Jazz — CDs

A wealth of jazz in many styles -- bop, hardbop, soul jazz, spiritual, rare groove, modal, improvised music, funk, free jazz, fusion, avant garde, and trad!


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CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
George DukeAura Will Prevail ... CD
MPS (Japan), 1975. New Copy ... About November 2, 2016
The aura here is spreading wide – as George Duke really grows his sound strongly from the early years, and takes hold of a whole host of cosmic influences! The record's one of Duke's biggest for MPS – a beautiful balance between jazzy fusion and spacey soul – served up with help from an array of great singers and players from the west coast scene. Duke's still stretching out plenty on keyboards – but never in a too-jamming, too-indulgent way – always sensitive enough to never mess up the groove, and always with a sense of space and timing that never showed up this well in his later records. Players include Airto on percussion, Alphonso Johnson on bass, Ndugu Chancler on drums, and Duke himself on more keyboards than we could ever hope to list here! Vocals are by Sylvia St James, Gee Janzen, and Kathy Woehrle – as well as Duke himself – and titles include "Foosh", "For Love", "Uncle Remus", "Fools", "The Aura", "Enchinda's Arf", "Floop De Loop", and "Dawn". CD
Possible matches: 1
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CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Tom LellisFlow ... CD
Beamtide, 2016. New Copy ... $11.99 15.99
An excellent set from Tom Lellis – a jazz vocalist we've been digging since the 70s – as part of an elite group of really special singers that might include Mark Murphy or Kurt Elling – able to work in a jazzy style that's far more than just delivery of a lyric, with a sense of individuality that's always compelling! This album has Lellis in wonderful form – at a level that rivals all the greatness of his classic records, with a similar commitment to excellent material, and sublime small group presentation of the music – with instrumental energy that really matches his vocal phrasing of the words. Tom plays piano, keyboards, vibes, and guitar – and other musicians include Orlando Valle on flute, Toninho Horta on guitar, Dave Kikoski on piano, and Gary Fisher on piano and keyboards. Titles include a great blending of "Berimbau/Pomba Gira" – plus "Love Comes & Goes", "Tones For Joan's Bones", "Can It Be Done", "Waiting The Day", "Sea Aura", and "The Flow". (Vocalists, Jazz) CD
Partial matches: 11
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CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
George BraithMusart ... CD
Prestige/Dusty Groove, 1967. New Copy ... $10.99 13.98
One of our favorite-ever albums on Prestige Records from the 60s – and a set that's a fair bit different than most of the other work on the label! The set's an unusual outing for saxophonist George Braith – cut after his famous albums for Blue Note, and in a mode that's quite different – very far-reaching, and almost spiritual at points – with the blend of jazz and other modes that you might find on the Cadet/Concept sessions in late 60s Chicago! Braith plays a wide assortment of saxes – c-melody, alto and soprano – but his playing here is a bit different than the Roland Kirk-like vibe of before – sometimes more stretched-out and exploratory, in a Nathan Davis sort of vibe – sometimes wrapped up in some larger explorations from the whole group. There's moments of raw percussion with echoey production, others with wordless vocals floating alongside the lead soloist, and still others that have that catchy blend of soul jazz and exoticism you'd find in the music of Eddie Harris or Yusef Lateef – even though Braith here is completely his own artist too! The set features Jane Getz on piano, Jay Carter and Eddie Diehl on guitar, and Ben Dixon on drums – but there's also a lot of percussion, both Latin and otherwise, from a shifting lineup of players. The whole thing's wonderful – and titles include "Del's Theme", "Musart", "Evelyn Anita", "Our Blessing", "Laura", and "Splashes Of Love". CD
(On the Dusty Groove label.)

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Kent CarterOratorios & Songs ... CD
Emanem (UK), 2010. New Copy ... $16.99 19.98
A really different side of the deep talents of bassist Kent Carter – an artist you might know best for his improvised work with Steve Lacy and other members of the European free jazz scene – working here in a much more compositional mode! Music is by a quartet that features Carter on bass, Christiane Bopp on trombone, Albrecht Maurer on violin, and Katri Mickiewicz on alto viola – and most numbers feature vocals by Laura Tejeda Martin, a mezzo soprano who really opens up the poetic lyrics penned by Carter! The style's a bit like some of Steve Lacy's jazz/poetry experiments, but maybe a bit more song-based, too – as you'd guess from the title. Instrumentation hangs nicely between avant jazz and chamber work – and titles include "Something For Conny", "Manhattan Blues", "Can't Get Up", "You Know", "The Beginning", "Dumb Delights", and "Cluster Ringing". CD

Partial matches5
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Stan Getz with Joao GilbertoBest Of Two Worlds (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Sony (Japan), 1976. New Copy ... $14.99
A wonderful return to the sounds of Brazil for Stan Getz – a 70s album that reunites him with Joao Gilberto, but in a style that's somewhat different than the pair's older Verve recordings! The sound here is looser, freer – more in that breezy Brazilian mode that evolved out of the initial bossa years – and Stan's tenor sounds great in the setting, with those loose yet heartfelt lines we love so much from this period! Joao's great too – somehow even more "present" on the record than before, with that amazing ability to do so much with so little – as on some of his own great 70s recordings. Miucha contributes some English language vocals to the record alongside Joao's Portuguese ones, and Oscar Castro Neves handled the arrangements with a nicely stripped-down style that has plenty of focus on the percussion and rhythms. Titles include a sublime English language version of "Aqua De Marco (Waters Of March)", plus the tracks "Double Rainbow", "Falsa Bahiana", "Ligia", "Izaura", "Eu Vim Da Bahia", and "E Preciso Perdoar". CD

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Henry Mancini with Doc SeverinsenBrass Ivory & Strings/Brass On Ivory ... CD
RCA/Vocalion (UK), 1972/1973. New Copy ... $16.99
A pair of albums recorded by Henry Mancini with Doc Severinson – back to back on a single CD! Brass, Ivory, & Strings is very groovy 70s work from Henry Mancini – way more than you might expect from the strings in the title! The album's got a pretty upbeat feel at times – a mix of gentle rhythms, swirling strings, and instrumentation that includes Hank on piano and Doc Severinsen on trumpet – both getting in plenty of space to work! Some of the cuts are much funkier than you'd expect – and highlights include the wah-wah "Theme For Doc", the moody "Round Midnight", the sleazy reading of "Make It With You", an off-kilter take on "Lover Man", and a great recording of Jobim's "Wave", with some nice lilting voices in the background! Other titles include "Love Theme For Laura", "Without You", and "Ben". Brass On Ivory is a sublime testament to Mancini's talent for understatement – and features tunes that move along quietly, smoothly, and with a wonderful blend of piano, strings, and slight chorus vocals – to to mention some great flugelhorn solos from Doc Severinsen. The sound's way more than easy listening, and surprisingly sophisticated at points – with a hauntingly dark edge that's even more striking given the time. And there's enough bubbling bass work to make things feel slightly groove-based at times, although never all-out funky – making for a similar feel to some of Mancini's best soundtrack work of the time, like The Thief Who Came To Dinner. The kind of a record that you'll put on one night and say "Oh man, why did I pass this one up all my life!" Titles include "Sometimes", "Brian's Song", "Brass On Ivory", "Dreamsville", and "Soldier In The Rain". (Now Sound, Jazz) CD
(Super Audio CD pressing!)

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Charles MingusMingus Three (aka Trio) ... CD
Jubilee/Warner (Japan), 1957. New Copy ... $14.99
A classic trio session from Charles Mingus – one of the few he ever recorded! The set's got Mingus on bass, working with regular drummer Danny Richmond and pianist Hampton Hawes – an unusual choice for the record, but a player whose sense of freedom and intensity at this point really helps bring in some of the energy of some of the larger group recordings from Mingus! Hawes' incredible piano lines really fly over the top, and Mingus' bass comes to the forefront as well – getting plenty of room for personal elements that Charles never got as strongly in the larger sessions. The set list includes a mix of originals and standards, with "Back Home Blues", "Hamp's New Blues", "Dizzy Moods", and "Laura". CD
(SHM-CD pressing!)

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Modern Jazz Group FreibergEuropean Jazz Sounds (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Christophorus/Be! (Germany), Late 50s/Early 60s. New Copy ... $16.99
A wonderful collection of work from this overlooked modern jazz combo from the 50s German scene – a group whose material was originally issued on a handful of 45rpm EP titles by a Christian music company – finally brought together in this excellent full length collection! The Modern Jazz Group Freiberg have a style that echoes the other European Jazz Sounds releases of the time by Joki Freund and Michael Naura – a groove that draws strongly from the best American modern impulses of the time – with both a west coast style of arranging, and a bit more New York fire on the way that the soloists come across! The group here has a strong trumpeter in the lead – Raymond Court – who clearly loves Clifford Brown, but also has his own sort of vibe, too – working here with Ewald Heidepriem on piano, Karl Theodore Geier on bass, and Eberhard Stengel on drums. Titles include "Remember Clifford", "Blues Pour Alice", "Solar", "My Old Flame", "A Night At Tony's", "St Joseph's Blue Concept", and "Jubilation". CD features 7 more bonus tracks – with work from tenorists Barney Wilen, Francis Netz, Bruno Spoerri, and Gustl Mayer! CD

Partial matches9
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Krzysztof SadowskiNa Kosmodromie (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Pronit/GAD (Poland), 1972. New Copy ... $16.99
A hell of a record from Polish organist Krzsystof Sadowski – one that mixes his own Hammond with wordless vocals, reeds, and rhythms – all in a style that really fits the spacey image on the cover! Key to the record is singer Liliana Urbanska – a vocalist with that higher range of Urszula Dudziak, and a similar instrument-like style of singing at times – one that's almost used like electronics at some point, to further the spacey sounds of the album in a really haunting way – or at others taking off like a horn, to match the record's work on alto sax from Wlodzimierz Nahorny, and trumpet from Eddie Engels. The rhythm section features electric bass, drums, and congas – which give some of the best cuts a nice kick – and titles include "Dalarna", "Alfa Centaura", "Na Kosmodromie", "Straight Life", and "Blues X". CD features bonus tracks – another version of "Na Kosmodromie", plus "On N'Enterre Pas Le Dimanche" and "Ballada Jazzowa". CD

Partial matches10
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Lucky ThompsonBop & Ballads – Hamburg 1959 & 1960 ... CD
Sonorama (Germany), 1959/1960. New Copy ... $18.99 20.98
Bop, ballads, and lots more too – played by reedman Lucky Thompson at a time when he was really picking up some new ideas on the European scene! As with contemporaries like Sonny Criss or Benny Bailey, Thompson was great before he hit the continent – but then came back from Europe a completely changed man – a musician whose sense of expression had evolved strongly in a very short time – to a point where the music on these recordings from 1959 and 1960 is quite different than his American records from a few short years before! Part of the change might come from pianist Michael Naura – who's on all these sides, and is one of the hippest cats working in Germany at the time – but you can already hear Lucky opening up his tone and his inflections, especially on the numbers that feature soprano sax. Other players include Jimmy Gourley on guitar, Hans Koller on tenor, and the great Wolfgang Schulter on vibes – on titles that include "The World Awakes", "Brother Bob", "Yesterdays", "Deep Passion", "Thin Ice", and "Summertime". CD
Also available Bop & Ballads – Hamburg 1959 & 1960 ... LP 24.99

Partial matches11
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VariousJohn's Old Time Radio Show ... CD
East River, 1920s/1930s. New Copy 2 CDs ... $12.99 19.98
A collection of tracks pulled from the podcasts of 78rpm collector John Heneghan – featuring music from his own legendary collection of rare shellac, as well as discs from the collection of Robert Crumb – who also makes an appearance on the program too! The tracks are interspersed with commentary from the show – in the manner of a radio broadcast – and the album features two different features, one on "Happiness" in music, the other balanced out with "Pain, Sorry, Sickness, & Death". As you might imagine with collectors like Crumb and Heneghan, the records here are all pretty darn rare – the sorts of things that only exist in a handful of remaining copies on this planet – and titles include "Fixin To Die Blues" by Bukka White, "My Mother's Grave" by Elmer Bird, "Come On Baby" by Rich Trice, "Death Cell Blues" by Blind Willie McTell, "Hard Times" by Pigmeat Pete, "Old Dog Blue" by Jim Jackson, "The Ohio Prison Fire" by Bob & Charlotte Miller, "I'm Gonna Kill Myself" by Laura Smith, "Tillie Lee" by William Moore, "I Got Mine" by Frank Stokes, and "Sweet Petunia" by Curley Weaver. (Blues, Jazz) CD
Also available John's Old Time Radio Show (3LP set) ... LP 32.99

Partial matches12
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Sonny StittLittle Bit Of Stitt (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Roost/Warner (Japan), 1959. New Copy ... About October 25, 2016
A little bit of Stitt is always a great thing – especially when Sonny's playing this well! The album's a killer from Stitt's Roost years – a time when the player was really stepping ahead of the pack – moving past anyone's easy categorizations of his playing – and into territory that's completely Stitt-like overall! Sure, there's some roots of older jazz traditions – but Sonny manages to make the whole thing uniquely his own – hitting these moments that are crisp and modern, yet soulful and personal at the same time – really sparkling with work from a quartet that features Jimmy Jones on piano, Aaron Bell on bass, and Charlie Persip on drums. The solos are mind blowing – and titles include "Laura", "JB Blues", "After The Late Late Show", "For All We Know", and "Star Eyes". Features two bonus alternate takes too! CD

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✨✧ Elvin JonesLive At The Village Vanguard ... CD
Enja (Germany), 1968. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
Prime post-Coltrane material from Elvin Jones – featuring his "power trio" style of operation, with one great sax player out front, and Jones kicking it in the back with the bass player! In this case, the sax player is George Coleman – who's really finding a voice of his own in these late 60s years, and really makes the most of the extended space of the album to stretch out, soar, and show off his ever-growing talent for a powerful solo! Wilbur Little is on bass, playing nice round warm notes to offset Jones' edgey playing – and the group's joined by trumpeter Hannibal Marvin Peterson on one track – who brings in a soulful edge that's mighty nice. All tracks are nice and long – and titles include "Laura", "Mister Jones", and "By George". CD

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