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Special Ed

 

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Possible matches: 2
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New Ed MottaAOR (English version with bonus tracks) ... CD
Dwitza/Tummy Touch, 2013. New Copy ... $11.99 12.99
Tremendous work from Ed Motta – a record that not only lives up to all the promise we've found in his music over the years – but which also goes way way beyond, and really knocks it out of the park! The title here is no lie, as Ed's a huge fan of AOR modes from the 70s – especially those magical sounds from the west coast that perfectly blended jazz, soul, and pop with sweet studio perfection – an approach he goes for wonderfully here, with results that are even better than we expected! Motta's always had soul music at his core, but has professed a strong love for Steely Dan over the years – and this set's a sublime balance of both modes – especially on this English version, where Ed's lyrics are able to reach American ears that have never been able to fully appreciate his genius. Everything about the album is totally right, and totally great – an instant classic set that should get Motta's music out to generations of fans for generations to come. The set features guest work from David T Walker and Bluey of Icognito – and titles include "Playthings Of Luv", "Simple Guy", "Lost In The Night", "Smile", "1978", "AOR", "Dried Flowers", and "Dondi". Includes two special US bonus tracks – "Marta (alt piano solo)" and "Mais Do Que Eu Sei". CD
Also available AOR (English version) ... LP 26.99

Possible matches2
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New Teddy CharlesSalute To Hamp ... CD
Bethlehem/Solid (Japan), 1958. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
A salute to Lionel Hampton, but one that goes way past the usual – thanks to a very hip group led by vibist Teddy Charles! Teddy made lots of great records in the 50s, and this is definitely one of them – a batch of tunes associated with Hamp, but played here by a modernist hardbop lineup that includes Art Farmer on trumpet, Zoot Sims on tenor, and Bob Brookmeyer on trombone – all players who really help add their voices to the music in wonderful ways, with some especially rich tonal colors that sound great next to Teddy's vibes. The rhythm section is mighty sweet too – with Addison Farmer on bass and Ed Thigpen on drums – keeping the grooves past another Hamp rehash – and titles include "Midnight Sun", "He's Gone Again", "Stardust", "Blue Hamp", "Moonglow", and "Air Mail Special". CD
 
Partial matches: 194
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Barry AltschulFor Stu ... CD
Soul Note (Italy), 1979. New Copy ... $8.99 16.99
An album dedicated to the late drummer Stu Martin – and a set that features some very dynamic drum work from longtime friend Barry Altschul! The album has Altschul really hitting some new notes in his music – stepping off with a bit more dynamic energy than some of his other 70s recordings, working with a group that has a nicely elastic feel – able to change sounds and shapes at the drop of a hat! Other quartet members include Anthony Davis on piano, Ray Anderson on trombone, and Rick Rozie on bass – and the trombone of Anderson is especially great here, adding in a sense of warmth, and almost playfulness at points. Titles include "Drum Role", "Sleepwalker", "For Stu", and a version of the Mingus classic "Orange Was The Color Of Her Dress Then Silk Blues". CD
(Official pressing of the CD, with full artwork – not the CDr pressing found at other online retailers.)

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Fred Anderson, Hamid Drake, K Jordan & W Parker2 Days In April ... CD
Eremite, 1994. New Copy 2 CDs ... $24.99 29.99
Two great days in April – each featuring some very free improvisation from a group that includes Fred Anderson and Kidd Jordan on tenors, William Parker on bass, and Hamid Drake on drums – a quartet with boundless energy, and a really rich sense of each other's place within the sound! The first day features a performance from Amherst, and a relatively fiery one at that – with these unbridled sounds from all players, and some especially tremendous saxophone lines from Anderson and Jordan – often soaring out together, but with a very individual sense of space. The second day is slightly more measured – a Cambridge performance that has some nice solo spots for each player. Both dates are very well-recorded – and packaged in the usual high Eremite standard! CD

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Marisa AndersonMercury ... CD
Mississippi/Important Records, 2013. New Copy ... $14.99
Lovely instrumental work from Marisa Anderson – guitar sounds both acoustic and electric, played in a style that's certainly folksy – but often a bit less traditional than you might expect! There's these cool darker tones around the edges here – a quality that maybe starts with John Fahey, but also echoes some of the more simply expressive solo guitar work of the post-punk generation – especially on the electrified numbers that let the fuzz ring out around the edges, and really help the tunes take shape. The album's quite unique, and very different than most of the contemporary guitar underground – and titles include "The New Country", "Sinks & Rises", "Galax", "Red Sky", "Embudo", "Trinity", "Mojave", and "Furnace Creek". CD

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ArtisticsLook Out ... CD
Brunswick/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1973. New Copy ... $21.99
Heavenly group soul from The Artistics – a quartet who already sounded great on the Chicago scene of the 60s – but who really opened up into something special with records like this! The group's harmonies were well forged on early upbeat groovers – which means that here, when they're kicking back a bit more they really take off – mixing voices and leads in this way that easily rivals the best east coast groups of the period – and which gets some massive kick at the bottom from the team of Sonny Sanders and Willie Henderson – both of whom bring in a gentle funk to some of the best numbers. Titles include their seminal "I Want You To Make My Life Over" – a cut that we never tire of hearing – plus "Being In Love", "If You Had A Change Of Mind", "Don't You Know That I Love You", "She's Heaven", "Look Out I'm Gonna Get You", and "This Love Is Mine". CD

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New Dorothy AshbyDorothy's Harp ... CD
Cadet (Japan), 1969. New Copy ... $13.99
One of the grooviest Dorothy Ashby albums of the 60s – a set that has her already-great jazz work on harp backed by Chicago soul arrangements from Richard Evans – all in a blend that's somewhere in the territory of the Soulful Strings, but even groovier! And as an added bonus, Odell Brown even plays a bit of Fender Rhodes on the record – which sounds especially great! Both Ashby and Evans are at the height of their powers here – mixing together bits of jazz, soul, and trippier elements in a sublime late 60s Cadet Records blend – one that's carried off perfectly on the original tunes "Truth Spoken Here", "Tornado", "Cause I Need It", and "Just Had To Tell Somebody" – but which also sounds great on some of the album's cool covers too! Other titles include Brazilian numbers "Reza" and "Canto De Ossanha" – both of which are transformed in Dorothy's hands – plus "This Girl's In Love", "By the Time I Get to Phoenix", and "Windmills of Your Mind"! CD

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Roy AyersLove Fantasy ... CD
Polydor/PTG (Netherlands), 1980. New Copy ... $18.99
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

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AztecaAzteca (plus bonus tracks) ... CD
Columbia/Big Break (UK), 1972. New Copy ... $14.99
A crowning moment for the west coast Latin scene in the 70s – a wonderful Bay Area set that brings together some of the best talents working on that scene at the time! The set's got a great blend of modes – Latin soul, touches of funk, and plenty of the jazzy inflections you'd expect from a lineup that includes Coke Escovedo on timbales, Paul Jackson on bass, Lenny White on drums, George Muribus on Fender Rhodes, Tom Harrell on trumpet, and Victor Pantoja on congas! Vocals are by Pete Escovedo – who brings in a heady soulful sound to the set – and the vibe is a bit like work by Malo or El Chicano, but even more jazz-based overall! Titles include "Peace Everybody", "Empty Prophet", "Can't Take The Funk Out Of Me", "Azteca", "Ah! Ah!", and "Mamita Linda". CD features two bonus tracks – single versions of "Mamita Linda" and "Ain't Got No Special Woman". CD

Partial matches10
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Paulo BaguncaPaulo Bagunca E A Tropa Maldita ... CD
Continental/Discos Mariposa (Argentina), 1973. New Copy ... $9.99
A Brazilian underground classic from the early 70s – mindblowing work that mixes heavy percussion with lots of guitar – in a style that's samba soul one minute, but heavier rock the next! There's a bit of a Jorge Ben influence going on at times – particularly in the way the record uses quickly-strummed acoustic guitar next to the earthy rhythms – but the overall sound is also a bit more fragile at times, and rougher around the edges, especially at its most expressive moments. But that quality only serves to make the album more striking – an instantly captivating set that needs no previous cultural knowledge at all! Really tremendous stuff – the kind of lost treasure that will have you scratching your head, but loving it at the same time! Titles include "Apelo", "Grinfa Louca", "A Mente", "Tramba", "Madalena", "Mensageiro", "Cristina", "Olhar Animal", and "Microfones Metalicos". CD

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BalojiKinshasa Succursale ... CD
Crammed (Belgium), 2011. New Copy ... $7.99 13.98
One of the most compelling combinations of global styles we've heard in awhile – a great second set from Belgian-Congolese artist Baloji! The set's got an unusual approach that's rooted in African instrumentation, run through European filters, and imbued with a bit of hip hop energy – particularly in Baloji's sharply-spoken lyrics – which are more bold messages than straight hip hop rhymes – especially set amidst some of the warmer, more flowing musical passages. The set features guest work from a wide range of talents – including Konono No.1, soukous stars Zaiko Langa Langa, American soul maverick Amp Fiddler, brass band Fanfare La Confiance, and the choir Choeur La Grace – all of whom leave their unique imprint on the set – creating a great sense of change as the music flows along. Titles include "Tshena Ndekela", "De L'Autre Cote De La Mere", "Genese 89", "Kesho", "Tout Ceci Ne Vous Rendra Pas Le Congo", "Nazongi Ndako", and "Karibu Ya Bintou". CD

Partial matches12
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Harrison BankheadMorning Sun Harvest Moon ... CD
Engine, 2011. New Copy Gatefold ... $14.99 15.99
The debut as a leader from bassist Harrison Bankhead – long an important figure on the Chicago jazz scene as a sideman, really stepping forth here with a bold new vision of his own! The album's got a very free, open sort of vibe – definitely in the spirit of the AACM, but with some 70s spiritual touches too – especially once things get going, and some of the more rhythmic tracks take hold! The group features the great Ed Wilkerson on tenor, clarinet, and didgeridoo – sounding great, and returning a favor to Bankhead after the bassist's years in Wilkerson's groups. Other players include Mars Williams on saxes, James Sanders on violin, Avreeayl Ra on drums and percussion, and Ernie Adams on more percussion – a lineup that's equally well-suited to free improv numbers, and some of the more groove-oriented tracks. Titles include "Over Under Inside Out", "Chicago Senorita", "East Village", "Morning Sun/Harvest Moon", and "Flying Through Your Dreams". CD
(In a beautiful hand-pressed cover, too!)

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Ron BanksTruly Bad ... CD
Columbia/FTG, 1983. New Copy ... $13.99
One of the original Dramatics, singer Ron Banks strikes out here on his own – a slept on gem from the early 80s! The set's in a similar modern soul mode to LJ Reynolds, who also worked with him in the group, and was having a bit of a solo career of his own at the time. It's got sort of a D-Train feel to it – with classic male soul vocals over instrumentation that includes some slight electro touches, especially on keyboards and drum programs. Banks keeps the whole thing nice and soulful, thanks to some great vocal work, which you'll hear on the smooth mellow track "Let Love Flow", which has a beautiful down-tempo groove, and a nice two-step beat – plus the other mellow tracks like "Make It Easy On Yourself" and "You and Me". Uptempo club cuts include "Truly Bad", "Zap", and "She's So Good to Me". CD

Partial matches14
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Keith BarrowPhysical Attraction (with bonus tracks) ... CD
CBS/FTG, 1978. New Copy ... $15.99 16.98
A great secular set from Keith Barrow – a singer who started in gospel, but who's always been best-remembered for this modern soul gem from the 70s! Keith's got a great range to his vocals – one you can hear right from the start, as he dips and soars effortlessly with a quality that's clearly inspired by the spirit – but set here to some wicked smooth soul arrangements from Johnny Allen. The album's got a mix of clubby moments and some even better laidback cuts – and the set also features a few tunes penned by Ronn Matlock, an under-credited master of modern soul. Titles include "Turn Me Up", "Physical Attraction", "You Know You Want To Be Loved", "If It's Love That You're Looking For", "Garden Of Love", and "Free To Be Me". CD features bonus tracks – "Turn Me Up (special disco version)", "Turn Me Up (inst)", "Physical Attraction (12" mix)", and "You Know You Want To Be Loved (7" mix)". CD

Partial matches15
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Claudja BarrySweet Dynamite (plus bonus tracks) ... CD
Salsoul/Octave (Japan), 1977. New Copy ... $21.99
An early hit for Salsoul Records – a set of extended European disco tracks, all building in a nice slow, layered sort of way – then remixed by Tom Moulton for the US dancefloor! The tunes have this instrumental structure that almost doesn't even need the vocals of Claudja Barry – especially the title track, which has this sweet-stepping keyboard line that's really beautiful – more of the hook of the tune than the lyrics themselves. Strings swirl stronger as the album moves on – and Claudja more than redeems herself on the cut "Dance Dance Dance", which is a nice bit of dancefloor funk that really stands out! The other cuts include "Live A Little Bit", "Sweet Dynamite", and "Love For The Sake Of Love". CD features bonus tracks – "It Takes Two", a duet with Ronnie Jones – plus single mixes of "Sweet Dynamite" and "This Taste Of Love". CD

Partial matches16
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Robbie BashoZarthus ... CD
Vanguard (UK), 1974. New Copy ... $14.99
One of the trippiest records ever from Robbie Basho – in case you couldn't guess from the striking cover image! The set's a blend of Basho's sublime work on guitar – very much in the John Fahey side of the spectrum – and more Eastern-styled elements from Ramnad V Raghavan, who plays mrdangam on all tracks – creating these captivating rhythmic pulses alongside Basho's guitar! Basho also sings and plays a bit of piano – both very eerie, and very unusual – especially on the last track on the record, which takes up almost all of side two, and has an almost Gurdjieff sort of vibe. Titles include "Zarthus", "Khalil Gibran", "Bride Divine", "Rhapsody In Druz", and "Mehera". CD

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Les BaxterHouse Of Usher ... CD
Intrada, 1960. New Copy ... $19.99
A surprisingly complex score from the great Les Baxter – written for Roger Corman's famous film version of The Fall Of The House Of Usher! The music is quite lush at times – more orchestral than some of the Baxter exotica from the same period, but still filled with lots of great little twists and turns – especially as the narrative moves on – that ear for odd sounds and unusual tunings that made Les one of the real standouts of his generation! There's lots of weird watery passages, moody reed tones, and offbeat string sounds – and this great reissue features remastered sound and a full booklet of notes. Titles include "Madeline Usher", "Roderick Usher", "Buried Alive", "Catalepsy", "Pallbearers", and "The Ancestors". CD

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Beginning Of The EndBeginning Of The End (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Alston/Creole Stream (Japan), 1976. New Copy ... $24.99
One of the rarest funky records of all time – the hard-to-find second album by Beginning Of The End! This West Indian combo hit it big with their first album on Alston, but this second set, for some strange reason, never really got distributed – which is a damn shame, because it's every bit as funky as their first! The uniquely choppy rhythms of the group's first album are every bit as great here as on the first set – and if anything, the band's instrumentation is even better, especially on the guitar, which is wickedly tight, and played with a super-dope flanged-out approach on the solos. Vocals are great too, maybe even more soulful than before, especially on the album's few midtempo cuts – and the album's a must-have for any fan of the group's funky sound! Titles include "That's What I Get", "Super Woman", "Bluestrain", "Jump In The Water", "Falling Apart At The Seams", and "Trip To Nowhere". CD
Also available Beginning Of The End ... LP 9.99

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Madeline Bell/Themes International Rhythm SectionVoice Of Soul/Sound Of Soul ... CD
Themes/Vocalion (UK), 1976. New Copy ... $16.99
Two wonderfully soulful albums from the Themes International sound library label – back to back on a single CD! The Voice Of Soul is a rare date from singer Madeline Bell – a vocalist who cut some key commercial work in the late 60s and 70s UK scene, but who shines beautifully on this rare set for the sound library! The tunes are all vocal, with Madeline in the lead – and the overall feel is a bit like Bell's This Is The One Girl set from the mid 70s – but with a leaner feel overall, thanks to the relatively small combo backing up the vocals. And although the record was never issued publicly at the time, it's a killer batch of mellow soul from the 70s – great vocals sliding along with the keyboards, and quite possibly Bell's finest moment on wax. Titles include "Your Smile", "You're A Winner", "Love Doctor", "Soul Slap", "Flying High", "Mr Smooth Man", and "Love Is All". The Sound Of Soul is all instrumental – classic set of soulful sound library tracks – lots of sweet keyboards, guitar, basslines, and other nice bits – one of the best of the titles on the Themes library label during the 70s, and with loads of great tracks by Alan Parker! The overall style is especially in the cop show mode – with tight production, but lots of hard riffing funk – and titles include "Move & Shake Your Body", "Love Doctor", "Soul Slap", "Crumpet", "Flying High", "Mr Smooth Man", and "Love Is All". CD

Partial matches20
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William BellDuets ... CD
Stax, Late 60s/Early 70s. New Copy ... $5.99 11.98
William Bell was one of Stax's first great male singers, prefacing Otis Redding by a few years with his initial recordings for the label. However, what's not as well known is the fact that Bell also recorded some excellent duets for Stax – all of which were only ever issued as singles, until this tasty CD set, which compiles 10 of those duets, plus 3 more solo sides. Bell's sophisticated vocals were perfect for the format – as he was sort of the Marvin Gaye to Stax's Motown-esque lineup of girls that included Judy Clay, Mavis Staples, and Carla Thomas. Titles include the sublime "Private Number", plus "Love-Eye-Tis", "All I Have To Do Is Dream", "My Baby Specializes", "Left Over Love", "I Can't Stop", and "Lonely Soldier". CD

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Bebo Best & Super Lounge OrchestraSaronno On The Rocks ... CD
Chin Chin (Italy), 2011. New Copy ... $8.99 15.98
One of the tightest records to date from Bebo Best – a set that's still awash in cool 60s influences from lounge, bossa, and soundtracks – but which also comes across with an even more spontaneous spirit! There's still a fair bit of programs in the rhythms, and lots of cool sound samples too – but at points, you almost get the feel that the group's jamming live, especially on some of the more Latin-styled numbers. Titles give a good idea of the flavor of the set – and include "Havana Jazz Dance", "Chill Radio Bossa", "Dakiri Bossa Dance", "Jazz Carnival", "Saronno On The Rocks", and "Mambo & Cola". CD

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Bio RitmoPuerta Del Sur ... CD
Vampi Soul (Spain), 2014. New Copy Gatefold ... $16.99
One of the coolest contemporary combos in the Latin scene – a group who bristle with all the fire of a classic New York or Puerto Rican ensemble – and one who really keep the salsa dura flag flying high! Almost every cut here is a winner – just the kind of heavy-hitting gems that you'd only find here and there on a classic Fania album – packed together on this release to make this record one hell of a cooker all the way through! Instrumentation is relatively classic – in a trumpet/trombone 70s salsa style – but there's some unusual touches from time to time, the kind of compelling inflections the group's using to make the music their own – especially as they get more confident over the years. Titles include "Pajaro Pio Pio", "Codeina", "Se Les Olvido", "La Via", "Picaresca", and "Motocilengua". CD
Also available
Puerta Del Sur ... LP 16.99
Puerta Del Sur ... CD 11.99

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Jane BirkinLolita Go Home ... CD
Fontana (Japan), 1975. New Copy ... $13.99
Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin take Jane's ever-growing trash rock aesthetic into the Euro club world of the 70s – and the result is an insane batch of tracks that are among Birkin's craziest work of the decade! She sings with an incredibly deadpan style – as you'll hear especially on the English-language versions of "What Is This Thing Called Love" and "Where Or When" – and the arrangements by J-P Sabar have a spare electric quality that work perfectly with Jane's flat voice. A real oddity, but the kind of oddity that kept Birkin a compelling artist throughout her career – and proof that style goes a lot farther than substance in the world of Euro pop! Tunes are almost all originals written by Serge Gainsbourg – and titles include "French Graffiti", "Just Me & You", "La Fille Aux Claquettes", and "Rien Pour Rien". CD

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Walter Bishop, Jr.Keeper Of My Soul ... CD
Black Jazz/Snow Dog (Japan), 1973. New Copy ... $13.99 18.99
One of Walter Bishop's greatest records – an amazing session that's as funky as it is spiritual – and quite different than most of Bishop's other work! The vibe here is wonderful – as Bish plays a host of keyboards, not just piano – and works in the company of other players who include Ronnie Laws on reeds, Gerald Brown on bass, Woody Murray on vibes, and Shakur M Abdulla on percussion – a beautiful mix of cats who help Walter carry off some of his hippest recordings of the time! The use of vibes is especially nice alongside the electric piano – and titles include a great take on Bishop's classic "Soul Village", done here in a nice funky version – plus a version of "Summertime" with Bishop on organ, and the titles "Sweet Rosa", "Those Who Chant", and "N'Dugu's Prayer". CD

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Jo BissoLove Somebody ... CD
Marlin/Henry Stone, 1977. New Copy ... $6.99 12.99
Disco grooves, but with a definite difference – given that Jo Bisso had previously worked on the Parisian club scene, and brings a special flourish to this American album from the late 70s! Jo sings lead vocals on the side-long "Love Somebody" – a tune that builds strongly as Bisso gets answered by a trio of lovely ladies who really brighten up the sound – and who then seem to take over even more on the flipside working with singer Claudia Ferrari. This second side is even better than the first – as things get a bit more spare and stripped-down – snaking out on the smooth stepper "Your Love", getting some funky moogy touches on the P&P-like "Let's Keep It Together", and warming up on the mellow disco number "Thank You Baby". Special bonus – CD features a fifth track – not titled or credited at all! CD

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Black HeatNo Time To Burn ... CD
Atlantic (UK), 1974. New Copy ... $16.99
A stone classic from Black Heat – the group's second album, and even tighter than their first! The group's size has dropped a bit between albums – but that only helps them cook even more – dropping a bit of the horn section from before, which allows even more emphasis on their razor-sharp rhythms! There's a slight hint of Afro Funk in some of the rhythms – and the keyboards cook with lots of sweet clavinet lines – mixed with a production style that features some bubbling electronic elements that remind us a lot of that crazy "magic bag" that was used by the Lafayette Afro-Rock Band. That group might be a good point of comparison, but the band also shares a lot of Kool & The Gang's ensemble funk style – especially on their cover of "Love The Life You Live" – which they burn here beautifully! Other tracks include "Super Cool", "M&M's", "Rapid Fire", "You Should Have Listened", "Times Have Changed", and "Check It All Out". CD

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Black SheepWolf In Sheep's Clothing ... CD
Mercury, 1991. New Copy ... $4.99 5.98
A Native Tongues classic from 1991 – one that sounded great way back when, and has held up beautifully over the years – and rightly considered amongst the greatest hip hop albums ever! Wolf In Sheep's Clothing is playful rap at it's best, with funky and and funny cuts galore – but the title is apt, as the wit is pretty sharply barbed – especially when they're skewering hardcore and gangsta cliches. It's as brilliant as ever. Includes the massive "Flavor Of The Month", "Similak Child", "Pass The 40", "To Whom It May Concern", "Butt In The Meantime", "Strobelite Honey", "Are You Mad?", "Blunted", "For Doz That Slept" and more. CD
Also available Wolf In Sheep's Clothing (2LP pressing) ... LP 22.99

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Ruben BladesBohemio Y Poeta (remastered edition) ... CD
Fania, Mid 70s. New Copy ... $9.99 10.98
A collection of important early work by Ruben Blades – and easily one of the best examples of his tremendous talents in the 70s! The title is very well put, as Blades is both poet and bohemian on the record – hitting themes that are both personal and political in a way that other Latin singers would never touch, and handled here with arrangements that bring in not only a bit of jazz, but also some deeper shadings of color and tone that sparkle with almost soundtrack-like sophistication. Many titles are relatively longish, especially when compared to the work of his contemporaries, and titles include "Juan Pachanga", "Sin Tu Carino", "Paula C", "Pablo Pueblo", "La Mora", and "Canto Abacua". CD

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Ran BlakeRan Blake Plays Solo Piano ... CD
ESP, 1965. New Copy ... $10.99 12.99
Really amazing early work from pianist Ran Blake – an artist who's continued to blow our minds in more recent years, but who sounds especially outstanding hear in an early session for the ESP label! The album's quite different from some of the freer, bolder music you'd normally associate with ESP – as Ran plays solo here, with a style that's very poetic – although still quite open-ended and free, with a fair bit of improvisation as well. The shift of tones alone is mindblowing – almost beyond anything you might expect to come from the piano, yet without any of the heavier-handed modes of a player like Cecil Taylor. Original material is mixed with very vivid re-workings of jazz standards – and titles include "Vanguard", "Sister Tee", "Eric", "Stratusphunk", "On Green Dolphin Street", and "Lonely Woman". CD

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Blaze25 Years Later ... CD
Motown (Japan), 1990. New Copy ... $13.99
A fantastic bit of soul and house that was woefully overlooked at the time of its release – and one of our favorite albums of the past 25 years! The Blaze production team had been hitting the underground club scene hard for a few years with their raw New Jersey house singles – then Motown grabbed them in the studio, and had them cut this classic album of soul tracks that pays homage to a set of greats that runs from Leroy Hutson, to Donnie Hathaway, to Norman Harris, and a host of others – all with a sense of soulfulness and depth that goes way past their standard work for the clubs! The dancefloor tracks are great, but the album's also got some wonderfully mellow moments too – with tracks that include "So Special", "We All Must Live Together", "Missing You", and "Get Up". The CD version has the added bonus of being a bit of a "mini-opera" – with spoken bits that have a narrative quality, linking the tracks together in a way that didn't occur with the LP. CD

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Blue BeatsBeatle Beat ... CD
Rock Beat, Mid 60s. New Copy ... $11.99 12.98
Not The Beatles, but a group who are trying to cash in on their fame – by showing a monstrous Beatle wig on the cover of the album, covering a horde of dancers – and by playing a whole host of instrumentals with a nod to the Brit Invasion! We're guessing the Blue Beats were some American studio combo – as the overall project doesn't have a real UK sound – and they've definitely got their chops, especially on the guitar lines – which are recorded with a nice dose of echo and a good deal of twang, and mixed in with stomping rhythms and the occasional keyboard line. Titles include "The Chocolate Pudding Slop", "The Swingin Spiders' Bo Diddley", "The Fat Kings' Twist", "The Broken Egg Frug", "The Cold Mashed Potato", and "The Big Shoe Twist". CD
Also available Beatle Beat ... LP 18.99

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Francy BolandFrancy Boland Playing With The Trio ... CD
Rearward (Italy), 1967. New Copy ... $14.99
One of the few small group recordings ever cut by pianist Francy Boland – and a set that cooks every bit as much as his work with the larger Clarke Boland Big Band on MPS! The reason for the cooking is clear – Francy's got key rhythmic help from group members Jimmy Woode on bass and Kenny Clarke on drums – players who are way more than just partners with Boland on the session – more musical soulmates, especially from a rhythmic perspective – and able to work at that unique Clarke Boland level that's both lyrical and swinging, soulful and modern! The tunes are played in this way that really shows off Boland's skills on the keys – but never in a style that's flashy, just fresh and filled with surprising tones and twists – backed superbly by Woode and Clarke. Titles include "The Girl & The Turk", "Gamal Sady'N'Em", "Night Lady", "Myriam Doll", "I'm All Smiles", "Lonely Girl", and "Nights In Warsaw". CD

Partial matches33
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BombersBombers (with bonus tracks) ... CD
West End/Octave (Japan), 1978. New Copy ... $22.99
One of the more guitar-driven groups on the West End label at the end of the 70s – an outfit with a really great approach to cutting longer dancefloor grooves! Tracks on the album have a nice tight feel that's echoed strongly by the guitar and keyboard work on the tracks – not as spacey as you might think from the sci-fi cover of the record, but still with a strong cosmic groove nonetheless! The album includes the legendary break cut "The Mexican", served up here in a full version that's nearly 12 minutes long, and which has lots of nice congas and guitars! Other titles include "Main Man", "Don't Stop The Music", and "Super Max". CD features some nice bonus tracks – including "The Mexican (Paul Poulos 12" special disco rmx)", "Dance Dance Dance (Paul Poulos 12" special disco rmx)", and "Don't Stop The Music (original single)". CD
Also available Bombers ... LP 9.99

Partial matches34
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BossacucanovaOur Kind Of Bossa ... CD
Six Degrees, 2014. New Copy ... $13.99 14.98
Bossacucanova serve up the kind of bossa they do best – a sweet mix of classic instrumentation and contemporary touches – but they also work here with some great help from a rich array of guest artists, all of whom really help the trio to deepen their sound! The vocalists are especially important – a mix of older and modern singers that includes Wilson Simoninha, Marial Rita, Elza Soares, Emilio Santiago, Cris Delanno, Moska, and Teresa Cristina – working alongside guest instrumentation from Oscar Castro Neves on guitar, David Feldman on piano, and Roberto Menescal on guitar – all players who are really respected by the group, and given plenty of room to shape the tunes. It's been awhile since we've heard from the trio, and the time has really helped them sharpen their sound – and continue to find a way to persist, where so many of their contemporaries have fallen away. Titles include "Adeus America", "Segure Tudo", "Ficar", "Deixa Pra La", "Rio De Inspiracao", "To Voltando", and "Waldomiro Pena". CD
Also available Our Kind Of Bossa ... CD 9.99

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New Brass MonkeyBrass Monkey (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Rare Earth/Vivid (Japan), 1971. New Copy ... $26.99
Funky, rootsy, and with a gritty undercurrent that will have you reaching for another bottle of brass monkey before the set is over! The record's a real standout in the early 70s scene – one of those rare magic moments when all sorts of familiar elements came together in a way that was really special – vocals informed by a folksy generation, instrumentation that was maybe post-Band, and an undercurrent of soul that really comes through in the rhythms – almost with a vibe that's like some of the hipper rock groups in Detroit who weren't afraid to play on both sides of the tracks. There's a few moments here that have kept this one strong with crate diggers over the years – and titles include "Keep A Little Bit Back", "Sing, Sing, Sing", "Strange Days", "All Fall Down", "You Keep Me Hangin On", "Stay With Me Baby", and "Sweet Water". CD

Partial matches36
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BreakawayBreakaway/Right On To The Top ... CD
Breakaway/BBE (UK), Late 70s. New Copy Gatefold ... $19.99
A pair of completely rare albums from Breakaway – a St Louis combo from the late 70s – with a groove that's equal part jazzy club and blue-eyed soul! Breakaway is the group's debut – recorded in 1977 with a surprisingly tight sound – especially given that the group were essentially a local club act who got the chance to record a bit in a local studio! The feel is very much in the best LA mode of the time, but maybe a bit looser too – with emphasis on some funky riffing from the male members of the group, plus sweet lead vocals from singer Kathy Newbry-Taylor – an artist who might have been pop, had she worked on the coasts – but who stretches her style nicely here. The album's been made famous by both On Track and Americana comps on BBE – and titles include "There's A New Group In Town", "Who Was It This Time", "Love My Eyes", "Understudy DJ", "Everything's Been Said About You", and "My Symphony". Right On To The Top is the second set from Breakaway – and the album already shows a great deal of growth – especially in the territory of rhythm! Breakaway have definitely dug some of the best club modes from the New York scene – and work here in a jazzy disco style that's filled with sweet keyboard lines alongside the female lead vocals – all with a vibe that's nicely stripped-down, and still lives up to the indie spirit of the group. The set features some guest work on horns, which nicely expands the sound – and titles include "Straight On To The Top", "You Are Love", "Back & Forth", "There's A New Tree In The Forest", "Work With The Music", and "Breakaway". CD
Also available Breakaway (with bonus CD) ... LP 22.99

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Peter Brotzmann/William Parker/Hamid DrakeNever Too Late But Always Too Early ... CD
Eremite, 2001. New Copy 2 CDs ... $22.99 29.99
Peter Brotzmann blows beautifully here – in a set that's dedicated to bassist Peter Kowald, and which features some especially great work from William Parker in the group! Brotzmann's got some soulful tones right at the start – almost an exotic quality in his reeds that spins out strongly with Parker's bass and the creative drum work of Hamid Drake – often with that bold focus that can make an Eremite date like this so great! The performance is fierce, but never in an unfocused way – and Drake is really wonderfully balanced between straighter swing and some of his freer explorations on the drum kit. Titles include "Never Run But Go", "The Heart & The Bones", "Halfhearted Beant", and "Never Too Late But Always Too Early". CD

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Miquel BrownManpower/Close To Perfection – Disco Recharge ... CD
TSR/Harmless (UK), 1983/1985. New Copy 2CD ... $16.99
A pair of albums from Miquel Brown – plus lots of bonus tracks too! First up is plenty of Manpower from Miquel Brown– the Canadian club singer who scored big with the classic "So Many Man So Little Time" club cut in the early 80s – then followed it up with this full album of late disco grooves! Brown's vocal approach is in the higher side of the spectrum – and the cuts take off on the style of some of the Canadian disco modes for divas from a few years before – but feature some instrumentation that's a bit more 80s, especially in the keyboards and beats. There's a few older soul touches at times – and the album's produced by Ian Levine and arranged by co-producer Fiachra Trench – usually in a mode that's somewhat poppy and hook-heavy. Titles include "So Many Men So Little Time", "Manpower", "Beeline", "Sunny Day", "He's A Saint He's A Sinner", and "Maybe He Forgot". CD also features "So Many Men So Little Time (hot tracks Rob Kimble rmx)", "Beeline (Mike Mayberry 12" rmx)", and "So Many Men So Little Time (2009 metropolitan soul rmx)". Close To Perfection has Miquel Brown hitting more of an 80s groove than before – but still holding onto a few of her best disco elements – in the hands of the same production team as previous singles, but maybe also trying to reach for more contemporary club modes as well. Titles include "One Hundred Percent", "Learn The Lines Of Love", "White Lace", "The Easy Way Out", "Blind Date", and "Black Leather". CD also features "Black Leather (12" mix)", "Close To Perfection (M&M rmx)", and "Love Reputation (12" ext dance)". CD

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Randy BrownWelcome To My Room/Midnight Desire ... CD
Casablanca/Shout (UK), 1978/1980. New Copy ... $9.99
Two killers from Randy Brown – sublime 70s soul, back to back on a single CD! Welcome To My Room is a mellow soul masterpiece from Randy Brown – a crucially-overlooked talent from the late 70s, working here with a totally put-together vibe! The album's got the mature, mellow feel of some of the best work by better-known 70s contemporaries – like Leroy Hutson or Lamont Dozier – polished, but never slick – and flowing out with a sensual groove that's especially nice on the more laidback or midtempo cuts. Randy's vocals have some great deep soul echoes – much more so than other singers of this type – and mixed with the warm production from Homer Banks and Carl Hampton, they give the album a rich quality that totally grabs us – a bit like some of Teddy Pendergrass' best mellow work with The Blue Notes. Titles include "I Love You Baby", "Love Is All We Need", "Do It Baby", "Too Little In Common", and "I'd Rather Hurt Myself". Midnight Desire is a sweet, smooth stepper from the great Randy Brown – and a record that's got the same sublime mix of mellow grooves and earthy vocals that you might find on some of Tyrone Davis' best late 70s work for Columbia! Tunes are all plenty darn fresh – written by the team of Homer Banks and Chuck Brooks, who also produced the album – and Randy's got this way of hitting a groove that's confident, but never arrogant – a perfect late 70s masculine mode, of the sort only a handful of singers could handle this well! Titles include "Without You (I Can't Make It Through The Night)", "We Ought To Be Doin It", and "Do You Love Me?" – all of which have great hooks – plus "Do You Love Me", "Love Be With You", and "Love Formula". CD

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Sheree BrownMessages From The Heart – An Extention Of Love ... CD
Expansion (UK), 2013. New Copy ... $16.99
A positive, powerful set from the always-great Sheree Brown – a new recording, but one that sparkles just as much as her rare classics for Capitol Records at the start of the 80s! Like those gems, there's a blend of jazz and soul here that's really wonderful – a special sound that puts Sheree in the rare company of artists like Minnie Riperton or Patrice Rushen – able to embrace so many ideas at once, and turn them into a rich new groove of her own! Rushen actually helps out a bit on the record, as does Leon Ware – although the main production credits go to Brown herself, who only seems to have stepped up her game in these recent years. Great proof that the great ones still keep on keepin on, if given the chance – with titles that include "Messages From The Heart", "Time For The Party", "Just A Simple Love", "I Think I'm Gonna Pray", "Getting Started", "We Can Chance The World", and a bonus version of Minnie Riperton's "Inside My Love". CD

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Ray BryantAlone With The Blues ... CD
New Jazz/Prestige (Japan), 1958. New Copy ... $15.99
A very striking album – one of Ray Bryant's most noteworthy of the time! The album features Ray playing solo piano – quite unusual for the period, as most piano jazz records, especially his, were at least cut in a trio format – with additional bass and drums. Yet the approach works wonderfully for Bryant, and unlocks a surprisingly sensitive side of his music – quite different than some of his more soul jazz-styled work of the period. Ray's wonderfully unfettered here – hitting grooves with a level of expression and sophistication that far surpasses most of his other records. The intimate time on the keys never gets hokey or overindulgent – but it does let Ray open up and show a side that we've rarely heard on wax. Titles include "Stocking Feet", "Blues #3", "Joy", "Me & The Blues", and "My Blues". CD
(SHMCD pressing.)

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Ralph BurnsBijou ... CD
Bethlehem/Solid (Japan), 1954. New Copy ... $13.99
Amazing small group work from Ralph Burns – a real standout, given the amount of his larger ensemble sessions in the 50s! The album features Burns on piano – overdubbed on some tracks – working with a combo that includes Jimmy Raney on guitar, Clyde Lombardi on bass, and Osie Johnson on drums – all gently modern players who fit perfectly with Ralph's vision for the record. Things aren't as dark or as arch as on some of Burns' bigger dates of the decade – almost a bit warm at times, especially thanks to Ralph's piano lines. Titles include "Autobahn Blues", "Echo Of Spring", "Spring Sequence", "Spring", "Spring Is Here", and "Gina". CD

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Burton IncLA Will Make You Pay $$$ ... CD
Jazzman (UK), Late 70s. New Copy ... $9.99
An obscure little set, but a great one too – a joint effort from Charles and Barbara Burton – served up with a really wonderful blend of upbeat club and modern soul modes! The album's got all the indie soul charm you'd expect from its title and cover – a simple, straightforward approach to the music that's often got lots of personal touches and genre-crossing moments – a great antidote to more mainstream soul of the time, but done with a fair bit of skill throughout! Instrumentation includes some great keyboards next to Barbara's vocals – and a few numbers feature chorus vocals that come across with an especially shimmering kind of sound. Titles include "LA Will Make You Pay", "Sincerely Yours", "Who You Gonna Get", "You Know I Love You", "Groovin At The Night Club", and "Nation Song". CD

Partial matches44
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BwanaBwana ... CD
Acid Symposium, 1972. New Copy ... $8.99
An insanely wonderful bit of Latin funk! The groove is super heavy, and falls somewhere in between NuYorican soul and Chicano Power rock – with a sound that's pretty close to Black Sugar, but a little bit more psychedelic, due to the heavy guitars and keyboards in the grooves. Hard congas take the lead on most of the tracks – especially the cut "Chapumbambe", which starts with a nice break! Other tracks include "Tema De Bwana", "Motemba", "La Patada", and the massive Latin soul cut "Lolita". CD
Also available Bwana ... LP 9.99

Partial matches45
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Donald ByrdCreeper (Japanese pressing) ... CD
Blue Note (Japan), 1967/1981. New Copy ... $15.99
A rock-solid set from Donald Byrd and a great group of players – a record that's got the same sharp edges and dark undercurrents of late 60s classics like Black Jack, Mustang, and Slow Drag! As with those gems, this album's got Donald really experimenting a bit more – especially with the rhythms – which are put forth by a hip trio that features Chick Corea on piano, Miroslav Vitous on bass, and Mickey Roker on drums! But almost even better is the frontline – with Sonny Red making one of his sublime appearances with Byrd, blowing alto with an edge that's amazing – and frequent partner Pepper Adams, adding plenty of baritone on the deep end. The whole thing's great – oddly unreleased until the start of the 80s – and titles include "Samba Yanta", "I Will Wait For You", "Blues Medium Rare", "The Creeper", "Chico-San", "Early Sunday Morning", and "Blues Well Done". CD

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Guy CabayLi Tins Les-Otes Et On Po D'Mi (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Disques Dessinee (Japan), 1979. New Copy ... $14.99
Really cool work from Guy Cabay – a singer who's a bit hard to describe accurately in words, but who definitely ranks right up there with some of the hippest French talents of the 70s! Cabay's got a breathy style of singing that's kind of post-Serge Gainsbourg, and a bit in the Saravah Records mode – especially as the small combo backings often feature some tenor or alto sax elements behind the vocals – a slight jazzy touches that helps underscore the hip singer/songwriter approach of Guy's music. There's a lyricality to his approach that comes through strongly – even if you don't understand French – and titlles include "Tot Reguede", "Julia L'Ote", "Julia Onk", "Li Harlake Et L'Djone Feye", "Li Nuleye E M'Payis", and "Camamele Et Cataplame". CD

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Bobby CaldwellCat In The Hat (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Clouds/JVC (Japan), 1980. New Copy ... $15.99
One of the greatest moments ever from Bobby Caldwell – a special little album that occupies it's own place between genres – a touch of soul, the warmth of jazz, and a delivery that really helped Caldwell reach out to some big new audiences at the time! There's a cool, compressed feel to the record – but a quality that's still quite personal and never too slick – that rare balance that only a few of Bobby's contemporaries could ever match – and which is really hammered home here by the production and great songwriting. Instrumentation uses a warm blend of acoustic and electric elements that offset the vocals nicely – and titles include "Coming Down From Love", "Wrong Or Right", "You Promised Me", "I Don't Want To Lose Your Love", and "Open Your Eyes". CD
(HQ – Hi Quality CD pressing!)

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New Cameo12 Inch Collection & More ... CD
Mercury, Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy ... $4.99 9.98
The only thing better than Cameo is more Cameo – especially when the group's best tunes are stretched out a little! This tasty set features 10 tight little jammers – some of the group's greatest dancefloor groovers, served up in extended 12" mixes – one of which is previously unreleased! The grooves range from the group's stellar late 70s years into some of their more heavy-handed 80s funk – and titles include "Rigor Mortis (12" mix)", "Single Life (12" UK mix)", "Candy (12" UK mix)", "Shake Your Pants (12" club)", "Word Up (12" club)", "I Just Want To Be (12" ext)", "She's Strange (12" club)", "Room 123 (12" rap)", "Attack Me With Your Love (12" club)", and "Back & Forth (12" Larry Blackmon mix)". CD

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Ana CaramSunflower Time ... CD
Universal (Brazil), 1996. New Copy ... $13.99
A great introduction to the music of Ana Caram – an early session recorded both in London and Brazil – with all the great mix of modes that might imply! The album's breathy and bossa in some spots, but full and jazzy in others – and Ana's equally at home in both settings! Some tracks feature just vocals and guitar, while others bring in a bit of light acoustic instrumentation – while others expand with a soulful vibe that's mighty nice, especially on three of the album's tracks produced by Bluey from Incognito. Titles include "Agua De Beber", "Mas Que Nada", "Overjoyed", "Odara", "Port Of Call", "Wave", and "Filhos De Gandi". CD

Partial matches50
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Vikki CarrFirst Time Ever I Saw Your Face (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Columbia/Real Gone, 1972. New Copy ... $15.99 16.98
A bit 70s album for Vikki Carr – and one that really shows a newer, sexier style for the singer! The backings are lush, but never sleepy – wrapped up with the kind of ornate sensuality of the cover image – which Vikki matches perfectly with notes that are well-formed, and understatedly mature – amidst a set of songs that really sum up the new "adult" modes of the time. Backings are mostly by All Capps – who's even more impressive here than usual – especially in his blend of acoustic and electric elements – and titles include "Without You", "First Time Ever I Saw Your Face", "The Summer Knows", "Speak Softly Love", "Song Sung Blue", "Help Me Make It Through The Night", "Brian's Song", and "The Way Of Love". CD features 9 bonus tracks – including "I Don't Want A Sometimes Man", "Reflections", "Let The Band Play On", "The Big Hurt", and "Call My Heart Your Home". CD

Partial matches51
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New Ron CarterAll Blues (remastered edition) ... CD
CTI, 1973. New Copy Gatefold ... $9.99 10.98
One of Ron Carter's best from the 70s – a hip and subtle effort recorded for CTI, with a small group that includes Joe Henderson on tenor, Roland Hanna on piano, and Billy Cobham on drums! Henderson's tenor work dominates the album, and the long tracks really let him snake around mightily – blowing with that dark edge that we totally love, and taking the record in much different directions than some of Carter's other albums. Richard Tee also plays electric piano on the title "117 Special" – and other tunes include "A Feeling", "All Blues", "Rufus", and "Will You Still Be Mine". This CTI 40th Anniversary edition was remastered using the original analog tapes. CD
Also available All Blues ... LP 16.99

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Michael CarvinFlash Forward ... CD
Motema, 2014. New Copy ... $11.99 15.98
Michael Carvin flashes backwards here – using a quartet of young talent to make magic with a host of older jazz standards – but all at a level that really reflects the freshness of his music in recent years! Carvin's been a favorite of ours for decades, but it seems as if his recent larger recognition has brought about a whole new fire in his music – similar to the rise Roy Haynes experienced in the 90s, with a similar sense of renewed purpose and direction! Here, Michael works with Keith Loftis on tenor, Yayoi Ikawa on piano, and Jansen Cinco on bass – on work by Horace Silver, Bobby Hutcherson, Dizzy Gillespie, and others – tracks that take an especially great cue from the tenor lines in the lead. Tracks include "Sayonara Blues", "In Walked Bud", "Same Shame", "You Go To My Head", and "So What". CD

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New Brian Charette Organ SextetQuestion That Drives Us ... CD
Steeplechase (Denmark), 2014. New Copy ... $15.99 18.99
Way more than just another Hammond combo record – as Brian Charette uses the B3 in these really fresh, really unique ways – working here with an especially compelling mix of reed players too! In addition to Charette's organ and the drums of Jochen Rueckert, the group features four different reed players – Mike Dirubbo on alto, Joel Frahm on tenor, John Ellis on bass clarinet, and Itai Kriss on flute – all musicians who dip in quickly to the waves of sound coming from from the keys of the Hammond, and create these shifting passages of group and individual voices that are mighty sublime! The individual approach is furthered by Charette's songwriting, which fills up the album with great tunes that include "Medium Up", "Answer Me", "Labor Day", "5th Bse", "Denge Merenge", and "I Came So Far To See You". CD

Partial matches54
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Don CherryWhere Is Brooklyn? ... CD
Blue Note (Japan), 1966. New Copy ... $18.99
Easily one of the most powerful albums ever cut by Don Cherry – a searing set of tracks done for Blue Note in the late 60s – and featuring some tremendous tenor work by Pharoah Sanders! There's a tightness and level of energy here that surpasses even Cherry's other excellent Blue Note sessions – a rawness that recalls the style forged often on key ESP albums of the 60s, but honed here into a slightly tighter mode. Sanders' horn is especially well-placed in the set – and pushes Cherry past the spacier notes of other recordings, in a way that unlocks fire from the years with Ornette – but which opens up into a much freer groove. The rest of the group includes Henry Grimes on bass and Ed Blackwell on drums – both a perfect match for the quartet – and titles include the 17 minute "Unite", plus "There Is A Bomb", "Awake Nu", "Taste Maker", and "The Thing". CD
(SHM CD pressing!)

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Clarke Boland SextetMarcel Marceau Praesentiert Swing Im Bahnhof ... CD
Rearward (Italy), 1965. New Copy ... $15.99
A brilliant recording by a small combo from the larger big band of drummer Kenny Clarke and pianist Francy Boland – and a great illustration of the driving, soulful sound the group always had at its core! The combo here features some of the most important members of the bigger unit – all artists who have a distinct personality, but an incredible way of coming together in a groove – in ways that are completely unlike any American jazz of the time, and light years ahead of most European work too! The music's really a blueprint for sounds to come for many decades – but served up here by the originals, who do the whole groove better than anyone else could ever touch. The performance is live – recorded in honor of Marcel Marceau – who could hardly keep quiet with such greatness like this in the room! The sextet features Sahib Shihab on flute, Fats Sadi on vibes and bongos, Francy Boland on piano, Joe Harris on percussion, Kenny Clarke on drums, and Jimmy Woode on bass and vocal – the latter of which is especially nice. Tracks include "Just Give Me Time", "Invitation", "Con Alma", "Serenata", "Born To Be Blue", "Yah Yah", "Balafon For Marcel Marceau", and "Insensatez". CD

Partial matches56
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ClashSoundsystem Box Set (11CDs & DVD) ... CD
Sony, Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy 11 CDs & DVD ... $139.99 249.98
The ultimate set for any true lover of The Clash – a set that features their first five albums, plus three more CDs' worth of bonus material – plus a DVD, and lots of amazing bonus bits too! The box is amazing in and of itself – styled like an early 80s boombox, and about as big as one too – and stuffed with bonus materials that include a set of metal dog tags, a vintage sticker set, a 15" poster, two bumper stickers, three reprints of the Armagideon Times zines, a Clash folder, a paperback book (The Future Is Unwritten), three DIY stickers, five badges, a service manual, and a special DVD too, with unreleased video and film footage. Also includes three CDs' worth of bonus material – lots of singles, rare tracks, and more – and then moves onto the first five (and five best) records by The Clash – their landmark self-titled debut, with the great UK track list; the brilliant follow-up Give Em Enough Rope; the blistering London Calling double set; the game-changing, genre-stepping Sandinista (originally a 3LP set); and the still-great Combat Rock – maybe the last album to still have all the best Clash elements still in place! See the photo for the full scope of material in the set – mindblowing! CD
(DVD is NTSC coded, Region 0.)

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New CoalitionBirth (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Kenya/Shout (Japan), 1978. New Copy ... $19.99
A very hip group from the 70s Philly scene – a jazz combo who've got a soulful swing and a wonderfully lyrical feel! The record has a bit of vocals, but really just added in as flavoring for the quartet's excellent instrumental interplay – a blend of tenor and flute with piano, bass, and drums that steps out wonderfully – often with a bit of a Strata East sort of vibe, especially on the longer, more searching tracks! The groove is way deeper than you might guess from the cover, or the monotone look of the set – and the set's one of those rare 70s nuggets from a small label that has more surprise and imagination than most big label jazz sets of the time. Titles include "Marionette", "Bill's Samba", "Kenya's Horizon", and the excellent "The Downer". CD
(Part of the Deep Jazz Reality series!)
Also available Birth ... LP 42.99

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Jimmy CobbOriginal Mob ... CD
Smoke Sessions, 2014. New Copy ... $14.99 15.99
Drummer Jimmy Cobb works here with his Original Mob – a quartet that's been together for over 20 years, and which features a well-matched lineup of Peter Bernstein on guitar, Brad Mehldau on piano, and John Webber on bass! Bernstein's sharp, tight guitar lines are really appreciated in a setting like this – as he plays with a vibe that recalls 60s Grant Green at his best, and which soars strongly in a role that somehow seems to encompass a bit of both rhythm and melody at once. The recording quality really puts Bernstein's guitar up front – at a level that sometimes doesn't happen on other records – and Mehldau, as always, has more then enough bold energy of his own – especially when given rock-solid direction from John Webber's bass. Titles include the Jimmy Cobb originals "Composition 101" and "Remembering You" – plus Bernstein's "Minor Blues", Webber's "Lickety Split", and the titles "Sunday In New York" and "Amsterdam After Dark". CD

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Cola & Jimmu (Nicole Willis & Jimi Tenor)I Give To You My Love & Devotion ... CD
Herakles (Finland), 2014. New Copy ... $16.99
Jimi Tenor is a man of many talents – able to work in modes from spacey to jazzy to funky, and everything in between – as is singer Nicole Willis, who most folks know from her deep funk recordings, but who reemerges here as a house vocalist in the team of Cola & Jimmu! The look of the cover really sums up the sound of the record – a great old school vibe that reflects the best underground club releases of the late 80s – especially that deeper-than-deep house scene that never even came close to the mainstream! There's lots of spiritual elements in the lyrics – similar to the vibe of Jimi's recent Kabu Kabu records – but Nicole's delivery is very different, often parsed in short lyrical bursts amidst the keyboards and grooves. Titles include "Immortal Champion", "Earthly Delights", "Open Up Your Chakra", "Fantabulous", "Meet You At The Crossroads", and "No More Wars". CD
Also available I Give To You My Love & Devotion ... LP 22.99

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Natalie ColeThankful/I Love You So/Don't Look Back ... CD
Capitol/BGO (UK), 1977/1979/1980. New Copy 2CD ... $19.99
Classic early work from Natalie Cole – packaged here in a sweet 2CD set! First up is the album Thankful – the third record in a tremendous early creative and commerical winning streak for Natalie! Thankful has her sweet, soulful voice out from of prodcution by Chuck Jackson and Marvin Yancy of the Independents, and they give her a nice jazzy sound that made the record one of her best of the 70s. Richard Evans and Gene Barge arranged, which probably had something to do with that, too – but Natalie truly deserves most of the credit of the strength of this set. It includes the standout groovers "La Costa" and"Annie Mae", but the whole record is really sweet – with "Lovers", "Our Love", "Be Thankful", "Just Can't Stay Away" and "Keeping A Light". I Love You So is a Capitol killer from Natalie Cole – a really great record from the time when she really seemed to be starting out her career with a bang! As with other gems on Capitol, the record features some great production work from Marvin Yancy and Chuck Jackson, getting a bit of help here from Gene Barge too – all wrapped up with a strong, sophisticated sound that shows plenty of Chi-soul touches in the music – a great approach for Natalie's maturing vocals. The sound is wonderfully balanced, and really stays away from easy hit modes – leaving the lady in a space that's all her own, on tracks that include "The Winner", "I Love You So", "Oh Daddy", "Sorry", "Stand By", and "Who Will Carry On". Don't Look Back is an overlooked gem from Natalie Cole – a set that still has her working strongly with songwriter Marvin Yancy, who really helped her find her sound and style during the early years of her career! Natalie actually helped with writing a fair bit on the record herself – sometimes with Yancy, sometimes alone – and the result is a surprisingly personal batch of tunes that really show a deepening of spirit in the singer, especially in the mellower moments. Gene Barge handles the arrangements – still bringing a bit of Chicago soul roots to the record – that mix of deep and sophisticated modes that always brought out the best in Natalie. Titles include "Don't Look Back", "I'm Getting In To You", "Paradise", "Hold ON", "Danger UP A head", and "Someone That I Used To Love". CD

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Mitty CollierShades Of Mitty Collier – The Chess Singles 1961 to 1968 ... CD
Chess/Kent (UK), 1960s. New Copy ... $14.99
A mighty helping of music from the overlooked Mitty Collier – a 60s soul singer on Chess Records, and one who was every bit as great as bigger label stars like Etta James or Fontella Bass! Like both of those singers, Mitty's got a voice that grabs you right from the get-go – a deeply soulful approach to her music that's really fresh and without cliche – especially considering she got her start belting out tunes years before some of the bigger names in 60s female soul, and managed to keep things mighty real all the years she was working at Chess. Production and arrangements here are all top shelf – handled by Phil Wright, Riley Hampton, and others – and the CD offers up 24 gems from Mitty's years at Chess – the a-sides of all 15 singles cut for the label, plus 9 more great tunes from the flips! Titles include "Everybody Makes A Mistake Sometimes", "Gotta Get Away From It All", "I've Got Love", "I Had A Talk With My Man", "Walk Away", "My Party", "Sharing You", "That'll Be Good Enough For Me", "Git Out", "Watching & Waiting", "Like Only Yesterday", "No Faith No Love", "I'm Your Part Time Love", and "Miss Loneliness". CD

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New Lyn CollinsCheck Me Out If You Don't Know Me By Now ... CD
Polydor (Japan), 1975. New Copy ... $13.99
The mellower of Lyn Collins' two albums for the People label – but still pretty darn fantastic! At some level, it seems like Lyn's taking on the rest of the soul industry – showing them that she can kick some major booty on her interpretations of hits like "Backstabbers", "If You Don't Know Me By Now", "Try A Little Tenderness", and "Mr Big Stuff", which is one of her best funky tracks ever, and better than Jean Knight's original! She also shines extremely well on the original cuts, though – especially the funky classic "Rock Me Again & Again & Again", plus the often-overlooked mellow soul groovers "To Each His Own", "Put It On The Line", and "How Long Can I Keep It Up". Production by James Brown, of course! CD
Also available Check Me Out If You Don't Know Me By Now ... LP 9.99

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CommodoresMidnight Magic ... CD
Motown (Japan), 1979. New Copy ... $13.99
Lots of Midnight Magic from The Commdores – still nice and funky at the start of the evening, but also chilling out in the wee hours too – really finding a great way to follow the trajectory of the night with the tracks in this set! The album sparkles with strong arrangements and production from James Carmichael – who furthers the vibe perfected on Natural High, yet continues to avoid most of the cliches that would slow down the group in later years. Lionel Richie's given room to step forth on the ballads "Still" and "Sail On" – but the group feel is still nicely maintained on the rest of the record – which also features the tracks "Getting It", "You're Special", "Wonderland", "Sexy Lady", and "Might Magic". CD

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New CookersTime And Time Again ... CD
Motema, 2014. New Copy ... $11.99 15.98
One of the greatest groups going in recent years – a strong revival of key soulful jazz talents from previous years, all working under the leadership of trumpeter David Weiss – who's really helped them come together and find a whole new sort of energy! The lineup features tremendous tenor from Billy Harper – sounding at his classic best with The Cookers – especially when the rhythms spin out majestically from George Cables on piano, Cecil McBee on bass, and Billy Hart on drums – often with these dark undercurrents that make the music wonderfully powerful! And in addition to Weiss on trumpet, the frontline also includes Eddie Henderson's trumpet as well, plus the alto of Donald Harrison – and the horns have a great way of folding together and interweaving, before breaking out in these very personal solos. Titles include tracks by almost all members of the group – and tunes include "Slippin & Slidin", "Renada", "Sir Galahad", "Time & Time Again", "Dance Of The Invisible Nymph", "Dance Eternal Spirits Dance", and "Three Fall". CD

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Larry Coryell with The Wide Hive PlayersLarry Coryell With The Wide Hive Players ... CD
Wide Hive, 2011. New Copy ... $9.99 15.99
A really old school jam from guitarist Larry Coryell – one that takes us back to some of the most tripped-out sounds of his early years! Given the cover, you can definitely expect a psychedelic influence to the music – and the group here really helps Larry get back to his roots – finding a sound that's still plenty jazz, but which mixes in some funky and progressive elements too – that genre-stepping quality that really helped Coryell break down a lot of barriers back in the day. Coryell plays both acoustic and electric on the date, and the lineup features some especially nice Fender Rhodes – plus trombone, saxes, bass, and plenty of percussion. Titles include "Torchlight", "Cobalt", "Terco", "The Last Drop", "Return Of Shirtless", "December Blues", "Honey Dijon", and "Dream Scene". CD

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Country Joe & The FishI Feel Like I'm Fixin' To Die (mono & stereo versions) ... CD
Vanguard (UK), 1967. New Copy 2CD ... $13.99
Maybe the greatest moment ever from Country Joe & The Fish – an insane blend of politics, psychedelia, rock roots, and more – all wrapped up in a nice of carnival-esque style that really lives up to the group's name! Many folks later copied the group – and others, like The Fugs, worked in somewhat similar territory – yet there's a really special sound to the group on this early set, a balance that brings more focus to otherwise trippy moments, more sense to their political agenda, and these sharp instrumental inflections that really send the whole thing home. Blues historian Samuel Charters produced, giving the record another influential quality – and titles include "The Fish Cheer & I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-To-Die-Rag", "Who Am I", "Pat's Song", "Magoo", "Jam", "Eastern Song", and "Colors For Susan". 2CD set features the full album in both mono and stereo, plus bonus tracks "Janis" and an alternate take of "I Feel Like I'm Fixin To Die Rag". Great notes too! CD

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Pee Wee CraytonTexas Blues Jumpin In Los Angeles – The Modern Music Sessions 1948 to 1951 ... CD
Ace (UK), Late 40s/Early 50s. New Copy ... $14.99
A tremendous guitarist, with a really mindblowing sound – easily one of the most powerful players on the electric guitar of the time! Pee Wee Crayton's got this full, rich tone that reminds us a lot of T Bone Walker – especially when he hits lots of raspy edges – and like Walker, the music here is more of a mix of jazz, jump, and R&B than the straighter blues you'd associate with Chicago electric guitarists a few years later – such as the musicians who recorded for Chess. The work's a rich illustration of the key criss-crossing of scenes and styles that happened in 40s LA – as musicians like Crayton moved from Texas, and picked up lots of hipper, modern elements on the coast! This package features 28 gems from the Modern Records vaults – all of them on CD for the first time ever, and most of them issued here for the first time ever too. Titles include "Texas Hop", "Old Fashioned Baby", "Huckle Boogie", "The Bop Hop", "Blues For My Baby", "Brand New Woman", "Central Avenue Blues", "Long After Hours", "I Love You So", "Tired Of Travelin", "Poppa Stoppa", and "Answer To Blues After Hours". CD

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Miles Davis with John ColtraneSwiss Radio Days Vol 31 – Recorded Live In Zurich 1960 ... CD
TCB (Switzerland), 1960. New Copy ... $10.99 16.98
A classic Miles Davis group – captured here in 1960 with incredible sound! The format is wonderful – as the tracks are quite long, and allow for lots of space for long trumpet solos from Miles, and tenor from John Coltrane – both supported beautifully by the trio of Wynton Kelly on piano, Paul Chambers on bass, and Jimmy Cobb on drums! Coltrane's definitely in fine form – and has this commanding way of playing that almost blows away Davis – especially since Miles usually starts out most numbers here on his own, then lets Coltrane come in second – a move that almost makes the trumpet dim by comparison. Titles include "Fran Dance", "So What", "All Blues/Bye Bye", and "If I Were A Bell". CD

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Stanton Davis' Ghetto MysticismBrighter Days ... CD
Outrageous/Cultures Of Soul, 1977. New Copy ... $11.99
Sublime sounds from the legendary Stanton Davis – a rare 70s gem that's been a favorite of groovehounds for years! The set's got a really unique feel – part spiritual jazz, part soaring club – a blend that's similar to the sound you'd get on James Mason's legendary album too – a unique hybrid of American undergrounds that comes off beautifully throughout! Production is perfect – a Mizell-like blend of acoustic and electric jazz elements, layered with a bit of vocals – and Davis plays soulful trumpet lines, in a group that has some especially nice keyboards! Titles include "Space A Nova (parts 1 & 2)", "Play Sleep", "Brighter Days/Brighter Daze", "Nida", "High Jazz", and "Things Cannot Stop Forever". CD

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Tyrone DavisWithout You In My Life ... CD
Dakar/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1972. New Copy ... $22.99
Warm and tender work from the mighty Tyrone Davis – really singing here at the height of his early powers, in that wonderful blend of the rough and smooth that made him so unique! Davis has a gritty touch in his singing style, but the backings have that perfect Brunswick Chicago soul approach – a blend that's laid out perfectly in the album's arrangements from Monk Higgins, Willie Henderson, and Tom Tom Washington! Tyrone's a singer who's really a cut above – especially on his early work like this – able to charm and convince us with just about any sort of lyric. Titles include "Wrapped Up In Your Warm & Tender Love", "I'm Just Your Man", "There It Is", "I Had It All the Time", and "True Love Is Hard to Find". CD

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Manu DibangoAfricadelic ... CD
Aurora, Early 70s. New Copy ... $16.99
Incredibly funky work from Manu Dibango – a set that's easily as great as his classic Soul Makossa album – but which is a lot more obscure overall! The work's got a fiercely-jamming quality all the way through – lots of rumbling percussion at the bottom, and also a bit of keyboards as well – served up in a heady brew that turns out to be a perfect setting for Dibango's sharp-edged reeds! The record's got a few especially great break tracks, but all numbers are pretty darn great too – filled with more funky changes, flaring horns, and 70s-styled grooves than you might ever hope to find in a single album! Tracks include "Black Beauty", "Soul Fiesta", "The Panther", "Africadelic", "Moving Waves", "Afro Soul", "Wa Wa", "Percussion Storm", "Monkey Beat", and "Oriental Sunset". CD

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Dida with Roy HargroveDida Plays & Sings ... CD
Red (Italy), 2011. New Copy ... $15.99 18.99
A sweet little set from Dida – a singer who also plays a mighty nice jazz guitar – a cool combination, especially for a female artist – stepping out wonderfully here in a well-recorded set! Trumpeter Roy Hargrove guests on a few tracks, and Fabio Morgera joins on a few more – but we're more than compelled enough by the core sounds of Dida's trio, which has this timeless feel in its construction of guitar, bass, and drums – almost a late 40s sort of vocal jazz cool – but somehow coming across with a very contemporary vibe that belies the Brooklyn recording location for the album. Titles include "Fried Pies", "Our Love Is Here To Stay", "Calcutta Cutie", "Ir Atzuva It's A Sad City", "Can't Take My Eyes Off You", and "That's All". CD

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New Diddys featuring Paige DouglasAgony & Extasy (Japanese paper sleeve edition – with bonus tracks) ... CD
Bam-Boo/Shout (Japan), 1977. New Copy ... $19.99
A very cool, really rare soul album from the Philly scene – one that was written, produced, and arranged by Hammond organist Charles Earland – but which is a sweet soul album with a really great feel! There's definitely a touch of Earland's keyboard work on the set – especially some of those non-organ lines he brought to his records for Mercury – and there's a jazzy groove that really sets The Diddys apart from other east coast groups of the time – a more complex approach to rhythm and instrumentation that almost makes some of the tunes feel as if they came from the James Mason side of the spectrum! The whole thing's wonderful – as unique as it is rare – and titles include "Intergalactic Love Song", "Strange Love", "Your Love Is Like A See Saw Baby", "How Long Have You Loved Him", and "My Special Love". CD features lots of bonus tracks – alternate takes of nearly every number on the record! CD

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Pierre Dorge & New Jungle OrchestraTjak Tjaka Tchicai ... CD
Steeplechase (Denmark), 2014. New Copy ... $15.99 18.99
Pierre Dorge pays tribute to the late reedman John Tchicai – a frequent musical partner over the years, and a player who's shaped the sound of countless others on both sides of the Atlantic! Tchicai got his start with Archie Shepp on the New York scene of the 60s, but moved over to Denmark by the end of that decade – and ended up having a good deal of interaction with guitarist Pierre Dorge in years to come, including performances on some of the best sessions by the New Jungle Orchestra! This album really recalls those great ones – as Dorge chooses tunes that seem to have an especially spiritual flavor, and evoke Tchicai in ways that most of the group's recent work might not have – using especially strong passages from reed players who include Jakob Mygind on tenor and soprano, Anders Banke on tenor and bass clarinet, and Morten Carlson on tenor and taragot. Titles include "Mozombo", "A Rufous Mot Mot", "Jungle Sketches", "Autobahn Tchicai Zwei", "Lucianus In Congo", and "Tjak Tjaka Tchicai". CD

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Dezron DouglasLive At Smalls ... CD
Smalls Live, 2013. New Copy Gatefold ... $11.99 14.99
Bassist Dezron Douglas can be one hell of a leader – especially when he's working with a group and setting as great as this! The album's got that solid punch we love in the Smalls Live series – a way of allowing players to really open up and be themselves, yet also find a cohesiveness as a group that you don't often get in studio sessions – that brilliant magic that can make live jazz performance so wonderful, when it's captured this well – a great document of a musical moment and local expression that might have been missed otherwise. Dezron's bass is very upfront in the performance – and the quintet also features tight trumpet from Josh Evans, bold tenor from Stacy Dillard, sharp piano from David Bryant, and smoking drums from Willie Jones III. Titles include "Nita", "Let's Ride", "The Puppet", "Bish Bash Bop", and "Power Of One". CD
Also available Live At Smalls ... CD 8.99

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George DukeBrazilian Fusion ... CD
Wounded Bird, Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy ... $10.99 11.98
A dream of a set – at least to our Brazilian-loving ears – a special package that brings together all the best Brazilian-flavored cuts from George Duke's late 70s run on Epic Records! The package is filled with wonderfully sunny grooves throughout – tunes that sparkle and soar with mighty nice rhythms – topped with loads of keyboards from George, and vocals that often have a scatting, breezy style that's plenty sweet – American soul influenced by Brazilian grooves, in a sound that's a bit like the feel of Earth Wind & Fire's "Brazilian Rhyme". It's wonderful to have these cuts all together, and the set feels like a dream album we would have compiled ourselves – with titles that include "Omi", "The Future", "The Way I Feel", "Sunrise", "Festival", "A Melody", "Ipanema Lady", "Corine", "Positive Energy", "Let Your Love Shine", "Thinking Of You", "Your Life", and "Yeah We Going". CD

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New Gene DunlapIt's Just The Way I Feel/Party In Me ... CD
Capitol/Expansion (UK), 1981. New Copy ... $16.99
Two Capitol classics from the great Gene Dunlap – back to back on a single CD! First up is It's Just The Way I Feel – a classic soulful fusion album recorded and released during the crucial years of the "Capitol Rare" sound! Gene Dunlap is a jazz drummer at heart – but he's got a flair for the modern soul song – and in the same style as Norman Connors or Harvey Mason before him, he manages to put together a strong record of grooves and ballads from behind the kit! The strongest point of the record is work by The Ridgeways, a female soul trio who sing on the best tracks, giving them a smooth Jones Girls-ish kind of sound. The album includes two modern soul classics – "Before You Break My Heart" and "It's Just the Way I Feel" – plus "Love Dancin", "Rock Radio", "I Got You", and "Surest Things Can Change". Party In Me is wonderful work from Gene Dunlap – a jazzy soul drummer, and also a maestro with a killer ear for a modern soul groove! The album's got a mix of grooves and sophistication that are a bit like the best early 80s material from Roy Ayers – never chartbound, and never too commercial – but nice and tight, and really well put together! The instrumentation has plenty of jazzy 80s groove touches – especially in the keyboards – and Dunlap does a nice job of balancing up beat tracks with the mellow moments we love so much in his work. Vocals are from a variety of singers – including the great Ethel Beatty, who'd sung with Roy Ayers – plus Phillippe Wynne, Pam Lawson, and Gene himself – and titles include "Something Inside My Head", "Something Special", "Corner Pocket", "There Will Never Be Another (Like You)", "Party In Me", "Jam City", and "This One's On Me". CD

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Thomas DybdahlWhat's Left Is Forever ... CD
Manhattan, 2014. New Copy ... $10.99 11.98
Quite a set from Norwegian singer Thomas Dybdahl – at one level a blue-eyed soulster with a flair for weaving his vocals with electronics, at another level a more personal singer-songwriter with a captivating approach to a tune! The music maybe feels a bit like some of the more tuneful records on Norway's Jazzland in the past decade or so – vocals in English, and a quality that could cross Thomas over to many different camps – especially with this album's wider distribution in the US. Some of our favorite moments bubble with keys next to Dybdahl's mix of lightness and rasp – and titles include "City Lights", "The Sculptor", "So Long", "Man On A Wire", "But We Did", and "Soulster". CD

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Berndt EgerbladhWhen I Started To Play (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Nashville/Jazzhus Disk (Japan), 1966. New Copy ... $24.99
Amazing sounds from the Swedish scene of the 60s – a record that's archly modern, yet soaringly soulful too – a really wonderful combination of modes in the hands of pianist Berndt Egerbladh! The title's a bit strange – as Berndt's hardly the kind of guy that would make us laugh, and he definitely has our ears right away from the very first notes on the record – a brilliant blend of his own piano, plus alto from Lars Goran Ulander, bass from Lars Gunnar Gunnarsson, and drums from Sten Oberg! The alto is especially nice – very sharp-edged and soulful on the tracks in which it figures – and helping to give the record and even deeper feel than some of Egerbladh's other albums – even though we like those a lot too. Tracks are all originals – beautiful compositions that make the album sparkle with a freshness you'll appreciate instantly – titles that include "Kiki", "Sunday Morning", "Free Hands", "This World Of Ours", "Corny Waltz", and "Estremadura". CD

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EmotionsFlowers (with bonus track) ... CD
Columbia/Gold Legion, 1976. New Copy ... $11.99 14.99
A soaring classic from The Emotions – thanks to some supreme help from the Earth Wind & Fire side of the soul spectrum! This set has the trio really sounding great – with Kalimba Productions by Maurice White and Charles Stepney – and a good deal of EWF help on the instrumentation as well! The girls break out of the rootsier style used on their earlier Stax recordings, and manage to fit perfectly with the jazzy tinges of the new grooves – and, along with Ramsey Lewis and EWF, the Emotions were part of a hugely successful trinity during the late 70s – one that took the indie soul roots of the Chicago scene and turned it into landmark big business for Columbia Records. The album's got a new approach to female group soul that would go onto shape R&B for years to come – and titles include "Flowers", "I Don't Wanna Lose Your Love", "We Go Through Changes", "Special Part", and "You've Got The Right To Know". CD features a bonus single version of "Flowers". CD

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Ensemble NovoBlue Night ... CD
Frosty Cordial, 2013. New Copy ... $6.99
A new ensemble, but one with a strong influence from older Brazilian modes – especially the best bossa jazz styles of the 60s! The group's got a sweet approach that mixes vibes in with bossa grooves – a really nice change from the usual, and backed up by more classic elements on acoustic guitar and tenor sax! The sound's wonderfully stripped-down, and recorded in a very basic style – so that there's none of the too-smooth feelings you'd get from other contemporary bossa outings – which leaves a really nice sense of personality and expression from the instruments. Behn Gillece plays vibes and Tom Moon plays tenor – and titles include "Andorinha", "Tristeza", "Wind", "Berimbau", "Grace Engine No 1", "O Sol Nascera", and "Boranda". CD

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Kellylee EvansI Remember When ... CD
Motema, 2014. New Copy ... $11.99 15.99
Singer Kellylee Evans works here with the great Eric Legnini – the European keyboardist whose own records are always a delight, and who brings a sharp sense of funky soul to this vocal outing! Kellylee has a style that's rooted in jazz, but expressed in more contemporary soulful modes – which works perfectly for Legnini's strong sense of rhythm – especially on the original tunes that the pair co-created together! Most numbers feature a small combo, often with a romping vibe that's a nice change from the usual neo soul set – and in addition to the originals "Only You", "I Remember When", "One More Lover", "Built To Fly", and "Jungle" – the set also features remakes of "Amazing", "If I Was Your Woman", and "Lose Yourself". CD

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Express RisingExpress Rising (2nd album) ... CD
Numero, 2013. New Copy ... $8.99 13.00
A warm batch of instrumental beats and atmospherics from Express Rising – and a much-anticipated second project from funk archivist Dante Carfagna! Dante's a name you probably know best from his work writing liner notes or Wax Poetics – and helping out in countless important compilations over the years – but a decade ago, Dante dropped his first mysterious project under the Express Rising name – and finally returns here with a second album! The sound is even more enticing this time around – still drawing a bit from the world of DJ Shadow – a frequent Carfagna collaborator on archive projects – but the sound is also surprisingly warm and lyrical too – bits of beats, layers of older sounds, and these spare keyboard bits all served up together in a style that's really unique – and which avoids any of the cliches of both the downtempo world, and the instrumental hip hop scene The approach is often quite poetic, yet still soulful as well – and the whole thing's got a laidback vibe that's neither sleepy nor muddled – a really sort of special space between the grooves. Titles include "Horse Opera", "Dark Early", "Answering Echo So Near", "Winter The Heart", "A Treasure Smile", "Rooms Between Us", and "Memorabilia". CD
Also available Express Rising (2nd album) ... LP 16.99

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Georgie Fame & The Blue FlamesRhythm & Blues At The Flamingo ... CD
Polydor (Japan), 1964. New Copy ... $13.99
Blistering early work from a young Georgie Fame – a set that definitely lives up to the Rhythm & Blues in the title! The set was recorded live at London's hip Flamingo club – and Georgie and The Blue Flames are very much in command of the crowd – burning with the intensity of a American small organ combo, especially the early 60s variety that often played equal parts soul jazz and R&B! Georgie's on the Hammond, and also sings with a rough-edged style that's plenty soulful, and incredibly appealing – a mode that oozes charisma, but never sounds fake or forced. Other instrumentation includes tenor, baritone sax, bass, drums, and conga – plus some great guitar from Big Jim Sullivan – and titles include "Do The Dog", "Eso Beso", "Work Song", "Baby Please Don't Go", "Shop Around", "Humpty Dumpty", and "You Can't Sit Down". CD features 10 more bonus tracks – some of them live, some of them studio – with titles that include "Madness", "One Whole Year Baby", "Do Re Mi", "I'm In Love With You", "Bend A Little", "Parker's Mood", and "Money". CD

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Wilton FelderWe All Have A Star/Inherit The Wind ... CD
ABC/Robinsongs (UK), 1978/1980. New Copy ... $13.99
A pair of albums from saxophonist Wilton Felder – back to back on a single CD! We All Have A Star offers up solo sounds from Crusaders reedman Wilton Felder – a really great set that's very much in the best vibe of his larger group at the time – yet one that also offers up a stronger focus on Wilton's sublime solo work on tenor! The album's got plenty of Crusaders help on board – given that Stix Hooper and Joe Sample produced the set along with Wilton – and the vibe's a wonderful blend of electric backings, with especially great keyboard lines, and Felder's well-phrased saxophone lines over the top! A few cuts feature vocals – sung by Angela Bryant or Debbie Demoia Ross – and titles include "We All Have A Star", "I Know Who I Am", "The Cycles Of Time", "Why Believe", "Ride On", and "You & Me & Ecstasy". Inherit The Wind is one of the best Crusaders-related solo projects – a soulful bit of fusion from saxophonist Wilton Felder, co-produced with his fellow Crusaders! The album's got the best sunny finish of the group's late 70s albums – traces of Latin, funk, and soul bubbling through a warm jazzy mix – staying soulful all the way through, and coming up with a sound that's smooth, but never sleepy. The blueprint for a million other records – none of which ever sounded this good! Titles include "Insight", "LA Light", "Until The Morning Comes", "Someday We'll All Be Free", and "Inherit The Wind". CD

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Manfredo FestManifestations ... CD
Tabu (UK), 1979. New Copy ... $16.99
An incredible batch of Brazilian fusion – cut by keyboardist Manfredo Fest, and one of the few records he ever waxed in the US during the 70s! The record mixes Fest's soaring Brazilian groove with a tight soulful set of arrangements by Jerry Peters – a bit club-oriented, with a similar sound to some of the other records on the Tabu label at the time, but always sensitive to Fest's playing and writing – especially his Brazilian roots! The record features wonderful vocals by Roberta Davis – a very soulful singer who had a hip wordless style that was similar to Tania Maria's at the time – breezy, scatting, and very nice. Her work really makes the record sparkle, working perfectly with Fest's jazzy electric keyboards in a perfect way! Titles include "Jungle Kitten", "Koko & Leeroe", "Arigo", and "Who Needs It". Sweet reissue – in book-style cover, with new liner notes and an interview with Jerry Peters. CD

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New FlamingosFlamingo Serenade ... CD
End/Warner (Japan), 1959. New Copy ... $13.99
Stunning work from The Flamingos – part of the group's incredible second chapter at End Records, where they really transformed their sound from their years at Chess! The group were already great before, but at End, they found this way of making even more heaven with their harmonies – finding this sublime space that really blew away most of their contemporaries, especially on the ballads – with the lead soaring out, the harmonies gliding alongside, and the production this pillowy, breathy sort of brilliance. The album's one of the best illustrations of this genius at its best – and titles include the sublime hit "I Only Have Eyes For You", plus "Love Walked In", "But Not For Me", and "Time Was". Spooky, heavenly, and totally wonderful! CD

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Darrow FletcherPain Gets A Little Deeper – The Complete Early Years 1965 to 1971 ... CD
Kent (UK), Late 60s/Early 70s. New Copy ... $14.99
Righteous soul from late 60s Chicago – a killer collection of early singles from the great Darrow Fletcher – only a youngster at the time, but already working at a level that's as strong as most of his older contemporaries! Darrow's got this soaring voice that really sends us every time we hear him sing – a style that's possibly a bit like Jackie Wilson, but both deeper and lighter at the same time – very unique, especially in these early years – and perfect for helping Fletcher stand out from the pack! The grooves here are nice and deep – socking hard in the best Chi-town styles of the time, with the sort of punch you'd get on the best One-Der-Ful/Mar-V-Lus recordings – with arrangements by Mike Terry, Phil Wright, Tom Tom, and others. Tracks were originally issued on a variety of labels – Groovy, Jacklyn, Uni, Congress, and Genna – and titles include "The Pain Gets A Little Deeper", "Now Is The Time For Love (parts 1 & 2)", "What Have I Got Now", "What Is This", "Gotta Draw The Line", "My Young Misery", "Infatuation", "When Love Calls", "My Judgement Day", "Sitting There That Night", "Changing By The Minute", "What Good Am I Without You", "We Can't Go On This Way", and "That Certain Little Something". CD

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New Celso Fonseca & Ronaldo BastosSorte ... CD
Dubas/Bomba (Japan), 1994. New Copy ... $13.99
Sublime sounds from the team of Celso Fonseca and Ronaldo Bastos – a modern pair who are some of the few to really carry forth the best ideals of the bossa generation! Celso's not just another bossa-styled singer with guitar – as he also works with some of the best inflections of the post-bossa years – especially those moments when singers like Caetano Veloso or Gilberto Gil found a way to strip things down, get acoustic, and make things even more personal than ever. Most instrumentation here is pretty light – although a few tracks bring in some nice touches from the great Jacques Morelenbaum – and titles include "Fato Banal", "Sorte", "Flor Lunar", "O Tempo Nao Passou", "Cada Um", and "O Poeta Do Estacio". CD

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New Sharon ForresterSharon Forrester (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Disques Dessinee (Japan), 1973. New Copy ... $22.99
A rare bit of British soul from the 70s – recorded with a bit of Jamaica in some of the grooves, and a very warm and soulful style overall! Sharon Forrester's a singer with a great gentle voice – one that slinks in right with the midtempo grooves in a mighty nice way – finding an excellent balance with the set's Fender Rhodes and organ lines – which trip out at a gentle pace that's right in keeping with the vocals! There's a laidback quality to the record that's almost like early Minnie Riperton at Chess – especially when the backings get nice and full – mixed with a dose of early lover's rock too. Titles include "Put A Little Love Away", "Which Craft Is Witchcraft", "Silly Wasn't I", "Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight", and "Clothe My Lonely Body". CD

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Sonny FortuneLong Before Our Mothers Cried (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Strata East/Shout (Japan), 1974. New Copy ... $19.99
A real early moment of genius from reedman Sonny Fortune – a classic set cut for the Strata East label, and one that's got a lot more depth and edge than some of Fortune's later records! Don't get us wrong, we always love Sonny to death – but there's really something special going on here – a quality that has Fortune breaking from some of the straighter scenes he was working in a few years before, and going for a righteous style he'd never create this well again – a rich approach to the music that's very much at home on Strata East! Tracks are long, and graced not only with wonderfully searching solos from Sonny on alto, soprano sax, and flute – but also features trumpet from Charles Sullivan, Fender Rhodes and piano from Stanley Cowell, bass from Wayne Dockery, drums from Chip Lyle, and percussion from the heady trio of Richard Landrum, Mario Munoz, and Angel Allende. The percussion is quite heavy at times, and gives the record a really rootsy feel at some of the best moments – and tracks include the massive 15 minute "Long Before Our Mothers Cried", plus "Tribute To A Holiday", "Wayneish", "Sound Of Silents", and "Five For Trane". CD

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New George FreemanFranticdiagnosis (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Bam-Boo/Shout (Japan), 1972. New Copy ... $19.99
A legendary bit of funk – and a killer record from one of the most unique guitarists ever! George Freeman's got a sound and a style unlike any other player we can think of – an approach to funky guitar that's often got a really hard touch on the strings, and which gets nice and noisy at the best funky moments. Freeman's probably best known for the few obscure records he cut with Groove Holmes, but this album's his out and out masterpiece – a rare one-off session cut in the funky Philly scene and supervised by DJ Sonny Hopson – and featuring a rare mix of players that includes Cesar Frazier on organ and Charles Earland on Arp! The mix of organ and Arp is really incredible – especially on the side-long jammer "Franticdiagnosis", which runs for nearly 20 minutes, and is one of the most messed-up funky jazz jams of the 70s! Other players include Von Freeman on tenor sax and Dave Hubbard on alto flute – and the album features the legendary jazz dance track "The Bump", plus the cuts "Free-Man" and "God Bless The Child". CD
Also available Franticdiagnosis ... LP 9.99

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Gap Band12 Inch Collection & More ... CD
Funk Essentials/Mercury, Early 80s. New Copy ... $4.99 9.98
Original, rare and/or extended versions of classic chart funk by the Gap Band! The set features original vinyl versions of the cuts, many available for the first time on CD! Tracks include "You Dropped A Bomb On Me" (original 12" mix), "Burn Rubber", "Early In The Morning" (original 12" mix), "Party Train" (original 12" special dance mix), "Outstanding" (original 12" mix), "I Don't Believe You Want To Get Up And Dance (Oops), "Shake" (original 12" disco version), and "Humpin". CD

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Larry Gelb TrioDaughters & Lovers ... CD
Imagine Action, 1996. New Copy ... $7.99
A great early showcase for the writing talents of pianist Larry Gelb – a musician who's got this great ear for a lyrical tune! Larry's got this open, almost gentle touch on the piano here – which really helps balance out the sentiments in his tunes, and keep things from ever sounding too overdone – a quality that makes Gelb a really special, overlooked talent from the American underground – as you'll hear on tracks that include "The Love Of My Life", "Lara Rachel", "Jesse", "Blues For Rachel Ward", and "Waltz For Jean Seberg". CD

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Stan GetzPrezervation ... CD
Prestige (Japan), 1949/1950. New Copy ... $9.99
The title's not a typo, but a strong reference to the influence of Lester Young on the tenor sound of Stan Getz – especially in these early recordings! The material is right from the end of the 40s – and shows a young Stan really coming into his own on Prestige Records – blowing with a crisply soulful tone that emulates his idol, but already finding fluid spaces that take Getz very much into his own territory too! Most recordings were issued in formats that pre-date the LP at Prestige – which makes this full collection an essential document of the time – and players include Al Haig on piano, Kai Winding on trombone, Tommy Potter on bass, Jimmy Raney on guitar, and Roy Haynes on drums. Titles include "Pinch Bottle", "Prezervation", "Liza", "Intoit", "Goodnight My Lvoe", "Short P Not LP", "Be Still TV", and "Opus Caprice". CD

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New Astrud GilbertoGilberto Golden Japanese Album ... CD
Verve (Japan), 1969. New Copy ... $13.99
A lost treasure – and one of the rarest albums in Astrud Gilberto's career! The set's a special Japanese-only session – recorded in 1969, and featuring all new Japanese lyrics to a number of Astrud's biggest hits – plus some wonderful new tracks done especially for the session! The backings are all new too – and a great blend of light orchestrations and sweet jazzy touches, in a mode that recalls the hippest style of Astrud's late 60s Verve recordings – and which carries the tunes with a lovely groove that wraps you up so much, you hardly notice that you can't understand the language! Titles include "A Man & A Woman", "Life For Life", "Shadow Of Your Smile", "Street Samba", "I Love Old Love", "You I & Love", "Cupid's Song", and "White Waves". CD

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David Gold, John Cameron, Alan Hawkshaw, et alBig City Suite & KPM 1000 Series Compilation 1972 to 1978 ... CD
KPM/Vocalion (UK), 1970s. New Copy ... $16.99
Sweet KPM funk from the 70s – a set that features the legendary "Big City Suite" from David Gold, plus 20 other groovers from rare KPM sound library albums of the time! Gold's suite is really great – a hip mix of keyboards, wah wah guitar, and strings – all wrapped together warmly in a portrait of a city from a variety of angles, in a variety of moods. The work's almost an update of 50s city-symphony albums, but is put together here with a much hipper 70s soundtrack mode – lots of subtle elements that really keep things interesting! Other tracks offer up a mix of jazz, soundtrack, and sound library funk – hand-picked from KPM classics like Jazzrock, Synthesis, Sounds Of The Times, Trendsetters, and other legendary albums – really packed in here with a huge amount of cuts that are totally great! Titles include "Good Vibrations" and "Trial Of Strength" by Keith Mansfield, "Testing Time" by David Lindup, "Four O'Clock Earthquake" and "Smokey Joe's Dilemma" by John Cameron, "Watchful Eye" by James Clarke, "Sunshine Special" and "Get Ready Get Set Fly" by Alan Hawkshaw, "Open Roads" by Nick Ingman, "Go Getter" by John Cameron, "City Airscape" and "City Police" by David Gold, and "Lap Of Honour" by Clive Hicks. CD

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Grand SlamLifetimers For The Funk – In The Studio 1985 to 2010 ... CD
TNT Productions (Germany), Late 80s/1990s/2000s. New Copy 2 CDs ... $6.99
A great collection of work from Grand Slam – a German funk combo who were serving up a classic take on American sounds long before the Daptone and Soul Fire generation! These guys are equally influenced by James Brown and George Clinton – especially the latter, given the bass-heavy riffs the group use in their music – and the number of times they get some help from P-Funk alumnus Gary Mudbone Cooper on some of these cuts! The vibe is more late 70s ensemble funk than gritty funky 45 modes – but Grand Slam definitely get their groove right – and have some mighty tight instrumentation to live up to their inspirations. 2CD set brings together a lot of work from the group's first 25 years in music – including some rare tracks, previously unreleased numbers, and a few cuts on CD for the first time ever. Titles include "Goin Out (orig demo)", "Da Rain", "Perfect Day", "Rock My World", "Get Your Own Thing (orig demo)", "Light My Fire", "If I Had", "U Blind", "Hunk/Fop", "Real XTC", and "Manik Botanik". CD

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Al GreenLet's Stay Together (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Hi Records/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1972. New Copy ... $28.99
A damn great bit of work from the legendary Al Green – maybe one of his best records ever – and in fact, maybe one of greatest soul albums of all time! The set's got a style that's really genre-defining – not the previous southern soul of a few years before, but also not the modes that were happening up north either. Instead, Al lays things out with this stunningly mature style – sexy, but never overdone – confident, but never in a swaggering way – with a really special flow that comes from the great Willie Mitchell's talents in the studio, but an edge that's Green at his secular best. The album's got a lasting appeal that's made it a favorite for generations – both a key introduction to soul, but also a treasured favorite for longtime collectors – and never every track's a gem – from the classic "Let's Stay Together", through a set list that includes "I've Never Found A Girl", "La La For You", "How Can You Mend A Broken Heart", "So You're Leaving", and "What Is This Feeling". CD
Also available
Let's Stay Together (180 gram pressing) ... LP 11.99
Let's Stay Together (Right Stuff pressing) ... CD 5.99

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Chris Greene QuartetGroup Effort ... CD
Single Malt, 2012. New Copy ... $9.99
A cooking group effort from the Chris Greene Quartet – a great Chicago combo we've watched grow tremendously with each previous release – stepping out here in their first-ever live recording! Greene's got a soulfully sophisticated approach to his saxes that really belies his Windy City roots – with this great way of stretching out on the solos, yet still keeping things real – a bit like Eddie Harris at his best, with the depth of Eric Alexander on tenor,but with some deeper sounds too – which come through especially strong on the album's extended tracks. The rest of the group features electric piano, bass, and drums – and titles include the originals "Shore Up", "Future Emperor Of Evanston", "State", and "Three & Six" – plus a nice cover of "Blue Bossa". CD
 
 
 



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