The Smile of the Snake

The Smile of the Snake is an album by saxophonist James Spaulding which was recorded in 1996 and released on the HighNote label.[1][2]

The Smile of the Snake
The Smile of the Snake.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedJuly 15, 1997
RecordedDecember 3 & 4, 1996
StudioAcoustic Sound Studios, Brooklyn, NY
HCD 7006
ProducerDon Sickler
James Spaulding chronology
Blues Nexus
The Smile of the Snake


Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic     [3]

The AllMusic review by Scott Yanow stated: "One of the most underrated saxophonists of the post-1960 era, James Spaulding has long been a passionate postbop altoist and a warm flutist. On this superior outing he is heard in top form on both of his axes (plus two appearances on bass flute) ... the result is a high-quality set of obscurities ... Spaulding digs into the songs, displays a great deal of versatility and certainly has his fiery moments. One of James Spaulding's finest allround recordings".[3] In JazzTimes, Willard Jenkins wrote: "James Spaulding is a consistent multi-reed and flute exponent who always swings-in the true Indianapolis tradition where he was raised ... It is on alto saxophone where Spaulding has been making valuable contributions on the scene for over 30 years, yet his flute should not be overlooked in a time when jazz flute is in short supply. And dig his use of the rarely heard bass flute as an improvisational vehicle".[4]

Track listingEdit

  1. "Third Avenue" (Clifford Jordan) – 4:50
  2. "Serenity" (Rodgers Grant) – 5:49
  3. "The Smile of the Snake" (Donald Brown) – 6:05
  4. "Lenora" (Richard Wyands) – 4:56
  5. "Tonight Only" (Ron McClure) – 7:18
  6. "Premonition" (Geoffrey Keezer) – 6:58
  7. "Yes It Is" (Wyands) – 5:43
  8. "Panchito" (McClure) – 5:06
  9. "Love Is Not a Dream" Idrees Sulieman, Kathe Laursen) – 5:48
  10. "Havana Days (Cuba 1954)" (Brown) – 5:51



  1. ^ Jazz Depot: album listing accessed December 31, 2018
  2. ^ Jazzlists: James Spaulding discography, accessed December 31, 2018
  3. ^ a b Yanow, Scott. James Spaulding: Smile of the Snake – Review at AllMusic. Retrieved December 31, 2018.
  4. ^ Jenkins, W. JazzTimes Review, accessed December 31, 2018