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Gato BarbieriGato Para Los Amigos/Que Pasa/Che Corazon ... CD
BGO (UK), 1983/1997/1999. New Copy 3 CDs .... $19.99
Overlooked later genius from Gato Barbieri – a trio of albums served up in one nicely priced package! Gato Para Los Amigos is some of Barbieri's best work of the 80s – an excellent live set from 1981 that's kind of a return to the drawn-out intensity of his years at Impulse! The group's got a good mixture of percussion, keyboards, and guitar – and the tracks on the set are mostly Latin-tinged numbers that offer a perfect foil for Gato's soulful and exploratory blowing – those haunting long lines we first fell in love with on his records for Impulse and Flying Dutchman! Titles include "Bolivia", "Carnavalito", "Brazil", "Viva Emiliano Zapata", and "Latino America". Que Pasa is a surprisingly nice late 90s effort from Gato Barbieri – at the time, his first new album in over a decade – and a set put together with a nicely contemporary feel with help from keyboardist Philippe Saisse! Saisse produced the set, and he really gives the record some of the warmly soulful moments of his own great music – an approach that's somewhat deeper than smooth jazz, and which makes more than enough space for Gato's well-blown saxophone solos. There's a bit of backing vocals on the set, and the approach here is definitely soul-based – but it's got a solid bottom that hearkens back to some of Gato's best R&B-inspired work of the 70s. Titles include "Mystica", "Dancing With Dolphins", "Straight Into The Sunrise", "Indonesia", "The Woman I Remember", and "Cause We've Ended As Lovers". Che Corazon is one of Gato Barbieri's most ambitious albums – a record that mixes core jazzy grooving with some larger orchestral parts – but all at a level that still moves along nicely! Sweet keyboards glide alongside Gato's reed lines – which come out strongly in the lead, with that sharp-cutting sense of soul that we've always loved so much. The overall sound is smoother than the early days, but no less soulful – and titles include a great remake of Marvin Gaye's "I Want You", plus "Eclipse", "The Woman On The Lake", "1812", "Encounter", and "Sweet Glenda". CD

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Al Di MeolaLand Of The Midnight Sun ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1976. New Copy .... $16.99
A real 70s standout from guitarist Al Di Meola – and that's saying a lot, given the strength of most of his albums from the decade! The record's one that broke Al's talents out to so many different groups – yet never in a way that waters down his sound, nor dims his genius for a solo. Al plays a host of guitars – electric, and both six and 12 string acoustic – the latter of which are especially beautiful, and handled in a balance between European virtuoso modes, and some of the more rhythmic elements of the American fusion scene. Speaking of fusion, the other players on the date really help set the tone – Chick Corea on keyboards and piano, Barry Miles on Fender Rhodes and mini-moog, Stanley Clarke on bass, and both Steve Gadd and Lenny White on drums – each setting a different pace when they appear. Titles include "The Wizard", "Suite Golden Dawn", "Short Tales Of The Black Forest", and "Land Of The Midnight Sun". CD

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Maynard FergusonMF Horn/MF Horn 2/MF Horn 3 ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1970/1972/1973. New Copy 2 CDs .... $16.99
Three albums that form the start of a bold new start for trumpeter Maynard Ferguson – and records that opened up a whole new groove for big band in the 70s! MF Horn is a brilliant album that owes a heck of a lot to Brit easy maestro Keith Mansfield! Mansfield produced the whole thing, and arranged with the help of Kenny Wheeler and Adrian Dover – and the whole record has the tightness of the best expansive Brit easy grooves from the time – setting Ferguson's brassy horn in some impeccable backings that have an amazing blend of jazz, easy, and rhythm – never failing to please our oft-jaded ears! Way more than just funky big band, with a really solid approach all the way through – and solo work by Kenny Wheeler and Pete King, in addition to Ferguson. Titles include the Indian groover "Chala Nata", plus "L-Dopa", "Eli's Comin", "Ballad To Max", and "MacArthur Park". MF Horn 2 is one of Maynard's key albums done with help from Brit Easy genius Keith Mansfield! Mansfield really helped Ferguson reinvent the sound of his big band at the end of the 60s – taking the sometimes modern, sometimes brassy sound of his earlier work and forging it into a tighter groove that often had a nice bit of bounce at the bottom – a slightly funky sound that made Maynard sound hipper than ever, and which also brought in a nice dose of electric keyboards and guitar to groove things up. Arrangements are by Kenny Wheeler, Mansfield, and Adrian Drover – and titles include "Give It One", "Hey Jude", "The Summer Knows", "Mother", "Spinning Wheel", "Shaft", and "Free Wheeler". MF Horn 3 is funky funky Maynard – and a sweet set of electric big band jazz that's got plenty of nice moments! The album features a core rhythm group that really goes to town – jamming in sort of a Clarke-Boland sort of way, with lots of propulsive changes that create a full-on and often funky groove – as Maynard and other horns blow like mad over the top, sending the album into screaming, soaring grooves that almost never let up. The record was Maynard's first US effort in a long time – and was produced by Teo Macero with a very electric-conscious sound that further enforced the hipness of the music! Titles include "Pochahontas", "Awright Awright", "Nice N Juicy", "SOMF", and "Mother Fingers". CD

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Freddie HubbardBundle Of Joy/Super Blue/Love Connection ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1977/1978/1979. New Copy 2 CDs .... $18.99
A triple-header from Freddie Hubbard – three late 70s albums together in a single set! Bundle Of Joy is a bundle of soul from Freddie Hubbard – one that has him blowing beautifully over full arrangements from Bert DeCoteux – the 70s super-soul maestro who really brings a new sound to Hubbard's music! The style's a bit smoother than other Freddie albums of the time, but still really great – a wonderful plenty of his well-timed, well-punctuated work on trumpet with warm grooves supplied by Bert – filled with instrumentation that includes David T Walker on guitar, Ernie Watts on sax and flute, Azar Lawrence on tenor, David Garfield on keyboards, and even Dorothy Ashby on flute. Titles include "Portrait Of Jenny", "Rainy Day Song", "Bundle Of Joy", "From Now On", "From Behind", and "Rahsaan". Super Blue is a sweet late 70s set from Freddie Hubbard – a slight move away from some of his highly-electric sides of the CTI years, yet one that still has some of the most soulful qualities of that work! Freddie's trumpet has a nicely spacious quality throughout – one that's flowing, and almost glowing at time – cascading along with qualities you might be more likely to hear from Art Farmer on some of the gentler numbers, yet really bursting out with that old Hubbard dynamism on the rest. Other players include Joe Henderson on tenor, Hubert Laws on flute, Kenny Barron on piano and keyboards, Ron Carter on bass, and Jack DeJohnette on drums – and George Benson also guests on guitar on one number too. A good number of the titles are originals, and tracks include "Super Blue", "To Her Ladyship", "Take It To The Ozone", "The Gospel Truth", and "Theme For Kareem". Love Connection has Freddie Hubbard working with arranger Claus Ogerman on some expansive tracks that go beyond his earlier work in the decade – sometimes blowing mellow notes over larger orchestrations, other times working in a surprisingly lean groove that has some really soulful touches! The approach shifts from track to track, but all titles are long, and the overall effect is really great. Al Jarreau guests on a sweet vocal version of "Little Sunflower", and other players on the set include Joe Farrell and Tom Scott on reeds, and Chick Corea, who plays most of the keys on the set. Titles include "Lazy Afternoon", "This Dream", "Brigitte", and "The Love Connection". CD

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Keith JarrettMysteries/Shades ... CD
Impulse/BGO (UK), 1976. New Copy .... $16.99
Great Impulse Records material from Keith Jarrett – almost overlooked, as it's from a time when most folks concentrate on his recordings for ECM! Mysteries is dark and moody work from Keith Jarrett – a record that builds strongly off his ensemble feeling of the Impulse years, but which also seems to carry a bit more of the introspective vibe he was building up in some of his more stripped down solo recordings! The group's still a great one here – with Dewey Redman on reeds, Charlie Haden on bass, Paul Motian on drums, and Guilhermo Franco on percussion – and the tunes, although long and somewhat free, still show Jarrett's great ear for a lyrical melody – carried off wonderfully without cliche, and still with more sharp edges than you might expect. Titles include "Rotation", "Everything That Lives Laments", "Flame", and "Mysteries". Shades is a lost gem from Keith's "with horns" period – a quintet session from the mid 70s, recorded with a group that features Dewey Redman on tenor, plus Charlie Haden on bass, Paul Motian on drums and percussion, and Guilherme Franco on additional percussion. The feel is a bit straighter than Jarrett's excellent Death & The Flower set – as the tunes have a highly rhythmic component, and make good use of the extra percussion to create a flowing, organic groove. There's still a nice loose feel overall, though – almost a take on the loft jazz sound, especially at the moments when Jarrett goes a bit outside on piano. Titles include "Shades Of Jazz", "Southern Smiles", "Rose Petals", and "Diatribe". CD

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Earl KlughLate Nite Guitar/Two Of A Kind/Nightsongs ... CD
BGO (UK), 1980/1982/1984. New Copy 2 CDs .... $18.99
A trio of albums from guitarist Earl Klugh – presented here in a single set! First up is Late Night Guitar – a beautiful set that really lives up to its title – a record that matches Earl's wonderful work on guitar with some sublime orchestral charts from Dave Matthews! The approach is definitely different than some of Klugh's previous work, and makes the album a very unique one – a set that's got a really personal, expressive vibe – but in ways that are never too cheesy or sentimental – a balance that, we think, really comes from Dave's handling of the backings. Titles include "Nice To Be Around", "Like A Lover", "Tenderly", "Mona Lisa", "Triste", and "A Time For Love". Two Of A Kind is a classic pairing of the guitar of Earl Klugh and the keyboards of Bob James – and a set that really makes some great steps forward out of a blend of the acoustic and electric sounds from each player! Earl's strings sound especially nice over James' Fender Rhodes – but even cuts with acoustic piano or other keyboards come off sounding great – with a warm Tappan Zee vibe that's mighty nice throughout! Titles include "The Falcon", "Whiplash", "Ingenue", "Wes", and "Sandstorm". On Nightsongs, Earl Klugh's guitar gets plenty of rich colors to work with – some deeper backdrops from arrangers Don Sebesky and Dave Matthews – each of whom bring a different mood to the set! Sebesky's got those lush, full charts that we love so much from his classic orchestral charts of the 60s and 70s – while Matthews is a bit tighter and more swinging, but still farther from his funky work of the 70s than you might expect. Klugh's guitar hits loads of those classic colorful tones throughout – and titles include "Theme From The Pawnbroker", "The Ook Of Love", "Nature Boy", "A Certain Smile", "The Shadow Of Your Smile", and "Stay Gold". CD

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Chuck MangioneLove Notes/Disguise/Save Tonight For Me ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1982/1984/1986. New Copy 2 CDs .... $16.99
Three Chuck Mangione albums from the 80s – all packed here together in a single set! Love Notes is full of cool compressed flugelhorn from Mangione – and a set that also features the leader on some Fender Rhodes as well! Chuck's working here in a small combo setting that keeps up the best vibe of his fusion classics from the 70s – that compressed quality that made magic with much bigger audiences than were reached by the usual jazz players of his generation – yet handled with that well-crafted vibe that still gave Mangione some respect from the old school. Tracks are relatively long, and surprisingly creative at times – and titles include "Steppin Out", "No Problems", "Memories Of Scirocco", "Love Note", and "To The 80s". On Disguise, Chuck Mangione gets some great help from Deodato – who not only plays keyboards on the set, but also arranged and produced – in a way that gives lots of the tracks the same soulful vibe as his own records from the time! Deodato's groove is definitely more 80s-styled than some of Mangione's other music – but the overall approach is still nice and warm, and plenty soulful – thanks to those compressed flugelhorn lines that Mangione blows so beautifully. Titles include "Josephine", "Leonardo's Lady", "Love Theme From London & Davis In New York", "Diana D", and "Love Wears No Disguise" – plus the odd "Shirley MacLaine", which also features some weird rapping from Shirley herself! Save Tonight For Me explores the soulful side of Chuck Mangione – a set that still features plenty of lead solos from Chuck, but which also brings in some fuller backings that have a contemporary R&B vibe overall! Most numbers are still instrumental – although there's a bit of vocals on the set – and as with other Mangione records from previous years, keyboards are often the other key element in the mix – an instrument that Chuck's learned to solo with in a really sweet way. Titles include "Machu Picchu", "Rockin At Red Rocks", "Sweet Cheryl Lynn", "Give Your Heart A Chance", and "TJ's Gingerbread House". CD

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Les McCannGospel Truth/Soul Hits/McCanna ... CD
World Pacific/BGO (UK), 1963/1964. New Copy 2 CDs .... $18.99
A trio of early 60s gems from pianist Les McCann – all wrapped up here in a single set! First up is The Gospel Truth – a solid 60s smoker in which Les McCann really gets back to the roots of soul jazz – serving up the gospel-tinged truth promised in the title – and really linking his piano back to the pulpit in the process! Les has a wonderfully firm touch on the left end of the keyboard – which makes for a rollicking groove on just about every track, augmented by super-tight drum work from the great Paul Humphrey, who almost gets a tambourine vibe out of his snare and cymbal! Stanley Gilbert plays bass, and Charles Kynard plays guest Hammond on a few tracks – and titles include "Get That Soul", "The Preacher", "The Gospel Truth", "Oh The Joy", and "Didn't It Rain". Soul Hits is a really hard-hitting groover from the great 60s trio of Les McCann – a set that adds in some extra guitar from Joe Pass, who definitely sounds his most soulful on the set! Joe grooves perfectly with Les' piano – and has almost a Kenny Burrell-like depth in tone throughout – one that we're not as likely to hear on other Pass sessions of this vintage, possibly because of the excellent rhythms from Paul Chambers on bass and Paul Humphrey on drums! Tunes are definitely the soul hits promised in the title – mostly numbers that were brimming up big in the soul jazz generation of the time, but given a particular Les McCann twist. Titles include "Sister Sadie", "Bag's Groove", "Back At The Chicken Shack", "Work Song", "Sonnymoon For Two", "Groove Yard", and "Sack O Woe". McCanna is filled with a great Latin groove from the mighty Les McCann – a smoking set that adds in extra percussion from Willie Correa – who gives the record a sound that's quite a change from the usual McCann groove! The percussion is wonderful throughout – and given that the great Paul Humphrey is already playing drums in the trio, the whole thing's got a rhythmic zest that never lets up – way different than just the usual "with conga" style you'd hear on a Prestige Records piano trio record – and instead a groove that's definitely dedicated to the boldest Latin piano modes of the time! The track list includes a lot of originals, such as "McCanna", "Zulu", "Bastuto Baby", "Shaam-Pu II", and "Narobi Nights" – plus versions of "Que Rico" and "It Had Better Be Tonight". CD

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Grover Washington JrAll My Tomorrows/Soulful Strut/Breath Of Heaven ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1994/1996/1997. New Copy 3CDs .... $19.99
A trio of 90s albums from Grover Washington! All My Tomorrows is an overlooked gem from reedman Grover – recorded in his later years, but a set that's actually got more of an acoustic style overall – one that goes back to the roots farther than any of Grover's fusion records! Washington's a great straight player in this setting – filled with soul on tenor and soprano sax – and working with top-shelf small group players like Eddie Henderson on trumpet, Hank Jones on piano, Bobby Watson on alto, and Robin Eubanks on trombone. Guitarist Romero Lumbambo arranged one great Brazilian-tinged number – and other arrangements are by Grover, Larry Willis, Slide Hampton, and Freddy Cole – who sings on two tracks too. Titles include "E Preciso Perdoar", "Happenstance", "All My Tomorrows", "Nature Boy", "Flamingo", and "Estate". Soulful Strut is bouncy soul from Grover Washington – a set that returns to his earlier roots in a space between soulful fusion and R&B! The slinky Washington soprano sax gets plenty of space in this set – blown with those seductive notes that always made Grover one of the most distinctive players on the instrument – and the backings often have this gentle R&B groove that's even stronger on the few cuts here with vocals. Titles include "Soulful Strut", "Bordertown", "Village Groove", "I Can Count The Times", "Headman's Hunt", and "Can You Stop The Rain". Breath Of Heaven is a holiday record from Grover Washington – but one that's got a fair bit more to offer than just the usual Christmas tunes! The set mixes older favorites and lesser-known numbers – all done in that soulful fusion style that Washington brought to his records from other seasons of the years – set up here with the leader on alto, tenor, and soprano sax – amidst arrangements from vibist Joe Lock, and keyboardist Donald Robinson, and guitarist Hiram Bullock – all of whom play on the record. Lisa Fischer sings on one number, but most of the record is instrumental – and titles include "Breath Of Heaven", "The Magi's Song/A Child Is Born", "I Wonder As I Wonder", "Christmas Time Is Here", "The Love In His Infant Eyes", and "Christmas Day Chant". CD

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Grover Washington JrStrawberry Moon/Then & Now/Time Out Of Mind ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1987/1988/1989. New Copy 2CD .... $16.99
Grover Washington Jr's first few albums for Columbia – Strawberry Moon, Then & Now and Time Out Of Mind – together in a 2CD set! Strawberry Moon has a number of laidback groovers, with some solid Washington originals such as the title track and some sweet covers. BB King plays and sings on "Caught A Touch Of Your Love", with Jean Carne guesting on "The Look Of Love". Grover's sax is soulful and sweet throughout, and the titles include "Strawberry Moon", "Summer Nights", "Keep In Touch", and "Maddie's Blues". Then And Now is a nice one that has Grover working in a straighter jazz mode for the most part, taking a break from the soul and R&B groover –- the most timeless of the 3 albums compiled here! Players include Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, Grady Tate and Darryl Washington. Titles include "Just Enough", "French Connections", "Stolen Moments", "Stella By Starlight" and more. Time Out Of Mind's title track is a cover of the Steely Dan classic, circa Gaucho – and this album finds Grover embracing the 80s a lot more than his previous album for Columbia. A mix of moods, with some electric funky flourishes and fusiony keys and synths. Titles include "Jamaica", "Sacred Kind Of Love", "Fly Away", the title track and more. This trio of albums represents a wide stylistic range covered by Grover in just a 3 year period! CD

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New Ian Carr & Don RendellShades Of Blue/Dusk Fire ... CD
BGO (UK), 1964/1966. Used 2CD .... Out Of Stock
Some of the greatest British jazz of the 60s – two early albums by the groundbreaking Ian Carr/Don Rendell quintet! Carr was a trumpeter and Rendell was a saxophonist – and together, the pair led a group that had an amazing flair for tones, colors, and interesting rhythmic progressions – picking up on the modal and exotic influences that were bubbling under in the British scene of the time, especially in work of players like Joe Harriott and Michael Garrick – but putting things together with a groove that was a bit more straight ahead, and inflected by the soulful lyricism of Blue Note artists like Horace Silver and Art Blakey! Both albums are tremendous – rich and under-discovered jazz territory, and overflowing with incredible original compositions that will make the set one of the freshest jazz CDs you purchase this year! Titles include "Latin Blue", "Just Blue", "Garrison 64", "Tan Samfu", "Jubal", "Dusk Fire", "Spooks", and "Ruth". CD

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New DeodatoWhirlwinds/Artistry ... CD
MCA/BGO (UK), 1974. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Two post-CTI gems from Deodato – back to back on a single CD! Whirlwinds is sweet keyboard soul from Deodato – a set that steps off nicely from the strengths of his big hits on CTI, hitting a similarly flowing groove that's really great! The instrumentation here is a bit more expanded than before, but never in a way that buries the keyboards – and Deodato's right out front on a range of electric keys that get some great support from John Tropea's finely-honed work on guitar! Titles include "Havana Strut", "Whirlwinds", "West 42nd Street", and a nice cover of Steely Dan's "Do It Again". And heck, even the album's version of Glen Miller's "Moonlight Serenade" manages to come off like a funk tune! Artistry is a live set from Deodato – but one that's very much in the mode of his best CTI studio sessions – with soaring, over the top keyboard work that's totally great – backed by some tightly compressed guitar, bass, and drums, with just enough funk in the mix to keep things interesting! As with other Deodato records from the time, there's a mix of moods here that comes together nicely – a range that goes past his easy hits, and shows Deodato to be one of the hippest, most soulful keyboard talents of his generation. Titles include a great version of "Super Strut" that grooves for over 8 minutes, and which has some firey guitar that really competes with Deodato's work on the keys – and other tracks include "Farewell To A Friend", "Pavane For A Dead Princess", "Rio Sangre", and "Jivin". CD

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New Maynard FergusonPrimal Scream/New Vintage/Carnival ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1976/1977/1978. New Copy 2CD .... Out Of Stock
A trio of heavy-hitters from hornman Maynard Ferguson – all served up in one sweet set! Primal Scream is one of the funkiest records ever from Ferguson – the climax of a great run of bigger group grooves in the 70s! The record's a tight batch of groovers, with production and keyboards by Bob James – and the whole thing's a mixture of big band funk and electronics that's simply out of this world! Side one kicks off with two massive numbers – the Arp-heavy "Cheshire Cat Walk", and the Kool & The Gang-ish "Primal Scream" – and both cuts are quite long, with loads of cool instrumental effects. Side two is a bit softer, but it does include a long keyboard groover called "Swamp". On New Vintage, Maynard really grooves it – playing with a group that's even larger than some of his early 70s funk sessions, in a style that's got traces of disco and R&B-styled fusion! The set was arranged, conducted, and produced by Jay Chataway – who's going for a nice smooth mode on most of the cuts, almost in the slick manner of some late 70s cop show soundtrack. Tracks are a bit longer than usual, with more room for the groove, and titles include the originals "Oasis" and "El Vuelvo", a surprisingly nice disco take on "Maria", and the cuts "Airegin" and "Star Wars". Carnival is a cool cooker from Maynard Ferguson – and a set that has all the upbeat tones you'd expect from the title, but lots of funky currents underneath! The set really sparkles right from the start – and has that sweet vibe that Maynard was really getting perfect on these late 70s records for Columbia – jazzy fusion that's tight, but never too uptight – with lots of room for sweet solos from the leader himself, plus Bill Hannon on moog, John Qdini on guitar, Eric Traub on tenor, and Mike Migliore on alto. Titles include a famous working of Earth Wind & Fier's "Fantasy" – plus "Battlestar Galactica", "MF Carnival", "Baker Street", "Birdland", "How Ya Doin Baby", and "Stella By Starlight". CD

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New Charles MingusLet My Children Hear Music/Charles Mingus & Friends In Concert ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1972/1973. New Copy 3CD .... Out Of Stock
A pair of 70s giants from Charles Mingus – some of his best material of the decade! First up is Let My Children Hear Music – one of the last great records by Charles Mingus – a set of extremely compelling original compositions, played by a fresh group of younger players, plus a few older masters! The record's got a fire and sense of emotion that's missing from a number of other 70s Mingus sessions – and it's one of the few later albums we'd easily rank right up there with his late 50s and early 60s classics! Orchestrations were partially arranged and conducted with help from Sy Johnson – and soloists include James Moody and Bobby Jones on tenor, Charles McPherson on alto, Snookie Young and Lonnie Hillyer on trumpet, and Roland Hanna on piano. Titles include "The Shoes Of The Fisherman's Wife Are Some Jive Ass Slippers", "Adagio Ma Non Troppo", "The Chill of Death", and "The I Of Hurricane Sue". Charles Mingus & Friends In Concert is a wonderful set – a double-length album that's great all the way through! Mingus live is always a treat – especially in these later years, when the fire seemed to go out of most of his studio recordings. Live, though, he always managed to kick it hard - with the sort of emotion that graced his strong early albums. And despite the fact that this one's conducted by Teo Macero, and features some remarks from Bill Cosby – the affair's still pretty hip, and the soloists go to town nicely – with those stretched-out performances that always made for the best individual moments in a Mingus record! The record features great work from Gene Ammons and Bobby Jones on tenor, Lee Konitz and Charles McPherson on alto, James Moody on flute, Randy Weston on piano, Lonnie Hillyer on trumpet, and Eddie Bert on trombone – and Honey Gordon sings a lovely vocal on the track "Eclipse". Other titles include "Jump Monk", "Us Is Two", "ESP", and "Ecclusiastics". CD

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New Tom ScottBlow It Out/Intimate Strangers/Street Beat ... CD
Epic/BGO (UK), 1977/1978/1979. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A trio of classics from reedman Tom Scott – all packaged together in a single set! Blow It Out has Tom Scott really hitting the right sort of smooth jazzy vibe to make the album one of his classics from the 70s! As on all Tom's work, the reed sound is still nice and sharp – that edge that appeared way back when Tom was doing great studio work in his early years, but was already one of the strongest voices of his new generation. And although there's a fair bit of electricity here, things are never too sanded down – and instead kept at kind of a Kudu Records sort of vibe – with bigger charts and some standout solos. Richard Tee plays some sweet Fender Rhodes on the record – and titles include "Gotcha", "Dream Lady", "Shadows", "Smoothin On Down", and "You've Got The Feeln". Intimate Strangers is sweet funky jazz from the great Tom Scott – an album that's recorded a bit later than some of his beathead classics, a great one nonetheless! The style here is noticeably smoother, but never too slick or too sleepy – as Scott still really manages to bring an edge to his playing, and keeps himself surrounded by a tight assortment of fusion players that include Richard Tee on keyboards, Eric Gale on guitar, Ralph McDonald on percussion, and Steve Gadd on drums. Gadd's drum work is especially nice – funky in all the right places, and with a snapping edge that almost creates a few breaks underneath the sweeter instrumentation on the top. Titles include the 3-part "Intimate Strangers Suite" – plus "Breezin Easy", "You're So Good To Me", "Puttin The Bite On You", and "Beautiful Music". Street Beat is a set that's definitely got a bit more bite than some of Tom Scott's other late 70s efforts! Scott's work on saxes is mixed with a bit of Lyricon as well – tied up in a group that features fuzzy guitar from Carlos Rios, who underscores the groove nicely on some of the album's funkier tracks. Other players include Don Grusin on keyboards and Ralph MacDonald on drums – plus a small horn section that features Jim Horn on tenor and baritone sax. A vocal chorus sings on a few numbers, but the main focus is instrumental – that well-crafted funky jazz vibe that Scott helped invent during the 70s. Titles include "Give Me Your Love", "The Shakedown", "Greed", "Street Beat", "Come Closer Baby", "We Can Fly", and "Car Wars". CD

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New Stanley ClarkeTime Exposure/Find Out/Hideaway ... CD
Epic/BGO (UK), 1984/1985/1986. New Copy 2CD .... Out Of Stock
A trio of funky electric albums from Stanley Clarke's mid 80s R&B years – 1984's Time Exposure, ''85's Find Out and '86's Hideaway – in a 2CD set! Time Exposure has a lot of 80s electro funk in the mix, particularly Clarke's impeccable bass lines, which are heavy throughout. Titles include "Play The Bass '10", "Heaven Sent You", "Speedball", "Future Shock" and the great title track. Find Out follows somewhat similar territory, an 80s synth funky set with a few surprising twists – including an electro/funk/old school rap cover of "Born In The USA"! Other tracks include "Find Out", "The Sky's The Limit", "Stereotypica" and "Psychedelic". Hideaway makes a move towards more delicate synth soul for Clarke – who assembles an impressive guest list that includes Stanley Jordan, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Copeland. Titles include a cover of Stevie Wonder's "Overjoyed", plus "My Love, Her Inspiration", "Where Do We Go", "Old Friends" and "When It's Cold Outside". CD

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New Ornette ColemanMusic Of Ornette Coleman – Forms & Sounds/Skies Of America ... CD
Sony/BGO (UK), 1967/1972. New Copy 2CDs .... Out Of Stock
A great couple of harder-to-find Ornette Coleman records – nicely paired up in a 2CD set! First up is The Music Of Ornette Coleman, from 1967 – which is beautiful record that serves as both a showcase for Ornette's "serious" writing efforts – and his ability to play with a larger ensemble! It kicks off with Ornette playing trumpet solos with The Philadelphia Woodwind Quintet as they perform his "Forms & Sounds" live. That's followed by recordings of Ornette's "Space Flight" and "Saints & Soldiers" performed by The Chamber Symphony of Philadelphia Quartet, a string ensemble that brings a new light to Ornette's compositions! Skies Of America is an ambitious record with full orchestra, in a haunting sound that's light years from any of his smaller group recordings of the 60s and 70s! There's an incredible feel to the strings used here – played by the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by David Measham – all tied up and dark, with swirling sounds that run up beautifully from the bottom, then take off to the skies promised in the title – opening the door for Ornette to come in and solo freely over the top – in a magical mix that easily makes the record a standout in his long and mighty career! Harmolodic theory is definitely a part of Coleman's conception here – but in very different ways than his quartet or quintet recordings. Lots of tracks on this one, including "Skies Of America", "The Men Who Live In The White House", "Sunday In America", "Dreams", "Native Americans", "Silver Screen", "The Artist In America" and more. CD

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New Paul HornPaul Horn In India/Cosmic Consciousness – Paul Horn In Kashmir ... CD
World Pacific/BGO (UK), 1967. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A great collection of one of the most exciting points in the career of reedman Paul Horn – a set that brings together two albums recorded for the World Pacific label in the mid 60s! First up is Paul Horn In India – a record in which Horn opens up in a really cool way – definitely moving past his early modern jazz years, to become one of the first American jazzmen to explore the sounds of India! The album features Horn blowing flute on some great long tracks – stretching out with this sense of sound that's really amazing – almost more tonal texture than his previous jazz sense of melody – often moving slowly, with slight phase shifts that are really compelling – and working alongside spare instrumentation from Indian musicians on tabla, tamboura, and violin! The tracks are all ragas that spin off with a free but rhythmic sound – and titles include "Raga Vibhas", "Raga Tilang", "Alap", "Manj Khamaj", and "Raga Desh". Paul Horn In Kashmir is easily the trippiest of Paul Horn's 60s experiments – and even more far-reaching than his Paul Horn In India set! This one has a very similar feel to Paul's Indian session, but it's much more transcendental – with long tunes that spin out amidst sitar, tabla, and vocals – going for a meditative approach that's a great complement to Horn's work on the alto flute. The jazz component to the session is very subdued, but given the overall quality of the album, we're not ones to complain! Vocals are by Shri Chunilal Kaul, and titles include "Raga Ahir Bhairao", "Tabla Solo IN Teental", "Raga Kerwani", and "Alap In Raga Bhairav". CD
 
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Barry Altschul3Dom Factor ... CD
Tum (Finland), 2013. New Copy .... $16.99 19.98
Blistering work from drummer Barry Altschul – working here in the company of bold young tenorist Jon Irabgon, and matching his youthful energy at every step! The set's easily one of the most driven we've heard from Altschul in many years – a trio date that also features the bass of Joe Fonda, but which really draws most of its magic from Irabgon's horn, and the way that Barry reaches out strongly to provide just the right vibe. Tunes are almost all originals from Altschul – and titles include "Natal Chart", "A Drummer's Song", "Papa's Funkish Dance", "Be Out S'Cool", "Oops", and "Just A Simple Song". CD

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Dave DouglasDD/50 – 50th Birthday Recordings (Be Still/Time Travel/Pathways/DVD/bonus download) ... CD
Greenleaf, 2013. New Copy 3 CD & DVD .... $42.99 49.98
Dave Douglas is fifty – and he's celebrating with this very cool limited package of music and image! The set features three different albums, plus a bonus DVD – all in a sweet box, too! First up is Be Still – quite a compelling project from trumpeter Dave Douglas – a record that has him working strongly with singer/guitarist Aoife O'Donovan, whose presence really helps transform the sound of the set! Aoife's got a folksy touch on her vocals, and colors things in with some great earthy tones that are a surprisingly good fit for Douglas' lines on trumpet – sometimes jazzy, sometimes sparkling with a rich sense of American history – yet delivered in a subtle, linear way. Next is Time Travel – a really in the pocket session that's filled with rhythmic intensity, and some of the boldest music we've heard from Dave in years! There's plenty of edges to the set – especially the trumpet of Douglas and tenor of Jon Irabgon – but there's also a groove to many numbers too – a kind of forward-rolling energy that really takes the whole thing to great points throughout the set, and which makes a great progression from the somber tone of Dave's last album – almost a musical rebirth of sorts! The third album in the set is Pathways – beautiful tones and colors from a sextet that also features Greg Tardy on tenor and clarinet, Joshua Roseman on trombone, Uri Caine on piano, Linda Oh on bass, and Clarence Penn on drums – all players who are nicely sensitive to Douglas' ideas here, and bring together a fresh wave of ideas from previous records. DVD features both Quintet performances (with Jon Irabgon and Matt Mitchell) and Sextet material (with Greg Tardy, Joshua Roseman, and Uri Caine) – recorded in studio performances and music videos too! CD
(Also features a bonus download too!)

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Dave DouglasTime Travel ... CD
Greenleaf, 2013. New Copy .... $9.99 11.99
One of the best albums we've heard in years from trumpeter Dave Douglas – a really in the pocket session that's filled with rhythmic intensity, and some of the boldest music we've heard from Dave in years! There's plenty of edges to the set – especially the trumpet of Douglas and tenor of Jon Irabgon – but there's also a groove to many numbers too – a kind of forward-rolling energy that really takes the whole thing to great points throughout the set, and which makes a great progression from the somber tone of Dave's last album – almost a musical rebirth of sorts! Crack rhythms flow from the trio of Matt Mitchell on piano, Linda Oh on bass, and Rudy Royston on drums – and titles include "Time Travel", "Beware Of Doug", "Little Feet", "Garden State", and "Bridge To Nowhere". CD

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New Laurence Hobgood/Brian Torff/Paul WerticoState Of The Union ... CD
Naim (UK), 1998. Used .... Temporarily Out Of Stock
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