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Exact matches: 5
Exact matches1
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
DeodatoKnights Of Fantasy ... CD
1979. New Copy .... Around June 25, 2014
Smooth jazzy work from Deodato – done in an LA late 70s style that's kind of like work by Joe Sample or The Crusaders, but a bit more R&B oriented, and with a deeper soul style overall! You can definitely hear Deodato's growing taste for modern soul here – especially on the seminal club jammer "Whistle Bump", which is a tight keyboard-driven groove, with some sweeping strings underneath wah wah guitar. The cut's the real standout on the album – although there's a few other nice moments, like "Space Dust" and "Lovely Lady", which has a great mellow Bob James-ish sound. CD

Exact matches2
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Justin RobinsonAlana's Fantasy ... CD
New Copy .... Early May, 2014

Exact matches3
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New Roy AyersLove Fantasy ... CD
Polydor/PTG (Netherlands), 1980. New Copy .... Temporarily Out Of Stock
One of our favorite Roy Ayers albums of all time – and an overlooked gem from Roy's late 70s years at Polydor! This set's a bit more laidback and less clubby than some other Ayers work of the period – which means it's got this wonderful jazzy groove throughout – a sweet mix of midtempo modern soul and the vibes-based style that Roy kept on perfecting at the time. Tracks are longer than usual, and they really open up in a way that fits the title – slinky and seductive, but never soppy or commercial at all – that really special blend of warmth and wisdom that's always made Roy Ayers so great. Titles include the sublime title track "Love Fantasy", which begins with Roy chatting up some girl in the intro, then sliding into a nice smooth jazz funk tip on the chorus – plus the great cut "Sigh", a sweet little bubbling number with a wonderfully breathy quality! Other titles include "Believe In Yourself", "Betcha Gonna", "Baby Bubba", and "Rock Your Roll". CD

Exact matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
New Sun Ra & His Astro InfinityCosmo Earth Fantasy – Sub Underground Series Vols 1 & 2 ... CD
Saturn/Art Yard, Late 60s/Mid 70s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A set of varied moods and settings – yet one that really does a wonderful job of fleshing out the Sun Ra aesthetic during these crucial years when Ra dubbed himself the "King Of The Sub Underground"! That humorous title is a reference to the fact that Ra and the Arkestra were still working with largely little mainstream exposure – despite the big growth of avant jazz at the time – and were instead working on beautiful recordings like these, often made without any thought of a larger market at all! The CD brings together material from albums originally issued with Sub-Underground in the title – also under other names as well, including Temple U – and the tracks represent the Arkestra really hitting some of their creative heights in a mix of live, studio, and rehearsal recordings. Titles include the brilliant "World Of Africa", recorded in 1968, but with a chunky groove and weird piano that almost feel like a precursor to Fela Kuti; the sublime "Love Is Always" and "Song Of Drums", recorded live with a spare group in a beautifully echoey setting; surprisingly great takes on "What's New" and "Autumn In New York", played by a small group with Ra on a slightly off-tune upright piano; the long "Cosmo Earth Fantasy" suite, with some very fierce sounds; and a nice live take on "Space Is The Place/We Roam The Cosmos", which jumps right into the groove at the start – with a pretty offbeat feel, and lots of cool vocal interplay! CD

Exact matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
New Becen & The ShellsFlorida Fantasy ... CD
Henry Stone, 1975. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A rare bit of Florida funk from the 70s – an album recorded by TK during the height of its soulful run at the time, but never issued until now! The group's headed by vocalist Becen Padron – who also plays keyboards, guitar, and drums – and the rhythms have a snapping, funky, clubby sort of groove – quite similar to some of the more famous rhythms coming from TK powerhouse KC & The Sunshine Band! As with KC's work, the groove here is a bit funk, a bit disco, and plenty darn catchy – and Padron's rough-edged vocals bring a nice sort of unpolished feel to the record, making it come across a lot more indie than most sounds on TK. Titles include "The Thange", "Surrender Your Love", "Florida Fantasy", "Girls", "Gotta Have The Funk Funk", and "You Do Me Good". CD
(Please note: Although these CDs are legit, they are produced as CDRs with artwork by copyright owner Henry Stone.)
Close matches: 28
Close matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Cannonball AdderleyPhenix ... CD
Fantasy, 1975. New Copy .... $10.99 11.98
Sweet funky 70s work from Cannonball Adderley – a record that has him revisiting older tunes from his early soul jazz years – but in ways that give them a whole new electric vibe overall! The album's actually Cannonball's last full studio set, but it's also one of his greatest too – a very hip little record that features arrangements that are slightly bigger than before – almost a CTI sort of mode, with a similar CTI sense of space, sound, and timing! There's some great keyboards on the set – courtesy of George Duke and Mike Wolff – and other players include Nat Adderley on cornet, Airto on percussion, Sam Jones and Walter Booker on bass, and Louis Hayes and Roy McCurdy on drums. The keyboards lead off most numbers, but they're followed strongly by Cannon and Nat – both of whom open up wonderfully in the magical setting of the record! Titles include great new takes on "Sack O Woe", "Work Song", "Jive Samba", "74 Miles Away", "Walk Tall/Mercy Mercy Mercy", "Country Preacher", "Domination", and "This Here" – plus "Hi Fly" and "Hamba Nami". CD
Also available Phenix ... LP 8.99

Close matches7
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AllspiceAllspice ... CD
Fantasy/Dusty Groove, 1977. New Copy .... $10.99 12.98
The only album ever from Allspice – but a hell of an incredible soul record – and one that's kept the group's name strong with collectors and rare groove fanatics for years! The album's on of the best Fantasy Records productions by Wayne Henderson and his At Home team – and like some of the others, is handled with a groove that's tight, yet plenty sophisticated too – light years from mainstream disco or common club of the late 70s, and instead informed by plenty of jazz and deeper ideas as well! The vibe is perfect – as heavenly and righteous as some of the best Roy Ayers club tracks of the time – which proves to be a perfect foil for the Allspice style of mixing male and female vocals – which again is often done in an Ayers-like mode. The sound is sublime throughout – one of those real treasures that should have been a huge record in the 70s, but was barely pressed up at all – and quickly forgotten about by the record company. Yet even after all these years, the whole thing sounds amazing – one of those albums we'd never part with at all! Titles include the groovy "Slipped Away", the funky stepper "Hungry For Your Love" – and loads of other great tunes that include "Love Fire", "Destiny", "She's A Lady", "I Don't Know", and "Give It Time". CD
(On the Dusty Groove label.)

Close matches8
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David Axelrod & OthersAxelrod Chronicles ... CD
Fantasy, Early 70s. New Copy .... $3.99 14.98
It's great to see that David Axelrod's finally getting his due – and this reissue of material from Fantasy is one of the first reissues of his work in the US! Most cuts here are much more jazz-based than Axelrod's higher-concept material under his own name for Capitol in the late 60s – and the music represents Axe's key move to Fantasy after bigger label fame – a move that he made with Cannonball Adderley, who also figures in on some of these tracks. The CD features 8 tracks from Axelrod's Full Axe album – a tasty bit of funky fusion that's one of his best jazz-oriented releases – plus a sampling of tracks from other albums he produced and/or arranged for Fantasy. Titles from Full Axe include "My Family", "Mucho Chupar", "Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing", and "Everything Counts" – and other tracks include "Cantaro" and "Solitario" by Gene Ammons, "Bach" and "Sierra Morena" by Hampton Hawes, "Quit It" by Nat Adderley, "Goodbye So Long" by Funk Inc, and "Stayin Place" from the Big Man 2LP set. CD
(CD case has a small cutout notch.)

Close matches9
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CybotronEnter Cybotron (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Fantasy/Decision, 1983. New Copy .... $11.99 15.99
A mindblowing debut from Cybotron – one of the most unusual groups to ever hail from Detroit – and that's saying a hell of a lot, given the musical legacy of the city! Cybotron have a sound that's starkly electronic, and a huge influence on later electro, hip hop, techno, and house – served up here as a spare, fuzzy approach to funk – but with lots of the colder touches you'd find from post-punk imports at the time! The blend is quite unique, and even more unusual given the fact that the trio were working in virtual obscurity on the Detroit scene – as an early project from the legendary Juan Atkins, with guitarist Jon-5, and the mysterious electronician 3070! There's more funk here than most of the group's electro contemporaries – but the sound is still nicely cold in all the right parts too – and titles include the seminal "Clear", which was years ahead of its time – plus "Cosmic Cars", "Cosmic Raindance", "Industrial Lies", "The Line", and "Alleys Of Your Mind". CD reissue also features some nice bonus cuts – including "Clear (Jose Animal Diaz rmx)", "Cosmic Cars (Detroit style mix)", "Techno City (voc)", "Techno City (inst)", "R-9 (inst)", and "Eden (voc)". CD
Also available Enter Cybotron (with bonus tracks) ... CD 8.99

Close matches10
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Luis GascaCollage ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1976. New Copy .... $11.99
A standout classic from trumpeter Luis Gasca – and a set that may well be the artists' most complete musical vision of the 70s! The group here is larger than on previous records, and Gasca's dropped a bit of his Latin roots in exchange for a soaring, slightly spiritual sound put together by arranger Don Menza – who's really at the top of his game here! There's a perfection and poise that's almost like CTI or Kudu at their best – almost a bit above the usual Fantasy Records session like this from the 70s, too! Other players include Bobby Hutcherson on vibes, Menza and Hadley Caliman on reeds, Patrice Rushen on keyboards, and Harvey Mason on some mighty nice drums – which makes for more than a bit of funk in the mix. Titles include the sweet vibes/Rhodes number "Kathy", the stepper "Sara", and the tracks "Visions", "The Way I Feel Sometimes", "Patrice", "Collage", and "Night People". CD

Close matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Esther MarrowSister Woman ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1972. New Copy .... $11.99
Very righteous work from Esther Marrow – a soul sister who sings with a hell of a lot of power! The set's an overlooked gem in the Fantasy catalog of the 70s, and it's one of only two secular soul albums cut by Marrow – and quite possibly the best of the bunch, too! Esther's got some great help on the set from arrangers Richard Tee, Bernard Purdie, and Bobby Scott – each of whom set Marrow up with some small group backing that keeps things tight and soulful throughout – thanks in big part to the drum work, which is handled by Purdie, Jimmy Johnson, and Idris Muhammad. Other players include Tee on organ and piano, Cornell Dupree on guitar, and Ralph McDonald on congas – whose percussion really helps shape the sound of most of the grooves. There's a horn section too – used sparingly – and there's also a bit of backing vocals from The Reflections, although Esther's pretty much in the lead on all numbers. Titles include "Trade Winds", "Things Ain't Right", "Ask Me To Dance", "Woman In The Window", and "Ghetto". CD

Close matches12
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Dave PikeBossa Nova Carnival/Limbo Carnival ... CD
New Jazz/Fantasy (Germany), 1962. New Copy .... $13.99 18.98
A pair of killers from Dave Pike – early work in a tremendous career in music! First up is Bossa Nova Carnival – a sublime set of bossa nova numbers, all written by the bossa pianist Joao Donato! Joao doesn't actually play on the record, but his compositions here are enough – as they help Pike find a new sense of space and pulse in his music – rhythms that really unlock his vibes towards their grooviest ends for the first time ever on record. Most numbers are heavily modal – a great mix with the bossa setting – and the album also features key work from Clark Terry on flugelhorn, Kenny Burrell on guitar, and Chris White on bass – whose loping lines really help shape the overall sound of the record. Also features lots of nice percussion – and titles include "Ginha", "Samba Lero", "Sono", "Carnival Samba", "Sausalito", and "Melvalita". Limbo Carnival isn't some early 60s gimmick session, designed to cash in on a dance craze – and instead, it's a wonderful early Latin set from the great vibist Dave Pike! In fact, given the strength of the grooves here, it would be plenty darn hard to do any limbo action to this one – because the rhythms are bouncy, modal, and very very groovy – served up by Pike on vibes, in a lineup that includes Ray Barretto on conga, Ahmed Abdul-Malik on bass, and Leo Wright on flute and alto – plus a few other straight jazz players like Jimmy Raney on guitar and Tommy Flanagan on piano. Tracks include "Mambo Bounce", "Matilda", "Cattin Latin", "St. Thomas", and a strange groovy version of "La Bamba". CD

Close matches13
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
PleasureFuture Now ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1979. New Copy .... $11.99
A wonderful album from Pleasure – a group who were already great before, but who really seem to hit a great new level with this late 70s classic! Pleasure started out as a sweet jazz/funk combo with a great edge to their music – but by the time of this set, they'd actually gotten even tighter and better – but all without losing their depth at all! Most of the group's contemporaries just got slick and commercial – but instead, Pleasure found a way to hone their skills wonderfully – and take on some new spacey and electric touches in the process – definitely pointing towards the funky future promised in the title. The set's filled with some of the funkiest and most soulful moments of the group's career – including "Space is the Place", which has great funky drums on the intro; the mellow "Thoughts of Old Flames", a real stunner with a great moody feel; and the classic "Glide", a great dancefloor groover that still stands up well. Other tracks are all great too – and include "Universal", "Strong Love", "Nothin To It", and "Dedication To The Past". CD
Also available
Future Now ... LP 6.99
Future Now ... LP 9.99

Close matches14
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
PleasureGet To The Feeling ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1978. New Copy .... $11.99
Wonderfully tight work from Pleasure – a record that definitely lives up to the lean, clean image on the cover – as it's got the group honing their funky skills even more strongly than before! Wayne Henderson's at the helm, finding the group hit this razor-sharp groove that comes through right from the start – really refining their already-great sound into some of the tightest jazz funk on record at the time! Every track is a gem – and the set's got funky killers, mellow steppers, and plenty more – as you'll hear on the cuts "Celebrate The Good Things", "Foxy Lady", "Get To The Feeling", "Ladies Night Out", "No Matter What", and "Farewell Goodbye". CD
Also available Get To The Feeling ... LP 16.99

Close matches15
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
PleasureJoyous ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1977. New Copy .... $11.99
Joyous grooves indeed – the second album by this legendary 70s jazzy soul outfit – and a landmark album in the Fantasy Records Bay Area funk mode! The record will forever be remembered for the cut "Joyous" – a monster groover with a killer hook, strong funky playing, and a searing tenor solo that wails for about a minute before the vocals even come in! Wayne Henderson produced the record – and it's very much in the mode of work that he was doing for other groups at Fantasy, but also sounds a bit like later jazz funk groups, such as Breakwater or Smoke – tight, but never uptight – funky, but never with the kind of grit you'd find in the indie underground. The vocals are a bit in the Average White Band mode, and the instrumental playing is top-shelf all the way – a monster mix that's possibly carried off better here than on any other album by the group! The album includes 2 instrumentals, "Selim" and "Sassafras Girl", as well as the vocal tracks "Tune In", "Let Me Be The One", and "Can't Turn You Loose". CD

Close matches16
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
PleasureSpecial Things ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1980. New Copy .... $11.99
A really special thing from Pleasure – a set that has the group sounding sharper and tighter than ever – with a lean funky groove that's just right for stepping into the 80s! Things are never too slick or commercial – and the core funk combo energy of Pleasure still really comes through strongly – but the guitars and keyboards get even more play than before, following strongly from the vibe of the Future Now album, and it's great mix of mellow steppers and snapping groovers! Pleasure are still very much at the top of their game – with a quality that's way higher than so many other groups who'd been copping their sound for the past few years – as you'll hear on tracks that include "Take A Chance", "Yearnin Burnin", "Law Of The Raw", "You Are My Star", "Spread That Feelin", and "Now You Choose Me". CD

Close matches17
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New Sandra RhodesWhere's Your Love Been (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Fantasy/Omnivore, 1973. New Copy .... $15.99 16.98
A nice little album from Sandra Rhodes – an artist who sung backup vocals on more than a few southern soul sides in her day – emerging here on her own in a style that's part country, part rock, and plenty touched by the Memphis soul scene from which she emerged! The album's produced and arranged by Charles Chalmers, and it's got a flanged-out, laidback sound that makes it a bit hipper than you'd expect – almost Memphis meets LA, with a quality that really takes the music past its Tennessee roots, but also without losing them as well. Titles include "Sho Is Rainin", "It's Up To You", "Sowed Love & Reaped The Heartache", "Where's Your Love Been", "No Such Thing As Love", and "Never Grow Old". CD features 7 previously-unreleased bonus tracks from the same sessions – including "Jingo", "I Don't Play The Game", "Linda Was A Lady", "Baby Don't Go", "I'd Rather Hurt You Now", and "Someday Sweet Baby". CD

Close matches18
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Cal TjaderAgua Dulce ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1971. New Copy .... $11.99
One of our favorite Cal Tjader albums ever – and one of the first to have his vibes working alongside Fender Rhodes! The record's a surprising little set from the start of the 70s – one that almost has Cal picking up some of the New York sounds of a few years before, then mixing them up with a hipper west coast electric style in the end – a Fantasy Records vibe that meshes together a few different modes, and comes up with a rich new style in the process! There's a bit of vocals on the set – somewhat unusual for Cal Tjader, and often used to augment the soulfully snapping grooves of the best tunes – but even more amazing is the heavy use of Fender Rhodes, played here by the amazing Al Zulaica, who's work on the album really ranks right up there with the best early 70s keyboardists on the coast! Zulaica's piano is amazing next to Cal's warmly chromatic vibes – and other instrumentation includes saxes from Bill Perkins, flute from Mel Martin, trumpet from Luis Gasca, moog from Rita Dowling, and percussion from both Pete and Coke Escovedo. Titles include the killer "Aqua Dulce (Cool-Ade)", a fantastic version of "Gimme Shelter", a sublime of Clare Fischer's "Morning", and the cuts "Ran Kan Kan", "Descarga Cubana", "Curacao", and "Somewhere In The Night". CD

Close matches19
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Larry WilliamsThat Larry Williams – The Resurrection Of Funk ... CD
Fantasy/Dusty Groove, 1978. New Copy .... $10.99 12.98
A rare funk album from west coast legend Larry Williams – very different than his heavy R&B of the late 50s, or the brief soul comeback he had with Johnny Guitar Watson in the 60s – and instead a heavy groover with a trippy Cali sound! The record's got a sharp groove right from the start – a vibe that's a bit similar to some of the best Johnny Watson funk of the period – a slight jazzy undercurrent in the instrumentation, with wicked guitar and keyboard bits dancing around each other in the rhythms – often mixed with vocals that have a cool sort of electric feel, and topped with some great horn work from Fred Wesley on trombone and Maceo Parker on alto sax! Rudy Copeland plays keyboards on the album alongside Williams, the the set's got a bit of the feel of Rudy's lost Funky Blindman set – and in a way, also echoes the best strutting, sexy modes of Bootsy Collins too. The album's a surprising gem all the way through – a real lost chapter in Larry's career, and the kind of set that might have broken bigger, had he not died mysteriously a few years later. Titles include "Funky Force", "The Resurrection Of Funk", "One Thing Or The Other", "ATS Express", "How Can I Believe", and "Can't Dance To The Music (If It Ain't Got Funky Rhythm)". CD
(On the Dusty Groove label.)

Close matches20
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Cannonball AdderleyLove, Sex, And The Zodiac ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1974. New Copy .... Just Sold Out!
A classic from Cannoball and producer-partner David Axelrod – truly great stuff and maybe even better than the Zodiac set Cannonball did for Capitol! The formula is similar to that one – with David Axelrod producing, electric keyboards by Hal Galper and George Duke, spacey solos by Cannonball and Nat Adderley, and some very hip recitations by Rick Holmes on love, sex, and the zodiac! Holmes is best known as the chappie who cut "Remember To Remember" years later with Roy Ayers – but this album's got a similar "wisdom and knowledge" feel that's pretty wonderful. Titles include "Aquarius: Humanity Plus", "Cancer: All Sides", "Leo: Rosebud", "Aries: Damn Right", "Gemini: Ecstasy", and "Virgo: For Pam". CD

Close matches21
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New Side EffectWhat You Need ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1976. New Copy .... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Quite possibly the greatest album ever from Side Effect – a wonderful set that mixes their soulful harmonies with some killer jazz funk from Wayne Henderson! The album may be the most perfect realization of the groove that Henderson was going for during his At Home Productions years – lots of funky fusion in the instrumentation, but all directed towards a tighter, more soul-based style – that perfect contribution that Fantasy Records made to the world in the 70s – after labels like Blue Note and Columbia first started setting things down. Whatever the chronology, though, this set's a standout no matter how you slice it – damn catchy tunes, incredible vocals, and a set of rhythms that are every bit as hip today as they were back when first recorded – really genre-defining grooves that you'll definitely recognize in the album's classics "Always There" and "Keep That Same Old Feeling" – and will go on to love in the cuts "Life Is What You Make It", "Changes", "I Know You Can", "SOS", "Time Has No Ending", "Finally Found Someone", and "Honky Tonk Scat". CD

Close matches22
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New BlackbyrdsNight Grooves ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1978. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A great album of funky dancefloor tunes! Originally issued in 1978, and clearly for the New York dancefloor crowd – the record takes the earlier work of funk group The Blackbyrds, and remixes the tracks slightly to pump up the groove a bit for the dancers. While the approach might not sound good on paper, it actually works wonderfully on the record – as the tunes retain all of the jazz funk feel of the originals, without any of the cheap tricks you might expect. The album's as essential as any of the group's earlier albums – and it's filled with great versions of classics like "Supernatural Feeling", "Gut Level", "Walking In Rhythm", "Do It Fluid", "Rock Creek Park", and "Happy Music". CD
Also available Night Grooves ... LP 14.99

Close matches23
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New John La PortaTheme & Variations (Conceptions plus previously unreleased material) ... CD
Fantasy, Late 50s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Pretty amazing work from one of the greatest under-rated talents of 50s modern jazz! John LaPorta was a brilliant multi-instrumentalist who's probably best known for his work with Mingus in the mid 50s Jazz Workshop years, and for his earlier sides with Woody Herman – but it's on records under his own name that LaPorta really begins to shine. This great set features 14 tracks that were recorded in the 50s, but never issued before – and 9 more that were from the album Conceptions, issued briefly in the 50s by Fantasy Records. The first 14 tracks form a long suite of jazz-based compositions, handled with a modernist chamber-type approach – and based around some really great solo work on trumpet, baritone, tenor, and bass. The feel is almost like a 50s jazz soundtrack – with lots of moody moments paired with others that break out in a stronger swinging groove. The remaining tracks are equally nice – in a similar style, and showing LaPorta as a composer who could have handled just about any ambitious jazz project of the time. Titles include "Forward Motion", "Jazz Canon", "Images", "Lucidity", "Little Fantasy", "Ferme LaPorta", "En Rapport", and "Triplets You Say". CD

Close matches24
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New George RussellStratusphunk/Stratus Seekers ... CD
Riverside/Fantasy (Germany), 1960/1962. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A pair of modern moments from George Russell – back to back on a single CD! Stratusphunk is not "phunk", in the way you might think of "funk" – but an album that sets a whole new standard for modern jazz in the 60s – thanks to the fresh ideas of George Russell! Russell's in his best modal mode here – and there's a highly rhythmic construction to most tunes – layers that build beautifully, and which have a sharper edge than some of George's earlier work in the 50s – a balance that's better heard than described by our words, and which is completely compelling right from the start. The vibe is modern, but things still swing beautifully – and players are mostly younger musicians eager to follow Russell's leadership on piano – Dave Young on tenor, David Baker on trombone, Alan Kiger on trumpet, and Chuck Israels on bass. Titles include "Lambskins", "Stratusphunk", "New Donna", "Kentucky Oysters", and "Bent Eagle". Stratus Seekers is key work from the guy who put the "modern" in modern jazz – the great George Russell, heard here in the company of some younger players who definitely help him seek out some new territory in music! The record's got a wonderful balance between sharp edges and swing – a sound that few others could handle so well as Russell – and which bears some links to George's bigger concept albums in the 50s, but comes across with a sound that's much leaner, and which easily makes this record one of the most striking modern sides on the Riverside label at the time! Players are all great – and include Don Ellis on trumpet, Paul Plummer on tenor, John Pierce on alto, and Steve Swallow on bass – plus Russell on piano and Joe Hunt on drums. Titles include "Stereophrenic", "Pan Daddy", "Kige's Tune", and "Blues In Orbit". CD

Close matches25
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New SylvesterMighty Real – Greatest Dance Hits ... CD
Fantasy, Late 70s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Classic club from Sylvester – a key force in the late 70s disco scene – but an artist with an inspiration that ran much deeper than most of his contemporaries! By the time of these tracks, Syl had already been making some big waves in the Bay Area scene – singing in this strong, high-soaring vocal style – and sporting a cross-gender look that got him as much visual attention as his music did new listeners. Yet once disco came into play, Sylvester's style turned out to be a perfect fit for the groove – and as these tracks illustrate, Syl's still one of the strongest artists to flourish in the era. The set features a previously unreleased cut – "You Make Me Feel Mighty Real (Ralphi Rosario's mighty dub mix)" – plus "Stars", "Dance Disco Heat", "Changes", "Can't Stop Dancing", "Body Strong", "Sell My Soul", "Over & Over", "I Need Somebody To Love Tonight", "I Need You", and the original mix of "You Make Me Feel Mighty Real". CD

Close matches26
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New SylvesterSell My Soul/Too Hot To Sleep ... CD
Fantasy/Southbound (UK), 1980/1981. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A great double-header from Sylvester – two Fantasy classics back to back on a single CD! Sell My Soul is an overlooked gem from Sylvester's years on Fantasy Records – a set that has him working strongly with soul maestro Harvey Fuqua, in a really great blend of disco and more laidback modes! There's a balance here that's like early Luther at his best – a way of being proudly poised, yet never in an overdone way – a captivating approach to the music that pushes past any obvious cliches you might expect, and which will definitely have you digging deeper for more Sylvester if you only know his hits. The set list includes a few older classics remade – including "Fever" and "Cry Me A River" – plus the tracks "Change Up", "I Need You", "My Life Is Loving You", and "Doin It For The Real Thing". Too Hot To Sleep is even better – one of the most soulful albums Sylvester ever recorded – a set that's light years from his colder club work of the mid 80s, and delivered with a beautifully rich sound overall! Despite Sylvester's previous disco fame, the album does a great job of keeping things mellow at times too – showing a great way with a gentle groove, but one that Syl hardly ever gets any credit for! The gentle steppers here are really wonderful – right up there with some of the better-known modern soul of the time, and miles away from some of Sylvester's other overdone modes. Titles include "New Beginnings", "Too Hot To Sleep", "Here Is My Love", "Thinking Right", "I Can't Believe I'm In Love", and "Ooo Baby Baby". CD

Close matches27
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New SylvesterSylvester/Step II ... CD
Fantasy/Southbound (UK), 1977/1978. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A massive double-header – one that features the first two Sylvester albums for Fantasy Records! First up is the self-titled Sylvester – a reworking of his older groove into one that we love more than any other that he ever used – a smooth modern soul style, not really disco, but with a driving approach that would certainly have worked well in the clubs! You gotta give Syl credit here – as it would have been easy for him to turn up the camp a lot in the 1977 disco days – but instead he's sticking strong to his soul impulses, and has come up with a wonderful album of tracks that's like the first Luther album – one that you can enjoy whatever your take on the man, without any introduction to his person or persona. Of course, a big part of the credit also goes to Harvey Fuqua – who's reemerged here from his years at RCA to produce the record – showing his always strong ability to seek out new talent, and bring out the best in them. Titles include "I Tried To Forget You", "Tipsong", "I Been Down", "Loving Grows Up Slow", "Never Too Late", and "Over & Over". Step II is probably Sylvester's biggest album for Fantasy – and for good reason too! The set pushes onto the dancefloor a bit more than before – often with some slight keyboard touches that hint at the Patrick Cowley years, but with none of the coldness of those records at all. The great Harvey Fuqua's producing here with Syl, and the sound is rich and bold – an even more prideful statement than Sylvester's first album on Fantasy. Two Tons Of Fun deliver some great backup vocals, and Cowley lays down a bit of keyboards – and titles include the all-time disco classic "You Make Me Feel Mighty Real", plus "Dance (Disco Heat)", "Just You & Me Forever", "Grateful", and "I Took My Strength From You". CD

Close matches28
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New BlackbyrdsLovebyrds – Soft & Easy ... CD
Fantasy, 1970s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
One of the greatest sides of The Blackbyrds' music – their mellower, more chilled-out tunes – all tracks that we like almost as much as their funkier classics! Although the combo first earned their name for upbeat, sharp-edged funky fusion, they also had a wonderful way with a laidback groove – sweetly stepping instrumentals that were often a bit overlooked next to some of their bigger 70s hits, but which are equally great – and perhaps even more so, as they represented a really unique approach to the music at the time! There's a vibe here that we'd rank right up there with Kool & The Gang on "Summer Madness" – an approach that's often spare, and focused around a key instrumental bit – and which is a great antidote to some of the heavier-handed funk of the time! Keyboards are often heavy on these numbers, and although there's some vocals, the instrumentation is almost always center stage – served up over some sweetly stepping rhythms that are really great. Titles include "Lady", "Wilford's Gone", "A Heavy Town", "All I Ask", "At The Carnival", "April Showers", "Love Is Love", "Soft & Easy", "Lady", "Flying High", "The Baby", "Summer Love", "Dreaming Of You", and "Time Is Movin". CD
(CD case has a cutout notch.)

Close matches29
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New BlackbyrdsWalking In Rhythm – The Essential Selection 1973 to 1980 ... CD
Fantasy/Decision, 1970s. New Copy 2 CDs .... Out Of Stock
Some of the sharpest, jazziest funk you'll ever hope to hear – a smoking collection of the legendary 70s work by The Blackbyrds on Fantasy Records! The group started as a jazz combo under Donald Byrd's supervision – right at a time when Byrd was making his own fantastic funky records in the 70s – but working for the Bay Area Fantasy label, they really took off into an amazing groove that was all their own – still informed by jazz, but free to open up to lots of funk and soul elements too – sometimes with vocals in the lead, sometimes more focus on the kinds of solos that always set them apart from all their contemporaries! The cuts have some wonderful keyboard work from a young Kevin Toney – who's gone onto a lot of fame over the years – and production on all cuts is either by Larry Mizell, Donald Byrd, or George Duke – key 70s jazz funk forces who keep things mighty tight in the studio! The package features work from all Blackbyrds albums of the 70s – including the Cornbread Earl & Me soundtrack, and the Night Grooves remix set – and the package features 25 titles that include "Enter In", "Party Land", "Do It Fluid", "Gut Level", "Summer Love", "I Need You", "The Baby", "Blackbyrds' Theme", "City Life", "Rock Creek Park", "Walking In Rhythm", "A Hot Day Today", "Wilford's Gone", "One Gun Salute", "Supernatural Feeling", "Mysterious Vibes", and "Soft & Easy". CD
Also available Walking In Rhythm – The Essential Selection 1973 to 1980 ... LP 23.99

Close matches30
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New PleasureAccept No Substitutes ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1976. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Quite possibly the funkiest album ever from Pleasure – and that's saying a heck of a lot! The album grooves from the very first note – and moves through some of the group's tightest, most rock-solid numbers – all of which use their trademark blend of funky and soul, but which somehow seem to hit even more perfect territory than previous albums! And yes, those records are great, but usually have a few standout cuts – while this one works together perfectly – leading us in right away, then holding us rapt through some wonderful cuts that never let up – massive energy that few other funky combos could match, produced to perfection by the legendary Wayne Henderson. Titles include the wicked sample cut "I'm Mad", the bouncy "Pleasure For Your Pleasure", the spacey "Ghettos Of The Mind", the bumping "Let's Dance", and the tracks "Jammin With Pleasure", "Theme For The Moonchild", "2 For 1", "We Have So Much", and "The Love Of My Life". CD

Close matches31
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New PleasureGlide – The Essential Selection 1975 to 1982 ... CD
Fantasy/Decision, 1970s/Early 80s. New Copy 2 CDs .... Out Of Stock
A jazzy combo with a heart of soul – and a group who may well be one of our favorite funk groups from the 70s! Pleasure has an amazing way of being tight, yet never slick or commercial – a sound that's right on the money, but far from the mainstream too – which has kept them at the top of the stacks for crate-diggers and rare groove collectors for years! This sweet double-length package is a very well-chosen set of their gems for Fantasy records, and a few later tracks for RCA – a really expansive look at all that's great about the group – with classics mixed with overlooked album cuts and some great funky numbers you might have missed otherwise. Nearly everything Pleasure ever cut is fantastic, but this set is even more fantastic than the rest – and features 25 titles that include "Bouncy Lady", "Dust Yourself Off", "Joyous", "Ghettos Of The Mind", "Only You", "Sassafras Girl", "Glide", "Farewell Goodbye", "Special Things", "Thoughts Of Old Flames", "Give It Up", "Sending My Love", "Stone Love", "Glide (special disco rmx)", "Space Is The Place", "Living Without You", "Let's Dance", and a previously unreleased "Foxy Lady (disco version)". CD

Close matches32
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New Lucy ReedThis Is Lucy Reed ... CD
Fantasy/OJC, 1957. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Striking modern work from jazz singer Lucy Reed – no surprise, though, given that arrangements here are by the likes of Gil Evans, George Russell, and Eddie Higgins! Reed's got a beautiful sense of tone – a clarity that comes through right away, but which is never miscast in these modern settings as it might be in a more commercial jazz date – which could pitch Lucy right into some too-sentimental fare. Instead, the tunes usually have a moody sort of glow – all the sadness of more familiar jazz singers of the time, but given a colder steel edge that we really love. Titles include "Love For Sale", "A Trout No Doubt", "Born To Blow The Blues", "This Is New", "No Moon At All", "You Don't Know What Love Is", "Lucky To Be Me", and "There He Goes". CD

Close matches33
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New Spiders WebbI Don't Know What's On Your Mind ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1976. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A real treasure from the Cali scene of the 70s – the one and only album from drummer Spider Webb – and a wicked batch of bass-heavy grooves throughout! Spider's drums are definitely great, and his offbeat vocals are completely charming, too – but the basslines are what really drive the record – often with a slightly skittish quality that seems to hint at the more dynamic dancefloor modes to come on the New York scene of the early 80s – yet still fused nicely here onto a Fantasy Records blend of jazz, funk, and soul! Carol Kaye plays some mighty nice guitar on the record – and titles include the classic groover "I've Learned From My Burns" – plus "Carry Me Through", "Good Thing", "Reggae Bump", "I Don't Know What's On Your Mind", "Soft Wind", and "Spider's Webb". CD
Also available I Don't Know What's On Your Mind ... LP 5.99
Possible matches: 63
Possible matches34
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B Baker Chocolate CoB Baker Chocolate Co ... CD
LC/P-Vine (Japan), 1979. New Copy .... $26.99
Pure genius from the B Baker Chocolate Company – a set that's equal parts fusion and soul, held together by these rich arrangements that really send the whole thing home! The album's never too slick, yet has a sense of perfection that matches some of the best soulful fusion dates at Blue Note or Fantasy in the mid 70s – a quality that's especially strong on the vocal tracks on the set – one of which features Lew Kirton in the lead! The players are all totally top-shelf – and include Lonnie Smith and Jimmy McGriff on keyboards, John Faddis and Marvin Stamm on trumpets, and Jimmy Ponder on guitar – and the set's got a beautiful balance that few other records like this can match. Lew Kirton sings on "It's Where You're Coming From", and "Dreamer" features Gene Scott – and instrumental tracks include the funky classic "Snowblower", plus "Carousel" and "Spirit Level". CD

Possible matches35
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BlackbyrdsAction/Better Days ... CD
BGP (UK), Late 70s. New Copy .... $17.99
Two of the later Blackbyrds LPs on one CD! Action's one of their great ones, and it's got a cool mellow vibe that's different than their earlier funkier stuff. It also includes the great cut "Mysterious Vibes", which was sampled by someone not too long ago. Also with the cuts "Supernatural Feeling", "Soft and Easy", and "Street Games". Better Days has a bit of a modern soul feel, with more of the later Fantasy production style, and the tracks "Do It Girl", "What's On Your Mind", and "Love Don't Strike Twice". CD

Possible matches36
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ControllersFor The Love Of My Woman ... CD
MCA/PTG (Netherlands), 1987. New Copy .... $9.99
An overlooked gem from The Controllers – one issued a bit late to be part of the classic wave of group soul, but a set that's still overflowing with really old school harmonies! The Controllers really have a wonderful way of putting over a ballad – letting things build slow and mellow, trading lead parts and harmonies together in a way that really moves the message forward, while never overdoing things too much in search of a hook. And even when the instrumentation is contemporary, it never gets in the way of the vocals – and almost always lays back once the lyrics come in, even on the album's few groovers. Titles include "For The Love Of My Woman", "My Secret Fantasy", "Love Is On Our Side", "Play Time", "Sleeping Alone", "Knocking At Your Door", and "No One's Ever Loved Me More". CD

Possible matches37
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Courtial with Errol KnowlesDon't You Think It's Time (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Pipeline/Shout (Japan), 1976. New Copy .... $24.99
A rare bit of Cali soul – and a lot groovier than you'd guess from the cover! The music is rich in jazzy inflections – funky fusion used behind the lead vocals of Errol Knowles, in a blend that's quite similar to the best Bay Area funk of the time – particularly some of the grooves coming from the Fantasy Records scene! Guitars are great – played by Bill Courtial with lots of snakey, angular lines that really emphasize the groove – and other instrumentation includes keyboards and some mighty sweet percussion. Titles include "Losing You", "Love Nevermore", "Corn On The Cob/Time", "Don't You Think It's Time", "Time To Explain", and "Poem For Helen". CD

Possible matches38
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CromagnonCave Rock ... CD
ESP, 1969. New Copy .... $10.99 15.99
Crazy psyche era wierdness from Cromagnon – the band name and album title may reference prehistory, but this stuff is actually way ahead of it's time – if we didn't see the date on this thing, we'd have sworn it to be from the art damaged post punk early 80s! The group is credited to Austin Grasmere, Brian Elliot and "The Connecticut Tribe" – and the instrumentation is billed as vocals, music and sounds – you figure out the rest. The set opens with some soundbites of Hollywood fan fare that segues into a mix of bagpipes, thundering percussion and vocals that sound like screams and whispers at the same time. The following track "Ritual Fest Of The Libido" rivals "LA Blues" by the Stooges in gutteral grunted nightmare soundscapes, but later tracks mix in more laidback grooves that are just as freaky. A total mindfrack of a record, and a pretty amazing one, if not for everybody! Other titles include "Organic Sundown", "Fantasy", "Crow Of The Black Tree", "Genitalia", "Toth, Scribe I" and "First World Of Bronze". CD

Possible matches39
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Paco De LuciaFantasia Flamenca De Paco De Lucia ... CD
Philips (Spain), 1969. New Copy .... $18.99
A flamenco fantasy from the legendary Paco De Lucia – one served up with a sound that's a lot more revolutionary than you might guess from the title and cover! Sure, the style is rooted in older Spanish modes – but Paco's approach here is really freewheeling and personal – strongly informed by acoustic guitar changes in the US scene in the 60s, as well as a sense of jazz – then brought back to traditional sounds to really set the whole thing on fire! Paco's dexterity on the guitar is amazing – as is his sense of rhythm – which changes brilliantly throughout the course of each tune, to always keep things on edge amidst his cascades of acoustic notes. Titles include "Celosa", "Lamento Minera", "Aires De Linares", "Mi Inspiracion", "Guajiras De Lucia", and "El Tempul". CD

Possible matches40
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Five StairstepsFive Stairsteps – The Complete Curtis Mayfield Years (Five Stairsteps (Windy C)/Love's Happening) (plus bonus tracks) ... CD
Outta Sight (UK), Late 60s. New Copy .... $16.99
A pair of killer albums from The Five Stairsteps – 1967's self-titled set for Windy C – plus '68's Love's Happening by The Five Stairsteps & Cubie – together with bonus track on this great set from Outta Sight UK! The Five Stairsteps album is a landmark batch of sweet soul – recorded by the still youthful group that included a 13 year old Kenny Burke! The kids were brought together by their parents Clarence and Betty Burke, but it was Curtis Mayfield who really gave them a push – as he discovered them, produced them, and wrote some excellent songs for them during their best early years. Mayfield's sweet soul style forged with The Impressions runs through most of these tracks – and although the group is young, they really do a fantastic job with the material, and infuse it with a soulfulness way past their years. Titles include "Danger She's A Stranger", "World Of Fantasy", "Ooh Baby Baby", "Don't Waste Your Time", and "Behind Curtains". Love's Happening might be the best record ever by this Chicago soul group! The record's got a full batch of original tracks written and produced by Mayfield – including their amazing, funk steeped version of "Don't Change Your Love", with a breakbeat that lit up the sampler culture for years! That raw drum sound is in effect on even the more delicate numbers, and the lead vocals and harmonies soar or sink deep to the soul, as the groove demands. There's also some kind of tripped out touches in the production in spots, making for a nice balance of sweet soul and leftfield touches. Kind of an underappreciated effort in the grand scheme of Curtis Mayfield productions, but wholly essential! Other titles include "Stay Close To Me", "New Dance Craze", "Baby, Make Me Feel So Good", and "Little Young Lover". 5 bonus singles in the set: "Ain't Gonna Rest (Til I Get You)", "You Can't See", "Change Of Pace", "Madame Mary" and "We Must Be In Love". CD

Possible matches41
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IrakereChekere Son ... CD
JVC/Uniko (Canada), 1981. New Copy .... $12.99
A great early 80s session from Irakere – and one that really upgrades the funkier side of their groove! The approach is still that great mix of Cuban roots and Latin jazz we've always loved from the group – but there's also a bit tighter production, and great use of keyboards from Chuco Valdes – who spins out these funky fusion grooves that almost feel like some of the great west coast hybrids you'd get over at Fantasy Records during the 70s. In addition to work by Valdes on piano, organ, and keyboards – the set also features Paquito D'Rivera on saxes and Arturo Sandoval on trumpet and valve trombone – on titles that include "Cha Cha Cha", "Camaguey", "La Semilla", and "Quince Minutos". CD

Possible matches42
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Tizian Jost TrioUnited In The Big Blue ... CD
Enja (Germany), 2013. New Copy .... $13.99 15.99
We love the piano work of Tizian Jost – a player with a really special way of ringing out his tone on the keys, often with this sort of joyful flow that comes across right away! A few notches either way, and Jost might be too sentimental or too smooth – but instead, he's got this really perfect balance of warmer emotions that comes through especially well on this album's all-original tracks. Each number has this fresh sort of sparkle that really fits the mood of Jost's piano – and the trio features well-matched work on bass from Thomas Stabenow and drums from Mario Gonzi. Titles include "Fantasy In Yellow White & Blue", "United In The Big Blue", "Tizi's Business", "Missing The Right Word", "Room 76", and "Fun In The Forest". CD

Possible matches43
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Babatunde Lea with Dwight TribleUmbo Weti – A Tribute To Leon Thomas ... CD
Motema, 2008. New Copy 2CD .... $11.99 14.98
A beautiful tribute to the greatness of Leon Thomas – put together by one of the few cats who could get it right! Given that Babatunde Lea's other music already takes us back to the days when Thomas sang with Pharoah Sanders – his leadership on a date like this is a natural – as Lea has a way of hitting just the right sort of righteous vibe to open things up for Leon's message of peace, love, and spiritual fulfillment! The great Dwight Trible handles vocals on the date – a singer you probably already love for his work with Build An Ark – and other players include Ernie Watts on tenor sax, Patrice Rushen on piano, and Gary Brown on bass. The performance is a live one – recorded at Yoshi's in Oakland – and the double-length set features a heck of a lot of music, plus some video content on the second disc! Titles include "Prince Of Peace", "Reaching Up", "Umbo Weti", "Colors", "Sun Song", "African Fantasy", "Song For My Father", "African Tapestry", "Creator Has A Master Plan", "Boom Boom", and "Cousin Mary". CD

Possible matches44
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Michel LegrandCastles In Spain ... CD
Columbia/El (UK), 1956. New Copy .... $6.99
One of the great early albums in Michel Legrand's "travelogue" period – a set done at the same time as his musical portraits of Paris and Rio, and served up with a similar flair for the dramatic! The style here is somewhat different than Legrand's better-known soundtrack work of the 60s – and like his other travelogue albums, the record is sort of an imagined version of Spain – a musical fantasy of the country, served up in a style that mixes fuller orchestrations with some lighter, more isolated instrumental moments. There's a fair bit of acoustic guitar alongside the strings, and also some Spanish-styled rhythms at times – never too dramatic, but enough to help the overall flavor of the project. Titles include "Andaluza", "Espana", "La Danse Du Feu", "Espana Cani", "El Choclo", "El Gato Montes", and "Sant Marti Del Canigo". CD

Possible matches45
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Henry ManciniMancini's Angels/Theme Scene ... CD
RCA/Vocalion (UK), 1977/1978. New Copy .... $16.99
Two groovy late 70s albums from Henry Mancini – back to back on a single CD! Mancini's Angels has happy Hank surrounded by plenty of cleavage – a cover that's perfect for the album's title play on the hit Charlie's Angels show! Mancini does a great job with the theme to that one, and also adds in some cool keyboards you wouldn't have heard on the original – and the rest of the album is a mix of other mid 70s TV themes, plus some cool originals penned by Mancini himself, but with a very similar flavor – often quite funky, in a soundtrack sort of way. Titles include "Charlie's Angels", "Car Wash", "Silver Streak", "Inspector Clouseau Theme", "Gonna Fly Now", "What's Happening", "The Moneychangers", and "Evergreen". The Theme Scene features plenty of cool 70s soundtrack themes – titles pulled from both film and TV use, some with a feel that's every bit as funky as Henry Mancini's great work on the Cop Show album! Titles include "The Cheap Detective", "Star Trek", "Heaven Can Wait", "Children Of Sanchez", "Battlestar Galactica", "Once Is Not Enough", "Three's Company", "NBC News Theme", and "Fantasy Island". CD

Possible matches46
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Ray MantillaConnection ... CD
Savant, 2013. New Copy .... $14.99 16.98
A cracker of a set from Ray Mantilla – served up in that special approach to Latin jazz that's made Mantilla such a great leader for the past few decades! Ray's percussion is firmly at the helm of the set, but the group's definitely a jazz one through and through – graced with excellent work from Willie Williams on tenor and soprano sax, flute and baritone sax from Enrique Fernandez, and bold trumpet lines from Guido Gonzalez on a few tracks too! And while the solos are really rich and strong, the rhythms are definitely the core that drives the whole set strongly – not just Mantilla's percussion, but also bold, blocky piano lines from Edy Martinez, rolling acoustic bass from Chucho Martinez, and some drums from Bill Elder. Both Edy Martinez and Williams helped out with arrangements – and titles include "Andean Fantasy", "Psalm 107", "Sonando Puerto Rico", "Homanaje A San Rafael", "The Simple Life", and "New Moon". CD

Possible matches47
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MiamiMiami ... CD
TK (Japan), 1978. New Copy .... $13.99
Cool compressed sounds from Miami – a group who are still plenty funky on this rare third album, but one who've also found a great way to serve up their groove as well! The combo's even sharper on the rhythms than ever before – and have a style that's a bit like that key evolution Pleasure took after their first few records for Fantasy – a funk band really going for a cut-above, and finding a way to fuse all their already-great individual components into a rich new whole! Willie Clarke produced, and the album's easily one of his sharpest Miami sets of the time – and is nicely free of the commercial qualities of other big TK Records of the period. Titles include "Eye For An Eye", "Broken Down Man", "Let Me See Some Knees Please", "Strange", and "I've Been Loving You Too Long". CD

Possible matches48
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Mighty FireNo Time For Masquerading/Mighty Fire ... CD
Elektra/Expansion (UK), 1981/1982. New Copy .... $16.99
A pair of overlooked gems from Mighty Fire – back to back on a single CD! No Time For Masquerading is a wonderful debut full length from Mighty Fire – a group whose roots lead back to lots of previous work for Motown, and as The Flakes – stepping out here as a tight quintet with a wonderfully focused sound! Despite the 80s date of the record, the sound feels like the best combo funky soul from the previous decade – really sharp and on the money, but never commercial or chart-sounding at all – a perfect balance of so many wonderful warm elements, with the kind of jazzy touches you might hear in later groups like Incognito or Brand New Heavies. Guitarist Mel Bolton handles the arrangements, and most of the songwriting too – and trumpeter Harry Kim handles the horns, with the same warm vibe he'd later bring to his work with Earth Wind & Fire. Titles include "Sweet Fire", "Love Fantasy", "I Could Write A Love Song", "Missing You", and "Look What You Made Me Do". Mighty Fire is smooth stepping soul from a group who burn with a great mellow version of their name, which really helps to focus their energy throughout! There's a cool, classy vibe to the set – one that draws on the professional strengths of some of the group members, who also find a way to keep things personal and down to earth too – especially at the time of the album's release, when so many other folks were rushing to electrify their groove, and replace a lot of humanity with keyboards and drum programs. Most of the instrumentation is still in the live funk mode – played by the core members of the quintet – and titles include "You Satisfy Me", "Just A Little Bit", "Heavy Rotation", "Start It Up", "Sweet Lady", and "You Got Everything". CD

Possible matches49
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100% Pure PoisonComing Right At You ... CD
Soul Brother (UK), 1974. New Copy .... $16.99
One of the rarest soul records of the 70s – recorded in Germany by a bunch of American servicemen on leave, but with a sound that's right out of the Chicago or Detroit groove of the pre-disco years! The group's great with both the funky and soulful material – hitting hard with monster groovers like "Holes In My Shoes" and the jazzy break classic "Windy C", and keeping it sweet and mellow on ballads like "My Little Someone" and "Boarding Pass". The album's got a great sound overall – almost like some of the jazzy soul albums on Fantasy from the mid 70s – and the quality of the vocals and instrumentation is great throughout. Titles include "I Love You", "Bet You Say You Want To Make It With Me", "No More City, No More Country", and "You Keep Me Coming Back". CD

Possible matches50
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New OrgoneKillion Floor ... CD
Ubiquity, 2007. New Copy .... $12.99 16.98
A monstrous debut from one of the heaviest acts we've heard in years – LA's Orgone, easily one of the most up-and-coming funky combos around! Although Orgone share a bit with some of the leaner deep funk groups who've cropped up in the past decade or so, they've also got a sound that's a bit more advanced overall – sort of that second-generation approach to funk that hit the scene by the mid 70s, as some of the bigger funk acts like Black Heat or War moved out of the indie scene and really started to hit a wider audience! That doesn't mean that Orgone's commercial at all – because they've got a sound that's still as sharp-edged as any smaller group – but with a lineup that's quite large, they're able to encompass a very wide range of soulful styles – gritty 45 riffing, slinky Chicano-styled grooves, Afro Funk, tighter soul tracks, and lots lots more – all carried off with perfection throughout. The album feels like some lost masterpiece on Fantasy, or possibly some overlooked early 70s major label funk set on WEA or United Artists – and titles include "Who Knows Who", "I Get Lifted", "Funky Nassau", "Lone Ranger", "Prism Break", "Crabby Ali", "Duck & Cover", "Dialed Up", "Said & Done", "Hambone", "It's What You Do", "Do Your Thing", and "Sophisticated Honky". CD

Possible matches51
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Otis & ShuggWe Can Do Whatever ... CD
Expansion (UK), 1996. New Copy .... $16.99
The long-overdue release of an album that should have been a Neo Soul classic! The team of Otis Cooper and Shugg David recorded this gem of a set back in the mid 90s along with help from longtime friend and producer Raphael Saadiq – but due to shifting priorities at the major label, the set was shelved and is only now finally seeing the light of day! Despite the wait, though, the album bristles with electricity and has a totally fresh sound – bubbling over with the warmth and soul of the best Saadiq production work of the time, and hitting a vibe that's almost in the same mode as his own recent Ray Ray recordings. But even more charming are the talents of Otis & Shugg – two down-to-earth vocalists who work in a style that's nicely free of cliché, and which really shows them setting a tone that would be followed by many other make singers in the Neo Soul years to come. Titles include "Right On Track", "Fantasy", "If You Want It", "My First Mistake", "Round & Round", "Indiana", "This Is My Phone Call", and "Something Inside Of Me". CD

Possible matches52
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Duke PearsonIt Could Only Happen With You ... CD
Blue Note (Japan), 1970. New Copy .... $13.99
Pivotal work from Duke Pearson – a brilliant set that perfectly sums up all the criss-crossing of styles he was working on in the late 60s – and comes up with a wonderful blend of electric jazz, Brazilian rhythms, and just a touch of 70s soul! Pearson plays some sweet Fender Rhodes on the set, in addition to acoustic piano – and there's some other wonderful instrumentation in the mix too – including flute and guitar from Hermeto Pascoal, making a rare Blue Note appearance – plus sweet flutes from Jerry Dodgion and Lew Tabackin, both blowing in kind of a CTI-ish way – as well as tenor from Frank Foster, trumpets from Collins/Shepley, and wonderful drums from Mickey Roker – whose inventive rhythms here really helps set fire to Duke's new ideas. Flora Purim sings on a few tracks – pre-Fantasy Records, and turning in some of her greatest vocals ever – and titles include a wonderful version of "Stormy", plus "Book's Bossa", "Gira, Girou", "Hermeto", "Emily", and "It Could Only Happen With You". CD

Possible matches53
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PleasureGive It Up ... CD
RCA/PTG (Netherlands), 1982. New Copy .... $18.99
Great later work from Pleasure – a group who are probably best-known for their classic 70s albums on Fantasy Records, but one who kept the groove riding high in some early 80s years at RCA! This set's a shimmering jewel – a great mix of funky rhythms and mellower moments, all wrapped up in that blend of modern soul and 80s groove that RCA was really hitting perfectly for a few key years at the start of the decade. The sound's definitely different than the Fantasy years, but in a way that nicely has the group maturing a bit – changing things up, yet still holding onto all the best elements that made them a cut above most of their contemporaries. Keyboards come in a bit more than before, and there's some really tasty bass-driven numbers – on titles that include "Take It To The Streets", "Sending My Love", "Give It Up", "Sassy Baby", "It's So Hard", "Stone Love", and "All The Way". CD

Possible matches54
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Plunky & OnenessNever Too Late ... CD
Name Brand Records, 2014. New Copy .... $11.99
One of the deeper albums we've heard from Plunky in awhile – a set that's still got some of the smoother jazzy styles of his past decade or two, but one that also seems to offer a lot of input from a younger, fresher generation too! The "Oneness" on the cover is well-put – as the whole thing almost seems to be a Neo Soul reworking of his older Oneness Of Juju material from the late 70s/early 80s – that point when Plunky took his spiritual jazz modes, and forged them with a bit more of a dancefloor groove – a style that echoes all the older Oneness elements, but with a more contemporary vibe overall. Titles include the original numbers "Be About The Future", "Never Too Late", "A New Fantasy", "Space Jungle Love", "Sax Afrique", "Tableau Noir", and "Tribal Vibe". CD

Possible matches55
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Roy PorterJessica ... CD
Vistone/P-Vine (Japan), 1974. New Copy .... $22.99
A wonderful mix of soul jazz, funky rhythms, and even more experimental moments – a truly tremendous effort from LA drummer Roy Porter, and the first set issued under the name of his Sound Machine group! The groove here is really unconventional – filled with unusual timings, phrasings, and changes that push it way beyond more familiar jazz funk of Prestige, Fantasy, or CTI – yet still all very much in the pocket, with a righteously soulful vibe that's incredible! The cover's inspired by Roy's son's love of motocross – and one number even features a bit of motorcycle sound effects along with the grooves! The rest of the tracks are heavier on the horns, and feature some wonderful arrangements that are filled with soul and style – always a bit edgey, and never too slick or straightforward. Titles include the classics "Funky Twitch" and "Hip City", plus "Drums for Daryl", "Ooh-La-La", and the legendary "Jessica", a really beautiful number! CD

Possible matches56
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Sun RaOn Jupiter ... CD
Saturn/Art Yard (UK), 1979. New Copy .... $15.99 16.99
Righteous Ra from the end of the 70s – one of the most soulful albums ever by the Sun Ra Arkestra, and a lost treasure that's got some nice funky moments! The vibe here is very much in the Lanquidity/Disco 3000 mode – an extrapolation of styles best known from the Space Is The Place era, tightened up into more of a groove at some points, but also relaxed and more reflective at others. Our favorite track on the set is "UFO", a snapping bit of funk that comes as a real surprise from Sun Ra – and a tune that's got some nicely noisy guitar jamming alongside straighter electric rhythms – all topped off by vocals from the group and some really strong horn work! The tune's a great party funk number that shows the Arkestra at its most joyous – and other tracks include "On Jupiter", which has a great blend of light vocals, spacey moog, and snakey sax – plus the side-long "Seductive Fantasy", a laidback number that unfolds with a really gentle grace. CD

Possible matches57
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Eric RobersonB-Sides, Features, & Heartaches ... CD
Blue Erro Soul, 2014. New Copy .... $9.99 13.99
A range of special projects, guest appearances, and b-sides from Eric Roberson – and music that's mostly still better than the top-shelf recordings from most other artists! Eric's a singer we've loved for years, no matter what the setting – and he's got a richly collaborative spirit that's had him working with lots of the best of the underground for the past decade or so – lending his sublime vocals, songwriting skills, and even production talents to a range of really wonderful projects. This overdue collection pulls together all the best of those moments, and throws in a few special Roberson recordings too – all to make for one hell of a great record that's bursting with some of the best ideas going in contemporary soul. Titles include "Touch" with Collette, "Butterfly Girl" with DJ Spinna, "Let Me Know" with Angela Johnson, "Games" with M-Swift, "This Could Be The Night" with Zo, "She Was Fly" by Full Crate & Mar, "Far Away Girl" by Aaron Camper, "Fortune Teller" by DJ Kemit, "Deja Vous" with Les Nubians, and "Postcards From The Edge" with Wes Felton – plus the tracks "Fantasy" and "Anymore". CD

Possible matches58
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Patrice RushenShout It Out (with bonus track) ... CD
Prestige/Soul Brother (UK), 1976. New Copy .... $16.99
A pivotal record for Patrice Rushen – a set that has her really tightening up the groove from previous albums on Prestige – heading much more towards the focused soul-drenched grooves of her Elektra Records years! The set's a stunner – still very much with the hip, west coast funky fusion vibe of Rushen's roots – but even groovier overall, with loads of massive cuts that hold up beautifully over the years – and which still show a side of Patrice that's much different than her later hits. Titles include the classic cuts "The Hump", "Stepping Stones", and "Shout It Out" – all perfect jazz funk gems in the best Prestige/Fantasy mode of the mid 70s – and other tracks include "Roll With The Punches", "Let There Be Funk", "Let Your Heart Be Free", "Yolon", and "Sojourn". This Soul Brother UK edition includes a bonus single verion of "Let Your Heart Be Free". CD
Also available Shout It Out ... LP 6.99

Possible matches59
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Woody ShawComplete Muse Sessions (7CD set) ... CD
Muse/Mosaic, 1965/1970s/1980s. New Copy 7CD .... $118.99 119.00
Some of the best work ever from legendary trumpeter Woody Shaw – and honestly, a batch of music that may well be one of the best runs at a label by any jazz musician, period! Woody first came on the scene as a sharp talent from the east coast in the 60s – playing with a drive and fire that really set a whole new tone for the trumpet – one different from predecessors like Miles Davis, Lee Morgan, or Freddie Hubbard. And although he was already great on records for Blue Note and other labels, he really exploded as a leader with these sides for Muse – stretching forth with dynamic energy and boundless imagination – sometimes in a setting that was as spiritual as work on Strata East, sometimes in a straighter mode that put Shaw right up there with the best trumpeters of decades past. This Muse Records work has always been scattered and spotty on the reissue market, but is finally collected together here in one place – a stunning set of albums that includes The Moontrane, Love Dance, Little Red's Fantasy, Concert Ensemble At The Berliner Jazztage, In The Beginning, Iron Men, Setting Standards, Solid, and Imagination. The set features all tracks from these sessions – including bonus material not on the original LPs – plus very detailed notes and information, in the true Mosaic Records fashion! CD

Possible matches60
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New Cal TjaderMambo Sangria – Cal Tjader Plugs In/Solar Heat ... CD
Skye/Fabulous (UK), Late 60s. New Copy .... $5.99
2 totally great Cal Tjader electric albums – both recorded originally for the Skye label, and back to back on one CD! Cal Tjader Plugs In is a beautifully plugged-in, turned-on session from Cal Tjader – one that features the funky vibist alongside some sweet Fender Rhodes! The session was recorded live, but it's got a flowing, modal quality that rivals Tjader's best work in the studio for Verve and Fantasy at the end of the 60s – a soaring, spacious sound that comes from the interplay between Cal's ringing vibes and the Fender Rhodes and acoustic piano work of Al Zulaica – an excellent player we only know from a few of Tjader's albums. Armando Peraza provides some tight conga work on the set – and titles include "Spooky", "Tra La La Song", "Morning Mist", "Alonzo", "Nica's Dream", and "Get Out of My Way" – a great instrumental take on the Latin soul hit from Joe Torres! Solar Heat is even better – a record that features Joao Donato on organ and Gary McFarland on vibes! The record is a brilliant extension of Cal's styles at Verve – a bit of Latin, a bit of jazz, with some easily grooving numbers that have just the right dose of funk! Donato's organ sounds especially great, and there's also some added electric piano and electric harpsichord on the record, which expands the electricity even more! Loads of great numbers – including "Mambo Sangria", "Fried Bananas", "Solar Heat", "Ode to Billy Joe", and Donato's great "Amazonas". CD

Possible matches61
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Kim TolliverCome & Get Me I'm Ready ... CD
Chess (Japan), 1973. New Copy .... $13.99
One of the deepest soul records ever issued by Chess Records – and the album wasn't even done in Chicago! The album's the only full effort issued under the name of Kim Tolliver – a singer who'd worked previously for Fantasy as Kimberley Briggs – and it's a sublime effort from Tolliver and husband Fred Briggs, who'd worked together previously on work for Stax by Margie Joseph! The style here is quite unique – a mix of Kim's southern soul-styled vocals with some fuller, richer touches – almost in the same way that Gloria Scott comes across on her classic album with Barry White – but a bit more rough around the edges overall. The production is amazing – with a great sense of space and style – and some key use of echo that really underscores the emotion of the tunes. A good part of the album was recorded in Miami – with echoes of the TK modes of the time – but other recording was also done in Cleveland, which might account for the more unique aspects of the set. Regardless of location, though, the album's a tremendously individual effort – a bold, raw statement from Tolliver – filled with emotion that few of her contemporaries could match, and free of any crossover soul cliches that were really bogging down other artists at the time. Most tracks here are original – as original in conception as the sound of the record – and titles include "The Other Side Of Town", "The Way He Used To", "She Don't Know You Like I Do", "Takin A Woman's Stand", "I'm Losing The Feeling", "Learn To Get Along Without You", and "I Need You/Drop Whatever You're Doing". CD

Possible matches62
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Johnny Guitar WatsonListen/I Don't Want To Be Alone, Stranger ... CD
Ace (UK), 1973/1975. New Copy .... $15.99
2 of Johnny's best albums ever! The two records on this CD were the first that he cut for the Fantasy label during his comeback period of the mid 70s, and they both show Johnny turning his earlier bluesy style into a very dope Bay Area soul/funk groove, of the sort that would become his trademark sound for the next 10 years. In later years, that style sort of became a parody of itself – but in these early recordings, it still sounds nice and fresh, with a nice messed up style, and some excellent production. Titles include the great "It's Way Too Late", plus "Strong Vibrations", "Tripping", "I Don't Want To Be A Lone Ranger", "I Get A Feeling", "If I Had The Power", and "Like I'm Not Your Man". CD

Possible matches63
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Lenny WilliamsChoosing You (with bonus tracks) ... CD
ABC/ (UK), 1977. New Copy .... $13.99
A killer set from Lenny Williams – done in a smoothly jazzy mode that echoes with a real Fantasy Records groove! Lenny's clearly drawing some great inspiration here from the East Bay scene – working with older Motown producer Frank Wilson on a set of warmly modern numbers that really help him state a strong voice as a solo act. The grooves are all just perfect for Lenny's vocals – funky, but never too much so – and smooth without being slick – a rare balance, but one that comes off perfectly here, and makes the set a great one! Essential mellow soul throughout – with tracks that include "Look Up With Your Mind", "Riding The High Wire", "Choosing You", "Shoo Doo Fu Fu Ooh", "Please Don't Tempt Me", "Trust In Me", and "I've Been Away From Love For Too Long". CD features lots of bonus tracks – "Choosing You (12" single)", "Choosing You (7" single)", "Shoo Doo Fu Fu Ooh (7" single)", and "Look Up Your Mind (7" single)". CD

Possible matches64
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Bernard WrightNard/Funky Beat ... CD
Arista/GRP/Robinsongs (UK), 1981/1983. New Copy .... $13.99
Early 80s greatness from Bernard Wright – the benchmark Nard from '81 and his Funky Beat from '83 – in a single set! Nard is a masterpiece of smooth jazzy funk – and super-hip session headed up by the young keyboardist! Wright's working here with an insider crowd of jazz funk players that includes Bobby Broom, Dave Grusin, Marcus Miller, and Don Blackman, whose funky style is very similar to Wright's. The record sort of picks up the groove where some of the Fantasy Records sessions of the 70s left off – mixing together jazz and soul into a captivating blend that's made even better by Dave Grusin's tight production. Includes Don Blackman's sample classic "Haboglabotribin", a nice version of Weldon Irvine's "Music Is The Key", and the cuts"Just Chillin' Out", "Master Rocker", and "Bread Sandwiches". Funky Beat is his second album – an 80s groove electro classic that's quite different than his first LP! It takes Bernard firmly into a b-boy jazz mode – working keyboards, bass, and drum programs into a groove that's farther reaching and more soulful than anything that Herbie Hancock was doing at the time. And as with his first album, Bernard's got plenty of great help on this one – as the record features work by Weldon Irvine, Lenny White, Dave Grusin, and others. The album includes some great Weldon Irvine compositions – like a remake of "Mr Clean", and the sweet vocal numbers "Won't You Let Me Love You" and "Keep On Doing That Right Thing", both of them warm wonderful tunes that stand with the best work on the album! Also includes a straight jazz version of "Joy Spring", and the breakin' tracks "Funky Beat", "Get Your Lover Back", "Video Generation", and "Move Your Body". CD

Possible matches65
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New VariousBay Area Funk – Funk & Soul Essentials From San Francisco, Oakland, & The Bay Area 1967-1976 ... CD
Luv N' Haight, Late 60s/Early 70s. New Copy .... $5.99 16.98
A killer! As revolutionary as the music and political climate was in the Bay Area in the late 60s and early 70s, it's damn near criminal that there haven't been more representative collections of the music – enter Luv N Haight Records, who are here with the first ever comprehensive compilation of Bay Area funk and hard soul! The kind of funky music that came out of the Bay in the period differs a bit from a lot of mirror sounds from the other coast, the midwest and the south –artists and groups like Sugar Pie Desanto, P-I-R Square, Marvin Holmes and the Uptights, San Francisco T.K.O and others work with short, tight, hard-clapping blasts of 45 funk. Where the funk of other scenes was designed to bounce you along an elastic groove, the Cali school for the most part specialized in short, sweaty, scratchy numbers that were designed to get you on your feet, than knock you straight on your arse! Truly amazing stuff – all funky 45 numbers, many of which are available for the first time on CD! 16 treasures: "Git Back" by Sugar Pie Desanto, "Foxy Girls In Oakland" by Rodger Collins, "Pickin' Cotton" by Johnny Talbot, "Find Yourself" by Marvin Holmes, "Check Me Out" by Kittie Denise, "Trippin' On The Sound" by Jeannie Tracie, "The Trip" by Eugene Blacknell, "Fantasy" by P-I-R Square, "Oomph" by Marvin Holmes, "Herm" by San Francisco T.K.O.'s and lots more – plus great foldout notes with details on each track. A great sounding, long overdue document of a great scene! CD

Possible matches66
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VariousBGP Presents Jazz Funk ... CD
BGP (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy .... $14.99
A heavy dose of funky jazz – and one that goes way past the obvious too – to include some real gems from the 70s that even we'd passed up! The package is filled with stellar jazz from the Fantasy Records family – Prestige, Pablo, Galaxy and Fantasy proper – choice numbers by The Blackbyrds, Stanley Cowell, Charles Earland, Patrice Rushen and others – funky jazz, soul, boogie and Brazil-flavored numbers from the top shelf of the diverse period! It's a tight, well chosen compilation with numbers you simply could not overlook in putting a set like this together – productions by the Mizells, Donald Byrd, Earland and others – but there's a few of leftfield choices, too. Simply a great little snapshot of the funky jazz and soul period and the family of labels that generated so much of the most creative music to come from it! 14 tracks and nearly 80 minutes of grooves: Includes "Happy Music" by Blackbyrds, "Close To You" by Marlon McClain, "Let Me Love You (Let Me Be Me)" by Stanley Cowell, "Taj Mahal" by Paulinho Da Costa, "Nov Ano" by Azar Lawrence, "Moon Dreams" by Flora Purim, "Montevideo" by Opa, "Glide" by Pleasure, "Shout It Out" by Patrice Rushen, "If Only I Could Prove To You" by The 3 Pieces and more. CD

Possible matches67
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VariousEven Mo' Mod Jazz ... CD
Kent (UK), 1960s/1970s. New Copy .... $14.99
The latest volume in one of our favorite series of soul jazz tracks! This one opens the scope way past previous volumes, and features a rollicking party of tasty little groovers – most of them with a raw, uptempo, funky 45 jukebox kind of feel! Tracks are from the Chess, Fantasy, Jewel, and Brunswick catalogs – with many rare numbers like "Fever" by Sharon Cash, "Get Ready" by Ella Fitzgerald, "Ain't There Something That Money Can't Buy" by Young Holt Unlimited, "Light My Fire" by Erma Franklin, "Hush" by Woody Herman, "Another Plan For School Mix Up" by The Cals, "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" by Karen Hernandez, "Caesar's Pad" by Googie Rene, "The Point" by Aaron (Chico) Bailey & The Family Affair Band, "I Got To See My Baby" by Lee Jones & The Unforgotten Two, and "Ain't It A Groove" by Dave Hamilton. 23 cuts in all – and very very groovy! CD

Possible matches68
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VariousJazz Club – Bossa Nova USA ... CD
Universal (Germany), 1960s. New Copy .... $8.99
The American take on the sound of bossa nova – a mode that started almost as soon as the first sounds headed north from Rio, and which grew to become a very important contribution to the music in the 60s! We love the originals by Antonio Carlos Jobim, Luis Bonfa, Joao Gilberto, and others – but we also totally dig these American reinterpretations by musicians on Verve, Fantasy, and other hip labels of the 60s – players who really got into the sound of Brazilian rhythms, and used the new groove to unlock some great power in their own solo playing as well! The package mostly features 60s recordings, with a few gems from later years – and titles include "Temanco No Samba" by Cal Tjader, "Samba De Orfeu" by Bob Brookmeyer, "O Morro" by Wes Montgemery, "Samba With Some Barbecue" by Paul Desmond, "Desafinado" by Charlie Byrd, "Um Abraco No Bonfa" by Coleman Hawkins, "Jazz Bossa Nova" by Milt Jackson, "Nana" by Kenny Burrell, "O Grande Amor" by Stan Getz, and "Mas Que Nada" by Hank Jones & Oliver Nelson. CD

Possible matches69
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VariousMo' Mod Jazz ... CD
Kent (UK), Late 60s. New Copy .... $11.99
Second great volume in this cool Kent series of "mod" jazzy tracks from the Prestige/Fantasy vaults. The emphasis here is definitely on "mod", and a lot of these tracks are the kind of cuts that you'd imagine Brit hipsters in the 60's listening to – with loads of Hammond riffs, choppy guitar, and the occasional bluesy vocal. There's 22 cuts on here, and the tracks include "Smokey Joe's La La" by Googie Rene, "Blue Vibes" by Johnny Lytle, "Cholo" by Brown Brothers of Soul, "Soul Jam" by Booker T & The MGs, "Money" by Freddie Roach, "Mission Impossible" by Johnny Gilliam, "Brother Ray" by Willis Jackson, and "Right On" by Boogaloo Joe Jones. Very very groovy, and like finding an excellent jazzy jukebox in a lost corner tavern! CD

Possible matches70
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New Paulinho Da CostaAgora ... CD
OJC, 1977. New Copy .... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A tasty session of west coast Brazilian grooves – cut by the great percussionist Paulinho Da Costa, with a group that includes Claudio Slon, Larry Williams, and Lee Ritenour. The record's got a very nice breezy feel – with a sound that's similar to some of the Fantasy Brazilian LPs of the time, which mixed tight Brazilian playing with a soulful sense of California production. With the cuts "Simbora", "Toledo Bagel", "Ritmo Number One", and "Berimbau Variations". CD

Possible matches71
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New George DukeGuardian Of The Light (Japanese paper sleeve edition – with bonus track) ... CD
Epic (Japan), 1983. New Copy Gatefold .... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A funky concept album from George Duke – and one that's filled with some mighty nice grooves! Guardians Of The Light is a full-on "musical fantasy" – with the story line laid out in the liner notes, yet still a bit difficult to follow – but we can't fault him for that when it's done in his masterful R&B-fusion-funk approach! George sings on all cuts, but he also gets some stellar vocal assistance from Jeffrey Osborne, Portia Griffin, and Patti Austin. The record also has some surprisingly sweet mellow moments that bring a deeper level of spacey soul to the out-there concept – those laidback lines that George could always do better than anyone else! Titles include "Born To Love You", "You Are The Light", "Reach Out", "Give Me Your Love", "Stand", "Soon", and "Fly Away". Also includes a bonus track – "Reach Out (12" single)". CD
(Blu Spec CD2.)
Also available Guardian Of The Light ... LP 4.99

Possible matches72
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New Johnny HammondGears/Forever Taurus ... CD
BGP (UK), 1975. New Copy .... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Amazing stuff! Johnny "Hammond" Smith began his career as a simple soul jazz organist – but by the time of Gears, he'd teamed up with the mighty Larry Mizell, the genius arranger/producer who'd breathed new life into the careers of Donald Byrd and Bobbi Humphrey. Mizell works with Hammond in the say we he does with other jazz artists – by taking a groove that works best with their solo style, and slowly layering other instrumentation and effects on top of it, so that when the solo kicks in, it's supported on waves and waves of funky sounds and soulful grooves. Mizell and his brother Fonce both play keyboards on the record, and the rest of the group includes monster fusion players like Harvey Mason, Roger Glenn, Hadley Caliman, and Jerry Peters. The real treat is Johnny, though – as his solos are heavenly, the best of his 70s work, stripped mean and lean, laid in at just the right points. Includes the breakbeat classic "Shifting Gears", the house classic "Los Conquistadores Chocolates", and funky numbers "Fantasy" and "Tell Me What To Do". The second half of this CD is Forever Taurus, which Johnny recorded right after his legendary Gears album, and it features production by Wade Marcus that's very much in the Larry Mizell mode that made Johnny huge in the 70s! As with the Gears record, Johnny's backed by a large ensemble of players – and the overall sound has lots of nice touches, extra percussion, and a good electric groove. Tracks include "Cosmic Voyager", "Walk In Sunshine", "Ghetto Samba", and the title cut. CD

Possible matches73
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New Bobby MontezJungle Fantastique ... CD
CuBop/Ubiquity, 1958. New Copy .... Temporarily Out Of Stock
An incredible record – one of the best sides of Latin jazz you could ever hope to find! West coast vibist Bobby Montez had a fantastic sound during the 50s – one that mixed together Latin rhythms in a way that few other players were using. He kind of fixed on a changing modal groove, the sort that would later be used more heavily by Dave Pike or Bobby Vince Paunetto – and he worked his combo like a shifting plate of rhythms, swirling around the grooves on piano, bass, and percussion in a weirdly complicated way, yet never failing to swing, or to hit that right groove for the dancefloor. This 1958 album is a rare gem – the sort that changes hands for hundreds of dollars in the original, and for good reason. It's been lovingly remastered here – and we're pleased as punch that it's finally back out again at a good price! The whole thing's brilliant – with loads of great tracks like "African Fantasy", "Jungle Sunset", "Chango", "Swinging At The M", and "Cha Cha Cha Por Neuva York". CD

Possible matches74
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New VariousLatin Jazz Dance Classics Vol 1 ... CD
CuBop/Ubiquity, Early 70s. New Copy .... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A tremendous little set – one that digs through all the great Latin-inspired grooves in the vaults of Fantasy Records – which also includes plenty of rare jazz gems from labels like Prestige and Riverside too! The package follows strongly in the main Jazz Dance Classics series from Ubiquity – and some cuts start in a soul jazz vibe, but then really take off with some Latin rhythms – mixing great jazz solos with some mighty fierce percussion – while other tracks have a straighter Latin jazz approach – in a very classic mode! Tracks include "Mambero" by Cal Tjader, "Descara La Moderna" by Ray Barretto, "Guanco Lament" by Eddie Lockjaw Davis, "Solo Tu" by Pete & Sheila Escovedo, "Jackie's Mambo" by Latin Jazz Quintet, "Este Mambo" by Mongo Santmaria, "Sentido En Seis" by Louie Bellson, and "Swing Thing" by Pucho & The Latin Soul Brothers. CD also features three bonus tracks – "I Showed Them" by Cal Tjader, "Kick Those Feet" by Terry Gibbs, and "Bacoso" by Mongo Santmaria. CD

Possible matches75
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New Dave Brubeck/Paul Desmond/Cal TjaderDave Brubeck Quartet/Paul Desmond Quartet/Cal Tjader (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Crown/P-Vine (Japan), Early 50s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Rare work from the San Francisco scene of the 50s – issued here on the Crown label, who usually just focused on the sounds of LA! As usual with Crown, the notes are a bit vague – but we can say that the set features some sparkling material that really matches the Fantasy Records 50s best of all players – although with a vibe that's slightly more rough around the edges – but we mean that in a good way! The set begins with a long take on Brubeck's haunting "At A Perfume Counter" – almost more of a showcase for the alto of Paul Desmond, which takes some turns and twists that are simply breathtaking – and which will have you raising your love of his talents another notch – if that's possible at all. Next is Desmond as a leader in the haunting "Purple Moon" – a number with a bottom bassy intensity that's a perfect foil for Paul's raspy alto in the lead. Last up is Cal Tjader on "Jazz Latino" – a number that's got a cool blend of vibes, piano, and guitar! CD

Possible matches76
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New Ray Camacho BandReach Out ... CD
Creole Stream (Japan), Early 80s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Brilliant brown-eyed soul from Ray Camacho – an artist who was previously known for more border-styled work with his Teardrops band, but who steps out here with a surprisingly great blend of electric jazz and boogie! The approach is wonderful – a real re-direction of Ray's earlier groove into even more soulful territory – handled with that unique fusion that was happening in just a few of the best Texas spots, like the scene in Austin at the time. The album's equal parts soul and funk, but still has a few Latin roots too – and had this gem come out on Fantasy Records at the time, it would have pushed Ray and group into much headier territory. But we're also happy the set's been undiscovered for so many years (consider it our little secret) – and titles include "Reach Out", "Diggin Deep", "Shake What You Got", "Nobody But You", "Nothing But A Party", and "What A Day". CD

Possible matches77
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New Chocolate MilkWe're All In This Together/Milky Way ... CD
RCA/FTG, 1977/1979. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A heavy 2-fer – featuring a pair of 70s gems from Chocolate Milk! First up is We're All In This Together – an overlooked funky classic from Chocolate Milk – and a set that still preserves the tight grooves of the group's earliest work! Allan Toussaint is still on hand this time around to help with both production and songwriting – and his touches can definitely be felt on the record – a tight funky undercurrent that's definitely rooted in New Orleans soul, but has some warmer, more contemporary elements too – just like that mid 70s change Toussaint was bringing to his own grooves. Standout cuts include the funky numbers "Grand Theft" and "America" – plus the groover "Girl Callin" – although there's some mellower numbers we like pretty darn well too. Other tracks include "Help Me Find The Road", "Thinking Of You", "That's The Way She Loves", and "Fertility". Milky Way is tight, funky, and plenty groovy – a set that has Chocolate Milk sounding a lot smoother than at their start, but still pretty darn great overall! Allan Toussaint and Marshall Sehorn are still around to help the group on production, but the sound is more LA than New Orleans – a well-crafted set of grooves that almost seems to have the group's Crescent City roots shaking hands with the sunnier sound of California soul in the late 70s. That latter aspect adds in some nice jazzy touches – ala Fantasy Records – and almost gives the record a Wayne Henderson-styled groove at points, especially on some of the mellow steppers and midtempo numbers. Titles include "Milky Way", "You're The One", "Hurry Down Sunset", "Groove City", "Say Won'tcha", and "Paradise". CD

Possible matches78
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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 Freddie HubbardFirst Light (remastered edition – with bonus tracks) ... CD
CTI, 1972. New Copy Gatefold .... Out Of Stock
Sweet early CTI work from trumpeter Freddie Hubbard – the kind of groundbreaking electric jazz that really helped him find a new space in the 70s! The album follows strongly from Freddie's classic Red Clay set for CTI – and like that one, it features extended tracks that build beautifully as they roll on – taking Freddie's airy trumpet as the base, and layering in electric piano, flute, guitar, and percussion – plus some wonderfully subtle strings – used sparely, but in just the right way to underscore the wider vision of the record. Arrangements are by the mighty Don Sebesky – and other players include George Benson on guitar, Hubert Laws on flute, Phil Kraus on vibes, and Airto on percussion – plus Richard Wyands on the keys, making a rare CTI appearance here. Titles include a surprisingly great version of "Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey" which has some great breaks in the middle – plus "First Light", "Moment To Moment", and "Yesterday's Dreams". New version features remastering from original tapes – and 2 bonus tracks – "Fantasy In D" and an live take of "First Light". CD

Possible matches80
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New VariousAmericana Rock Your Soul Vol 2 – More Blue Eyed Soul & AOR Sounds From The Land Of The Free ... CD
BBE (UK), Late 70s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Really soulful sounds from a set of unlikely sources – American grooves from the late 70s that weren't necessarily recorded as soul records – but which really fit in well with the best work of the time! The music here is from a host of obscure indie records – some funk, some jazz, some even rock – but always with a warmly soulful groove that's mighty darn nice – and which sparkles along with some of the best work of the time from much bigger names! If we were to go for a comparison, we might reach for the Fantasy Records/Bay Area scene of the time – especially its way of blending together different styles with a warmer mode and a jazzy finish – something that all the artists here really share. The set's a wonderful discovery – even nicer than the first volume – and we'd honestly never heard most of these cuts before. Titles include "Make Me Believe" by Archie James Cavanaugh, "Night Time Stars" by Joseph Nicoletti, "Hollywood" by Ray Camacho Band, "Hot Ice" by TR's Hot Ice, "Vaya Mulata" by Luc Cousineau, "There's A New Group In Town" by Breakaway, "A Million Stars" by Macky Feary Band, "Without You" by Steve Eaton, and "Here Is Where Your Love Belongs" by Jaye P Morgan. CD

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New VariousBrown Door Story ... CD
Brown Door/Shout (Japan), Early 70s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A killer collection of funk and soul from an ultra-hip Bay Area label of the 70s – Oakland's enigmatic Brown Door Records – headed up by funk maestro Marvin Holmes! The music's got a beautifully sunny vibe – all the best Bay Area elements of the time, reflected in the scene-crossing, genre-stepping modes that often made the East Bay way more exciting than anything going on in San Francisco – particularly in the cool crossbreeding that would happen between Berkeley, Oakland, and other communities. Holmes' cuts here are a great example of that – still the funk and jazz of his late 60s music for bigger labels, but also pretty stretched-out and open too – filled with an all-encompassing spirit that rivals the best music from the Fantasy studios at the time – but with a hipper, indie vibe all the way through. This spirit also steps over to the work by other artists on the collection, too – and is told in the rich notes and images included with the heavy booklet – both in English and Japanese, at a level that shows the Shout Productions folks stepping into Numero territory. A wonderfully deep compilation – filled with great cuts that include "You & Me", and "Goin Home" by Faye Marshall, "Making New Friends" and "Trippin On The Sounds" by Jeanie Tracy, "Cain't Get Anuff" by Bill Bell, "I Can't Go Without You (parts 1 & 2)" by Doroth Morrison, "Love Yo Love" and "Confess Your Love" by John Turk & The 3rd Street Annex, and the tracks "Kwame", "You Better Keep Her (7" version)", "Find Yourself (parts 1 & 2)", "Gimme Some Tonight (parts 1 & 2)", "Feel So Good (inst)", "You Girl", "Tell The Truth", and "Kimani Mdogo" by Marvin Holmes & Justice. CD

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New VariousDisco Discharge – Disco Fever USA ... CD
Harmless (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy 2CD .... Out Of Stock
Looks like we yanks done caught ourselves an infectious case of Disco Fever – a great 2CD set in the Disco Discharge series from Harmless UK! Disco Fever USA features 22 tracks on 2CDs, material from US scenes in their prime, floor shaking 12" or longer album mixes. It's got some of the biggest names in dancefloor soul at the time as well as comparably overlooked acts, but most of the songs are not overplayed. A fresh set as solid as any in the series. Includes "Baby Let Me Kiss You (Original Album Version)" by Fern Kinney, "Love Dancing (Original 12" Mix" by Marlena Shaw, "Boogie Wonderland (Original 12" Instrumental Mix)" by Earth Wind & Fire, "Space Bass (Original 12" Mix)" by Slick, "Life Is A Song Worth Singing (Original Album Version)" by Teddy Pendergrass, "Nighttime Fantasy (Original Disco Mix)" by Vicki Sue Robinson and more. CD

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New VariousGet Down Boogie Sound – The Hidden Sound Of Black America ... CD
BGP (UK), Early 80s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Great grooves from the post-disco years – music from the time when the sound of the clubs went back to the underground after the failure of the mainstream – and produced a lot of great music in the process! Most of the work here is in a mode that's come to be called boogie over the years – upbeat and funky soul, done with a style that's tighter than disco, and a lot less excessive too – with plenty of great basslines and simple rhythms at the bottom, sweet keyboards in the middle, and some mighty soaring vocals over the top! The package brings together obscure singles from the Fantasy, Posse, and Vanguard labels – and features some of the lesser-known acts who were recording for the companies at the time – turning out cuts that still sound mighty darn fresh all these years later. Titles include "Dance So Fine" by Nijel, "Get Up An Dance" by Mynk, "That's A Lady" by Shock, "Sweet Thing" by Convertion, "I Love Music" by JT, "Give It Up (extended mix)" by Sylvester, "Body Moves" by Rare Essence, "Project Funk" by Eazy, "Eletrophonic Phunk" by Shock, "Pastel" by Marlon McClain, and "Sureyoureright" by Steptoe. CD

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New VariousGet Your Lie Straight – A Galaxy Of Funky Soul ... CD
BGP (UK), Late 60s/Early 70s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
An absolute funky monster! This set lays out an incredible batch of funk era singles from the vaults of Galaxy Records – and it shakes and burns all the way through, with lost funk bombs Bobby Rush, Rodger Collins, Bill Coday, Bobby Eaton, the Debonairs and others! It's comprised of mostly obscure 45s representing the stone funkiest records ever released by the Oakland-based Galaxy label – which was at this point sort of serving as the farm club for big brother label Fantasy Records. This one's essential, kids – just as worthy of your funk-loving dollar as the legendary rare funk compilations on Jazzman, Soul Fire or Stones Throw! 22 tracks in all: "Foxy Girls In Oakland", "Get Your Lie Straight", "Chicken Heads" by Bobby Rush, "Bring It On Up" by Loleatta Holloway, "I Love Her Too" by Lenny Williams, "People Say" by JJ Malone, "Try The Life" by Everyday People, "Man Power" (previously unreleased) by Ben & Larry, "My Money Is Funny" by the Right Kind, "The Iron Horse" by Merl Saunders & Heavy Turbulence, "I Get What I Want" by the Sequins and lots more! CD

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New VariousSpiritual Swingers – Presented By Nicola Conte – Deep Afrocentric Modal Jazz ... CD
Universal (Germany), Late 50s/1960s/Early 70s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Spirit, swing, and a whole lot more – a mighty collection of music all hand-picked by the legendary Nicola Conte! There's a deeply soulful groove to the whole thing – and a touch of the exotic as well – and the package really reminds us a lot of the great Gilles Peterson Universal collections that were out a few years back – full of deep tones and rich colors, and proof that when you've got the right guy at the helm, a collection of older jazz tracks can be way more than just the sum of its parts! In addition to Universal label work – originally issued on Decca, Emarcy, and other labels – the package features some Fantasy/Prestige tracks too – including some great gems we might have missed otherwise. Almost 75 minutes of music – with titles that include "Taboo" by Dorothy Ashby, "New Delhi" by James Clay, "Big P" by New Jazz Orchestra, "Juan-Les-Pins" by Staffan Abeleen, "Subo" by Klaus Weiss, "Spanish Castles" by George Gruntz, "Modette" by Roy Haynes, "My Favorite Things" by Sound Of Feeling, "Jungle Fantasy" by Yusef Lateef, "Feeling Good" by Pat Bowie, "The Hooter" by Ernie Wilkins, "Afro Blue" by Abbey Lincoln, "Bogota" by Ahmad Jamal, and "Baltimore Oriole" by Lorez Alexandria. CD

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New Father's ChildrenFather's Children (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Mercury/Vocalion (UK), 1979. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A lost classic from Father's Children – the group's only album ever, but an impeccably produced set – thanks to the efforts of Wayne Henderson's At Home Productions team! The groove here is similar to that forged by Henderson over at Fantasy – soul, but inflected with plenty of jazzy fusion touches – instrumentation that steps out riffing with a really great edge, and fleshes out the sound with a lot more creativity and imagination than mainstream soul at the time. The best grooves here have a midtempo boogie flavor – with plenty of righteous jazzy touches alongside the richer harmonies that flow out warmly on the lyrics! Titles include their landmark track "Hollywood Dreaming", plus other nice ones like "Got To Get Away", "Gone Bad", "You Can Get It", "Music For Your Mind", "Wild Woman" and "Shine On". 2 bonus tracks on this CD version: 7-inch edits of "Hollywood Dreaming" and "Shine On". CD

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New Hi-TensionHi-Tension (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Island/Robinsongs (UK), 1978. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A sweet set from the early years of the UK funk scene – the smoking debut from Hi Tension, and a set that's filled with sharp numbers throughout! There's a strong jazzy undercurrent to the music – a bit like some of the sounds you might hear from the Fantasy Records scene – no surprise, since those records were always huge on the British scene – and quite possibly had an influence on the direction of Hi Tension here – with tight rhythms on the bottom, complicated jazzy changes on the instrumentation, and some tight horn parts that really soar along strongly with the vocals! Lyrics are mostly presented in an ensemble mode – produced warmly, with almost an Earth Wind & Fire mode – and the album was put together by Kofi Ayivor of Osibisa, with a slight touch of Afro funk in the mix. Tracks include the classics "Hi Tension" and "British Hustle" – plus "Autumn Love", "You're My Girl", "Power & Lightning", "Peace On Earth", and "Unspoken". CD features bonus tracks – "British Hustle (7" version)", "Hi Tension (7" version)", and "Girl I Betcha". CD

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New Malone & Barnes & Spontaneous SimplicityFreedom Serenade ... CD
Humpin International/Luv N' Haight, 1977. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Jazzy soul from the team of Jonni Malone and Allan Barnes, working here with the Spontaneous Simplicity group – a combo named after an old Sun Ra tune! The feel of the album is somewhere in the territory of the hipper work on Fantasy Records in the mid 70s – indie soul that has a sweetly spiritual approach, and a fair bit of jazz in the mix – all served up with some wonderfully warm production! Some tracks are upbeat groovers aimed at the dancefloor, but with an overall deeper mode of expression that has great solos really stretching out – while others are more laidback, with a 70s righteous take on the groove. Malone plays keyboards and sings, Barnes plays "Afro horns" in a Oneness Of Juju way, and the album also features work by a number of other ensemble players. Titles include "Galactic Interlude", "Road Man", "Freedom Serenade", "Up N Comin", "Moonstruck", and "Workin Plan". CD

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New SunSunburn (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Capitol/Vivid (Japan), 1978. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Massive work from Sun – a tightly crafted batch of dancefloor funk that reminds us of some of our favorite work from Fantasy Records at the time – especially some of the more righteous groups that blended equal parts jazz and soul! Sun's got a tightness here that's amazing – right up there with Earth Wind & Fire at their best, but not as commercial overall – and instead, always delivered with a nice sense of righteous energy! The set kicks off with the wicked "Sun Is Here", a guitar-driven groover with a very famous sample riff – and a sound that's somehow more stripped-down and jazz funk-driven than a lot of the group's other tunes. Other cuts are pretty great too, with lots of warm bubbly soulful moments – and titles include "Dance", "Long Drawn Out Thang", "I Had A Choice", "Sun Of A Gun", and "You're The One". CD

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New Various122 BPM – The Birth Of House Music – Mitchbal Records & Chicago Connection Records ... CD
Still Music, 1980s. New Copy 3 CDs .... Out Of Stock
A crucial look at the Chicago scene in the 1980s – and the first collection to really get at the roots of that city's legendary house music scene! Although later labels – like Trax or DJ International – became known as global forces for dance music in the 80s, the big wave of new sounds from the Windy City was really started by a much smaller company – the tiny Mitchbal label, and related Chicago Connection Records! This wonderful package really does a great job of bringing the Mitchbal contribution to light – with lavish notes, almost Numero-style, that fully detail the way the label mixed unique strands on the scene – British imports, new wave rhythms, and a younger generation of soul musicians still looking for an outlet in the post-disco years. These forces, and more, all came together to make the mighty sound of Mitchbal – featured here in a collection of the label's rare singles, some unreleased tracks, and other essential bits. 3CD package features a full bonus mix CD, plus a whopping 24 tracks that include "Fantasy (inst)" by Z Factor, "Shake Your Body" by Jeanette Thomas, "When I Hear The Music" by Mitchbal & The Housemasters, "The House Is On Fire" by Dezz & Grant, "Do Dat Stuff (dance mix)" by Mitchbal & Larry Williams, "I Am Music (inst)" by Libra Libra, "That's The Beat" by Risque Rhythm Team, "Fast Cars" by Z Factor, "More Than Just A Dance (backyard mix)" by Rique Rhythm Team, "I Got Broke Breakdancing (inst)" by MC Ghee, and "I Can't Forget" by Mr Lee. CD

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New VariousI Am The Center – Private Issue New Age In America 1950 to 1990 ... CD
Light In The Attic, 1950s/1960s/1970s/1980s. New Copy 2 CDs Gatefold .... Out Of Stock
An amazing compilation – and a really groundbreaking attempt to get to the true heart of new age music – that initial moment of meditative sound on records from the American underground – very pure in both spirit and execution before the whole thing got watered down and commercial! The massive set digs way deeper than we might have expected – way past the Bay Area indies who rose the genre to prominence, to a whole host of tiny US labels from the postwar years onward – home to individual players with a very personal sound – on instruments that range from conventional piano to global sources, electronics, and even some items of their own invention. The choice of tracks is perfect – really getting back to the basics of the genre in a great way – and the music is very laidback and meditative, with ethereal qualities that are completely sublime – especially in the context of the great packaging and notes of the whole collection. Many tracks here were never issued on CD – and many were only from rare tapes, too – and the double-length batch of work is one of the most unique musical journeys we've ever taken! Titles include "Lifting Off" by Joanna Brouk, "Arabian Fantasy" by Daniel Emmanuel, "Formentera Sunset Clouds" by Iasos, "Seventh Chakra Keynote B" by Steven Halpern, "Om Mani Padme Hum" by Constance Derby, "Unicorns In Paradise" by Laraaji, "Blue Spirals" by Daniel Kobialka, "As The Earth Kissed The Moon" by Michael Stearns, and "Waterfall Winds" by Alice Damon. CD

Possible matches92
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New Ravi ShankarTransmigration Macabre – Music For The Film Viola ... CD
Spark/Varese, 1967. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
A unique set by the great Ravi Shankar – one of his trippiest albums ever, and originally recorded as a soundtrack for the film Viola! There's plenty of elements that resonate with some of Shankar's other studio work of the 60s – but there's also a much darker feel overall – really heady sounds that are often abstracted or echoed a bit with the production, given a wild sort of light show feel that you'd never hear on any of Ravi's other records! There's some very raw tabla and tambura in the mix, and other odd instruments from Les Structures Sonores – who seem to bring in a bit of electro-acoustic energy to the record at points. Titles include "Madness", "Fantasy", "Anxiety", "Torment", "Submission", "Death", "Transmigration", "Retribution", and "Reflection". CD

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New Bill SummersFeel The Heat ... CD
Prestige/BGP (UK), 1977. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Masterful funky soul jazz from the mid 70s – and one of the best solo albums recorded by Headhunter Bill Summers – a sunny batch of Bay Area funk that really grooves with the best of Fantasy Records from the time! The set was produced by Skip Scarborough, and has that great bubbling, stepping, soulful groove that was Scarborough's best contribution to jazz funk – a trademark groove that was every bit as important to the 70s as the work of Bob James or Larry Mizell! Summers' work on congas and percussion is excellent and the players are totally top shelf – the core group features drums by Alphonse Mouzon, bass by Paul Jackson, and keyboards by Scarborough – and vocalists on the set include Dianne Reeves, Mikki Morris, and Charles Meeks. Titles include "Drum Suite", "Come Into My Life", "People Know", "Just A Matter Of Time", "No One", "Check It Out", and "Que Sabroso". CD

Possible matches94
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New Johnny Guitar WatsonWhat The Hell Is This/Love Jones ... CD
DJM/Cherry Red (UK), 1979/1980. New Copy 2 CDs .... Out Of Stock
A pair of late 70s gems from Johnny Guitar Watson – back to back in a single set! What The Hell Is This offers up a great return to the spacey soul that made Johnny Watson so great in the 70s – a set that turns down the bass and brings up Johnny's voice – letting his wonderful persona drift and flow amidst a range of mellow-grooving tracks! The album's got some great echoes of territory that Johnny first explored during his Fantasy years – that style that took his older blues and smoothed it out – compressing all the elements together in a really great way, yet without some of the overdone funky bits that could sometimes hurt later Watson work from these years. Johnny's charm is undeniable throughout – wickedly soulful and clever, and not nearly as silly as you'd think from the album's goofy cover. Titles include "In The World", "What The Hell Is This?", "Strung Out", and "Cop & Blow". Love Jones is one of the last great records by Johnny Guitar Watson – and an album that's got some wonderfully subdued moments, which is a real relief after some of the too-funky bits on some of his other sets from the late 70s! Johnny returns to the tight soul of the mid 70s Fantasy LPs – still keeping the guitar up in the mix, but also really focusing on his wonderfully compressed style of vocals – a slightly tripped out mode that dances along beautifully with the guitar – ta-ta-ing us to some great mellow grooves, and really letting Watson's personality shine! Titles include "Love Jones", "Asante Sana", "Lone Ranger", and "Children of the Universe". CD

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New Charles WilliamsStickball ... CD
Mainstream/P-Vine (Japan), 1972. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Full-on funky backings for saxophonist Charles Williams – a set that almost has him in the same territory as Stanley Turrentine during his late 70s years on Fantasy Records, or Hank Crawford over at Kudu! The style here is a bit more lush than some of the other Mainstream Records dates of the time – full backings arranged and conducted by Ernie Wilkins – always plenty darn soulful, and built around a mix of strings and jazzier instrumentation – set up with the care and precision of a hip soul soundtrack, and topped by well-crafted alto sax solos by Williams. Other players include Chris Woods on baritone sax, Bubba Brooks and Frank Wess on tenor, Don Pullen on organ, Paul Griffin on electric piano, David Spinozza on guitar, and Ray Barretto on congas – and titles include some great versions of "Who Is He (And What Is He to You)", "People Make the World Go Round", and "Where Is The Love" – plus "Iron Jaws", "Just Before Day", "Ain't No Blues", and "Drown In My Own Tears". CD

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New VariousSurinam – Boogie & Disco Funk From The Surinamese Dance Floors 1976 to 1983 ... CD
Kindred Spirits (Netherlands), Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy .... Out Of Stock
Really rare grooves from an incredibly obscure scene – and that's saying a lot, given how many global sounds have been circulating in recent years! The cuts here represent a unique outpouring of funky club styles from the nation of Surinam – tracks recorded by a handful of groups in the wake of their mid-70s independence – and as filled with as much joy and positive energy as you might imagine from such a political moment! The grooves are surprisingly great – upbeat funk, with lots of jazzy inflections – in a space that's somewhere between the sound of Fantasy Records in the mid 70s, and Capitol soul at the start of the 80s – tight, but never too slick – and as cool as it is classy. Lyrics are in English, and titles include "Sweet Dream" by Alwin Reingoud, "Groovy Weekend" and "Disco Party" by Erwin Bouterse & The Group Roetoe, "Try Try Try" and "You Are Gonna Miss Me" by Solat, "Funkin In Your Mind" and "Going Insane" by Sumy, "Here's To You" by Thunderstorm, and "Waiting For Your Love" by Usje Sukatma. CD