Bar code: 090204543854
This collection showcases Leon Spencer, a Houston native who recorded four Prestige albums in the early '70s. The first six tracks are from Sneak Preview!, the organist's 1970 label debut, the others from its more commercially oriented follow-up, 1971's Louisiana Slim. State-of-the-art soul-jazz personnel includes tart-toned trumpeter Virgil Jones and up-and-coming tenor sax star Grover Washington, Jr. Born on November 1, 1945, Spencer came up on piano, switching to organ when he heard Jimmy Smith in person. He had a unique style: while flashy on top, he leavened it with an unusually authoritative left hand, creating countermelodies in the bass where most organists could only create counterpoint. The standouts here are Spencer's bluesy "The Slide," a juicy take on the Meters' "Message from the Meters," Spencer's ballad "Our Love Will Never Die" (check out Sparks's delightfully florid solo and Washington's sweet flute), and his richly vernacular "Louisiana Slim."