Herbie Hancock – The Prisoner

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The Prisoner is the seventh Herbie Hancock album, recorded in 1969 and released in January 1970 for the Blue Note label, his final project for the label before moving to Warner Bros. Records. It is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who had been assassinated the previous year. Hancock suggested at the time that he had been able to get closer to his real self with this music than on any other previous album. Participating musicians include tenor saxophonist Joe Henderson, trumpeter Johnny Coles (on flugelhorn), trombonist Garnett Brown, flautist Hubert Laws, bassist Buster Williams and drummer Albert “Tootie” Heath (Wikipedia).

Track listing:
All compositions by Herbie Hancock, except “Firewater” composed by C. B. Williams.

Side one

“I Have a Dream” – 10:58
“The Prisoner” – 7:57

Side two

“Firewater” – 7:33
“He Who Lives in Fear” – 6:51
“Promise of the Sun” – 7:52

Bonus tracks on CD reissue

“The Prisoner” (alternate take) – 5:47
“Firewater” (alternate take) – 8:38

Herbie Hancock – acoustic piano, electric piano
Johnny Coles – flugelhorn
Garnett Brown – trombone
Joe Henderson – tenor saxophone, alto flute
Buster Williams – bass
Tootie Heath – drums
Tony Studd – bass trombone (1, 2, 4)
Jack Jeffers – bass trombone (3, 5)
Hubert Laws – flute (1, 2, 4)
Jerome Richardson – bass clarinet (1, 2, 4), flute (3, 5)
Romeo Penque – bass clarinet (3, 5)


Released: January 1970
Recorded: April 18, 21 & 23, 1969
Studio: Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs
Length: 41:11 original LP
Label: Blue Note
BST 84321
Producer: Duke Pearson