One of the good Milt Jackson LPs for Savoy, recorded back when he had some fire in his playing, and when he had some excellent accompaniment, like Kenny Clarke on drums, Hank Jones on piano, and the great Lucky Thompson on tenor, who lays down some great solos here. Cuts include "Now's the ... read moreCD
A slightly different take on the Modern Jazz Quartet sound of the early years – as the album features Milt Jackson's vibes in the company of MJQ bandmates Percy Heath and Connie Kay, but also includes Horace Silver on piano – in the spot normally reserved for John Lewis! The presence ... read moreCD
One of the best-known 50s jazz sessions from the Savoy label – a laidback classic that's a great illustration of the label's shift in modes after the early bop years! The setting here is relatively informal – with Milt Jackson as the ersatz leader, working almost in blowing session ... read moreCD
Savoy Bop side featuring the amazing Lucky Thompson on tenor(on three cuts), and a larger lineup on the rest of the album, with Milt featured on piano as well as vibraphone, in a group led by the rhythmic pioneer Kenny Clarke. Classic bop side cut early in the history of the genre, as played by the ... read moreCD
Milt Jackson & Coleman Hawkins —
Bean Bags ... CD Atlantic/Koch, 1958. Used ...
A wonderful little record – a real standout in both the careers of Milt Jackson and Coleman Hawkins! The album captures Hawk during his great later years – that time when his sound was even more soulful and inventive than ever – with lots of odd modern undercurrents that really ... read moreCD
Excellent late work by Illinois Jacquet – right on a par with his best recordings for Verve, and a great example of the strength of his tenor playing, which didn't always surface as well in large group recordings. The record features Jacquet in the company of a number of smaller groups ... read moreCD
2 slices of work by Illinois Jacquet – one album for Epic and one for Roulette, back to back on a single CD! First up is material from the 1962 album Illinois Jacquet – excellent later work that's right on a par with his best recordings for Verve, and a great example of the strength of ... read moreCD
Pre-electric Jamal, but with the spiralling spiritual lyricism that he would later bring to his Fender Rhodes recordings. Tracks are very open-ended – a continuing growth of the lyrical exploration he first forged in the late 50s, expanding out to embrace the new freedom of the 70s, but ... read moreCD
A cheesy cover, but a pretty decent little record – not nearly as electric or dated as you might guess from the image on the front or the title! The premise is simple – as Ahmad's updating a number of the bigger tunes from his book of the 50s – not in terms of instrumentation, ... read moreCD
Brilliant work by Jamal – and one of his first albums to feature electric piano! The mode of the tracks is in that "stretching out" style he was using as the 60s came to a close – a bit inspired by McCoy Tyner, but more an exploration of the lyricism of his earlier work, set ... read moreCD
Bob James is picking up some extra keyboards here – mixing his usual Fender Rhodes with a bit of Oberheim Polyphonic – but the overall sound of the record is still pretty great, and filled with those warm, spacious tones that make Bob's albums so great! Things are slightly smooth, but ... read moreCD
(Out of print.)
Bob James —
One ... CD CTI/Red River, 1974. New Copy ...
A landmark record – not only for Bob James, but a seminal release for CTI and the Fender Rhodes as well! This is the album where all the magic starts – the first of many extremely successful albums that Bob recorded during the 70s under his own name, and almost the birthplace of the ... read moreCD
Soulful 80s work from Bob James – a record that features him working a bit with Rod Temperton of Heatwave, in a style that's got a few more soul-based modes than before! Temperton wrote half of the tracks on the record – the tighter, catchier ones that often use a bit of backing vocals ... read moreCD
Bob James —
Swan ... CD Koch/Tappan Zee, 1983. Used ...
Mellow grooving with Bob James – not as darkly-tinged as some of his 70s fusion classics, but that's probably because he was making so much money by this point! The record's still pretty decent overall – a lot better than some of the fusion imitators that showed up in Bob's wake – ... read moreCD
A smooth set of Fender Rhodes instrumentals built around Bob James' famous theme to the TV show Taxi – also known as "Angela", and probably the way that most mainstream folks know Bob's work! And although that track was plenty famous, it's still a really great number that echoes ... read moreCD
A pair of grand pianos, played in a beautifully open space during a live performance by Jan Jarczyk and John Stetch – both players who can really balance their energies between melody and much freer expression! The set's not nearly as outside as you might guess from the format – and ... read moreCD
A great little trio session from Keith Jarrett – still in the mode of some of his other ECM work, but almost a bit more back to basics as well! The group here features Gary Peacock on bass and Jack DeJohnette on drums – both working beautifully with Keith in a flurry of colors, tones, ... read moreCD
Great Impulse work from Keith Jarrett – recorded at a time when he had a lot sharper edge than later years, and was really matching the spirit of some of the post-Coltrane generation players on the label! The date's a live one, and features some relatively extended tracks – tunes that ... read moreCD
A heady double-length set from Keith Jarrett – some of his more sharper-edged work of the time, even though the session follows the free-flowing solo aproach of his other ECM recordings! The first half of the set features the extended "Invocations" suite – a work that has ... read moreCD
Ultra-hip work from pianist Keith Jarrett – a session that's filled with joy and life, and which has a lot more energy than some of his albums for ECM! The work here is kind of a refinement of the freer styles that Jarrett had laid down on previous albums – performed with a strongly ... read moreCD
Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden/Paul Motian —
Hamburg 72 ... CD ECM (Germany), 1972. New Copy ...
Never-heard music from the great Keith Jarrett – a beautifully-recorded concert performance from 1972, and one that draws together so many wonderful strands of his music at the time! The date's a trio one, but has a feel that's quite different than some of the more famous trio dates that ... read moreCD
Very cool reissue of this rare early album by one of the greatest of the early French beboppers. Bobby Jaspar plays tenor only on this session, and he's backed by a group of groovy Frenchmen that include Maurice Vander, Pierre Michelot, and Roger Guerin – on a set of nice tracks that ... read moreCD
One of the Jazz Crusaders' classic funky live sets from the 60's, recorded live at the Lighthouse, where there talents were slowly becoming the stuff of legend. Nice tight soul jazz stuff, with some excellent groovers that include an early version of "Scratch", plus "Blues Up ... read moreCD
Hard swingin' British jazz – a tightly grooving set that's played in the post-war British bop mode of work by Tubby Hayes, Ronnie Scott, and others who were contemporaries of the group. The set was originally issued on Tempo Records in 1960 – and is the kind of rare Brit jazz gem we ... read moreCD
One of the rarest albums by this fantastic combo from the late 50s! The band features the very strange mix of French horn, tenor, and soulful piano – played by Julius Watkins, Charlie Rouse, and Gildo Mahones, respectively. The sound shouldn't work, but it does, and beautifully – ... read moreCD
Genius live work from Jazz Q – one of the most important groups on the Eastern European scene of the 70s – heard here in a previously unissued performance! The music here is even more electrifying than that on any of the full albums issued by Jazz Q – as it's got a more ... read moreCD
A sweet little tribute to the legendary CTI Records – done here by drummer Akira Jimbo, with a trio style that's even leaner than the label's classic albums from the 70s! The tracks are all older gems you'll know from the rich legacy of CTI jazz, funk, and soul – and Jimbo works with ... read moreCD
Nils Olav Johansen —
My Deal ... CD Jazzaway (Norway), 2007. Used ...
An insanely big amount of music from these two key Swedish jazz talents of the 60s – a 2CD package that features loads of trio material from pianist Jan Johansson, plus sides done in collaboration with guitarist Rune Gustafsson, and a few more tracks by Rune on his own! CD1 is overflowing ... read moreCD
JJ's Broadway is a-ok with us – a hip mix of small group tunes, played with the great Walter Perkins on drums, and handled with a much more complicated approach than most other "jazz meets Broadway" type albums! About half the tracks feature a quartet with Perkins on drums, plus ... read moreCD
One of the key efforts from JJ Johnson's comeback years of the early 90s – a session recorded with some excellent tenor work from Ralph Moore and Jimmy Heath – both of whom cut a groove nicely next to JJ's trombone! The style here is almost an extension of the best Johnson work as a ... read moreCD
A further chapter in the big band years of JJ Johnson – heard here at a point when JJ was pushing his ensemble even more than before, with a fluid groove that almost matches the energy of similar groups on MPS at the time! There's a real undercurrent of hipness going on in the record – ... read moreCD
A great mid 50s recordings by one of the greatest pairings in popular jazz of the time – the twin-trombone lead work of JJ Johnson and Kai Winding, both players who'd come from differing backgrounds, but who created a wonderful new sound together! The interplay between the trombones on ... read moreCD
A classic early album on Prestige – and one that features some heavy bop sessions cut for early 78s, all nicely packaged in a great cover by the famous Mad Magazine cartoonist Don Martin! The record features 3 sets of different tracks led by three of bop's greatest trombonists – JJ ... read moreCD
Rare work as a leader from drummer Osie Johnson – two sessions recorded during the heyday of his career, when he was appearing as a sideman on countless other albums! The style here is similar to some of Johnson's other session work – particularly his contributions to the labels RCA ... read moreCD
That's quite an image on the cover – and quite a record as well – as the set's one of the best chances you'll get to hear tenor giant Plas Johnson blowing loose and free in the 50s! Plas did countless studio sessions with other artists, and recorded some mellower sides for Capitol ... read moreCD
Rudolph Johnson —
Spring Rain ... CD Black Jazz/Snow Dog (Japan), 1971. New Copy ...
One of the few albums ever cut by reedman Rudolph Johnson – a hell of a saxophonist, and one with a great ability to combine the spiritual with the searing – a bit like Joe Farrell at his CTI best, but not as freewheeling – nicely focused, and a little bit funky in all the right ... read moreCD
(Remastered with updated artwork and new liner notes.)
One of the greatest records ever cut by pianist Pete Jolly! Little Bird is a sweet set of instrumentals featuring a trio of Chuck Berghofer on bass and Larry Bunker on drums, plus Howard Roberts on guitar and Kenny Hume on added percussion. The centerpiece here is Jolly's groovy hit version of ... read moreCD
Great work from one of the grooviest pianists of the 60s – a player who could always keep things lively and swinging, even in a small combo session! The album's one of Pete Jolly's gems for the Ava label – a follow-up to his semi-hit Little Bird, and like that one, a record done with ... read moreCD
Darius Jones & The Elizabeth Caroline Unit —
Oversoul Manual ... CD 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 ... read moreCD
Soaring, righteous sounds from Elvin Jones – an early 80s session, but one that cooks as strongly as his most soulful albums from the 70s! In fact, there's almost a focus or tightness here that could sometimes be missing from other Jones albums – a really bold, sharp use of the group's ... read moreCD
Elvin Jones —
Genesis ... CD Blue Note (Japan), 1971. New Copy ...
Elvin Jones rose to fame in the company of one of the greatest saxophone players ever – the mighty John Coltrane – and his post-Coltrane work like this really continues a keen respect for the role of the reeds in jazz – and really does a lot to push it forward as well! There's a ... read moreCD
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 ... read moreCD
Elvin Jones towers above his bandmates on the cover of this 70s classic – and really leads them onward to some great sounds within! The record has a bit more focus and soul than some of Jones' other albums of the period – still quite powerful and dynamic, but with a good adherence to ... read moreCD
Elvin Jones introduces Japanese pianist Takehisa Tanaka to a larger audience – giving him a perfect setting with a quartet format that also includes Cecil McBee on bass Sonny Fortune on flute and tenor sax! Tanaka's style is a bit laidback – spacious, but sometimes a bit wispy, even ... read moreCD