Sweet Honey Bee

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Sweet Honey Bee
Sweet Honey Bee.jpg
Studio album by
RecordedDecember 7, 1966
StudioVan Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey
LabelBlue Note
BST 84252
ProducerAlfred Lion
Duke Pearson chronology
Prairie Dog
Sweet Honey Bee
The Right Touch
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4/5 stars[1]
The Penguin Guide to Jazz3.5/4 stars[2]

Sweet Honey Bee is an album by American jazz pianist and composer Duke Pearson, released on the Blue Note label in 1967.[3] The woman on the cover was Pearson's fiancee Betty.[4]


Allmusic awarded the album with 4 stars and its review by Scott Yanow states: "Pianist/composer Duke Pearson leads an all-star group on this run-through of seven of his compositions. The musicians (trumpeter Freddie Hubbard, altoist James Spaulding, Joe Henderson on tenor, bassist Ron Carter, drummer Mickey Roker, and the pianist/leader) are actually more impressive than many of the compositions, although the swinging minor-toned "Big Bertha" deserved to become a standard."[5] The Penguin Guide review says: "the highlights are the lushly voiced melodies of 'Sudel' and 'Gaslight', the former a tune which Pearson had recorded some years earlier with a different group. Hubbard and Henderson eat up their solo opportunities without sundering the essentially easy-going feel which was [a] Pearson trademark, and while not all the material is up to this standard, as a showcase for the pianist as writer and group-leader, this is surely the best thing available at present [2004]."[2]

Popular culture[edit]

In David Mitchell's novel Ghostwritten, Satoru, a young Japanese jazz-lover working in a record shop in Tokyo, says of a girl who comes into the store, "if you know Duke Pearson's 'After the Rain,' well, she was as beautiful and pure as that."[6]

Track listing[edit]

All compositions by Duke Pearson except where noted.

  1. "Sweet Honey Bee" – 5:00
  2. "Sudel" – 5:43
  3. "After the Rain" – 4:45
  4. "Gaslight" – 6:01
  5. "Big Bertha" (Peter Chatman, Pearson) – 5:58
  6. "Empathy" – 6:00
  7. "Ready Rudy?" – 6:01



  1. ^ Yanow, Scott (2011). "Sweet Honey Bee – Duke Pearson | AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved 17 July 2011.
  2. ^ a b Richard Cook and Brian Morton, The Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD, 7th ed. (Penguin, 2004: ISBN 978-0-14-101416-6).
  3. ^ Duke Pearson discography accessed September 6, 2010
  4. ^ Nat Hentoff, liner notes to Sweet Honey Bee (Blue Note CDP 0777 7 89792 2 7).
  5. ^ Yanow, S.Allmusic Review: Sweet Honey Bee accessed 06 June 2010
  6. ^ David Mitchell, Ghostwritten (Random House Digital, Inc., 2001: ISBN 0375724508), p. 41.