Micro: Gene Ammons, Preachin’

It’s all just hymns.

Issued in 1962– I wonder if this was a stopgap measure for Ammons, who was between prison terms for possession of heroin. Maybe because of this, there’s a subtle desperation in the songs that only adds to their power: who gives a shit if Brenda Bland is sinless and on her way to heaven– if you dedicate an entire album to spirituals because you’re soul-worried about relapsing, there’s an honesty in the sound that can’t be faked.

Highlights: “Sweet Hour” and “Abide With Me.”


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