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A wealth of bop, hardbop, soul jazz, spiritual jazz, jazz funk, fusion, avant garde, and traditional jazz!


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Swing Swang Swingin'
Blue Note (Japan), 1959. New Copy
Jackie McLean cut some of his best bop sessions for Blue Note – and this is one of them! The record is amazingly precise, and features Jackie as the sole horn soloist in a group with Walter Bishop on piano, Jimmy Garrison on bass, and Art Taylor on drums – a crack rhythm combo that ... CD
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Fuego
Blue Note (Japan), 1960. New Copy
One of Donald Byrd's first albums on Blue Note – tight, soulful, and a firm statement of hardbop truth – a record that showed that Byrd was firmly on the map! The ensemble features Jackie McLean on alto, and the rhythm section includes Duke Pearson, Doug Watkins, and Lex Humphries ... CD
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Headin' South
Blue Note (Japan), 1960. New Copy
One of the coolest, grooviest albums ever from the legendary pianist Horace Parlan – a sweet little Latin-inflected set that's unlike any of his other records for Blue Note! All of Parlan's work for the label is great, but this album's something even more special – thanks to the ... CD
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Brown Sugar
Blue Note (Japan), 1966. New Copy
Smoking work on Hammond from Freddie Roach – a key player in the Blue Note lineup of the 60s, and a strong link between the label's soul jazz and modern sides! The sound here is a really beautiful one – partly in the organ/tenor mode forged by Baby Face Willette and John Patton in ... CD
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Putting It Together
Blue Note (Japan), 1968. New Copy
Proof that Elvin Jones wasn't just riding on the laurels of the Great One during his years with John Coltrane – as the album's a breakout date that has Jones firmly establishing his own voice in jazz! There's an explosive power here that makes us think that Elvin must have really just been ... CD
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Charisma
Blue Note (Japan), 1966. New Copy
One of our favorite albums from Lee Morgan – a soaringly soulful session that was recorded in the mid 60s, and finally issued by Blue Note at the end of the decade! The vibe here really follows from the lyrically inventive, post-Sidewinder mid 60s Morgan years – with a spirit that's ... CD
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Two Headed Freap
Blue Note (Japan), 1972. New Copy
Amazing stuff by Ronnie Foster – a sweet little album of slow funky keyboard tones, much more loosely arranged than his later work, with a dope groove that was years ahead of its time! The album's in some ways a blueprint for some of our favorite jazz-based hip hop – and although ... CD
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Skylarkin'
Motown (Japan), 1980. New Copy
Sweet Motown grooving from Grover Washington – a set that has him working with slightly larger backings than his Kudu years, but in a way that still lets his soulful horn stand strongly out front! As always, Washington is a killer talent on the soprano sax – able to inflect the ... CD
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Hollywood
MoWest/Universal (Japan), 1972. New Copy
A great record from The Crusaders – and an album that's really the start of the group's strong run of smooth funky jazz for the 70s – a very vibrant little set, even though the black and white cover makes the whole thing look a bit understated! The album's got the group dropping the ... CD
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My Heroes
Venus (Japan), 2014. New Copy
Drummer Joe Farnsworth pays tribute to the greats of the 50s and 60s – Elvin Jones, Roy Haynes, Art Blakey, Max Roach, and others – in a smoking set that features his longtime musical companions Eric Alexander on tenor, Harold Mabern on piano, and Nat Reeves on bass! There's a vibe ... CD
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Studio 4/SSJ (Japan), 1964. New Copy
Brilliant work by JR Monterose – an obscure album cut after his Blue Note date, with backing by a small Iowa combo! The sound is very hip – as sharp-edged and standout as any of JR's other few albums – and the regional setting of the album doesn't dim the fire a bit! The core ... CD
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Discovery!
Columbia (Japan), 1964. New Copy
A wonderful bit of soul jazz – much less trippy than some of Charles Lloyd's later work, and handled with a soulful flair that's a mix of Coltrane spiritualism, with an even larger dose of the sort of post-Trane experiments in jazz that would crop up during the early 70s on smaller ... CD
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Blue Bossa (Japanese paper sleeve edition)
SSJ (Japan), 1968. New Copy
A rare live appearance from the great Hank Mobley – a player who wasn't always that present on the European scene, but is heard here in a strong Copenhagen concert with pianist Kenny Drew! The format's a bit similar to other American tenor dates of the time – especially those of Dexter ... CD
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SSJ (Japan), 1968. New Copy
Sonny Rollins really opening up – playing live here in a broadcast date from Copenhagen – one that's been available on DVD over the years, but which is presented here without the edits that occurred in the filmed footage! The tracks are all real standards from the Rollins songbook ... CD
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SSJ (Japan), 1966. New Copy
Searing live work from the great Thelonious Monk – heard here on two different European performances from 1966 – both done with his classic Columbia Records quartet that featured Charlie Rouse on tenor, Larry Gales on bass, and Ben Riley on drums! The group had already made some ... CD
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Grand Night For Swinging (Japanese paper sleeve edition)
Navy Swings/SSJ (Japan), 1964. New Copy
Pianist Billy Taylor, working here in a really unique setting – a broadcast performance that has guitarist Wes Montgomery joining the trio for the whole session – plus vocals from Joe Williams on the second half! The core groove is great enough – given that Ben Tucker is on bass ... CD
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SSJ (Japan), 1958. New Copy
Bassist Scott LaFaro left a very big mark on jazz – especially given his few short years on this planet – recording seminal sides with players like Bill Evans and Hampton Hawes – both of whom were really transformed by his work on bass! This set brings together some rare material ... CD
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Recado Bossa Nova
Venus (Japan), 2014. New Copy
A whole new setting for tenorist Eric Alexander – and a great one too! The album's got Alexander in a bossa-styled mode – but less like the facile bossa jazz projects of the 60s than some of the harder-edged ones you'd get from players like Ike Quebec or Charlie Rouse! The sharpness ... CD
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Ancient Afrika/Shout (Japan), 1980. New Copy
Beautifully spiritual work from this obscure Chicago group from the late 70s – an AACM ensemble, and quite possibly one of the most soulful we've ever heard! There's a really spare, earthy approach to the work here – one that uses percussion, piano, and saxes from Light Henry Huff ... CD
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Walking In The Night
RCA (Japan), 1960. New Copy
Some of the best modern jazz Italy had to offer in the postwar years – and a record that's gone onto be the blueprint for countless recent work from groups on labels like Schema and Deja Vu! Tracks are short, but very groove-centered – often mixing modal jazz rhythms with hardbop solo ... CD
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RCA (Japan), 1962. New Copy
A really landmark album in European jazz – one of those records that always tops the lists of collectors, and for good reason too! The sextet of trumpeter Oscar Valdambrini and tenorist Gianni Basso was easily one of the greatest things going in jazz on that side of the Atlantic in the early ... CD
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It's About Time
RCA (Japan), 1961. New Copy
Of course it's about time for Joe Morello – because as Dave Brubeck's drummer, he was constantly caught in recording sessions that were all about unusual rhythms and timings in jazz! Yet this set really helps Joe break free from the Brubeck mode – and also shine strongly as a leader, ... CD
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Positive Intensity
CBS (Japan), 1976. New Copy
A unique Japanese-only session from pianist Tommy Flanagan – hardly a one-off, though – as the whole thing's put together with a real sense of care by legendary Columbia jazz producer Teo Macero! Although unissued in the US, the set gives Flanagan one of his greatest showcases of the ... CD
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Genuine Tong Funeral
RCA (Japan), 1968. New Copy
One of the most ambitious projects ever from vibist Gary Burton – an extended piece written by Carla Bley – and billed as "A Dark Opera Without Words"! The work has a feel that's much more fluid than opera, though – and is a great instrumental outing that not only ... CD
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Winds Of Barcelona
Sony (Japan), 1969. New Copy
Groovy guitar work from Yoshiaki Masuo – working here in a sweetly chromatic style with hip small combo backing! Yoshiaki's got echoes of 60s work from George Benson or Wes Montgomery – a sound that's clean, but which has great colors billowing out nicely from the edges – a ... CD
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Images
RCA (Japan), 1975. New Copy
A wonderful record – one in which Phil Woods blows alto solos over the arrangements of Michel Legrand – handled in the masterful style of Legrand's best jazzy soundtrack work, and in a way that lets Woods hit some of his best solos of the 70s! Legrand's always been great at this sort ... CD
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RCA (Japan), 1954. New Copy
Shorty Rogers courts Count Basie – but he does so in a way that's definitely all his own! The material may have Basie roots, but the overall execution is Shorty at his early 50s best – in a way that makes the album one of his strongest for RCA at the time – and that's saying a ... CD
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Lofty Fake Anagram
RCA (Japan), 1967. New Copy
A standout classic from Gary Burton – the kind of fresh-voiced and angularly modern session that showed why his sound on the vibes was one of the most revolutionary in jazz at the time! The session features a quartet with Larry Coryell on guitar, Steve Swallow on bass, and Bob Moses on drums ... CD
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Jimmy Jones Trio
Vogue/Sony (Japan), 1954. New Copy
One of the few albums as a leader from pianist Jimmy Jones – a musician who was best known for his backing work for a few famous singers – but a player who really shines on this rare French session from the 50s! Jimmy's got a really great command of the keys – still that rhythmic ... CD
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Jazz At The Plaza Vol 2
Columbia (Japan), 1958. New Copy
An intimate live session from Duke Ellington and his great late 50s orchestra – presented here at a private party hosted by Columbia Records at the Plaza Hotel in New York – at a time when Ellington was making some of his best music for the label! The tracks here are every bit on a par ... CD
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Hard Bop (plus bonus tracks)
Columbia/Sony (Japan), 1956. New Copy
A killer album – one of Art Blakey's best non-Blue Note sides, and a blinding set of hard-driving jazz that well earns its title! The group is one of Blakey's pre-Timmons/Morgan/Shorter ones – with Jackie McLean on alto, Bill Hardman on trumpet, Spanky DeBrest on bass, and Sam Dockery ... CD
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RCA (Japan), Late 40s. New Copy 2CD
Rare pre-Verve material from the great Oscar Peterson – a host of early tracks recorded for RCA in the 50s! If you think that Peterson only emerged fully-formed in the hands of Norman Granz during the 50s, then think again – because this work really shows a young player already hitting ... CD
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Blues Roots
Columbia (Japan), 1968. New Copy
An overlooked Dave Brubeck from the 60s – and one of his most striking sessions at the time! The album steps a bit into the Blues Roots promised in the title – but overall, it's more of a unique meeting between Brubeck's piano and the baritone sax of Gerry Mulligan – coming ... CD
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Columbia (Japan), 1978. New Copy 2CD
One of Herbie Hancock's great acoustic moments of the 70s – quite a contrast to his more dynamic electric work of the time, with the subtle, sensitive approach of some of his Japanese trio sessions! Likewise, Chick Corea reminds us that he's great on the acoustic keys too – and works ... CD
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Blue Montreux
Arista (Japan), 1978. New Copy
A sweet session of 70s electric jazz – recorded as a unique live all-star outing by a group of Arista's best jazz players at the time! The group's an octet, but plays together in differing formations throughout the record – with Warren Bernhardt on keyboards, Michael Brecker on saxes, ... CD
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Vogue/Sony (Japan), 1954. New Copy
A classic French session from one of the greatest American jazz guitarists of the 50s – the legendary Jimmy Raney, a player who mixed his hard-edge tone with a magically fluid groove! Jimmy's playing here on some great single-note lines – alongside a set of players that includes Bobby ... CD
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Vogue/Sony (Japan), 1953. New Copy
A wonderful French session from alto genius Lee Konitz – and a record that we might well rank up there with Lee's best 50s material on Atlantic and Storyville! The session's got the open, tone-centric feel of those gems – with Lee's crisp alto right out front, already finding countless ... CD
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Columbia (Japan), 1953. New Copy
A heavy classic from trumpeter Buck Clayton – and a record that set a whole new standard for the jam session on record at the time! The album pushes forward strongly from the territory of the Jazz At The Philharmonic and Jam Session records on Verve – with a vibrancy that's even ... CD
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Sony (Japan), 1970. New Copy
An incredibly groovy session of Beatles tunes – one played by Dutch pianist Louis Van Dyke on a church organ, with no other instrumentation for accompaniment! Louis wisely chooses tracks from the later years of the Fab Four's career – some of the more introspective ones that have ... CD
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Columbia/Sony (Japan), 1964. New Copy
The earliest album we've ever seen from pianist Louis Van Dyke – a bit more swinging than some of his later work, but a set that's already got his great sense of space very firmly in place! Half the record features really wonderful vibes from Carl Schulze – stepping out on some numbers ... CD
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My Little Angel
BMG (Japan), 1971. New Copy
A pivotal album in the development of the Japanese piano trio sound of the 70s – one that links together an older mode of expression with some of the newer freedoms on the scene! Yuji Ohno grabs us here from the very first note with a bold voice on the keys – one that's got some echoes ... CD
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Electric Rendezvous
Columbia (Japan), 1981. New Copy
A sweet electric rendezvous from guitarist Al Di Meola – and a record that stands in sharp contrast to some of the mellower acoustic sessions he was cutting at the time! The album's got a mix of fuzz and funk that's a bit like some of Stanley Clarke's albums for Columbia in the same stretch ... CD
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Columbia (Japan), 1972. New Copy 2CD
Mingus live is always a treat – especially in these later years, when the fire seemed to go out of most of his studio recordings. Live, though, he always managed to kick it hard - with the sort of emotion that graced his strong early albums. And despite the fact that this one's conducted by ... CD
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Monastic Trio
Impulse/Superior Viaduct, 1968. New Copy Gatefold (reissue)
Early work by Alice Coltrane – somewhat under the shadow of her late husband, as you'd guess from the use of his name on the front cover – but really stepping out here with a voice of her own! The Monastic Trio of the set features Alice on harp and piano – alongside bass from ... LP, Vinyl record album
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Universal Mind
Arc Light Editions (UK), 1982. New Copy (reissue)
An obscure bit of spiritual jazz from the early 80s – recorded by a trio in Finland, but with a style that's much more in the mode of American work from the loft jazz scene of the 70s! The group's led by reedman Jone Takamaki, who plays tenor, bass clarinet, flute, and soprano sax – ... LP, Vinyl record album
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Melody Lingers On
High Note, 2014. New Copy
Soulful sounds from legendary tenorist Houston Person – working here with a hip group that makes the album way more than just another batch of late nite ballads! Houston's tenor is well-rounded and laidback, but it's got some fresh company in a quintet that includes the vibes of Steve Nelson ... CD
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Oversoul Manual
Aum Fidelity, 2014. New Copy
One of the most unusual projects we've ever heard from Darius Jones – so much so that the record doesn't feature the instrumentalist at all – just his own ideas and compositions performed by a very unique vocal quartet! The album is dedicated to all the singers who've influenced Jones ... CD
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Constellation (Canada), 2011. New Copy Gatefold
Powerful, fiercely creative material from alto sax and clarinet player Matana Roberts and her excellent group – the first chapter of what's purportedly to be 12-part project – and given the strength of this first set, we have no doubt that such a long journey will be worth every step! ... CD
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Motema, 2002. New Copy 2CD
Pure brilliance from Babatunde Lea – an artist who sounds as deeply soulful in the 21st Century as he did on his first recordings from a few decades back! This time around, Lea's working with the wonderful Frank Lacy on trombone and trumpet – in a set of work that's all arranged by ... CD
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Columbia, 1969. New Copy 2CD
One of the few cases in jazz where an oft-played classic still resonates with power! The record itself is a key cap to Miles Davis' already-groundbreaking years of the 60s – a bold step forward, not just for his nascent electric sound, but also for jazz in general – and the benchmark ... CD
 
Updated October 22, 2014


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