Hayes’ biographer Simon Spillett reminded his FB followers recently that 12 May is the 50th anniversary of 50s/60s British jazz sensation Tubby Hayes’ last gig, a low-key affair in Brighton. His last album had been an easy-listening one in 1969 (‘The Orchestra’) playing jazzed-up pop hits. His last album ‘proper’ had been 1967’s quartet set ‘Mexican Green’, which was itself recorded over a year earlier. An unreleased quartet album from 1968 was in the can – only released (as ‘Grits, Beans & Greens’) as recently as 2019 – in the superb ‘Complete Fontana Albums 1961-69 box set and separately.
In short, aside from serious health problems in the late 60s/early 70s, Tubbs had fallen out of fashion in Britain. He did, though, continue playing – in jazz pubs around Britain and a few visits to Scandinavia. Lots of posthumous recordings have emerged in recent years, including several from his 1969-73 ‘wilderness years’ – one of the first being this Swedish radio concert from 1972 (further, much more lavishly sleeve-noted Swedish 1972 radio recordings were released more recently as ‘Split Kick’). These late-period recordings reveal a more lyrical style of playing to the style that made his name in the » Continue Reading.