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

Friday, December 24, 2010

John Hicks - s/t

Every so often you end up with a recording that a friend gives you just because he thinks it is something you might like, not necessarily something you had been asking about. This record falls completely into this category. I assume the impetus was a shared admiration for Bobby Hutcherson coupled with a recent discussion about his work. What ever the reasoning, he was correct in his assessment of my taste. I like this little lp a lot.
I knew Hicks' name as he has been around awhile, floating in and out of The Jazz Messengers at times, but I was oblivious to any solo career which started rather late in his career. I knew he had done a Maybeck Recital session and a session with David Murray. Even though this is self titled, it appears to be his 4th lp as a leader.
While this session is not essential or life changing, we all have a lot of those very sessions laying about. This record relaxes me, untwisting the knots, smiling even, at some of the twists particularly from the leader. I'm glad it was passed along. I'm glad I have friends like that.

John Hicks

1. Pas De Trois (Dance for Three)
2. Steadfast
3. For John Chapman
4. Star-Crossed Lovers
5. Littlest One Of All
6. After The Morning
7. That Ole Devil Called Love
8. Gypsy Folk Tales
9. Beantown Blues

John Hicks - piano
Bobby Hutcherson - vibes
Walter Booker - bass


Evidence ECD 22224

This friend has contributed several recordings and has offered more. Make sure to thank Six String in the comments.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Shorty Rogers - Chances Are It Swings

Shorty Rogers records often took, and maybe still do take some heat from the "serious" jazz critics. Me? I've always dug him. He stood by his conviction to continue in the swinging big band traditional long after it had fallen out of favor. His arrangements always feel fun.
Let's be honest here, just how serious do you think Rogers took himself? Lps about martians and outer space!! The dude definitely had a sense of humor about it. I think that's is why the lps feel the way they do.
On this session all the songs were written, or co-written by a single composer, Robert Allen. For me Allen's claim to fame will always be the Christmas tune "Home For The Holidays". The performers themselves are only credited as the "Orchestra featuring the Giants." The solos are all shorty and punchy in keeping with the feel of the whole lp which is rather short itself. - In retrospect the lp is not all that short but it seems to fly by far too quickly - hook
Released on the Living Stereo imprint, I'm betting this lp was the tits (which is way better than the cat's meow) when it was first released. It's always been my pleasure to do my part to keep this stuff alive!

Shorty Rogers - Chances Are It Swings

1. Chances Are
2. No Such Luck
3. It's Not For Me To Say

4. Lilac Chiffon

5. I Just Don't Need You

6. Who Needs You

7. Everybody Loves A Lover

8. Come To Me

9. My Very Good Friend In The Looking Glass

10. You Know How It Is

11. A Very Special Love

12. Teacher, Teacher

The personnel of the orchestra cannot be found anywhere on the sleeve, so it seems worth while to list it here. Shorty Rogers was directing Al Porcirio, Pete Candoli, Conte Candoli, Ray Triscari and Ollie Mitchell (trumpets); Harry Betts, Dick Nash, Kenny Shroyer and Bob Enevoldsen (trombones); Bill Holman, Bud Shank, Richie Kamuca, Chuck Gentry and Paul Horn (reeds); Pete Jolly (piano), Mel Lewis (drums) and Red Norvo or Gene Estes (vibes). Don Fagerquist (trumpet) and either Barney Kessel or Howard Roberts (guitar) are featured in a small group ("The Giants") which is heard on some tracks.

Personnel info was taken from a Gramaphone article.

Recorded Hollywood, 12/12 and 12/20, 1958 (I was a squalling six month old.)


My lp has the Living Stereo bar across the top AND the blue" for jazz fans" box in the corner. Can't find a picture with both, and even sharing that with you means I am a geek.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Eddie Bert - Kaleidoscope

C'mon now. Admit it, Eddie Bert looks so freaking cool on this cover. Far hipper than Kai Winding, the other white dude playing trombone with any recognition at the time. Just dig that mustache. That mustache alone is worth the price of admission.

I love this Savoy session for a ton of reasons. First off, Savoy had a grittier sound than the more popular BN releases. And they tended to showcase lesser appreciated artists of their time. Eddie Bert was kinda second string trombone at the time. Eddie was probably aware of that. It didn't stop him from making some fine music. He appears on many fine recordings as a sideman. Yet when he takes center stage here, he really allows this to be a group effort. I never get the feeling he needs to be the star even though he is the de facto leader on these dates.

If I was hard pressed, I would say the most overlooked player on the dates is Duke Jordan. His piano is an integral part of the bebop revolution and he shines here.
And while I would normally frown upon a vocal track as a novelty, Bert doesn't embarrass himself on the single outing included here.

Look for Joe Morello of Brubeck Quartet fame on the last session.

Eddie Bert - Kaleidoscope

1. Love Me Or Leave Me
2. Little Train
3. Prelude To A Kiss
4. Conversation Piece
5. Interwoven
6. Around Town
7. Kaleidoscope
8. Broadway
9. Melting Pot
10. Ripples
11. Conversation
12. He Ain't Got Rhythm
13. Cherokee

Eddie Bert - Trombone; Duke Jordan - piano; and Clyde Lombardi - bass with...

1-4: Sal Salvatore - guitar; Mel Zelnick - drums
recorded 5/11/53 - Van Gelder studios, NJ
5-8: Vinnie Dean - alto sax; Art Madigan - drums
recorded 8/20/54 - NYC
9-13: Vinnie Dean - alto sax: Joe Morello - drums; EB - vocals (12)
recorded 11/3/54 - NYC

Savoy Jazz SJL 1186

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Dollar Brand - African Portraits

I have been digging this guy's recordings so much lately that it was a welcome surprise when, as I was filing away some vinyl that I ran across this. I was a bit stunned. I had forgotten even finding it.
Sometimes life is a grand!

A solo outing from Toronto in 1973, this is the second of two volumes. There is no apparent breaks between songs so each side is presented as originally recorded. A superb recording. From Canada! Who knew?

Dollar Brand - African Portraits

1. Cherry / Bra Joe From Kilimanjaro

2. Blues For Hughie / Kippie / Gafsa - Life I s For The Living, Death Is For Us All / Little Boy / Easter Joy / Jabulani / Xaba

Abdullah Ibrahim - piano

recorded 2/18/73, Toronto

Sackville ST3009

Monday, December 13, 2010

Skip Martin's Scheherajazz

OK - so I never promised this thing would only be high art, and if we poll the critics among you, I doubt this would qualify as the first exception. Although it may be the most obvious example...yet.

This is only of those completely geek lps that contain as much info on the back cover about the recording process as it does the musician's involved. Except of course, the now completely unknown arranger who was, nominally I would bet, in charge of the session.
In this case we have Skip Martin, saxophonist with stints in the bands of Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman, and Charlie Barnett. Add a few Basie arrangements and this guy should be a household name. Instead we are informed that at the time he was a bachelor, sharing his apartment with a dog, flies his own planes and collects dames, Aston-Martins and empty bottles. Dudes like him had no use for match.com!

Before I get into the personnel on the session, let's touch base on the all important recording details.

"This is the first in a series of classical works for symphony orchestra and jazz band to be released on Stereo-Fidelity records." Yup - that's what it says. And just so know they are serious, the label informs us "This stereophonic 33 1/3 R.P.M long playing record has been mastered employing the Westrex cutter head system driven by a Scully lathe." There's more but they do not claim full fidelity when played on a monaural phonograph, in case you were contemplating such foolishness.

About the musicians - all were West Coast session men - some far more recognizable than others. I can't imagine this originating anywhere else. Many of these fellows found work in the burgeoning Hollywood scene. Now lest you think these fellows did this just for the cash, let me leave you with this last blurb...
Scheherajazz is just not another recording - it is a jazz project that by it's very dimension and unique nature immediately fired the enthusiasm of all concerned with producing it.

Despite all the hyperbole, this is actually quite fun, in a lazy afternoon sorta way, even though it was very late at night when I put this together. Pshaw - high art, indeed!!

adapted from Rimsky-Korsokov's Scheherazade

1. First Movement
2. Second Movement
3. Third Movement
4. Fourth Movement

Gus Binova, Ted Nash, Paul Horn, Jules Jacob, Chuck Gentry - reeds; Conrad Gozzo, Pete Candoli, Don Fagerquist, Frank Beach, Joe Trescari - trumpets; Joe Howard, Milt Bernhart, Frank Rosolino, George Roberts - trombones; Vince DeRosa, Jack cave, Dick Perissi - french horns; Clarence Carella - tuba, Al Hendrickson - guitar; Jimmy Rowles - piano; Larry Bunker, Irv Cottler, Lou Singer - drums; Red Callender - bass; Eudice Shapiro - solo violin; Ed Lustgarten - first cello.

Recorded in Hollywood by the Studio Symphony and the Video All-Stars
Skip Martin - conducting


Monday, December 6, 2010

Sam Rivers - Contrasts

I realize this makes an occasional appearance out there in blogland but it's been awhile since I have seen it. And for some reason I never grabbed it, so I was beside myself when my friend Six String sent me a copy. A giant thanks to him for ripping this.

For many many years I avoided ecm because of their reputation for, well, what I considered "pastoral landscapes". I may have been a bit harsh and ecm seems to have found a warm corner in my heart.

This lp definately sounds like an ecm record, and yet it var more brazen than most. I seem to be among a fair group that is mystified at the non cd release of this incredible set.

Seven original Rivers' tunes, all single word titles that typify the recordings themselves. The trombone and bass weave in and about Rivers' almost slinky lines. A fantastic record.

Sam Rivers

1. Circles
2. Zip
3. Solace
4. Verve
5. Dazzle
6. Images
7. Lines

Sam Rivers - soprano & tenor sax, flute
George Lewis - trombone
Dave Holland - bass
Thurman Baker - drums, marimba

recorded 12/79

ecm 1-1162

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Artie Shaw - Blue Room / Cafe Rouge

Swing is still the thing, kids!!
Just look at that cover...Artie Shaw was a rock god. These radio sessions are a whole lotta fun. In the liner notes, Artie Shaw commented, listening to these old recordings, how tight and how much fun the bands were having at the time. He's right on, but he remains the star.

Here are two sessions, recorded about a year apart, at NYC nightclubs. 1938/39

I love the fact that these radio shows seem so loose but still sound so perfect. As each session winds to an end, the band seems rock a bit harder leading up to a swinging finale. These sets are all over the place...some standards, some covers but a really nice amount of ...well oddball shit. Just what we like.

In The Blue Room

1. Nightmare
2. Together
3. My Reverie
4. Sobbin' Blues
5. Jeepers creepers
6. In The Mood*
7. Non-Stop Flight
8. Begin The Beguine
9. The Old Stamping Ground
10. The Chant
11. Stardust
12. The Carioca

In The Cafe Rouge

1. At Sundown
2. I'm Sorry For Myself
3. Maria, My Own
4. Diga Diga Do
5. Moonray
6. Everything Is Jumpin'
7. St. Louis Blues
8. I've Got My Eye On You
9. My Blue Heaven
10. El Rancho Grande
11. Sweet Sue
12. Man From Mars

RCA Victor LPT-6000
part one
part two

*I cannot be help responsible for the ridiculously long version of "In The Mood". At the time, the swapping of popular tunes was common practice, but there is no excuse for this.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Mal Waldron / Marion Brown - Songs of Love and Regret

Sometimes your hands shake when you stumble across a recording that you have been searching for. And sometimes you stumble across one, and think "this looks cool, I wonder why I never heard of it."
I had the second reaction when I should have had the first. Why some fool dumped this off is beyond me. Praise be to the fool behind the counter that sold it to me for 8 bucks because it was still in an unsorted pile and he didn't feel like dicking around.

As is understood I am a huge Waldron fan and though I haven't posted any Marion Brown I love him as well. I had meant to post this shortly after Marion's passing but it slipped my mind.
This set is mostly covers , although a couple are pretty obscure. "A cause.." is a Waldron original as is "To the Golden Lady" by Brown. "Contemplation" is by Tyner and "Hurry Sundown" by Clarence Williams. The others should not need an introduction. The one remark I will say is Blue Monk (take 2) doesn't feel like an alternate take but mostly just a different take that was always headed for this session.

This has recently become one of my favorite recordings. The lyricism these two share shines on this lp.

1. Blue Monk
2. A Cause de Monk
3. To The Golden Lady In Her Graham Cracker Window
4. Contemplation
5. Hurry Sundown
6. A Flower Is A Lovesome Thing
7. Blue Monk (take 2)

Marion Brown - alto sax
Mal Waldron - piano

recorded 11/9-10/85 - Yerres, France on FreeLance records.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Illinois Jacquet & Will Bill Davis

This post goes out to Cheeba. A simple, swinging recording that I'm sure he'll dig. I'd have gone with a moldy oldie but that would be cruel. Now that jazzman is back on the scene, let's hope that Cheeba and the family are on the mend. You're missed in the blogosphere.

These recordings from a session in Paris, early 73, saw a very limited release on lp. Somehow or another they made the digital leap in 1986. Is it really possible that the cd has become a viable collector's item? It breaks my pvc heart. Just the same, this disc is over 25 years old. A respectable age for an lp, in my youth. And most of them age didn't wear so well. So here again I am forced again to bring you a cd.

1. No Sweat
2. Blues Skies
3. It Don't Mean A Thing
Blue And Sentimental
4. Pamela's Blues
5. The Man I Love
6. Cottontail
7. What Am I Here For?
8. Blues From New Orleans

Illinois Jacquet - tenor sax
Wild Bill Davis - organ
Al Bartee - drums

Recorded at Barclay studio on 1/15-16/73 by Dominique Samarcq. Originally released on Black & Blue 33044 (1-4, 9) and 33082 (5-8).

Black and Blue 233044

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Joe Williams - Music Masters radio show

An overview of Joe William's career. Just short of an hour long. Nothing ground breaking but a nice way to spend 50 mins. Oddly about 12-15 minutes in there seems to be a weird detour that focuses in Ella Fitzgerald more than Williams. The songs they perform together here are fun but once again re-enforce my position that Ella was just too "nice" sometimes. Joe swings.

The funniest line from the show is when the host compares Joe's '80's touring schedule as "more intense than a punk band". Sure.

This is just a single long track. Maybe someday I will have the time too break it down. Till then...

WDCB Joe Williams

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Jam Session - ARS recording

From the Jazz Division of the American Recording Society. This one is billed as "Jam Session" - and How The Blues Began. A heady title to be sure. While there were many fine dates later released as "blowing sessions" nothing ever beat the JATP blowing sessions. They set the standard for many recordings to come.
I did some (very little) research and it appears these tracks were not included with the "official" release of these sessions. I would assume time constraints were a major factor.

As much as I tend to dismiss Oscar Peterson as a utilitarian pianist, he gets a pass here. He deserves more credit than I usually give him.

Somehow ARS had the vision to release these tracks so that we can now enjoy them. I decided to tack on an extra track from another similar recording just because it makes me happy.

From what I can tell, this is how it all goes down....

Jam Session

1. Jam Blues No.1
2. Funky Blues No. 2
3. Funky Blues No.2 (cont.)
4. Mail Order Blues

in order of appearance -
1 - Ensemble, Flip Phillips (ts), Benny Carter (as), Oscar Peterson (p), Charlie Parker (as), Barney Kessell (g), Johnny Hodges (as), Charlie Shavers (tpt). J.C. Heard - drums, Ray Brown - bass.
recorded Hollywood 6/52 culled from Norman Granz Jam Session #1

2/3 - Roy Eldridge (tpt), Flip Phillips (ts), Bill Harris (tb), Herb Ellis (g), Dizzy Gillespie (tpt), Oscar Peterson (p), Buddy DeFranco (cl), Roy (again - over chorus). Louis Bellson - drums, Ray Brown - bass
recorded 10/30/54, NYC, culled from Norman Granz Jam Session #9

and the bonus track...
4. Flip Phillips, Illinois Jacquet, Lester Young (ts); Roy Eldrige, Dizzy Gillespie (tpt); Buddy Rich (d); Ray Brown (b); Oscar Peterson (p); Herb Ellis (g)
recorded 10/2/55 Chicago Opera House

ARS G-404/416

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Billy Bang - Distinction Without Difference

Is this record really from 1979? Damn, I was three years outta high school. I was the only person I knew who was really "into" jazz. No one I knew had an inkling about this shit. I had no inkling about this shit. I can only look back and think that this would have flattened me at the time.
This is a solo outing. Some solo recordings work better than others but most often are only necessary to the dire hard fan. This is short enough and entertaining enough to appeal to any one with interest in Bang's work.

This Swiss label has been responsible for some of the most under the radar great jazz lps of all time. My pleasure to offer...

Billy Bang:
Distinction Without Difference

1. Improvisation on Sweet Space
2. Loweski
3. part of a Distinction Without A Difference
4. Thenme For Masters
5. Sometime Later
6. Skip To My Lou (traditional)

Billy Bang - violin

recorded live on Sunday August 12 1979 at GAKU Gallery NYC

1980 hat Hut records 1R04

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Yes Sir, That's My Baby - The Golden Years Of Tin Pan Alley

Here is one of the more obscure lps I have offered. A compilation of Tin Pan Alley tunes from the 20's. There are a few unknowns sprinkled among a handful of names that should nag at the back of your brain, and a couple that should be in every music fan's vocabulary.

This is absolutely one of those lps that deserves a back story. I bought this at a library sale of some sort, in nothing but a paper sleeve. I have several other lps that were released on this label. All have nice gatefold sleeves complete with booklets sporting each track's details. I don't have that. Bummer. My research turned up nothing specific for this lp. Diligence may turn up info on individual songs, you're on your own.

These are great early recordings of these songs, some filled with hope and splendor, some guttural and raw, and most a sign of things to come. Except the part where those guys sing through the megaphone, and maybe the part where it's sounds like they are singing into one. Nah, that's shit's cool too. By time you get to the Armstrong track this stuff sounds almost refined.

Once again a huge shoutout goes to a friend who did a massive clean up job on the lp. Without him this record was barely presentable.

Yes Sir, That's My Baby
The Golden Years of Tin Pan Alley 1920-1929

1. Whispering - Paul Whiteman Orch.
2. April Showers - Al Jolson
3. Collegiate - Fred Waring's Pennsylvanians
4. Dinah - Ethel Waters
5. A Good Man Is Hard To Find - Ted Lewis and his Orch.
6. Gimme Little Kiss, Will Ya Huh? - Jack Smith
7. Deed I Do - Ruth Etting
8. There'll Be Some Changes Made - Sophie Tucker
9. Sunday - Cliff Edwards
10. Yes Sir, That's My Baby - Blossom Seely
11. - Mississippi Mud - Paul Whiteman/The Rhythm Boys
12. My Blue Heaven - Gene Austin
13. Deep Night - Rudy Vallee
14. Ain't Misbehavin' - Louis Armstrong & His Orch.

New World Records NW279

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Definitive Jazz Scene Vol. 3 - Impulse Comp.

The last in this series of vinyl treasures. Again these tracks were all unreleased when the lp was issued. This is probably the most forward looking of all three lps.
A few personal observations and notes about this lp. The Coltrane piece features him on a soprano, an instrument that I struggled with liking for many years. then I just outright dismissed it except for the occasional Trane pieces which I mildly suffered through. Now I have come to embrace it again albeit still in smaller doses.
The Archie Shepp blows me away far more than it did 10 years ago when I first landed this lp. as do the Oliver Nelson and Shirley Scott tracks.

The Chico Hamilton track is adapted from an old Bob Crosby Dixieland swinger. The Russians never did make a splash but the tune is fine in it's own right. I love a clarinet. And only two of them are russian.

Sometimes it seems unfortunate that most people quickly relegate McCoy Tyner and Elvin Jones to Trane sideman status as they were both exceptional leaders on their own. These tracks
support that admirably.

The Definitive Jazz Scene
Volume 3

1. Vilia
2. The Chased
3. One For Phil
4. Five Spot After Dark
5. Big Noise from Winnetka
6. March For Igor
7. Time After Time
8. That Five-Four Bag

1. John Coltrane Quartet - JC - soprano sax; McCoy Tyner - piano; Jimmy Garrison - bass; Elvin Jones - drums NYC 3/6/63
2. Archie Shepp Trio - AS - tenor sax; David Izenzon - bass; JC Moses - drums NYC 3/9/65
3. Oliver Nelson's Septet - Thad Jones - trumpet; Phil Woods - alto sax; Phil Boner - tenor sax and English Horn; Pepper Adams - baritone sax; Roger Kelleway - piano; Richard Davis - bass; Grady Tate - drums; Nelson - arr. and conduct NYC 11/10/64
4. McCoy Tyner Trio - Tyner -piano; Jimmy Garrison - bass; Tootie Heath - drums
NYC 6/4/63
5. Chico Hamilton Trio - CH - drums; Willie Bo Bo - drums; Al Stinson - bass NYC 3/15/65
6. Russian Jazz Quartet - Boris Midney - clarinet and alto sax; Roger Kelleway - piano; Igor Berukshtis - bass; Grady Tate - drums NYC 11/13/64
7. Shirley Scott Quartet - SS - organ; Stanley Turrentine - tenor sax; Bob Cranshaw - bass; Otis Finch - drums NYC 9/23/64
8. Elvin Jones Quartet - EJ - drums; Charlie Mariano - alto sax; Roland Hanna - piano;
Richard Davis - bass NYC 2/23/65


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

David Murray - Live At The Lower Manhattan Ocean Club

I've had a copy of this recording from a cool blog for quite awhile. Considering that I will never see a vinyl pressing of this record, it is the collector geek in me that had to buy this disc when I ran across it at some local cd exchange. I mean c'mon, you don't see this floating around everyday for under 10 bucks.

This is a reissue disc of what was originally released on 2 records by what was basically a labor of love, India Navigation records. I jnow this was also posted on the tribute site to IN but all the links seem to be gone from there now. As I said earlier as well, I have had a copy from another blog and it very well may be up there still. I don't remember if it was a private blog or not. I don't want to step on anybody's toes but this could use a little bump now and again, so here is my upload from my disc.
Murray was someone I overlooked for a long time. What caight my attention was he was an outspoken c5ritic of a bunch of the new lions who were performing basically hard bop. Foremost amongst these was Wynton Marsalis. While I had all the respect in the world for Marsalis, especially his study of history and his work with youth, not to mention his technical ability, but he didn't display soul, or feeling. Christ he was just boring. And Murray was the first I saw to say it. (Well actually I said it to the teacher at my very first trumpet lesson. It did not go over well. I paid my 20 bucks and looked for a hipper teacher.)
So anyway, that is how I discovered David Murray. Unfortunately he did not knock me off my feet right away and I spent several years in a hit and miss love for the dude. Still do. But when he hits it just right, its a thing of beauty....

This was one of those night, those records. This thing is just spot on. Lester Bowie on trumpet was an awesome choice. Being able to lay my hands on this IN disc has rekindled my love of the lp and I have probably played it a half dozen times in the last couple of weeks. I hope somebody new discovers this and searches further down the corridors of jazz, discovering people who were doing all they could to keep jazz interesting.

David Murray
Live At The Lower Manhattan Ocean Club

1. Nevada's Theme
2. Bechet's Bounce
3. Obe
4. Let The Music Take You
5. For Walter Norris
6. Santa Barbara and Crenshaw Folies

David Maurray - tenor and soprano saxes
Lester Bowie - trumpet
Fred Hopkins - bass
Phillip Wilson - drums

no recording date was provided but hold your breath, because someone will supply it in the comments shortly.

more minutia - track 6 was edited for the cd, and there was an additional song played but not presented on either vinyl or plastic.

IN 1032 CD

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Johnny Hodges & All The Duke's Men

Once again the trusty internet fails me and I have to take a picture of the lp.

I was gonna post something a bit more modern for a change but I ran into a few glitches. I have been promising someone I would get this up and it sure seemed like a good idea to give it a spin this afternoon, so here we are.

A short but essential lp. The kind of swinging records that just make you grin. The small band version of Satin Doll is Jeep at his smoothest. This should be on everyone's "seduction" disc. Amongst the Ellington standards are a few overlooked gems which give this record a more original feel than the usual knock off tribute lp that it easily could have been. Almost all the solos are Hodges but they never feel as though he is showing off nor just resting on his laurels. I want to listen to this record under the stars someday. With a cool breeze.

Johnny Hodges and
All The Duke's Men

1. Don't Get Around Much Anymore
2. Jeep's Blues
3. The Gal From Joe's
4. Satin Doll*
5. Azure
6. I've Got It Bad And That Ain't Good
7. Saturday Afternoon Blues*
8. I'm Just A Lucky So And So
9. I Didn't Know About You*
10. Day Dream

*The early session is a small band consisting of
Johnny Hodges - alto sax
Ben Webster - tenor sax
Roy Eldridge - trumpet
Vic Dickenson - trombone
Billy Strayhorn - piano
Jimmy Woode - bass
Sam Woodyard - drums
Recorded in 8/58 by Norman Granz

The other session was an all star, all Duke sidemen orchestra featuring
Hodges - alto
Billy Strayhorn - arranger and conductor
Shorty Baker, Cat Anderson, Bill Berry, Ed Mullens. Howard McGhee - trumpets
Lawrence Brown, Quentin Jackson, Chuck Connors - trombones
Russell Procope, Paul Gonsalves, Jimmy Hamilton, Harry Carney - reeds
Jimmy Jones - piano
Aaron Bell - bass
Sam Woodyard - drums
Recorded 12/11-12/61 by Rudy Van Gelder

Verve VSP/VSPS-3

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Coleman Hawkins - The Hawk In Holland

Goddamn Hawkins. What can you say? I think The Ramblers had the time of their life. I think Hawkins had a blast. These recordings have the ability to take my breath away at times.
Hawk is in top form...so freaking cool...and he leads these guys completely down his path.
This is pre WWII. WTF? Somebody pulled off these recordings?
The lp this is taken from was released in 1968. What we have are at the time 30+ year old recordings on a 40+ year old record. And I have to worry about disturbing my neighbor because I like to hear this stuff swing...loud!

Coleman Hawkins with The Ramblers
The Hawk In Holland

1. Some Of These Days*
2. After You've Gone*
3. I Only have Eyes For You*
4. I Wish I Were Twins*
5. Chicago~
6. Meditation~
7. What Harlem Is To Me~
8. Natcha's Dream~
9. I Wanna Go Back To Harlem+
10. Consolation+
11. A Strange Pact+
12. Original Dixie Land One-Step+
13. Smiles+
14. Something Is Gonna Give Me Away#

recorded in Holland on (*) 2/4/35. (~) 8/28/35. (+) 4/26/37, and (#) 4/28/37


Friday, September 3, 2010

The Blue Note Lost Sessions comp.

Embarrassingly I am offering up another cd copy. Once again though, I don't believe it ever saw light as a vinyl release.
It was also apparently made available as part of a 7 disc set for the Connoisseur series. Popular opinion is that this disc is the only only one really worthwhile.
There are many fine players spread across these tracks as one might expect from what made have been the world's most "perfect" label at one time.
Any flaws these tracks may have that kept them from being released originally are beyond my scope.

A few observations... apparently the opening Charlie Rouse track was the only thing salvageable from his two sessions. I have always enjoyed his work with Monk so I am surprised. I also have a Charlie Rouse lp that I will share soon that I think is swell.
Tadd Dameron's arrangements always astound me, and Ike Quebec is highly under rated.

Blue Note Records presents

1. One For Five
2. The Elder Speaks
3. Bevan Beeps
4. Lament For The Living
5. Aloof Spoof
6. For All We Know
7. I See Your Face Before Me
8. Sweet Slumber
9. Lady Be Good
10. Blues On Trial
11. Cowbell Boogie
12. Don't Even Go There

1. Charlie Rouse - tenor; Freddie Hubbard - trumpet; McCoy Tyner - piano; Bob Cranshaw - bass; Billy Higgins - drums 1/22/65
2 -5. Tadd Dameron - piano; Donald Byrd - trumpet; Curtis Fuller; Julius Watkins - french horn; Sam Rivers - tenor sax; Cecil Payne - baritone; Paul Chambers - bass; Philly Joe Jones - drums 12/14/61
6-8. Duke Pearson - piano; Ike Quebec - tenor; Israel Crosby - bass; Vernel Foournier - drums 6/26/60
9. Sonny Stitt, Dexter Gordon - tenor sax; Don Patterson - organ; Paul Weeden - guitar; Billy James - drums 5/14/62
10. Ike Quebec - tenor sax; Gene Harris - organ; Andrew Simpkins - bass; Bill Dowdy - drums 2/4/62
11. Fred Jackson - tenor sax; John Patton - piano; Grant Green - guitar; Herbie Lewis - bass; Ben Dixon - drums 6/12/62
12. Herbie Hancock - piano; Melvin Lastie - cornet; Stanley Turrentine - tenor sax; Eric Gale, Billy Butler - guitars; Bob Cranshaw - bass; Bernard Purdie - drums 7/19/66

BN 21484

I'm betting many of these tracks have ended up tacked to individual lps as bonus cuts. The "leader" of each date is in bold.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Dizzy Gillespie Big Band - Chester, PA 1957

Here's one from disc. Was this ever even released on vinyl? Can't imagine why not. Can't be bothered to dig around and find out. We're here for the music.
I love the fact that Diz is mostly famous for his stripped down lightning fast bebop heritage, but his heart always seemed centered on the big band stuff he grew up on. I love this transitional period between bebop and hard bop. For a brief couple of years you had the best of all worlds at the time.

For some reason this disc languishes on the shelf far too much. I like this record more than I like all of the known official releases I have heard from this period. This is a monster.

Back yard, hot night, grill is dying down. Try not to piss off the neighbor but doesn't Dizzy's trumpet sound far too good really loud, cracking the starlit sky?

I have no idea where I scored this disc. My cover is a bit different.

Dizzy Gillespie Big Band
Live In Stereo At Chester, PA

1. Introduction
2. A Night In Tunisia
3. Autumn Leaves
4. Dizzy's Business
5. Anitra's Dance
6. Begin The Beguine
7. Left Hand Corner
8. I Love You Much Too Much
9. Yesterdays
10. Wonder Why
11. Cool Breeze

Sorry kids - no info on the insert. I'm betting we have a good neighbor that may come along and supply the details. watch the comments.

Recorded 6/14/57

Jazz House cd JH-1029

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Definitive Jazz Scene Vol 2 - Impulse Comp

The second set of amazingly unreleased (at the time) sessions from the Impulse stable. Other than the Ray Charles track this is easily as strong as the last batch. Not that the uncle Ray track is a slouch, it just seems a tad outta place. Granted it does make a fine opener.

Highlights for me this time include Shirley Scott doing an instrumental version of the song that was her vocal debut, Coltrane's massive take on contemporary Stan Getz' signature tune and Oliver Nelson making his septet sound huge!

The Definitive Jazz Scene
Vol. 2
1. Without A Song
2. The Blues Ain't Nothin' But Some Pain
3. Moon Over My Annie
4. Night Lights
5. Gloria
6. Dear Old Stockholm
7. You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To
8. Blues Company
9. Anything I Do

1. Ray Charles - piano; and a whole crapload of people of whom you have never heard. 7/10/63
2. Shirley Scott - organ; Bob Cranshaw - bass; Otis Finch - drums 5/14/64
3. Lionel Hampton - vibes; Clark Terry - flugelhorn; Ben Webster - tenor sax; Hank Jones - piano; Milt Hinton - bass; Osie Johnson - drums 10/28/64
4. Oliver Nelson - arr.; Thad Jones - tp; Phil Woods - alto sax; Phil Bodner - french horn; Pepper Adams - baritone sax; Roger Kelleway - piano; Richard Davis - bass; Grady Tate - drums 11/11/64
5. J.J. Johnson - tb; Harold Malbern, Jr. - piano; Arthur Harper, Jr. - bass; Frank Gant - drums 5/1/64
6. John Coltrane - tenor sax; McCoy Tyner - piano; Jimmy Garrison - bass; Elvin Jones - drums 4/29/64
7. McCoy Tyner - piano; Jimmy Garrison - bass; Albert Heath - drums 6/4/63
8. Manny Alban - arr.; Johnny Coles - tp; Urbie Green - tb; Phil Woods -slto sax; Oliver Nelson - tenor sax; Jim Hall - guitar; George Duvivier - bass, Gus Johnson, Jr. - drums; others 1/12/62
9. Tommy Flanagan - piano; Richard Davis - bass; Connie Kay - drums

Impulse A-100

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Charlie Parker - Bird Of Paradise

No images for this were found online and the mindless zombies at Kinko's refused to scan it for me citing copyright concerns. Yeah, I'm sure there are no previous violations involved. Anyway, we have the next best technological invention - the cellphone photo.

The record itself contains no performance info whatsoever, other than the subtitle "Broadcasts of rare and Vitriolic Quality".

I grew up on Dylan and Kinks bootlegs. It never occurred to me what a labor of love some of them must have been. It took far more to get this stuff out there back then than it does now in this digital age.

Oh yeah.. the music itself... Well, Bird does not disappoint, but he rarely does. Highlights include this version of Star Eyes, and Cheryl, which I am not familiar with otherwise. Easy to Love is recorded with live with strings.

Hopefully some Bird aficionado can come along and tell us where these songs originated.

Charlie Parker
The Effervescent Indomitable Bird of Paradise

1. Cool Blues
2. Bernie's Tune
3. Don't Blame Me
4. Wahoo
5. Ornithology
6. Embraceable You
7. Star Eyes
8. Ornithology
9. Dynamo A
10. Embraceable You
11. Your Father's Moustache
12. Moose The Mooche
13. Cheryl
14. Easy To Love

This lp was "styled for Custer billings Jr. Fargo ND. I hope he enjoyed it.

Elysium 8008

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Hank Jones - Swings Gigi

Hank Jones could have been a star. Maybe he should have been. I'm not sure what Hank wanted. While his personality may have been understated, his playing was not. But he was never the star.
Here we have an infrequent turn as leader. Even better we have a go at the Lerner/Lowe masterpiece. I love the soundtrack to this musical. It has been translated fantastically many different ways. Put this near the top of the list.

Let us also thank the BCB denizen who passed this record my way. This is a rip from his original vinyl We are humbled.

Hank Gones
Swings Gigi

1. Gigi
2. I'm Not Young Anymore
3. Thank Heavens For Little Girls
4. It's A Bore
5. Say A Prayer For Me Tonight
6. Gossip
7. Waltz At Maxim's
8. The Parisians
9. I Remember It Well
10. The Night They Invented Champagne

Hank Jones - piano
Donald Lamond - drums
Arnold Fishkin - bass
Joe Galbraith - guitar

Golden Crest Records
CR 3042

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Okeh Jazz

Okeh was a really cool label. This double lp reissue of some of their jazz stuff is a must own, although they have taken some liberties.
While not strictly bebop, there is enough crossover between these sides and the last couple of lps I posted, to make me want to share it now...while I have your attention.
The first side is all big Texas tenor dude, Arnett Cobb. Dig out some old Lionel Hampton to hear Cobb come of age. These sides are macho and swinging, a trend that was soon to make an appearance.
Side two starts with "Little Johnny Griffin", joined by Babs Gonzales on a couple. On the lp next up would be Red Rodney, but I just posted the same songs on the IAJRC post.
Side Three is the one that sends me to my happy place. Early Ahmad Jamal. With the so sublime original "Ahmad's Blues"
Finishing the records off is some crazy organ trio stuff by Wild Bill Davis. I love his stuff with Johnny Hodges that came about much later. And lastly we get some sides by Mary Ann McCall, which were not actually released on Okeh, presumably because the label was on brief hiatus. Apparently whoever assembled this comp felt they belonged. Hmmm...well they are fun songs from a great band.

Okeh Jazz
1. Smooth Sailin'
2. Walkin Home
3. Jumpin The Blues
4. I'm In The Mood For Love
5. Whispering
6. Open House
7. Lil Sonny
8. The Shy One
9. For Dancers Only
10. Flying Home
11. Chicago Riffin'
12. Till We Meet Again
13. The Surrey With The Fringe On Top
14. Will You Still Be Mine
15. Aki and Ukthay
16. Billy Boy
17. Ahmad's Blues
18. A Gal In Calico
19. Azure Te
20. Rough Ridin
21. April In Paris
22. Money Is Honey
23. I Want A Big Butter and Egg Man
24. On Time

Arnett Cobb 1-8
NYC 9/12/50 (1), 8/7/51 (2-4), 11/20/51 (5-6), 8/52 (7-8)
Johnny Griffin - bs (2-4)

Johnny Griffin 9-12
NYC circa 1954
Babs Gonzales - vcl (9-10)

Ahmad Jamal 13-17
Chicago 10/25/51 (13-14), 5/5/52 (15-17)
Ahmad Jamal - p, Ray Crawford - b, Eddie Calhoun - d

Wild Bill Davis (18-20)
NYC 11/20/51 (1), 2/4/52 (2), 1/8/53 (3)
Bill Davis - organ, Bill Jennings - g, Chris Columbus - d

Mary Ann McCall 21-23
LA 6/19/47
Howard McGhee - tp, Dexter Gordon - ts, Jimmy Rowles - p, Barney Kessel - g, Red Callender - b, Jackie Mills - d, Willie Smith - as

EG 37315

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Modern Trumpet Leaders - IAJRC

I've really been on a bebop kick lately so I thought I might share a little. This is another fine record given us by the venerable IAJRC.

Other than the "schmaltzie" Flamingo by Candoli, this lp is a bristling documentary bebop just before the age of 78's came to a close.

In the internet age it is hard to appreciate how awesome records like this are. From the back cover "Twenty five to thirty years ago after these recordings were made... Art Zimmerman, Dec. 1976". Well now we are 30+ years passed when this lp came out. Some of the songs have surfaced elsewhere, some may have not. But you can bet your ass the only place you would find these tunes in 1976 was on this lp, or the very rare 78's. And pressing records was a far bigger labor of love than just disseminating some mp3's.

What, you might ask, has this to do with music. It doesn't. The music will speak for itself. One of the traditions of jazz has always been to acknowledge those they came before you. So as I do my best to keep this music alive, I bow to those who worked far harder at it than me.

As far as the music...I'd bet my bottom dollar I have these Dizzy songs elsewhere but the fog won't lift.

Modern Trumpet Leaders

1. Dig This Menu, Please
2. Red's Mambo
3. Honeysuckle Rose
4. Buckle My Shoe
5. Flamingo
6. Mambo Junior
7. Chris and Diz
8. Purple Sounds
9. Ornithology pt 1
10. Ornithology pt 2
11. Sweet Potato
12. Hoggin'
13. Blues Ala King
14. Night Mist
15. Yardbird Suite
16. Donna Lee

Red Rodney Orchestra
Red Rodney, tp; Buddy Savitt, ts; Jimmy Golden, p; unknown, b; Morton Perry, dr, vcl
NY Sept. 1052 Okeh 6899, 6922

Conte Candoli
Conte Candoli, tp; Bob Winn, as; Ira Sullivan, ts; Gene Esposito, p; Chubby Jackson, b; Tony Papa, dr. Chicago June 1953 Chance CH-1153

Dizzy Gillespie Quintet
Dizzie, tp; Sahib Shihab, bs; Wade Legge, p; Lou Hackney, b; Al Jones, dr
NY June 1953 Showcase 4401

Junior Jazz At The Auditorium
Howard McGhee, tp; Lucky Thompson, Jack McVea, ts; Jimmy Bunn, p; Irving Ashby, g; Red Callender, b; Jackie Mills, d; LA, 1946 Imperial 5075

11 - 14
Howard McGhee Orchestra
McGhee, tp; J D King, Teddy Edwards, ts; Jimmy Bunn or Vernon Biddle, p; Robert Kesterson, b; Roy Porter, drums LA spring 1946 Melodisc M1002

Howard McGhee Sextet
McGhee, tp; Jimmy Heath, as; Milt Jackson, vibes; Will Davis, p; Percy Heath, b; Joe Harris, dr; Earl Coleman, vcs Chicago, late 1948 The Old Swingmaster....


Friday, July 23, 2010

Pee Wee Russell - Everest recordings

I was gonna do a clarinet week, this was to be the first offering. I plan to do lots of things. Sometimes things don't work out as planned. You should still give an ear to this lp. An Everest recording, there is little info to be gleaned from the sleeve.

I remember a time when I would have viewed this music as "simple". I could not have been farther off base and I am so glad I came to appreciate the long history of jazz.

Pee Wee Russell

1. Out of Nowhere
2. Pee Wee Blues
3. I Used To Love You
4. Oh! No!
5. That Old Feeling
6. I've Got The World On A String
7. Exactly Like You
8. It All Depends On You
9. If I Had You

Pee Wee Russell - clarinet
Ruby Braff - trumpet

Bud Freeman - tenor sax

Vic Dickenson - trombone
Karl Kiffe - drums

Charles Potter - bass

Nat Pierce - piano and arrangements

FS-233 stereo

Friday, July 9, 2010

Mel Torme - radio transcriptions

These recordings could not sound better on this stifling summer evening.
These sides are from radio transcriptions recorded in the late 40's, the formative years in Torme's career. These are nothing more than a fascinating bit of nostalgia.

This no additional info provided with the lp, which was reissued in 1978 on Glendale records.

I keep threatening to post some vocal lps and hopefully I can get some more up here eventually.

Mel Torme

1. Isn't It A Lovely Day
2. I Can't Get Started
3. Stranger In Town
4. When It's Sleepy Time Down South
5. I Cover The Waterfront
6. Country Boy
7. How Are Things In Glocca Morra
8. The Blues
9. April In Paris
10. How Long Has This Been Going On?
11. Cottage For Sale
12. Gone With The Wind

material licensed from the C. P. MacGregor library

GL 6007

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Definitive Jazz Scene Vol 1 - Impulse Comp

It seems like I have owned this record forever, pulling it out every couple of years to be floored once again at all the great music it has that I just never run into elsewhere. Cah-rist! Ellington and Hawkins! Coltrane! Webster! Mingus! Tyner! and more Hawkins!
Of the series of three, and none of them are weak, this is probably my favorite. The two Bean tracks are simply outstanding. And this is the part where I mess with you...this issue has far more detailed notes about the recordings sessions including anecdotes, which the following lps tended to lack. Of course I can't share them with you due to the digital block in my brain.

But I will share as much info as my poor tired fingers will allow....

The Hawkins/Ellington tune was recorded after the session had ended and Hawk talked a few guys into playing one of his favorite Ellington themes, Basie looks back at his roots with a new incarnation of his Kansas City Six. Mingus makes my soul soar with this version of Freedom, while I dig the soprano version of Trane's selection. Hawkins sneaks in again with Shelley Manne on an outtake from their lp. Ben Webster showcases Ellington's "Single Petal Of A Rose". Webster shows up again on Clark Terry's bonus track.
You're gonna have to trust me here...there ain't a bad track on this compilation.
Without doing a whole lot of homework, I will assume that most of these tracks have appeared across the board on the respective artist's releases, but at the time this vinyl was the shit!!

The Definitive Jazz Scene
Vol. 1

1. Solitude
2. Trey of Hearts
3. Single Petal of a Rose
4. Tippie
5. Lisa and Pam
6. Big Nick
7. Avalon
8. Freedom
9. Hammer-Head Waltz
10. Flapstick Blues

1. Duke Ellington - piano, Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax, Ray Nance - violin, Sam Woodyard - drums, Aaron Bell - bass 8/18/62
2. Count Basie - piano, Thad Jones - trumpet, Frank Wess, Eric Dixon - flutes, Freddie Green - guitar, Ed Jones - bass, Sonny Payne - drums 3/22/62
3. Ben Webster - tenor sax, Hank Jones - piano, Richard Davis - bass, Osie Johnson - drums 3/11/64
4. Terry Gibbs - vibes, Kenny Burrell - guitar, Sam Jones - bass, Louis Hayes - drums 1/16/64
5. Shirley Scott - organ, Earl may - bass, Jimmie Cobb - drums 8/22/63
6. John Coltrane - soprano sax, McCoy Tyner - piano, Jimmy Garrison - bass, Elvin Jones - drums 8/11/62
7. Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax, Shelley Manne - drums, Hank Jones - piano, George Duvivier - bass 2/5/62
8. Charles Mingus - bass, narration, Eddie Preston, Richard Williams - trumpets, Britt Woodman - trombone, Don Butterfield - tuba, Jerome Richardson, Dick Hafer, Booker Ervin, Eric Dolphy - saxophones, Jaki Byard - piano, Walter Perkins - drums 10/20/63
9. Clark Terry - trumpet, Phil Woods - alto sax, Ben Webster - tenor sax, Roger Kellaway - piano, Milt Hinton - bass, Walter Perkins - drums 3/13/64
10. McCoy Tyner - piano, Jimmy Garrison - bass, Albert Heath - drums 6/4/63

Impulse A-99

Monday, June 28, 2010

Benny Golson - The Other Side Of Benny Golson

I love the warmth Golson coaxed out of his horn on these early lps, this being his fourth as leader.
The addition of Curtis Fuller on the front line and the absence of a trumpet, give this lp a laid back summer night feel.

There's not much I can tell you jazz fans about the band, all familiar faces. This is just a nice record I don't see much. Enjoy!

And don't you dig the cover, a precursor to what would become standard in the hippie movement in just a few years.

Benny Golson
The Other side of..

1. Strut Time
2. Jubilation
3. Symptoms
4. Are You Real?
5. Cry A Blue Tear
6. This Night

Benny Golson - tenor sax
Curtis Fuller - trombone

Barry Harris - piano

Jymie Merrit - bass

Philly Joe Jones - drums

recorded Nov 12, 1958

Riverside 290

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Women / Classic Female Jazz 1932 - 1952

Ever find yourself killing time in a mall? You might find yourself wandering around some chain store. Used to be that they would always have these dump bins with ridiculously priced cds. And certainly not worth digging through...50 to 1 you find something even remotely interesting.

Whoever kept me waiting in this mall, deserves a kiss on the cheek..forever. Sadly I don't remember the girl, but I remember standing in that store and thinking "This looks pretty cool" and buying the disc. Obviously my priorities are skewed.

There is so much old fashioned goodness spread across this disc, it's crazy. How this stuff ends up in dump bins is beyond me.

The Women / Classic Female Jazz Artists 1939 - 1952

1. Harmony Grits
2. Boogie Misterioso
3. Conversation
Mary Lou Williams' Girl Stars
4. Hesitation Boogie
Mary Lou Williams Trio
5. Oops! My Lady!
6. Low Ceiling
Beryl Booker Quintet
7. A Woman's Place Is In The Groove
8. Operation Mop
Vivien Gary Quintet
9. Blitzkrieg Baby (You Can't Bomb Me)
10. Beautiful Eyes
Una Mae Carlisle
11. Vi Vigor
12. Don't Get It Twisted
International Sweethearts Of Rhythm
13. Calling All Bars
14. Mighty Like The Blues
Hazel Scott w/ The Sextet of the Rhythm Club of London
15. Nice Work If You Can Get It
Edythe Wright w/ Tommy Dorsey and the Clambake Seven
16. My Castle's Rockin'
Alberta Hunter
17. Baby What Else Can I Do
Ethel Waters
18. Rockin' Chair
19. Georgia On My Mind
Mildred Bailey
20. Mutiny On The Bounty
Helen Ward w/ Gene Krupa and his Swing Band
21. I Don't Stand A Ghost Of A Chance With You
Helen Forrest w/ Lionel Hampton
22. Barbara's Carol
Barbara Carroll Trio
23. Transblucency (A Blue Fog That You Can Almost See Through)
Kay Davis w/ Duke Ellington and his Orchestra

Bluebird 6755-2-RB

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Kronos Quartet - live cassette

Pre-internet days, somebody sent me or I bought this cassette. Through the mail. After reading a trade magazine, most likely printed on newspaper quality stock.That's what we did back then.

You remember...you could always run across great deals in the back of Goldmine...if you had a magnifying glass.

Kronos can be difficult to pin down. You may think that they flit from genre to genre a bit, given all they have recorded. I sat in a hotel room with David Harrington one night. I saw the cds strewn around the room that he was listening to the night before a performance. The man absorbs everything. And yet, I was able to turn him on to a cassette of Cannonball Adderley's "Accent On Africa" lp the next night after the performance.

Without Kronos flitting from genre to genre, I would have overlooked a lot of music I have come to enjoy. It's not often when you can actually cite one single group that led you down many paths you may have missed.

This recording is from Terry Riley's 50th birthday celebration. Kronos was also on the verge of releasing their new record, as you will hear.

Unfortunately the years have not been kind and I have lost any specific info I may have had about this recording.

Since today is Terry Rileys birthday, I give you this.

Kronos Quartet
1. Sunrise of the Planetary Dream Collector
2. G Song
3. The Wheel/Mythic Birds Waltz
4. Cadenza On The Night Plain

Kronos is at this time...
David Harrington - violin
Hank Dutt - Viola
John Sherba - violin
Joan Jeanrenaud - cello

Kronos tape

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Duke Ellington - Monologue

More of the indomitable Duke. Nice stuff from a powerful time. 11 of the 16 tracks are from 1947, the other 5 from '51. While these bands don't always contain Ellington's most famous players, there are no slouches in this bunch and plenty that would achieve fame with Duke in the ensuing years.
I see a smattering of these songs elsewhere but I would have to do research to see if they are the same recordings. I rarely indulge in research. Sometimes I indulge in a buzz and read the credits. I have not read enough credits to be considered an authority but I know that in my bones these are fine Duke Ellington songs. Some swing like a mother, while others paint that panorama that only Duke can create. Sometimes I wonder if these versions were released elsewhere, but not often.

Duke Ellington

1. Three Cent Stomp
2. On A Turquoise Cloud
3. New York City Blues
4. Hy' A Sue
5. Golden Cress
6. Lady Of The Lavender Mist
7. The Clothed Woman
8. Monologue (Pretty and the Wolf)
9. Stop Look, and Listen
10. Rock-Skippin' at the Blue Note
11. Change My Ways
12. Sultry Serenade
13. Women
14. Fancy Dan
15. Brown Betty
16. Smada

The 1947 sessions include at various times Sheldon Hemphill, Harold Baker, Al Killian, Francis Williams, Wilbur Bascom, Ray Nance, Claude Jones, Lawrence Brown, Tyree Glenn, Wilbur DeParis, Jimmy Hamilton, Johnny Hodges, Russell Procope, Al Sears, Harry Carney, Fred Guy, Oscar Pettiford, Junior Raglin, Sonny Greer.

The 1951 sessions featured Harold Baker, Fats Ford, Cat Anderson, Nelson Williams, Ray Nance, Juan Tizol, Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, Willie Smith, Russell Procope, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney, Wendell Marshall, Louis Bellson. (tracks 3, 8, 10, 14, 16)

CBS 63 563

Friday, June 11, 2010

Jack Sheldon Big Band - Jack's Groove

Shit photo, I know. Sorry. (Actually thanks to Old Hippie Rick for supplying a better cover. The shit one is reproduced below.) Great record. And one I don't see around much.
Serious West Coast cool in a large band format. There is a small window of time when these dudes were awesome at this.

Sheldon was a veteran of the scene and assembled a crack crew for these sessions.

Recorded at two different sessions, I have no idea why the latter date is presented first.

Jack Sheldon and his Exciting All-Star Big Band
Jack's Groove

1. Green Dolphin Street
2. I'm Also A Person
3. I Had The Craziest Dream
4. Arrivederci
5. Brown Cow
6. Anyhow
7. Julie Is Her Name
8. Aplomb
9. Sunset Eyes
10. J.S.

1 - 5
Jack Sheldon, Conte Candoli - trumpets
Stu Williamson - valve trombone
Vince DeRosa - french horn
Lennie Niehaus - alto sax
Billy Root - baritone sax
Pete Jolly - piano
Red Callender - tuba
Buddy Clark - bass
Mel Lewis - drums

recorded LA, 12/58

Sheldon and Chet Baker - trumpet
Art Pepper, Herb Geller - alto sax
Harold Land - tenor sax
Paul Moer - piano, arrangements
Buddy Clark - bass
Mel Lewis - drums

recorded LA 8/57

Fresh Sounds cd FSR-CD 70

Shit cover...

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Johnny Hodges and His Orchestra - Hodge Podge

Recently a discussion about "swing era" bands came up with a few friends. The usual was bandied about. But surprisingly when Duke was mentioned, most folk almost always referred to the the Blanton/Webster phase.
I spent a couple of days wrestling with whether or not Duke was a swing band and how I was going to explain my position. A listen to Cottontail chased those thoughts straight from my head.

It's simply crazy how much Duke recorded back in the day. Even crazier is how there was enough time for his compatriots to record all this stuff under their own names.

However they worked it out, we are all richer because of it.
Nary a famous orchestra song among the bunch. Awesome...but I bet you could track these songs down elsewhere easily enough.

Johnny Hodges and his Orchestra

1. Jeep's Blues
2. Rendevouz With Rhythm
3. Empty Ballroom Blues
4. Krum Elbow Blues
5. I'm In Another World
6. Hodge - Podge
7. Dancing On The Stars
8. Wanderlust
9. Dooji Woodji
10. Savoy Strut
11. Rent Party Blues
12. Good Gal Blues
13. Finesse
14. Home Town Blues
15. Dream Blues
16. Skunk Hollow Blues

Johnny Hodges - alto and soprano sax
Cootie Williams - trumpet
Lawrence Brown - trombone
Harry Carney - baritone sax
Duke Ellington - piano, arrangements
Billy Taylor - bass
Sonny Greer - drums

track 13 - Hodges, Ellington, Greer only
track 15 - Billy Strayhorn replaces Ellington on piano
track 16 - Jimmy Blanton replaces Taylor on bass

recorded 1938/39
1974 Columbia products reissue


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Clifford Brown - all stars

I know I just offered up some Clifford Brown recently, but during one of those massive filing sessions I ran across this. And lest it get lost in the shuffle, I present it now....

Just two long tracks. Caravan feels like it was shot out of a blunderbuss, while Autumn takes its time developing. Each has their merits. I can't even for the life of me, imagine what it would have been like to see this stuff in a small bar!

Caravan is one of my favorite all time songs. I freaking love the way this band treats it.

Clifford Brown
all stars

1. Caravan
2. Autumn In New York

Clifford Brown - trumpet
Max Roach - drums
Herb Geller - alto sax
Joe Maini - alto sax
Walter Benton - tenor sax
Kenny Drew - piano

Emarcy EXPR-1007

in glorious mono

Friday, May 14, 2010

The George Wallington Quintet - Jazz at Hotchkiss

I love this record. I think it is a perfect example of the leap made from bebop to hard bop. It's not about virtuosity, but the ability to get you off your seat.
Two bebop standards, an obscure cover, and two originals, this date should be better known.

Alas this appears to be the only session by this group, a fly by night recording rather than a working quintet.

Somewhere I have more Wallington recordings but they are MIA at this point.

The George Wallington Quintet
Jazz at Hotchkiss

1. Dance of the Infidels
2. Strange Music
3. Before Dawn
4. Ow
5. 'S Make 'T

George Wallington - piano
Donald Byrd - trumpet
Phil Woods - alto sax
Knobby Totah - bass
Nick Stabulahs - drums

recorded Hackensack, NJ. 11/14/57

Savoy MG 12122

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Milt Jackson - Plenty Plenty Soul

I think this lp is actually seeing a new release soon on one of those discs that contain 4 lps. A bargain, yes. A bad idea throwing all that stuff to together, hell yes! I think it is even being thrown on with Telefunken Blues, which was originally released under Kenny Clarke's name but didn't garner enough attention that way so was remarketed under Jackson's name.

Ok so record company rant over, here is my vinyl copy for you to enjoy!

So my first exposure to Milt Jackson was in the mid/late 70's. We used to get colossally baked and sit in the attic and listen to Sunflower and Olinga along with lots of other CTI jazz, George Benson, Deodato, Airto, Freddie Hubbard....

Hmmm, I wish I had known this date back then...

Milt Jackson
Plenty Plenty Soul

1. Plenty Plenty Soul
2. Boogity, Boogity
3. Heartstrings
4. Sermonette
5. The Spirit Feel
6. Blues At Twilight

Side One:
MJ - vibraharp
Ronnie Peters - alto
Frank Foster - tenor
Sahib Shihab - baritone
Joe Newman - trumpet
Jimmy Cleveland - trombone
Horace Silver - piano
Percy Heath - bass
Art Blakey - drums

Side Two:
MJ - vibraharp
Lucky Thompson - tenor
Joe Newman - trumpet
Horace Silver - piano
Oscar Pettiford - bass
Connie Kay - drums

arrangements by Quincy Jones

Atlantic 1269