Watch the Rakin' With Richard online guitar lesson by David Hamburger from 50 Jazz-Blues Licks You MUST Know
We’ve already talked about Blue Mitchell and how hard he could swing on a shuffle groove, but he was equally badass on a straight-eighths feel. The lick here is inspired in part by some of Mitchell’s work with pianist Harold Mabern in the late 1960s.
Mabern, who is still very much alive, working and recording, made his biggest splash in that decade, playing with everyone from Sonny Rollins and Freddie Hubbard to Miles Davis and Wes Montgomery, but he has continued working away ever since, still inspired by his two heroes, Ahmad Jamal and fellow Memphian Phineas Newborn, Jr. Interestingly, Mabern describes himself as " a blues pianist that understands the philosophy of jazz," and takes particular pride in his capacities as an accompanist and his deep knowledge of tunes and composers in the jazz idiom. His out of print LP Rakin’ and Scrapin’ is vintage hard bop through and through, relaxed but driving. You can hear Mitchell play straight-eighth blues on the title cut, and on his own tracks "Millie" and "Hi-Heel Sneakers,"