 50's....stil l get a bit nostalgic when I hear that distinctive sound...stil l love it.
Report as inappropriate
doo woppers love him
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One of the greats!
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So Damn Good!!
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Earl "BOOM" Bostic!!!!!
Report as inappropriate
this is good
Report as inappropriate
Im pleased you know about him......... . . . . . D a v e

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