Soul Jazz

Soul jazz was a development of hard bop which incorporated strong influences from blues, gospel and rhythm and blues in music for small groups, often the organ trio, which partnered a Hammond organ player with a drummer and a tenor saxophonist.

Unlike hard bop, soul jazz generally emphasized repetitive grooves and melodic hooks, and improvisations were often less complex than in other jazz styles. Horace Silver had a large influence on the soul jazz style, with songs that used funky and often gospel-based piano vamps.

It often had a steadier “funk” style groove, different from the swing rhythms typical of much hard bop. Important soul jazz organists included Jimmy Smith and influential tenor saxophone players included Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis and Stanley Turrentine.

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