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

Friday, July 26, 2013

Stephane Grappelli plays Cole Porter

 The violin may be my favorite non-traditional jazz instrument and it is very cool to see Cole get the treatment from a monster like Grappelli.
 These are a couple of sessions recorded in Paris in the mid 70's, part of a series of Grappelli sessions under the Jazz In Paris umbrella.
  Enjoyable reworkings of many of the standards but included are a couple of rarities.
Once again I am digging this on the back stoop, warm evening, stars over the mountains. All is a-ok in the world and Cole Porter rules it.

1. It's all right with me
2. You're the top
3. Anything goes
4. In the still of the night
5. You've Got a thing
6. Miss Otis regrets
7. I've got you under my skin
8. Love for sale
9. Easy to love
10. You'd be so nice to come home to
11. Let's do it, let's fall in love
12. My heart belongs to daddy

Stephane Grappelli - violin
Marc Hemmler - piano (1, 7)
Maurice Vander - piano
Eddy Louiss - organ
Luigi Trussardi - bass (1, 3, 5, 7, 8)
Guy Perderson - bass
Jimmy Gourley - guitar
Daniel Humair - drums

recorded May 1975 - 1, 3, 5, 7, 8
recorded Feb 1976 - 2, 4, 6, 9-12

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy 4th of July - Prez!!

As I mentioned recently, I have been on a bit of a Lester Young kick. Have ya ever read an interview with him?. He was the ultimate hipster. I wanna be as laid back as Prez..

Here's a short set recorded a mere 60 years ago today!!

1. Up 'N Adam
2. I Can't Get Started
3. Lester Leaps In

Lester Young Band

Lester Young - ts
Jesse Drakes - trp
Horace Silver - piano
Gene Ramey - bas
Connie Kay - drums

Birdland - NYC  7/4/53

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Jazz at The Philharmonic Chicago 1955

Verve reissued a handful of these records in 1983. Pretty sure they never made the cd transistion. My copy is one of those ARS series that were sent to schools and libraries.

I have been on a bit of a Lester Young kick lately and digging through the lps I found this neglected little gem. Not a major record in anyone's discography but still a cool way to spend a hot summer evening. Hell, Prez doesn't even make the cover!!

Side one is a typical JATP jam session. Side two features the inevitable Oscar Peterson group and a odd outing by Gene Krupa. As much as Peterson leaves me cold, this version of Budo is entertaing.
Dizzy is smokin' as always.

Jazz At The Philharmonic
Chicago Opera House

1. Mail Order Blues
 Flip Phillips, Lester Young, Illinois Jaquet - saxes
 Dizzy Gillespie, Roy Eldridge - trumpet
 Buddy Rich - drums
 Oscar Peterson - piano
 Herb Ellis - guitar
 Ray Brown- bass

2. Anything Goes
3. Baby, Baby All The Time
4. Budo
 Oscar Peterson -piano
 Herb Ellis - guitar
 Ray Brown - bass

5. Drum Boogie
 Gene Krupa - drums
 Eddie Shu - sax & trpt
 Bobby Scott - piano
 Whitey Mitchell - bass


* The link has been corrected, You just have to look a little harder.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Mingus Big Band - Fez NYC

I may be slow but this is a classic story... A while back I posted a Mingus Big Band radio show from Glasgow, which incidentally was from a friend in IAJRC. Well, our buddy JD said he had a recording of their return to Glasgow that he wanted to share. I enthusiastically agreed. and then both of us promptly forgot.

Fast forward one year and JC lets me know it wasn't really Glasgow but NYC and did I still want to share?
Well of course. It is also the reason I love doing this. Because there are a handful of music lovers that really care about this stuff. The troll may get me down but this makes it all worthwhile. Thanks JD, for the awesome contribution.. Now I'm gonna let the dude speak for himself ...

The band move through a kaleidoscope of styles with a swinging ferocity that Mingus would have frankly envied. All his life, he craved and rarely had a large ensemble to serve his oversized compositional ambitions. “Charles wanted a band like this desperately,” says pianist and arranger Sy Johnson. “And on a night when the gods are smiling, it is an awesome thing.”
Ms. Sue Mingus, figurehead behind the continuation of the Mingus legacy,  may not have quite her husband’s appetite for public confrontation, but she has mastered the first principle of his working method: demanding from the band the highest level of im perfection. As Mr. Johnson recalls: “Charles had a chaos theory long before the scientists. He would get infuriated if the band really started to swing hard. He felt that the band was being taken away from him. He would get mad and try to fuck it up. He wanted to mix it up, make it uncomfortable for the players so they would reach deeper into themselves.”

Without the benefit of Charles Mingus to trip them up, the Big Band finds its proper level of chaos by having no one specifically in charge of the music. Sue Mingus draws on a pool of maybe 100 first-rate players that on a given night might include trumpeter Randy Brecker, saxophonist John Stubblefield, pianist Kenny Drew Jr. Instead of a lineup, there are fractal patterns of personnel that assume a specific personality for one gig  and then disappear. The constants are a lot of good soloists competing for solo space, the arrangements and Mingus’ own tunes. It adds up to a coherence rare in a big-band world where brass sections still play call-and-response with the reeds. Another way of looking at it is that it all adds up to Mingus.

“He’s dead center in the middle of the music,” Ms. Mingus says. “I think all the musicians feel that way. Sometimes there are specific moments when the bass string will snap at the beginning of a concert, and everyone gets a funny look on their face. He’s still egging people, making these demands. I feel like a mouthpiece for him-I’m the loudmouth in the wings.”
Adapted from a web article on the Mingus Big Band at the Fez

This is a set I've been meaning to post for ages, but I simply never got round to finishing the artwork until now. Never mind, it's here now, and it's a real KILLER from start to finish! The Mingus Big Band is, for me, one of the best BBs around; always reliably solid, always enjoyable, but when they're at their best - as here - they're unbeatable. The short recording, some 43 minutes and comprising just four top-notch compositions, comes from early in the band's residency at the Fez in New York in 1998, and was aired by the BBC in (I think) 1999. I've treasured it ever since. Clearly, as Sy Johnson says, the gods were smiling this night, and it is indeed an awesome thing!....JD

1. Moanin'
2. Tijuana Moods
3. Meditations
4. Nostalgia In Times Square

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Robert Parker - The Swing Era Small Bands

More crazy goodness. All the big names are here, Django and Dorsey and many more plus a handful of obscurities. Whether you like what he does with these recordings or not, it is very cool to just be able to listen to them. Crackling stuff as Parker will say.

As usual, a pair of 1/2 hour shows. .

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Oscar Pettiford - Vienna Blues

One of the things I love about jazz is when I discover recordings that have players that are completely unknown to me. Session men pulled in for the day that turn out incredible records.Never heard any of these fellows that accompany Pettiford on this disc. Don't recall them turning up anywhere else, although some pedant is sure to come along and correct me.Even more surprising is that a handful of the songs were written by the heretofore unheard of sax player.

This is a great little lp. Perfect on this overcast spring evening.

1. Cohn's Limit
2. The Gentle Art Of Love
3. All The Things You Are
4. Stalag 414
5. Vienna Blues
6. Oscar's Blues
7. Stardust
8. There Will Never Be Another You
9. Blues In The Closet

Oscar Pettiford - bass, cello
Hans Koller - tenor sax
Attila Zoller - guitar, bass
Jimmy Pratt - drums

Recorded Vienna Jan 1959

Black Lion records

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

David Murray Octet - New Life

Murray's 4th outing with the Octet. I have become so enamored with Murray over the last few years that often I can never find a damn thing wrong with his lps. Once again, here is one I never picked up until recently and once again I wonder why not. I am now on a quest to land all of Murray's Black Saint lps on vinyl.

 Please enjoy this newest acquisition with me. What else ya got to do for the next 45 mins? Nothing better I assure you.

1. Train Whistle
2. Morning Song
3. New Life
4. Blues In The Pocket

Murray - tenor sax, bass clarinet
Baikida Carroll - trumpet
Hugh Ragin - trumpet
Craig Harris - trombone
John Purcell - alto sax
Adegoke Steve Colson - piano
Wilbur Morris - bass
Ralph Peterson Junior - drums

recorded 10/6/85, NYC

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Makoto Ozone - s/t

So this is the 1st lp by pianist Makoto Ozone.Seems an odd instrumental line up for an opening shot. It's a particularly quiet lp seeing as how the dude put out a couple of real swinging sides over the next decade or so.The inclusion of Gomez might lead to some Bill Evans comparisons, and you may be right. Not necessarily a bad place to start.

I kinda dig the line up but I really have to be in the right mood for it, not just a drop and play lp. I really don't see it offered much so I do what I can cats.

1. Crystal Love
2. I Need You Here
3. Flight
4. Endless Seasons Part 1
5. Endless Seasons Part 2
6. Improvisation

Makoto Ozone - piano
Gary Burton - vibraphone
Eddie Gomez - bass

Columbia BFC 39624
recorded 1984

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Grand Award records - The Blues

Acclaimed by Music Critics. Approved by Music Educators. Treasured by Music Lovers. These Grand Award records can be some fun stuff. Since I'm no discophile I am unaware if this stuff has been issued elsewhere. I put it here to share with anyone else who wants to swing to these grooves. This batch being a bunch of jazzy blues. Dinah belts em out with Lucky Thompson's All Stars. Don't miss Mingus locking down the groove on these. The last couple of cuts are by Betty Roche who is cool but she's got Ellington alumni and Earl Hines on piano. You never hear this shit on PBS!

And a David Stone Martin cover...oh yeah!

1. Blues For A Day
2. Rich Man's Blues
3. All Or Nothing
4. Beggin' Mama Blues
5. Chewin' Papa Blues
6. Pacific Coast Blues
7. Wise Woman Blues
8. Blues On My Weary Mind
9. Trouble, Trouble
10. I'll Get By
11. Design For Jivin'

1-7  Dinah Washington Sings the Blues w/ Lucky Thompson's All Stars
Lucky Thompson - tenor
Milt Jackson - vibes
Charles Mingus - bass
Karl George - trumpet
Jewel Grant - alto sax
Gene Porter - baritone sax
Wilber Baranco - piano
Lee Young - drums

8-11 Betty Roche Sings with the Earl Hines Septet
Earl Hines - piano
Johnny Hodges -alto sax
Ray Nance - trumpet and violin
Al Casey - guitar
Oscar Pettiford - bass
Flip Phillips - tenor sax
Sid Catlett- drums

G.A. 33-318

Monday, April 15, 2013

Robert Parker's Jazz Classics In Stereo - Classic Jazz

I've just been listening to the second installment of The Robert Parker series. I must admit that despite the criticism of his restoration methods, I am quite happy at being able to enjoy these tracks at all.

I must apologize for the horrid commercial in the middle but I left the shows intact.

Despite the similar title of the last post this is a different compilation of various artists and early tracks. The next few shows with narrow the field a bit more.

As I mentioned before, the remaining shows were in half hours segments so there will be two links for each show. Enjoy!!!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Baby Doll soundtrack - K. Hopkins

Sometimes it all falls in place. The movie is one of my favorites, so twisted. Even the cover is a bit creepy. And who better to follow Cole Porter than Tennessee Williams?  Kenyon Hopkins soundtrack is the perfect foil to the film.

We'll get back to the jazz real soon.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Teddy Wilson - Cole Porter Classics

Wilson shines on this relaxed solo outing, a companion piece to the earlier Gershwin lp. His playing has always been lightly swinging but with a touch of elegance. I think it suits Porter perfectly. This lp, recorded late in his career, is rewarding listening on a overcast Sunday afternoon, or during a quiet dinner for two. And it even contains a nice surprise in the manner of a three song run right in the middle of session. First there is the not often played "Why Shouldn't I", quickly followed by a terrific stride version of "Love For Sale" and  then Wilson sneaks in a tribute song of his own entitled "Too Darn Blue." If you don't pay attention, this entrancing little number could easily slip through as a CP original.

1. Get Out Of Town
2. Just One Of Those Things
3. I Get A Kick Out Of You
4. I Love You
5. It's All Right With Me
6. Why Shouldn't I
7. Love For Sale
8. Too Darn Blue
9. I've Got You Under My Skin
10. Easy To Love
11. What Is This Thing Called Love

Teddy Wilson - piano

Recorded 11/77 - London

Black Lion Records

Friday, March 29, 2013

Jazz Classics In Stereo - an Introduction

Robert Parker was an Australian sound engineer who was passionate about early jazz. He also pissed alot of folk off with his technique for "cleaning up" these old 78's.
He explains his reasons for this at the beginning of this recording, the first in a series of 18 broadcast in the early 90's if I recall correctly.
 These are the Jazz Classics In Stereo shows not to be confused with the later "digital stereo" series of shows and discs. These, as far as I know never made disc format.

 This first one is aptly titled "Introduction to Jazz Classics". I'm gonna offer up a few of my favorites shows. Each show will be only 1 or 2 tracks without breaks.

As far as these recordings...well I probably would never have heard a lot of  them at all but for these shows so I'm not about to complain.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

John Lindberg - Trilogy Of Works For Eleven Instruments

I've been trying to load the record up for weeks but can never think of the right things to say. The music seems ragged and yet always fits. Kinda like when you first heard Mingus. This will never reach those heights but that should not be reason to dismiss this entertaining set. Three pieces written by Lindberg, with Braxton conducting for the recording.

1. Holler
2. m to M
3. Dresden Moods

Hugh Ragin - trumpet
Mike Mossman - trumpet, piccolo trumpet
Ray Anderson - trombone
Vincent Chancy - french horn
Marty Ehrlich - alto sax, flute, piccolo
J. D. Parran - tenor sax, clarinet
Pablo Calogero - Baritone sax
Alan Jaffe - electric guitar
Eric Watson - piano
John Lindberg - bass
Thurman Baker - drums, bells, and xylophone

recorded Sept 8/9, 1984

Black Saint BSR 0082

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Sonny Stitt - Sonny's Blues (Up Front lp)

Not the live record from Ronnie Scott's nor the recording done just a year before his death but another record with the same title.
 This blog has always been about the music I love with no pretensions towards rare or obscure recordings. I'm pretty sure the sessions on this very short release have been available elsewhere but this seems to be the only examples I have in my collection.
 Clocking in at a mere half hour, my first exposure to these recordings were a cassette tape most likely purchased at a 7-11 type joint for 2 bucks when that was a more common occurrence. Needless to say I had only dim fond recollections of the music when I ran across this lp at a flea market a couple of weeks ago. Not the best sounding recording but now I have another 2 dollars wrapped up so I thought I would share. And I fing I still dig the title tune as much as I remember.

Not a lick of info on the sleeve but that's where completists and other record geeks come in. Your turn to shine. Fill us in if you can.

Sonny's Blues

1. Star Eyes
2. Autumn In New York
3. Sonny's Blues


Friday, March 8, 2013

Tommy Dorsey Cole Porter 7" set

A  super short swinging set of 45's in a cool little box. All of life should be so cool. Got nothin' else on these records.

Tommy Dorsey plays Cole Porter for dancing

1. Just One Of Those Things
2. Love For Sale
3. Why Shouldn't I
4. You Do Something To Me
5. I Get A Kick Out Of You
6. It's Delovely


Saturday, March 2, 2013

Linda Lawson - Introducing

 Tonight is the occasional vocal offering. Not much out there to be found about Miss Lawson. This is a pretty decent record that was never destined to set the world on fire.
 Here's the rub. The backing band was put together by Marty Paitch. We know that Paitch used Art Pepper whenever he could. This would have been recorded during Pepper's break from incarceration. Even though he is not listed in the personnel, some of the solos are his without a shred of doubt. Now I'm not a research guy (Straight Life is 3 ft, away) so maybe this is common knowledge and I just don't remember it.
 Either way this is an opportunity to offer up a nice record on a Saturday evening. A nice mix of enjoyable covers of evergreens and a few oddballs thrown in for good measure.
 Best part is, it was offered to me by a friend who digs the blog.

1. Are You With Me
2. Where Flamingos Fly
3. But Beautiful
4. Me and My Shadow
5. You Don't Know What Love Is
6. Easy To Love
7.Meaning Of The Blues
8. Mood Indigo
9. Like Young
10. Hi-Lilli-Hi-Lo

Jimmy Rowles (piano);
Bud Shank (alto, sometimes);
Art Pepper - alto
Med Flory (baritone sax);
Bill Perkins (tenor sax);
Al Porcino, Stu Williamson, Jack Sheldon (trumpets);
Frank Rosolino (trombone);
 Bill Pitman (guitar);
Joe Modragon (bass);
 Mel Lewis (drums)

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Earl Hines plays Cole Porter

Amazingly, before Hines recorded this tribute of solo piano pieces in 1974, he had never before recorded a single Cole Porter tune, nor was he to do so after.
Hines is great at capturing that feeling a love about Porter tunes when done right. All classy but firmly tongue in cheek. Unfortunately Hines sticks strictly to the the known masterpieces.I wish more folks would dig out some hidden gems.

Earl Hines play Cole Porter

1. You Do Something To Me
2. Night And Day
3. Rosalie
4. I've Got You Under My Skin
5. I Get A Kick Out Of You
6. What is This Thing Called Love
7. Easy To Love

Earl Hines - piano
recorded 4/16/74 at RCA studio, NYC

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sidney Bechet ep's

Tonight brings a couple of old Bechet sessions. Short but highly entertaining. I know this stuff has ended up on various compilations before so this is nothing the completest can't drag out. Yes, I cobbed this stuff together from a couple of lps.
 The first session is from that Jazz A La Creole lp. (for those keeping score, my cover is a dull pinkish color, otherwise exactly as above). I have only included the Bechet side because, well, it was the best part of the record. C'mon its a trio with Bechet, Lil Armstrong and Zutty Singleton. This shit is just so cool. It swings in all the best ways.
 Not to be outdone is the Bechet/ Spanier sessions, which swings in a whole different way. No drums, with guitar. These sessions were probably recorded for the H.R.S. I happen to own some crazy West German comp that pools the eps together.
 No matter how much I listen to "modern jazz" I always find myself amazed at this roots stuff.

Jazz A La Creole
1. Milenburg Joys
2. Rockin' Chair
3. Big Butter and Egg Man
4.My Melancholy Baby
5. Limehouse Blues
6. Black Bottom
7. I Gotta Right To Sing The Blues

Sidney Bechet - soprano sax
Lil Armstrong  - piano
Zutty Singleton - drums

Archive of Jazz
1. Sweet Lorraine
2. The Lazy River
3. China Boy
4. Four or Five Times
5. That's A Plenty
6. If I Could Be With You
7. Squeeze Me
8. Sweet Sue, Just You

Sidney Bechet - clarinet and soprano sax
Mugsy Spanier - cornet
Carmen Mastrem - guitar
Wellan Braud - bass

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Benny Carter Plays Can-Can & Anything Goes

Another one swung over from the Cole Porter thing, this one though is a disc a ran across who knows where.
 Taken from a couple of short sessions recorded in '58. Both are fine blowing sessions that reflect the times perfectly. There some real stray tunes here that you don't get to hear much..

Don't know what it is, but CP seems to grab at my underlying pop sensibilities. I would figure I am not alone given that so many fine folk cover his songs. Get used to it, they're here to stay.

1. I Love Paris
2. C 'est Magnifique
3. It's All Right With Me
4. Allez-vous En, Go Away
5. I'm In Love
6. Anything Goes
7. All Through The Night
8. Waltz Down The Aisle
9. Buddy Beware
10.You're the Top

Benny Carter - alto
Hal Schaefer - piano

Joe Banjamin  - bass
John Drew - bass*
Gus Johnson - drums
Ted Sommer - percussion~
Teddy Charles - vibes*

recorded NYC. The Can-Can session~ was recorded 10/58, the Anything Goes* was recorded  11/58.

This was re-released by Lone Hill Jazz and is from their cd 

Monday, February 4, 2013

Miroslav Vitous - Infinite Search

 When I was just a young lad, still held in the throes of prog, and other lesser 70s ilk, I was the first of my friends to turn my eye in the direction of jazz. At first it was the relatively accessible lps of CTI, then of course the Blue Notes and Impulses but even then these were rarities in the used bins, my main source of records. Easier to find were fusion records and they were the hot item at the time. I fell in line...for awhile. Eventually found the records too...busy for my herbal induced lifestyle, and they fell by the wayside.
 Funny thing about life is everything seems to cycle back through at some point. 30 something years later, and I find I'm listening to fusion again, albeit in a much more particular manner. I've been through free jazz and world music and this stuff doesn't seem as frantic as I remember.
 That's one long winded tale to show off this record which I really dig.
 Released a year after Bitches Brew, with this crew, this can be classified as nothing but fusion. Add to the fact that the session leader plays bass, even though this is his first date as such, you know where you stand before you drop the needle.Still it must have been a buzz being so young and landing this gig, and playing your own tunes as well.(The opener is by Eddie Harris, a fusion dude himself.) It is passionate and awesome. Easily one of my favorite lps of the genre and I am glad I snatched it up when I did, wherever that may have been. Still a bit lost in that herbal cloud.

Infinite Search

1. Freedom Jazz Dance
2.  mountain In The Clouds
3. When Face Gets Pale
4. Infinite Search
5. I Will Tell Him On You
 6. Epilogue*

Miroslav Vitous - bass
Joe Henderson - tenor sax
John McLaughlin - guitar
Herbie Hancock - piano
Jack DeJohnette - drums
Joe Chambers - drums*

recorded NYC 1970
Embryo Records SD 524

Friday, February 1, 2013

The Music Of Cole Porter Played By America's Greatest Jazzmen.

I'm gonna move some of the Cole Porter stuff from my other blog over just cause I think it is too cool to go unnoticed. Porter  just always seemed to translate well to jazz renditions.
 The first one is this Moodsville lp, which was just Prestige light, right? These recordings are smooth but swinging. There are some great performances included here that probably slipped through the cracks in the grand scheme of things. Hope everybody digs em like I do.

 I wonder what Shirley Scott thought about being billed on a record titled "America's Greatest Jazzmen?".

The Music Of Cole Porter
Played By America's Greatest Jazzmen

1. You'd be So Nice To Come Home To
2. Easy To Love
3. Love For Sale
4. Just One Of Those Things
5. I've Got You Under My Skin
6. All Of You
7. You Do Something To Me
8. Get Out Of Town
9. What Is This Thing Called Love

1. Frank Wess - flute; Dorothy Ashby - harp; Herman Wright - bass; Roy Haynes - drums
2. Gene Ammons - tenor; Richard Wyands - piano; Doug Watkins - bass; Ray Baretto - conga;
 JC Heard - drums
3. Billy Taylor - piano; Earl May - bass; Candido - conga; Percy Brice - drums
4. Steve Lacy - soprano sax; Gil Evans - piano; Louis Mucci, Jake Koven - trumpets; Jimmy
 Cleveland - trombone; Bart Varsalona - bass trombone; Willie Ruff - french horn; Dave    Kurtzer - bassoon; Lee Konitz - alto; Paul Chambers - bass; Nick Stabulas - drums
5. Stan Getz - tenor; Al Haig - piano; Tommy Potter - bass; Roy Haynes - drums
6. Modern Jazz Quartet - Milt Jackson - vibes; John Lewis - piano; Percy Heath - bass; Connie Kay - drums
7. Shirley Scott - piano; George Duvivier - bass; Artur Edgehill - drums
8. Coleman Hawkins - tenor; Tommy Flanagan - piano, Major Holley - bass; Eddie Locke -drums
9. Red Garland - piano; Paul Chambers - bass; Art Taylor - drums

Moodsville 34

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Sadao Watanabe - Pamoja

 Here's one you don't see around much. I stumbled across this little beauty in a little record store on my last visit to Chapel Hill. I probably wouldn't have given this a second look if it wasn't for all those great Japanese records that our friends at inconstant sol have been posting the last couple of years.
 I will say that I faced a conundrum when I picked up this lp. As usual I had more records in my pile than my budget allowed. But this record had two names that I had finally become acquainted with that I knew I really dug. Watanabe, the leader and Masahiko Togashi, the percussionist, whom I had several lps that seriously smoked.
 The point was that I had several records in my hands that I loved but only had rips of, but this was new stuff. Unheard and untested. Yet I felt confident that it would be up my alley. I just hoped the flute and guitar didn't play too prominent roles. The Cole Porter tune was the clincher. I slipped one of the other records back into the bin and took this in the pile to the counter. Couldn't wait to get home and listen, although that would be a couple of days and many lps later.
 Well the flute was certainly in the lead on the first track but damn it, it was still pretty cool. By the time the guitar finished it's turn in the spotlight, I was a believer. This ensemble is tight, with not a slacker in the bunch. I hope it makes a believer outta you as well.


1. Vichakani
2. Musitoni
3. Pamoja
4. Ev'rytime we Say Goodbye

Sadao Watanabe - alto sax, flute
Hiroshi Fukumura - trombone
Yoshiaki Masuo - guitar
Takehiro Honda - piano
Isao Suzuki -bass
Hiroshi Murakami - drums
Masahiko Togashi - percussion

recorded live 10.27.75 at Yomiuri Hall, Tokyo

East West records EW-8022

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Coleman Hawkins - The Hawk And The Hunter

 I'll be honest. I don't often enjoy strings with my jazz.Well instrumentalists anyway. Even with singers I am a tad wishy-washy. It's like that thick icing on birthday cakes, all show but so cloyingly sweet it can only be ingested in small amounts. Save the strings for soundtracks is my general philosophy.
 But then again, when a giant of the idiom and a personal favorite thinks it's a good idea, I have to give it a listen. A fair listen.
 As any follower of this blog will note, I am a big Hawkins fan and besides just laying over some strings, he brought along a rhythm section for this recording. Well, actually two, and one of them sports one of my favorite pianists as well, Hank Jones.
 Despite the fact that the strings do indeed get a bit saccharine at times I still kinda dig this lp.It's very reminscent of those Moodsville lps. Hawkins shines through especially on the self penned tunes. Unfortunately this version of Brahm's Lullaby makes me long for a version without strings. That would have been some ballad.

Groovy cool cover for bonus points.

The Hawk and the Hunter
1. Easy Walker*
2. Traumerei
3. All The Time *
4. Lazy Butterfly
5. Not Quite Right*
6. Pebbles*
7. I Knew Dana*
8. Lullaby
9. Hawk Talk
10. Misty Morning
11. Lonely Tenor
12. Whisper To Me*

Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax
Frank Hunter - conductor

tunes marked *
Dick Hyman - piano
Milt Hinton - bass
Osie Johnson - drums

all others
Hank Jones - piano
George Duvivier - bass
Jimmie Crawford - drums

no recording info included

Mira records LP-3003

Sunday, January 20, 2013

After Hours - Grand Award Collection

 As much as I love jazz and the directions it is going, some nights I love looking back. This is one of those nights.

I have a few of these Grand Award lps. What a weird way of selling records. The encouragement of peeling off the cover and framing it seems a bit out there to me. None the less they produced some decent records with cool covers. Someone can come along and tell us if these sessions were originals or not.

Side 1 sports a fine cast with Hawkins standing out. I just dig his lyricism on these tunes. Side 2 doesn't swing as hard but it covers Hoagy Carmichael in no less of a deft manor.

Cover by Arthur Shilstone - whose fame rests mostly with outdoor/landscapes paintings - is pretty damn cool...and remains intact.

1. Caravan
2. Sweethearts On Parade
3. My Blue Heaven
4.Organ Grinder's swing
5. Honeysuckle Rose
6. Perdido
7. Stardust
8. I Get Along Without You
9. Rockin' Chair
10. Georgia On My Mind
11. New Orleans
12. Blue Orchids

1-6  Cozy Cole's All Stars
Cozy Cole - drums
Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax
Rex Stewart - trumpet
Tyrone Glenn - trombone
Claude Hopkins - piano
Billy Bauer - guitar
Arvell Shaw - bass

7-12 Marian McPartland's Quintet
Marian McPartland - piano
Jimmy McPartland - trumpet
Jimmy Rainey - guitar
Trigger Alpert - bass
Joe Morello - drums

Grand Award G.A. 33-334