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  • Mr. Hands

    Herbie Hancock’s thirtieth album, Mr. Hands, belongs on a “Most Overlooked Albums” list. Featuring six great tracks of (vocal-less) post-bop electro fusion, it is a return to form from his foray in disco pop. Using several different rhythm sections, Hancock is imaginative and hands-on here, moving through an eclectic variety of styles. Jazz-funk opener “Spiraling Prism” features drums from Leon “Ndugu” Chancler and Bennie Maupin’s inimitable tenor sax. Next, the Latin-jazz of “Calypso” features bassist Ron Carter, drummer Tony Williams, percussionist Sheila Escovedo, and Hancock playing synthesized steel drums as well as soloing on acoustic piano. On Side Two, the moody “4AM” features Jaco Pastorius, and the crazy rhythmic remake of “Shiftless Shuffle” features all five members of the original Headhunters quintet. Saving the best for last, the album closes with “Texture.” An all-synthesizer song performed entirely by Hancock, it debuts his use of an Apple II computer. This would be the last of Hancock’s electric jazz-fusion albums, as his subsequent releases shifted to R&B.

    Mr. Hands Catalog Number:  Columbia JC 36578

    Mr. Hands Track Listing:

    Side One

    1. Spiraling Prism – 6:21

    2. Calypso – 6:41

    3. Just Around the Corner – 7:33

    Side Two

    1. 4AM – 5:20

    2. Shiftless Shuffle – 7:06

    3. Textures – 6:36

    Get Mr. Hands on Vinyl:

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