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

Friday, February 26, 2010

Johnny Hodges - Rippin' & Runnin'

Every once in a while a Saturday night needs to be about fun. Not perfection, not whats great...just fun. This lp is all about that premise.
The only real star here is Hodges, the rest... a bunch of unknowns who share the same 15 minutes.

Who can ever fault Johnny Hodges? He's a freaking legend.

Johnny Hodges
Rippin & Runnin'

1. Cue Time
2. Rio Secundo
3. Jeep Bounces Back
4. Rippin' and Runnin'
5. Touch Love
6. Tell Everybody's Children
7. Moonflower

Hodges - alto sax
Freddie Waits - drums
Ron Carter - bass
Wilie Gardner - organ
Jimmy Podner - guitar

recorded 12/68

Verve V6-8753

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Cecil Payne - Patterns Of Jazz

I am a sucker for the deep registers of a baritone sax. While not the flights of fancy of an alto, nor the stand firm posturing of of the tenor, baritone players seem to be of a different breed. Whether performing their own material or covering a standard there is always such a leisurely feeling to their playing.

This is Cecil Payne's first recording as a leader and it is no exception. Swinging as hard as any post bop lp, it still manages to seem laid back. Perfect for late in the evening as things wind down, just before the vocalists go on.

Cecil Payne
Patterns In Jazz

1. This Time The Dream's On Me
2. How Deep Is The Ocean
3. Chessman's Delight
4. Arnetta
5. Saucer Eyes
6. Man of Moods
7. Bringing Up Father
8. Groovin' High

CP - baritone sax
Kenny Dorham - trumpet
Duke Jordan - piano
Tommy Potter - bass
Art Taylor - drums

recorded 5/19-22/56 by R. Van Gelder.

this reissue is labeled Savoy SJl 1167

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Herbie Hancock Trio - NYC 1993

Here's another recording supplied by Six String - make sure you thank him.

This is actually a very good live date by Hancock, a player I had given up on many years before.

Not that I thought any less of Hancock, anyone with a career as long lived as his is gonna be susceptible to ups and downs. I just really hadn't given him much thought at all.

Of course he had a string of classic BN lps and that is where these performances are mined from. Bookended with a pair of Cole Porter classics...we're gonna need some help with track 4.

Herbie Hancock Trio
NYC 1993

1. I Love You
2. One Finger Snap
3. Maiden Voyage
5. Cantaloupe Island
6. Just One Of Those Things

HH - piano
Jeff Littleton - bass
Gene Jackson - drums

unknown venue

Here Tis

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Thelonious Monk - Jazz Profiles

This is an NPR broadcast that I captured on what would have been Monk's 80th birthday. The broadcast is hosted by Nancy Wilson and while it contains no surprises, it is still a bit of fun listening.

The show has not been broken down into individual tracks and is presented here in a single 45 min. track.

I was originally going to schedule this to post on Monk's b-day but I had to look that up. Then I see that the man actually passed away on this date so I thought I would honor him by offering this little token to the blogosphere.

For your enjoyment, Monk

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Ahmad Jamal - Count 'Em 88

When I lived just outside of Chicago, I was lucky enough to stumble across an "antique store" a couple of towns over that had loads of lps in the basement, including an extensive jazz section. Careful mining only yielded a couple of real killers though. Just the same, Jamal was a local somewhat and all of his Argo/Cadet lps were in abundance and cheap as hell.

Despite the fact that Miles says I should love Jamal, more often than not he leaves me cold. I wish I would have seen him live when I had so many chances. That may have added more perspective to my opinion.

Despite that, Jamal put out a couple of records that stun me. Not just OK records but really really good ones. This is one of them.

Count Em 88
Ahmad Jamal Trio

1. Volga Boatman
2. Green Dolphin Street
3. How About You
4. I Just Can't See For Lookin'
5. Spring Will Be A Little Late This Year
6. Beat Out One
7. Maryam
8. Easy To Remember
9. Jim Love Sue

Ahmad Jamal - piano
Israel Crosby - bass
Walter Perkins - drums

recorded 10/4/56

Argo 610

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Art Pepper Shelly Manne - Pepper Manne

I've listened to these tracks pretty closely and I am fairly sure I don't have these versions of the Art Pepper tracks elsewhere.

I know I don't have the Shelly Manne tracks but I know very little of him. Assuming that those tracks are different that previous versions as I suspect the Pepper tracks are then you truly have a little gem here. The Art Pepper tracks would have been recorded during his mid 50s period.

I bit of research turned up this from dustygroove...

Excellent work by both players -- even if the source of the material's a bit sketchy! This set probably has less to do with the Charlie Parker imprint than most albums on that label -- and we suspect that the material was taped by Apex in LA, and later relased by Charlie Parker in a dodgy one-off deal. Who cares, though? Side one features some incredible work from Art Pepper -- playing here in a quartet with Russ Freeman on piano, and sounding incredibly sharp, with an edge that's missing from some of his bigger-known sides at the time. The group plays "Diane", "Pepper Pot", and "Besame Mucho", as well as a great version of "I Surrender Dear". Side two features Shelly Manne leading a very unusual group -- a sextet with piano by Robert Gil, and a heavily percussive lineup that includes extra drums, bongos, and conga. The sides have a strong Latin flavor, in keeping with the red peppers on the cover of the album.

Art Pepper Shelly Manne
Pepper Manne

1. Pepper Pot
2. Besame Mucho
3. Diane
4. I Surrender Dear

Art Pepper - alto
Russ Freeman - piano
Ben Tucker - bass
Gary Frommer - drums

5. Move
6. Sometimes I'm Happy
7. Fascination
8. Caravan
9. Rhumba
10. Magitos

Shelly Manne - drums
Mike Pacheco - bongos
Carlos Vidal - congos
Roberto Gil - piano
Julio Ayala - bass
Frank Guerrero - drums

Charlie Parker Records PLP836

In Glorious Mono

Friday, February 12, 2010

Thelonious Monk - Something In Blue

A freaking monster record sent to me by my pal Six String. I am humbled.

Monk never ceases to impress. More crazy piano goodness in the trio setting.

For all of his craziness, his outside approaches, I luve the fact that Monk never dismissed the popular canon. Nice work if you can get it, indeed.

Thelonious Monk
Something In Blue

1. Blue Sphere
2. Hackensack
3. Nice Work If You Can Get It
4. Criss-Cross
5. Something In Blue
6. Evidence
7. Jackie-ing
8. Nutty

Monk - piano
Al McKibbon - bass
Art Blakey - drums

recorded @ Gappell Hill Studios, London

Black Lion BL-152

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Fats Navarro - Nostalgia

So if you ever wanted to hear what a real Savoy record sounds like, here's your chance. Of course decent copies of these records are few and far between and excruciatingly expensive. Or they are simply so beat as to be worthless. Luckily I found one somewhere between. This has seen its share of late nights and probably a few early mornings.

A Savoy reissue of a couple of different sessions. Everything here should be recognizable but goddamn if it ain't a lot of fun!

I sometimes find myself awed that a talent like this was silenced before I was even born.

Fats Navarro Memorial No. 2

1. Nostalgia
2. Barry's Bop
3. Be Bop Romp
4. Fats Blows
5. Dextivity
6. Dextrose
7. Dexter's Mood
8. Index
9. Stealing Trash
10. Hollerin' and Screamin'
11. Fracture
12. Calling Dr. Jazz

Fats - trumpet
Charlie Rouse - tenor
Tadd Dameron - piano
Nelson Boyd - bass
Art Blakey - drums

Fats - trumpet
Dexter Gordon - tenor
Tadd Dameron - piano
Nelson Boyd - bass
Art Madigan - drums

Fats - trumpet
Eddie Davis - tenor
Huey Long - guitar
Al Haig - piano
Gene Ramey - bass
Denzil Best - drums

Savoy MG-12133

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Eddie Bert - Like Cool

There's just something about the trombone and heavy snow that go together. Eddie obviously knew that from this lp cover. Tonight I am looking at another foot of the white stuff and it looks like a day off tomorrow. A great night to post a record like this.

Like any good snowstorm, this starts languid and slow but picks up steam as she goes. By the time everything wraps up, you have a pretty nice little overlooked bop album.

All told, Hank Jones' piano rules this record.

Like Cool
The Contemporary Trombone Artistry of Eddie Bert

1. I'm Through With Love
2. Blue Beetle...Original
3. In A Meditating Mood
4. Father Time
5. Cool School Days
6. Pennies From Heaven
7. Home Cookin'
8. Speedster

Eddie Bert - trombone
Dave Schildkraut - tenor sax
Barry Galbraith - guitar
Hank Jones - piano
Clyde Lombardi - bass
Osie Johnson - drums

I have seen this record listed several ways. Everything tells me it was recorded sometime in 1955. You are getting a copy of my vinyl...

Somerset P-5200

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Bill Evans - Trio '64

I love this quiet early Evans trio record. Even though I just posted Evans a couple of days ago, this recording seems to sit perfectly with the 22 inches of snow I got. I suppose that justifies the version of "Santa Claus" included on this lp.

What may seem like a light, dismissable recording stands the test of time come daylight.

Had this record been recorded just a few years later, it would have been a CTI release. And it sounds every bit like one.

And it heralds the great things by Evans yet to come.

And totally unrelated to the music, a fantastic cover.

Bill Evans Trio
Trio '64

1. Little Lulu
2. A Sleeping Bee
2. Always
4. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
5. I'll See You Again
6. For Heaven's Sake
7. Dancing In The Dark
8. Everything Happens To Me

Bill Evans - piano
Gary Peacock - bass
Paul Motian - drums

recorded 12/18/63. NYC

Verve V-8578

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Charlie Parker - The Happy Bird

I recently found myself on the wrong side of a discussion about Blue Note records. Everyone on the message board had been fawning over records that I had been listening to for years. Or rather, not been listening to for years because I felt over familiar with them.

Did this make them bad records? Of course not. But it also led me to thinking "Why don't I ever listen to those bebop records that turned me on so long ago?" I mean those records turned me on my ear at one time. I couldn't get enough of the slurred notes, that blistering pace, all the while sounding perfectly natural to me. Not a hint of anything "outside" no matter how wild they may have been in their time.

I have spent the last couple of weeks revisiting some of those records. I'm thinking I may like to share a few with you all.

And why not start with the master himself? A posthumous release on the label named after the man himself. I love the fact that this recording is less than perfect. I can only imagine what a live Parker performance must have been.

While those live performances have been documented extensively, unless you are a completest, there are plenty that slip by. Here's one I really like.

Charlie Parker
The Happy Bird

1. Happy Bird Blues
2. Scrapple From The Apple
3. I Remember April
4. I May Be Wrong

There are no liner credits on my lp, but I am sure someone will be along shortly to fill us in. And I mean that in the nicest way.


* a bit of research tells me this MAY have been recorded 4/12/51.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Bud Shank - Jazz at Cal-Tech

Yup - bang, click, pow...not in the best shape but then neither am I. I have decided to embrace my shortcomings, for now.

I don't see this record offered up often and it will never be in good enough shape for the dudes at the Pacific Jazz site (Goddamn! are they doing a great job?).

But I can offer it up here first.

A pretty cool date which sports the flute, oboe combo on a couple of tracks.

The Bud Shank Quartet In Concert With Bob Cooper
Jazz at Cal-Tech

1. When Lights Are Low
2. Old Devil Moon
3. The Nearness Of You
4. How Long Has This Been Going On & Tea For Two
5. Lullaby Of Birdland
6. Somebody Loves Me
7. Moonlight In Vermont
8. The King

Bud Shank - alto and flute
Bob Cooper - tenor and oboe
Claude Williamson - piano
Don Prell - bass
Chuck Flores - drums

This session was produced by Frank Kofsky, a Cal-Tech physics student.

Pacific Jazz PJ-1219