When you get up in the morning, you must have a song - Ray Charles

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Cecil McBee Sextet - Music from The Source

It wasn't until I listened to this record a couple of times that I even realized it was a live set. I liked it but I never sat down to really listen to it. when I did it really clicked for me. I never really liked the flute much either but it may have been its use on this record that opened my ears a bit.
 The record has a very spiritual feel to it. the sort of spirit you might feel if you were spending the evening under the stars in an oasis nestled somewhere just off screen from the front cover of the lp.
 Side one, a single track, flows steadily from quiet through some raucousness and back to a steady lope before fading gently out. Side two lures you in quietly with a gentle serenade, sweet and pure. The next track reminds you that dancing to jazz is quite acceptable and even encouraged, until that saxophone needs to solo. Accomplished dancers may want to stay on their feet, while the rest of us will be content to listen and groovily sway our noggins.
One of my favorite things in life is to rediscover an lp with fresh ears and be astounded. More so, when the lp continues to sound fresh for many moons. So much for dismissing enja as a label so long ago.

Cecil McBee Sextet
Music from the Source

1. Agnez (with respect to Roy Haynes)
2. God Spirit
3. First Song In The Day

Cecil McBee - bass
Chico Freeman - flute, tenor sax
Joe Gardner - trumpet, flugelhorn
Dennis Moorman - piano
Steve McCall - drums
Don Moyes - conga

"recorded live at Sweet Basil, NYC under very difficult conditions"

mine is labeled IC 3023

Friday, September 16, 2011

Marion Brown - Sweet Earth Flying

The first Marion Brown record I ever heard and still arguably his finest. My friend Mac turned me onto this  when he wanted me to burn his lp onto disc. It was like a gateway drug, I was hooked. Even though his band had recorded a song named for Marion Brown, I had never really explored his music. I was in  his hometown a few weeks after Marion's passing and I was thrilled to hear the band break this song out, if only for a few performances. Which has little or nothing to do with this actual record, which still takes my breath away each time I listen. It plays even now as I type and struggle for words.

 This record has languished too long in limbo and needs to be rediscovered and added to many a Top 100 list.

Sounding very much of its time - mid 70's* - if you are a fan of jazz of that period - you need to hear this. If you are not such a fan, now is the time to give it a try - no better place to start than here.

Marion Brown
Sweet Earth Flying

1.Eleven Light City Part 1
2. Eleven Light City Part 2
3. Eleven Light City Part 3
4. Eleven Light City Part 4
5. Sweet Earth Flying Part 1
6. Sweet Earth Flying Part3
7. Sweet Earth Flying Part 4: Prince Willie
8. Sweet Earth Flying Part 5

1-4 Marion Brown (ss) Paul Bley (p, el-p, org) Muhal Richard Abrahms (el-p, org) James Jefferson (b, el-b) Steve McCall (d) Bill Hasson (per)
Boston, MA, May 6, 1974

5-8 Marion Brown (as) Muhal Richard Abrahms (p, el-p, org -2/4) Paul Bley (el-p -1,2) James Jefferson (b, el-b) Steve McCall (d, per -3) Bill Hasson (per, nar -3)
Boston, MA, May 7, 1974

Impulse AS 9275

* 1974 I was a sophomore in high school, and wouldn't even discover Miles Davis for another year.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Dave Brubeck Quartet In Berlin

Sometimes the generosity in this community is overwhelming. My friend P___ encouraged me to post this recording. He could have easily kept it quiet, sharing only with a select few, but he would rather see it in the hands of jazz fans.
  This is his record. I have uploaded a new link just to keep it alive but I take no credit for it's appearance. make sure you thank P__. Without him, this gem would not be here.

 I'll let him tell the story.....

One of the hardest albums to acquire for most Dave Brubeck fans is In Berlin, a 1964 concert by his quartet released only in Germany by CBS. Since the set list includes two songs that were recorded at the 1963 Carnegie Hall concert, that may be why it wasn't also issued in the United States by Columbia, though the performances are sufficiently different and well played. Desmond is witty as usual in "St. Louis Blues," though Brubeck adds an amusing Charlie Parker lick in his solo and bassist Eugene Wright also shines. Brubeck's "Koto Song," which had just been recorded a few months earlier for the LP Jazz Impressions of Japan, gave the audience a taste of something new. The composer's economical solo contrasts with his supposed reputation for heavy-handed playing. The group's breezy rendition of "Take the 'A' Train" is followed by the inevitable "Take Five." Recorded for radio broadcast by WDR Cologne, the commercial release was an afterthought following the concert, when Brubeck asked about the possibility.

Dave Brubeck Quartet in Berlin
1. St. Louis Blues
2. Koto Song
3. Take the 'A' Train
4. Take Five

Paul Desmond - alto sax
Dave Brubeck - piano
Eugene Wright - bass
Joe Morello - drums

Berliner Jazztage 1964. Berlin GE, September 26/27,1964

Columbia CBS 62578 Japanese pressing

Monday, September 12, 2011

Nina Simone - Forbidden Fruit

God bless Ella and Sarah, I do so love 'em. But as the  years progressed I often found myself reaching more and more for Nina. Her almost hard-boiled approach to the songs sends shivers down my spine.

Recorded in 1960 - the label included no musician credits. We have geeks for that nowadays. Welcome geeks mind you.. I meant no disrespect. I love the archivists and compilers. Really I do...

Anyway I give you ..

Nina Simone 
forbidden fruit

1. Rags and Old Iron
2. No Good Man
3. Gin House Blues
4. I'll Look Around
5. I Love To Love
6. Work Song
7. Where Can I Go Without You
8. Just Say I Love Him
9. Memphis In June
10. Forbidden Fruit

CP 419

Monday, September 5, 2011

Black Orpheus - OST

I picked this little baby up on my last excursion. Pretty happy about it too. Not all that hard to lay your hands on but who wouldn't want to own a decent copy on vinyl?

So in this post, the music is almost secondary. I just wanted to say how cool it is to still hold in your hands records, actual records that were responsible for starting whole new trends.In this case a record older than I am. Yeah, the music is great as well. It wouldn't have caught on of it wasn't. And yeah, the samba thing quickly veered out of hand, but I'm holding a piece of history.

Unfortunately all I can offer you is to hear what an original slab of vinyl, in mono sounds like. Dig it, cats.

The Original Soundtrack from the Film
Black Orpheus

1. Generique
2. Felicidade
3. Frevo
4. O Nosso Amor
5. O Nosso Amor (tamborine and accordian)
6. Mahna De Carnaval 
7. Scene de Lever do Soleil
8. Mahna De Carnaval
9. Scenes de la Macumba
10. O Nosso Amor
11.Mahna De Carnaval
12. Samba du Orfeu
13. Batterie de Capella

Produced by Sacha Gordine
Music Score by A. C. Jobin and Luis Bonfa

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Henry Threadgill - easily slip into another world

Threadgill is one of those guys I haven't been able to grasp completely. He has recorded a lot of stuff that still leaves me...puzzled. But when he is on, he smokes!

This record is a real barnburner for me. It touches all the bases which could actually come off sounding contrived but in this case never does. The funk of the opening track lures you in as you wend you way through touches of big band, NOLA brass, post bop, and some damn fine ensemble playing. Even a vocal tune thrown in the mix.

The lp is dedicated to Muhal Richard Abrams. The final line of purple prose on the back cover sums it up nicely. And what is purple prose if not a little over the top? "Decoding; 'Easily Slip Into Another World" is an instant classic and it's out to get you."

easily slip into another world

1. I Can't Wait Till I Get Home
2. Black Hands Bejewelled
3. Spotted Dick Is Pudding
4. My Rock
5. Hall
6. Award The Squadtett

Henry Threadgill - alto, tenor saxes, clarinet and arrangements
Rasul Siddik - trumpet
Frank Lacy - trombone, french horn, flugelhorn
Diedre Murray - cello
Fred Hopkins - bass
Pheeroan Aklaff, Reggie Nicholson - drums
Aisha Putli - vocals

recorded 9/20/ 87 NYC

Novus 3025 - I-N