31 August, 2011


The American Folk-Blues Festival - Volume Two 1962-66 (music video)

The American Folk-Blues Festival - Volume Two 1962-66
blues | DVD5 PAL | PCM mono | iso, cover | 3900MB
Universal | rel: 2003
Three songs by Howlin' Wolf are the highlight of this second set of blues performances recorded in the 1960s, when an extraordinary lineup of musicians (among the 18 tracks here are tunes by Lightnin' Hopkins, Willie Dixon, Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee, and Big Mama Thornton) toured Europe, thrilling (among many others) the young Englishmen playing in bands like the Rolling Stones and the Yardbirds. As with Volume 1, the monaural sound and black-and-white video are superb, making the release of the footage four decades later even more welcome. And Wolf? He was still in his prime in '64, perhaps equaled only by Muddy Waters (who appears on the first volume). "Did you ever been in the groove?" he asks at one point. "Well, I'm gonna put you way down in the woods." That he does, and blues fans will be only too happy to tag along.
Reelin’ In The Years Productions, in association with Experience Hendrix, bring you the American Folk Blues Festival 1962-1966 Volumes One & Two. The AFBF was an annual event that featured the cream of American blues musicians barnstorming their way across western Europe every fall from 1962 through 1966. Recorded live in a small TV studio in Germany, these historic and unseen performances have been lost for nearly 40 years. Filmed with superb camera work and pristine sound, each DVD contains 18 complete performances from the greatest blues musicians of all time. Captured during their heyday in an era of scant video documentation, these DVDs are truly one of the most unique and precious visual documents of the blues.
The American Folk Blues Festivals featured a dazzling array of talent that included such greats as Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Willie Dixon, John Lee Hooker and Sonny Boy Williamson playing alongside other legends such as T-Bone Walker, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Mississippi Fred McDowell, Memphis Slim and Big Mama Thornton to create the most significant group of blues artists ever assembled!

-01 Bye Bye Bird (Sonny Boy Williamson),
-02 My Younger Days (Sonny Boy Williamson),
-03 Come On Home Baby (Sunnyland Slim),
-04 Nervous (Willie Dixon),
-05 Mojo Hand (Lightnin' Hopkins),
-06 Black Snake Blues (Victoria Spivey),
-07 Everyday I Have the Blues (Memphis Slim),
-08 Don't Throw Your Love on Me so Strong (T-Bone Walker),
-09 Tall Heavy Mama (Roosevelt Sykes),
-10 Sittin' and Cryin' the Blues (Willie Dixon),
-11 Murphy's Boogie (Matt "Guitar" Murphy),
-12 Stranger Blues (Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee),
-13 Shake for Me (Howlin' Wolf),
-14 I'll Be Back Someday (Howlin' Wolf),
-15 Love Me Darlin (Howlin' Wolf),
-16 Down Home Shakedown (Big Mama Thornton)
Two bonus tracks from Magic Sam in 1969:
-b1 All Your Love
-b2 Magic Sam's Boogie
~70 mins

29 August, 2011


Tony Williams Lifetime - Emergency! (1969)

Tony Williams Lifetime - Emergency! (1969)
jazz, jazz-rock | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 475MB
Verve 1997
Tony Williams' Emergency was one of the first and most influential albums in late-'60s fusion, a record that shattered the boundaries between jazz and rock. Working with guitarist John McLaughlin and organist Larry Young, Williams pushed into new territory, creating dense, adventurous, unpredictable soundscapes. With Emergency, Tony Williams helped create the foundation of the style and sound of fusion. It's a seminal release, originally released on two albums and now available on one CD.

-1. "Emergency" (Williams) – 9:35
-2. "Beyond Games" (Williams) – 8:17
-3. "Where" (McLaughlin) – 12:10
-4. "Vashkar" (Bley) – 4:59
-5. "Via the Spectrum Road" (McLaughlin, Williams) – 7:49
-6. "Spectrum" (McLaughlin) – 8:50
-7. "Sangria for Three" (Williams) – 13:07
-8. "Something Spiritual" (Herman) – 5:37

* John McLaughlin – Guitar
* Tony Williams – Drums, vocals
* Larry Young – Organ

25 August, 2011


Duke Ellington - Latin American Suite (1970)

Duke Ellington - Latin American Suite (1970)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 235MB
Duke Ellington always absorbed influences from the music he heard as he toured the world, and The Latin American Suite is no exception. Written during his first tour of Central and South America in 1968, Ellington premiered several of the pieces during concerts in the Southern hemisphere, though he didn't record it until returning to the U.S., with one piece ("Tina") being recorded separately over a year after the other tracks. "Oclupaca" is an exotic opener showcasing Paul Gonsalves' robust tenor, while Ellington gets in an Oriental kick during his driving blues "Chico Cuadradino" (jointly written with his son Mercer). Ellington is in a jaunty mood in his bossa nova "Eque," which spotlights both Johnny Hodges and Gonsalves. The infectious "Latin American Sunshine" is buoyed by Harry Carney's sonorous baritone sax and trombonist Lawrence Brown's solo. It's a shame that Ellington chose not to keep any of these originals in his repertoire once work was completed on this album.

-1. "Oclupaca" - 4:20
-2. "Chico Cuadradino" (Ellington, Mercer Ellington) - 5:00
-3. "Eque" - 3:30
-4. "Tina" - 4:34
-5. "The Sleeping Lady and the Giant Who Watches over Her" - 7:25
-6. "Latin American Sunshine" - 6:52
-7. "Brasilliance" - 5:02
All compositions by Duke Ellington except as indicated
Recorded at National Recording Studio in New York, NY on November 5, 1968 (tracks 1-3 & 5-7) and January 7, 1970 in Las Vegas, Nevada (track 4).

* Duke Ellington – piano
* Cat Anderson, Willie Cook, Mercer Ellington, Cootie Williams - trumpet (tracks 1-3 & 5-7)
* Lawrence Brown, Buster Cooper - trombone (tracks 1-3 & 5-7)
* Chuck Connors - bass trombone, tenor saxophone (tracks 1-3 & 5-7)
* Johnny Hodges - alto saxophone (tracks 1-3 & 5-7)
* Russell Procope - alto saxophone, clarinet (tracks 1-3 & 5-7)
* Paul Gonsalves tenor saxophone (tracks 1-3 & 5-7)
* Harold Ashby - tenor saxophone, clarinet (tracks 1-3 & 5-7)
* Harry Carney - baritone saxophone (tracks 1-3 & 5-7)
* Jeff Castleman (tracks 1-3 & 5-7), Paul Kondziela (track 4) - bass
* Rufus Jones - drums

24 August, 2011


Art Blakey - Hard Drive (1956)

Art Blakey - Hard Drive (1956)
aka: For Minors Only
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 215MB
The final recording by the second version of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers features trumpeter Bill Hardman, tenor saxophonist Johnny Griffin, either Junior Mance or Sam Dockery on piano and bassist Spanky DeBrest along with leader/drummer Blakey performing four group originals, two Jimmy Heath compositions and the obscure "Late Spring." Although this was not the most famous edition of The Messengers, it set a standard that its successors would uphold to, training its members to be bandleaders in their own right. The music on this album is typical hard bop of the period, well played and full of enthusiasm and fire.

-1. "For Minors Only" - Heath - 5:49
-2. "Right Down Front" - Griffin - 4:31
-3. "Deo-X" - Hardman - 5:50
-4. "Sweet Sakeena" - Hardman - 5:06
-5. "For Miles and Miles" - Heath - 5:24
-6. "Krafty" - Griffin - 6:35
-7. "Late Spring" - Mitchell - 5:36

* Junior Mance - Piano
* Art Blakey - Drums
* Spanky DeBrest - Bass
* Sam Dockery - Piano
* Johnny Griffin - Sax (Tenor)
* Bill Hardman- Trumpet


Antonio Carlos Jobim, Gal Costa - Rio Revisited (1987)

Antonio Carlos Jobim, Gal Costa - Rio Revisited (1987)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 260MB
Recorded at a video taping in the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles as part of the Jazzvisions series, this was Jobim's live act shortly after he resumed touring in the mid-'80s. At the time, Jobim struck an avuncular, almost casually anti-show-business presence seated before a grand piano, presiding over a large ensemble composed of friends and family, singing in his endearingly rough, now-threadbare voice. Some of the performances here are little more than pro-forma run-throughs of standard Jobim oldies but things perk up when Jobim digs into some lesser-known compositions like his "Song of the Jet" and son Paulo's catchy "Samba do Soho." In any case, the material is always superb and the cool-voiced, always in-pitch Brazilian singer Gal Costa turns up on a few numbers.

-01. "One Note Samba" - Hendricks, Jobim, Mendonca - 3:07
-02. "Desafinado" - Cavanaugh, Hendricks, Jobim - 3:00
-03. "Agua de Beber" - DeMoraes, Jobim - 3:48
-04. "Dindi" - Jobim - 4:59
-05. "Wave" - Jobim, Jobim - 2:49
-06. "Chega de Saudade" - DeMoraes, Jobim - 3:48
-07. "Two Kites" - Jobim - 4:53
-08. "Samba Do Soho" - Bastos, Jobim - 3:38
-09. "Sabiá" - Gimbel, Jobim - 3:20
-10. "Samba Do Aviao" - DeMoraes, Jobim - 3:23
-11. "Aguas de Marco (Waters of March)" - Jobim, Jobim - 4:08
-12. "Corcovado" - Jobim, Lees - 3:05
Bill Graham's Wiltern Theatre, Los Angeles, CA (1987)

* Gal Costa (vocals);
* Antonio Carlos Jobim (vocals, piano);
* Paulo Jobim (vocals, guitar);
* Maúcha Adnet, Paula Morelenbaum, Ana Lontra Jobim, Elizabeth Jobim, Simone Caymmi (vocals);
* Jaques Morelenbaum (cello);
* Danilo Caymmi (flute);
* Paulinho Braga, Paulo Braga (drums).

19 August, 2011


Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz - Diz And Getz (1955)

Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz - Diz And Getz (1955)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 220MB
Dizzy Gillespie was at the peak of his powers throughout the 1950s, still the pacesetter among trumpeters. This CD matches Dizzy with Stan Getz, the Oscar Peterson Trio and drummer Max Roach. Getz, although identified with the "cool" school, thrived on competition and is both relaxed and combative on the uptempo explorations of "It Don't Mean a Thing" and "Impromptu."

-1. "It Don't Mean a Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)" (Duke Ellington, Irving Mills) – 6:40
-2. "I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart" (Ellington, Mills, Henry Nemo, John Redmond) – 6:19
-3. "Exactly Like You" (Dorothy Fields, Jimmy McHugh) – 5:01
-4. "It's the Talk of the Town" (Jerry Livingston, Al J. Neiburg, Marty Symes) – 6:55
-5. "Impromptu" (Dizzy Gillespie) – 7:50
-6. "One Alone" (Gillespie) – 3:04
-7. "Girl of My Dreams" (Sunny Clapp) – 3:19
-8. "Siboney, Pt. 1" (Ernesto Lecuona, Theodora Morse) – 4:23
-9. "Siboney, Pt. 2" – 4:10

* Dizzy Gillespie – trumpet
* Stan Getz - tenor saxophone
* Herb Ellis - guitar
* Oscar Peterson – piano
* Ray Brown – double bass
* Max Roach - drums

18 August, 2011


Captain Beefheart - Doc At The Radar Station (1980)

Captain Beefheart - Doc At The Radar Station (1980)
rock, avantgarde | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 270MB
Astralweerks | 2006 remaster
Generally acclaimed as the strongest album of his comeback, and by some as his best since Trout Mask Replica, Doc at the Radar Station had a tough, lean sound owing partly to the virtuosic new version of the Magic Band (featuring future Pixies sideman Eric Drew Feldman, New York downtown-scene guitarist Gary Lucas, and a returning John "Drumbo" French, among others) and partly to the clear, stripped-down production, which augmented the Captain's basic dual-guitar interplay and jumpy rhythms with extra percussion instruments and touches of Shiny Beast's synths and trombones. Many of the songs on Doc either reworked or fully developed unused material composed around the time of the creatively fertile Trout Mask sessions, which adds to the spirited performances. Even if the Captain's voice isn't quite what it once was, Doc at the Radar Station is an excellent, focused consolidation of Beefheart's past and then-present.

-01. "Hot Head" – 3:23
-02. "Ashtray Heart" – 3:25
-03. "A Carrot Is as Close as a Rabbit Gets to a Diamond" – 1:38
-04. "Run Paint Run Run" – 3:40
-05. "Sue Egypt" – 2:57
-06. "Brickbats" – 2:40
-07. "Dirty Blue Gene" – 3:51
-08. "Best Batch Yet" – 5:02
-09. "Telephone" – 1:31
-10. "Flavor Bud Living" – 1:00
-11. "Sheriff of Hong Kong" – 6:34
-12. "Making Love to a Vampire with a Monkey on My Knee" – 3:11

*Don Van Vliet (C Beefheart) - vocals, Chinese gongs, harmonica, soprano saxophone, bass clarinet
* Jeff Moris Tepper - slide guitar, guitar, nerve guitar
* Eric Drew Feldman - synthesizer, bass, mellotron, grand piano, electric piano
* Robert Arthur Williams - drums
* Bruce Lambourne Fowler - trombone
* John French - slide guitar, guitar, marimba, bass, drums
* Gary Lucas - guitar, French horn


Sarah Vaughan - Crazy and Mixed Up (1982) (XRCD)

Sarah Vaughan - Crazy and Mixed Up (1982)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 220MB
Sarah Vaughan had complete control over the production of this album, Crazy and Mixed Up (which would be her last small-group recording) and, even if the results are not all that unique, her voice is often in near-miraculous form. With fine backup work from pianist Roland Hanna, guitarist Joe Pass, bassist Andy Simpkins and drummer Harold Jones, Sassy sounds in prime form, on such songs as "I Didn't Know What Time It Was," "Autumn Leaves," "The Island" and "You Are Too Beautiful." It is hard to believe, listening to her still-powerful voice on this CD reissue, that she had already been a recording artist for 48 years.

-1. "I Didn't Know What Time It Was" (Lorenz Hart, Richard Rodgers) - 4:02
-2. "That's All" (Alan Brandt, Bob Haymes) - 4:04
-3. "Autumn Leaves" (Joseph Kosma, Johnny Mercer, Jacques Prévert) - 5:36
-4. "Love Dance" (Ivan Lins, Vitor Martins, Paul Williams) - 3:29
-5. "The Island" (Alan Bergman, Marilyn Bergman, Lins, Martins) - 4:30
-6. "Seasons" (Sir Roland Hanna) - 5:20
-7. "In Love in Vain" (Jerome Kern, Leo Robin) - 3:09
-8. "You Are too Beautiful" (Hart, Rodgers) - 3:36
Recorded March 1,2 1982, Los Angeles, USA

* Sarah Vaughan - vocals
* Sir Roland Hanna - piano
* Joe Pass - guitar
* Andy Simpkins - double bass
* Harold Jones - drums

17 August, 2011


John Foulds (Endellion Quartet) - Chamber Music (1981)

John Foulds (Endellion Quartet) - Chamber Music (1981)
 classical | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 235MB
Pearl 1995
Amazon customer:
I count both Janacek's and Britten's String Quartets among the most searingly lyrical compositions in the genre written in the 20th Century. Until I heard this Foulds disc, I also thought they were uniquely original. John Foulds long remained an all-but-forgotten figure of British music. Born in 1880, the son of a bassoonist in the Hallé Orchestra, he had a measure of success in the 1920s, and his huge World Requiem was given a yearly performance in London between 1923 and 1926, but his success as a composer of light music overshadowed his more serious endeavors, to his great irritation. When the World Requiem fell out of favor Foulds career suffered a setback, and eventually he established in India, working on a synthesis of Eastern and Western music, writing for ensembles of traditional Indian instruments, using quarter-tones and Indian scales (although he had grown an interest in them much earlier). But his geographical remoteness and sudden death of cholera in 1939 durably put him out of the music scene. The staunch advocacy of musicologist Malcolm MacDonald and this recording by Pearl and the Endellion String Quartet, made in 1981 (which is the medium through which I discovered the composer, some years ago), signalled the beginning of a revival, which had a (small) recent culmination with the release by Warner Classics of two discs of orchestral music conducted by Sakari Oramo (John Foulds: Three Mantras and John Foulds: Dynamic Triptych; Music-Pictures III), and by Chandos of the first modern performance of the World Recording under Leon Botstein, Foulds: A World Requiem [Hybrid SACD] (all this info comes from the excellent article published on the invaluable, free and user-operated Internet encyclopedia). More a trickle than a flood, but a trickle is better than a drought.
According to MacDonald Foulds composed ten String Quartets, without numbering them, of which apparently only four survive complete, eight of these being early works composed before he was thirty. Quartetto intimo op 89 is Fould's 9th and was composed in 1931, after a long period during which the composer didn't tackle the genre. So, it has the intense and searing lyricism and the strange twists of phrase of Janacek's Quartet or Britten's first two. I also hear traces of Ravel's. These references are mentioned only to give the reader an idea of what is in store, not to imply that the composition is derivative. It remained unplayed until the premiere given in 1980 by the same Endellion Quartet who recorded it here. Coming back to it some twenty years (oh can it be that long) after first hearing it, I am as breath-taken as the first time. How could such a masterpiece have remained so long forgotten, and how is it possible that it hasn't had any subsequent recordings?
Unfortunately most of the 10th Quartet, Quartetto geniale, composed in India in 1935, has been lost. Only fragments of the first movement remain and a complete draft of the slow third movement, "Lento Quieto". It is very tender, lullaby-like, then broodingly passionate and dramatic, quite beautiful but not as original as Quartetto intimo. This recording is believed to be the first performance.
"Aquarelles" is an earlier composition and isn't as original. In fact, according to the liner notes they are apparently a compilation, made around 1914, of movements written earlier and independently. Foulds regrouped them under the general title of Music-Pictures Group 2, the second of nine such suites written for various forces ranging from full orchestra to solo piano. The first Aquarelle, apparently originally written in 1911 for piano trio (part of the Music-Pictures Group 1), and the third, adapted from a piano piece, "English tune with Burden" (meaning "refrain"), possibly written also in 1914, are reminiscent and derivative of Dvorak. The original piano piece by the way can be found on Peter Jacobs' Foulds piano collection on Altarus, John Foulds: Seven Essays in the Modes, etc.. The second is the earliest (1905) and also the best, imbued with a mood of a despondent and passionate despair (and some depressivequarter-tone slides, too, at 3:54). Debussy's Quartet comes to mind.
TT is 54 minutes. The uncredited author of the very informative liner notes is presumably Malcolm MacDonald himself, the scholar who single-handedly set the Foulds revival in motion.

-1. Quartetto Intimo, Op.89: Poco Trattenuto - Impetuoso
-2. Quartetto Intimo, Op.89: Lento Introspettivo
-3. Quartetto Intimo, Op.89: Pasquinade: Con Amore
-4. Quartetto Intimo, Op.89: Colloquy: Serioso
-5. Quartetto Intimo, Op.89: Finale: Energico Passionata
-6. Quartetto Geniale, Op.97: Lento Quieto
-7. Aquarelles (Music-Pictures Group 2) Op.32: I. In Provence. Refrain Rococo
-8. Aquarelles (Music-Pictures Group 2) Op.32: II. The Waters Of Babylon
-9. Aquarelles (Music-Pictures Group 2) Op.32: III. Arden Glade. English Tune With Burden - ESQ

16 August, 2011


Horace Parlan - Up & Down (1961) (RVG)

Horace Parlan - Up & Down (1961)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 375MB
Blue Note | RVG 24-bit remaster 2008
By adding guitarist Grant Green and tenor saxophonist Booker Ervin to his standard rhythm section of bassist George Tucker and drummer Al Harewood, pianist Horace Parlan opens up his sound and brings it closer to soul-jazz on Up and Down. Green's clean, graceful style meshes well with Parlan's relaxed technique, while Ervin's robust tone and virile attack provides a good contrast to the laid-back groove the rhythm section lays down. Stylistically, the music is balanced between hard bop and soul-jazz, which are tied together by the bluesy tint in the three soloists' playing. All of the six original compositions give the band room to stretch out and to not only show off their chops, but move the music somewhat away from generic conventions and find new territory. In other words, it finds Parlan at a peak, and in many ways, coming into his own as a pianist and a leader.

-1. "The Book's Beat" (Booker Ervin) - 9:50
-2. "Up and Down" (Horace Parlan) - 6:11
-3. "Fugee" (George Tucker) - 7:04
-4. "The Other Part of Town" (Grant Green) - 11:41
-5. "Lonely One" (Babs Gonzales) - 4:06
-6. "Light Blue" (Tommy Turrentine) - 6:04
-7. "Fugee" [alternate take] (Tucker) - 7:01
Recorded at Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ on June 18, 1961

* Horace Parlan - piano
* Booker Ervin - tenor saxophone
* Grant Green - guitar
* George Tucker - bass
* Al Harewood - drums

15 August, 2011


Paolo Fresu & Uri Caine - Think (2009)

Paolo Fresu & Uri Caine - Think (2009)
with Alborada String Quartet
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 350MB
Blue Note/EMI
Editorial Review
Beautiful duets between trumpeter Paolo Fresu and keyboardist Uri Caine -- a wonderful session from the Italian arm of Blue Note Records, and easily one of Caine's more sensitive moments on record! The pair play together without any sort of rhythm section -- just Fresu's horn, and Caine's keys, which are either acoustic piano or Fender Rhodes. But many tracks also feature a string quartet too -- used lightly, but nicely -- bringing in some gentle tones that really fit the mood of the music, and further underscore some of the more personal sounds that are clearly Paolo's influence on the set.

-01. "Darn That Dream" (5:15)
-02. "Blood Money" (4:45)
-03. "The Way Forward Metamorfosi" (5:15)
-04. "The Dragon" (4:20)
-05. "Doxy" (5:08)
-06. "In Memoriam" (3:09)
-07. "Duru Duru Durulia" (3:13)
-08. "Lascia Ch'io Pianga" (5:19)
-09. "Think" (3:09)
-10. "Non Ti Scordar Di Me Centochiodi" (5:14)
-11. "Claws" (7:24)
-12. "Roberto Strepitoso" (4:51)
-13. "Ssi" (3:59)
-14. "Tema Celeste" (3:24)
-15. "Cowboys And Indians" (5:18)

* Paolo Fresu - Trumpet
* Uri Caine - Piano
* & Alborada String Quartet

12 August, 2011


The Bulgarian Voices "Angelite" feat. Huun-Huur-Tu - Fly, Fly My Sadness (1996)

The Bulgarian Voices "Angelite" feat. Huun-Huur-Tu - Fly, Fly My Sadness (1996)
world | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 290MB
JARO 4197-2
In the 1990s, it was discovered that the Bulgarian and the Tuvan people have the same roots, both originally inhabiting Central Asia. Because of great migrations more than 1,500 years ago, the original Tuvan somehow split in two groups; a group ended in what is now known as Bulgaria and the other in what is today Tuva. Because of numerous assimilations, Bulgarian people got assimilated to the Slav of the Balkan and the Tuvan to Mongolian tribes. As is obvious, the music of both groups evolved quite differently, yet both are fascinating. It was Mikhail Alperin who had the original idea of bringing together a Bulgarian choir with a Tuvan group. Here they are: the Bulgarian Choir Angelite and Huun-Huur-Tu -- two distant "cousins" meeting again after more than a thousand years, but this time through music. Alperin wrote all of the compositions, based on Bulgarian, Tuvan, and Russian traditions. The results are absolutely mesmerizing. This CD is a vocal meditation of the most divine spirituality, deeply grounded in more than 1,000-year-old traditions.

-1. "Fly, Fly My Sadness" - Alperin, Kenov - 7:43
-2. "Legend" - Alperin - 7:38
-3. "Wave" - Alperin - 7:19
-4. "Lonely Bird" - Alperin - 10:57
-5. "Mountain Story" - Alperin - 10:16

09 August, 2011


Sonny Rollins - Newk's Time (1957) (RVG)

Sonny Rollins - Newk's Time (1957)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 270MB
Blue Note | RVG 24-bit remaster 2003
In his early prime and well-respected, tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins cut this fine hard bop date as one of several late-'50s sessions for Blue Note. The record is part classic date, part blowing session, sporting a mix of engaging head statements and lengthy solos. Rollins takes to the spacious quartet setting, stretching out on taut versions of Miles Davis' '50s concert opener "Tune Up" and Kenny Dorham's "Asiatic Raes." Keeping the swing hard but supple are drummer Philly Joe Jones, bassist Doug Watkins, and pianist Wynton Kelly; Jones was certainly the standout in this well-respected sampling of the best young players of the period, as he oftentimes matched the intensity and ingenuity of the star soloists he backed. Jones, in fact, puts in some career highlights on "Wonderful! Wonderful!" and "The Surrey With the Fringe on Top," just two of many wholly unique Tin Pan Alley song interpretations Rollins has done in his long career. From a career-defining period before the legendary Williamsburg Bridge layoff of two years, Rollins' Newk's Time may not make classic status in jazz roundups, but it certainly is a must for fans of this most important of classic hard bop soloists.

-1. "Tune Up" (Davis) (5:43)
-2. "Asiatic Raes" (5:55)
-3. "Wonderful! Wonderful!" (Edwards, Raleigh) (5:57)
-4. "The Surrey with the Fringe on Top" (Rodgers-Hammerstein) (6:30)
-5. "Blues for Philly Joe" (6:42)
-6. "Namely You" (3:18)

* Saxophone [Tenor] - Sonny Rollins
* Bass - Doug Watkins
* Drums - Philly Joe Jones
* Piano - Wynton Kelly
* Producer - Alfred Lion

--> Blue Note 804001 edition (1990) here  <--

08 August, 2011


Rahsaan Roland Kirk & Al Hibbler - A Meeting Of The Times (1972)

Rahsaan Roland Kirk & Al Hibbler - A Meeting Of The Times (1972)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 250MB
Atlantic Masters
On first glance this LP combines together a pair of unlikely musical partners; the unique multi-instrumentalist Rahsaan Roland Kirk and Duke Ellington's former ballad singer Al Hibbler. However Rahsaan was very well acquainted with Ellington's music and he plays respectfully behind Hibbler on many of the standards, taking the wild "Carney and Bigard Place" as an instrumental. Hibbler (who did not record much this late in his career) is in good voice and phrases as eccentrically as ever on such songs as "Do Nothin' Till You Hear from Me," "Don't Get Around Much Anymore" and "I Didn't Know About You." One leftover selection from Rahsaan's session with singer Leon Thomas ("Dream") rounds out this surprising set.

1. "Do Nothin' Till You Hear from Me" (Duke Ellington, Bob Russell) – 4:38
2. "Daybreak" (Ellington, John Latouche, Billy Strayhorn) – 3:12
3. "Lover, Come Back to Me" (Oscar Hammerstein II, Sigmund Romberg) – 3:48
4. "Don't Get Around Much Anymore" (Ellington, Russell) – 2:53
5. "This Love of Mine" (Sol Parker, Henry W. Sanicola, Jr., Frank Sinatra) – 4:55
6. "Carney and Bigard Place" (Roland Kirk) – 5:34
7. "I Didn't Know About You" (Ellington, Russell) – 4:01
8. "Something 'Bout Believing" (Ellington) – 6:05
9. "Dream" (Kirk) – 2:30

*Rahsaan Roland Kirk: tenor saxophone, manzello, stritch, flute, clarinet, baritone saxophone
*Al Hibbler: vocals (tracks 1-5, 7 & 8)
*Hank Jones: piano (tracks 1-8)
*Ron Carter: bass (tracks 1-8)
*Grady Tate: drums (tracks 1-8)
*Leon Thomas: vocals (track 9)
*Lonnie Liston Smith: piano (track 9)
*Major Holley: bass (track 9)
*Charles Crosby: drums (track 9)


Leonard Cohen - Dear Heather (2004)

Leonard Cohen - Dear Heather (2004)
rock | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 310MB
There is an air of finality on Leonard Cohen's Dear Heather. Cohen, who turned 70 in September of 2004, offers no air of personal mortality -- thank God; may this elegant Canadian bard of the holy and profane live forever. It nonetheless looks back -- to teachers, lovers, and friends -- and celebrates life spent in the process of actually living it. The album's bookend tracks provide some evidence: Lord Byron's bittersweet "Go No More A-Roving," set to music and sung by Cohen and Sharon Robinson (and dedicated to Cohen's ailing mentor, Irving Layton), and a beautifully crafted reading of country music's greatest lost love song, "Tennessee Waltz." Cohen's voice is even quieter, almost whispering, nearly sepulchral. The tone of the album is mellow, hushed, nocturnal. Its instrumentation is drenched in the beat nightclub atmospherics of Ten New Songs: trippy, skeletal R&B and pop and Casio keyboard- and beatbox-propelled rhythm tracks are graced by brushed drums, spectral saxophones, and vibes, along with an all but imperceptible acoustic guitar lilting sleepily through it all. But this doesn't get it, because there's so much more than this, too. That said, Dear Heather is Cohen's most upbeat offering. Rather than focus on loss as an end, it looks upon experience as something to be accepted as a portal to wisdom and gratitude. Women permeate these songs both literally and metaphorically. Robinson, who collaborated with Cohen last time, is here, but so is Anjani Thomas. Leanne Ungar also lends production help. Cohen blatantly sums up his amorous life in "Because Of": "Because of a few songs/Wherein I spoke of their mystery/Women have been exceptionally kind to my old age/They make a secret place/In their busy lives/And they say, 'Look at me, Leonard/Look at me one last time.'" "The Letters," written with Robinson, who sings in duet, is a case in point, reflecting on a past love who has been "Reading them again/The ones you didn't burn/You press them to your lips/My pages of concern...The wounded forms appear/The loss, the full extent/And simple kindness here/The solitude of strength." "On That Day" is a deeply compassionate meditation on the violence of September 11 where he asks the question: "Did you go crazy/Or did you report/On that day...." It is followed by the spoken poem "A Villanelle for Our Time," with words by Cohen's late professor Frank Scott that transform these experiences into hope. "We rise to play a greater part/The lesser loyalties depart/And neither race nor creed remain/From bitter searching of the heart...." On "There for You," with Robinson, Cohen digs even deeper into the well, telling an old lover that no matter the end result of their love, he was indeed there, had shown up, he was accountable and is grateful. Cohen quotes his own first book, The Spice Box of Earth, to pay tribute to the late poet A.M. Klein. "Tennessee Waltz" is indeed a sad, sad song, but it is given balance in Cohen's elegant, cheerful delivery. If this is indeed his final offering as a songwriter, it is a fine, decent, and moving way to close this chapter of the book of his life.


-01. "Go No More A-Roving" (words by Lord Byron, poem "So, we'll go no more a roving") – 3:40
-02. "Because Of" – 3:00
-03. "The Letters" (Cohen, Sharon Robinson) – 4:44
-04. "Undertow" – 4:20
-05. "Morning Glory" – 3:28
-06. "On That Day" (Cohen, Anjani Thomas) – 2:04
-07. "Villanelle for Our Time" (words by F. R. Scott) – 5:55
-08. "There for You" (Cohen, Robinson) – 4:36
-09. "Dear Heather" – 3:41
-10. "Nightingale" (Cohen, Thomas) – 2:27
-11. "To a Teacher" – 2:32
-12. "The Faith" (music based on a Quebec folk song, see "Un Canadien errant") – 4:17
-13. "Tennessee Waltz" (Redd Stewart, Pee Wee King, additional verse by Cohen) – 4:05
All songs were written by Leonard Cohen, except where noted.

05 August, 2011


Ella Fitzgerald - Ella in Hollywood (1961)

Ella Fitzgerald - Ella in Hollywood (1961)
Live at The Crescendo
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 330MB
Verve Originals | rel: 2009
An appearance in Hollywood for a first-rate jazz vocalist was not necessarily an opportunity to broadcast the singer's visage and pander to everyone from Tacoma to Tallahassee. It could also include a date at the Crescendo. The Sunset Strip's best chance to find premier jazz, Gene Norman's nightclub hosted dozens of jazz legends (and a comic or two), and produced more than its share of excellent LPs recorded on location. Better even than Mel Tormé's 1954 classic, the Ella Fitzgerald LP that resulted from her May 1961 appearances generated one of the best (and certainly most underrated) live records in her discography. All of her hallmarks -- technical wizardry, breakneck scatting, irrepressible humor and warmth -- are on full display, with a small but expressive quartet backing her performance (including pianist Lou Levy, guitarist Herb Ellis, drummer Gus Johnson, and bassist Wilfred Middlebrooks). Although it's full of brilliance, the highlights are clear: a nine-minute scat masterpiece of "Take the 'A' Train," with chorus after chorus of variations, and the shorter but still excellent "Mr. Paganini." (The latter is one of the nods to her early career, along with a set-closing "Air Mail Special.") The balladry is masterful as well, with "Baby, Won't You Please Come Home" and "Satin Doll" high on the list. Rarely given a spot on the best LPs of her career, Ella in Hollywood is nonetheless a classic glimpse of Ella at her on-stage best.

-01. "This Could Be the Start of Something Big" (Steve Allen) – 2:33
-02. "I've Got the World on a String" (Harold Arlen, Ted Koehler) – 3:44
-03. "You're Driving Me Crazy" (Walter Donaldson) – 3:23
-04. "Just in Time" (Betty Comden, Adolph Green, Jule Styne) – 1:56
-05. "It Might as Well Be Spring" (Oscar Hammerstein II, Richard Rodgers) – 3:07
-06. "Take the "A" Train" (Billy Strayhorn) – 9:04
-07. "Stairway to the Stars" (Matty Malneck, M Parish, Frank Signorelli) – 3:56
-08. "Mr. Paganini" (Sam Coslow) – 4:05
-09. "Satin Doll" (Duke Ellington, Johnny Mercer, Strayhorn) – 2:53
-10. "Blue Moon" (Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart) – 3:17
-11. "Baby, Won't You Please Come Home?" (C Warfield, Clarence Williams) – 3:41
-12. "Air Mail Special" (Charlie Christian, Benny Goodman, Jimmy Mundy) – 5:26
Recorded live, May 11- May 21, 1961, Hollywood, Los Angeles

*Ella Fitzgerald - Vocals
*Wilfred Middlebrooks - Bass
*Lou Levy - Piano
*Gus Johnson - Drums
*Herb Ellis - Guitar


Donald Byrd - Off To The Races (1958) (RVG)

Donald Byrd - Off To The Races (1958)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 280MB
Blue Note | RVG 24-bit remaster 2006
From the crackling opening notes of "Lover Come Back to Me," it's clear that Off to the Races is one of Donald Byrd's most invigorating sessions of the late '50s. Working with a stellar supporting band -- Jackie McLean (alto sax), Wynton Kelly (piano), Pepper Adams (bari sax), Sam Jones (bass), Art Taylor (drums) -- Byrd turns in one of his strongest recordings of the era. Throughout the album, Byrd switches between hard bop, ballads, laid-back blues, and soul-jazz. Two of the numbers are standards, one is a cover, and three are Byrd originals, but what matters is the playing. Over the course of the album, Byrd proves he has matured greatly as a soloist, capable of sweet, melodic solos on the slower numbers and blistering runs of notes on the faster songs. McLean is just as vigorous and lyrical, contributing some fine moments to the record, as do Adams and Kelly. There's nothing surprising about Off to the Races; it's simply a set of well-performed, enjoyable hard bop, but sometimes that's enough.

-1. "Lover, Come Back to Me" (Oscar Hammerstein II, Sigmund Romberg) - 6:52
-2. "When Your Love Has Gone" - 5:04
-3. "Sudwest Funk" - 6:53
-4. "Paul's Pal" (Sonny Rollins) - 7:08
-5. "Off to the Races" - 6:36
-6. "Down Tempo" - 5:19
All compositions by Donald Byrd except as indicated
Recorded at Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, NJ on December 21, 1958.

*Donald Byrd - trumpet,
*Jackie McLean - alto saxophone (tracks 1 & 3-6)
*Pepper Adams - baritone saxophone (tracks 1 & 3-6)
*Wynton Kelly - piano
*Sam Jones - bass
*Art Taylor - drums

03 August, 2011


Can - Live Music (1971-77) 2cd

Can - Live Music (1971-77)
(Can Box Music: Live 1971-1977)
rock | 2cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 620MB
Spoon | rel: 1999
Mute celebrated Can's 30th birthday with the release of the Can Box. Formed in Cologne, Germany, in 1968, the feckless sound experimenters went on to reach the lofty cult and seminal status of bands like the Velvet Underground and Mothers of Invention. The three-item box contains a double CD of live music recorded from 1971-1977; a book of history, interviews, reviews, and photos; as well as a video of a 1972 concert and a previously unreleased documentary made in 1988 and 1997. The CD is compiled from cassettes and other non-professional fan recordings with professional sound processing and mastering applied. Four of the pieces are extemporaneous jams that have as heretofore not seen the light of day. The tome proves to be of just such rare and personal content. The concert was a free event attended by over 10,000 when Can had placed "Spoon" (available on the Box album) into the number one chart position. The footage was made with help from Wim Wenders' film editor, Peter Przygodda. While this attention brought the group to do a small German tour where each member presented a solo project, there were no plans for a reunion.

-1. "Jynx" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt) – 16:06
14th Oct 1975, Giessen, Universität
-2. "Dizzy Dizzy" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt) – 8:02
19th Nov 1975, Brighton, Sussex University
-3. "Vernal Equinox" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt) – 12:44
19th Nov 1975, Brighton, Sussex University
-4. "Fizz" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt, Rosko Gee) – 6:27
2nd Mar 1977, Keele, University of Keele
-5. "Yoo Doo Right" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt, Mooney) – 14:26
4th May 1975, Croydon, Greyhound
-6. "Cascade Waltz" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt) – 4:48
23rd Mar 1977, London, Sound Circus
-1. "Colchester Finale" incl. "Halleluhwah" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt, Suzuki) – 37:24
8th May 1972, Colchester, University of Essex
-2. "Kata Kong" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt) – 8:28
21st Nov 1975, Hatfield, Hatfield Polytechnic
-3. "Spoon" (Karoli, Czukay, Liebezeit, Schmidt, Suzuki) – 14:23
3rd Feb 1972, Cologne, Sporthalle

*Holger Czukay – bass (1972–1975); short wave radio, sampler & electronic treatments (1977)
*Michael Karoli – guitar, vocals
*Jaki Liebezeit – drums, percussion
*Irmin Schmidt – keyboards
*Damo Suzuki – vocals (1972 only)
*Rosko Gee – bass (1977 only)


McCoy Tyner - Tender Moments (1967) (RVG)

McCoy Tyner - Tender Moments (1967)
jazz | 1cd | eac-flac-cue-log-cover | 260MB
Blue Note | RVG 24-bit remaster 2003
On this excellent set (reissued on CD by Blue Note), McCoy Tyner had the opportunity for the first time to head a larger group. His nonet is an all-star aggregation comprised of trumpeter Lee Morgan, trombonist Julian Priester, altoist James Spaulding, Bennie Maupin on tenor, the French horn of Bob Northern, Howard Johnson on tuba, bassist Herbie Lewis, and drummer Joe Chambers in addition to the pianist/leader. Tyner debuted six of his originals, and although none became standards (perhaps the best known are "The High Priest" and "All My Yesterdays"), the music is quite colorful and advanced for the period. Well worth investigating. [The 2004 Rudy Van Gelder Edition does not contain any bonus material. It does, however, feature wonderfully remastered sound in 24-bit resolution transferred from the original two-track analog tapes. It replaces the earlier CD issue.]

-1. "Mode to John" - 5:40
-2. "Man from Tanganyika" - 6:51
-3. "The High Priest" - 6:05
-4. "Utopia" - 7:30
-5. "All My Yesterdays" - 6:02
-6. "Lee Plus Three" - 5:36
All compositions by McCoy Tyner
Recorded at Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, December 1, 1967

*McCoy Tyner: piano
*Lee Morgan: trumpet
*Julian Priester: trombone (tracks 1-5)
*Bob Northern: french horn (tracks 1-5)
*Howard Johnson: tuba (tracks 1-5)
*James Spaulding: alto saxophone, flute (tracks 1-5)
*Bennie Maupin: tenor saxophone (tracks 1-5)
*Herbie Lewis: bass
*Joe Chambers: drums

02 August, 2011


The American Folk-Blues Festival - Volume One 1962-66 (music video)

The American Folk-Blues Festival -  Volume One 1962-66
blues | DVD5 PAL | PCM mono |  iso, cover | 4300MB
Universal | rel: 2003

Unearthed some 40 years after the fact, this has to be one of the finest blues collections ever assembled on video. Thanks to a couple of young promoters who brought the musicians to Europe--where they were treated with a good deal more respect and dignity than in America--we get an extraordinary lineup of bluesmen and women: Muddy Waters, Sonny Boy Williamson, Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker, Sippie Wallace... the list goes on. Their concert performances (several in stagy but effective down-home settings) before a rather formal but appreciative German audience have them playing in some cool combinations (T-Bone Walker backing Memphis Slim, Otis Rush with Junior Wells), even introducing one another (Williamson on guitarist Lonnie Johnson, an elder statesman on the tour: "A very nice musician")--and all with great sound (mono, but still flawless) and visuals (in black and white). This is one for blues fans to treasure.

-01. Call Me When You Need Me
-02. Hootin' Blues
-03. The Blues Is Everywhere
-04. I Can't Quit You Baby
-05. Another Night to Cry
-06. Women Be Wise
-07. Hobo Blues
-08. Five Long Years
-09. Shakey's Blues
-10. Hoodoo Man Blues
-11. Mean Stepfather
-12. Going Down to the River
-13. Weak Brain and Narrow Mind
-14. Nine Below Zero
-15. Spann's Blues
-16. I've Got My Mojo Working
-17. Bye Bye Blues
-18. Walking the Floor Over You
-19. Off the Hook
~70 mins


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