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✨✧ VariousDisco Fantasy – Songs Inspired By Stage, Screen, & Superheroes ... CD
Essential, Late 70s. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
Some of the most playful tracks of the disco generation – songs that draw a heavy inspiration from film and TV – sometimes by offering up clubby covers of the original versions, sometimes by taking off in great new directions of their own! There's a decidedly camp vibe to the set – as some older themes are updated with disco rhythms and soaring strings – or other tracks take off into the "fantasy" territory of the title, by bringing a strong 70s vibe to subjects that you might not expect. Our all-time favorite cut here is the wonderful "Superman" by Celi Bee & The Buzzy Bunch – and other cuts include "Night Fever" by Carol Douglas, "Star Wars" by Boris Midney, "Star Trek (ext)" by Shufflin Tymes, "The Entertainer" by JR Bailey, "Love Boat" by Jack Jones, "Theme From Swat" by Inner City Symphony, "More" by Carol Williams, "Don't Cry For Me Argentina (12" mix)" by Festival, and "Secret Agent Man (ext mix)" by Ultimate. CD
 
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AllspiceAllspice ... CD
Fantasy/Dusty Groove, 1977. New Copy ... $10.99 12.98
The only album ever from Allspice – but a hell of an incredible soul record – and one that's kept the group's name strong with collectors and rare groove fanatics for years! The album's on of the best Fantasy Records productions by Wayne Henderson and his At Home team – and like some of the others, is handled with a groove that's tight, yet plenty sophisticated too – light years from mainstream disco or common club of the late 70s, and instead informed by plenty of jazz and deeper ideas as well! The vibe is perfect – as heavenly and righteous as some of the best Roy Ayers club tracks of the time – which proves to be a perfect foil for the Allspice style of mixing male and female vocals – which again is often done in an Ayers-like mode. The sound is sublime throughout – one of those real treasures that should have been a huge record in the 70s, but was barely pressed up at all – and quickly forgotten about by the record company. Yet even after all these years, the whole thing sounds amazing – one of those albums we'd never part with at all! Titles include the groovy "Slipped Away", the funky stepper "Hungry For Your Love" – and loads of other great tunes that include "Love Fire", "Destiny", "She's A Lady", "I Don't Know", and "Give It Time". CD
(On the Dusty Groove label.)

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CybotronEnter Cybotron (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Fantasy/Decision, 1983. New Copy ... $6.99 7.99
A mindblowing debut from Cybotron – one of the most unusual groups to ever hail from Detroit – and that's saying a hell of a lot, given the musical legacy of the city! Cybotron have a sound that's starkly electronic, and a huge influence on later electro, hip hop, techno, and house – served up here as a spare, fuzzy approach to funk – but with lots of the colder touches you'd find from post-punk imports at the time! The blend is quite unique, and even more unusual given the fact that the trio were working in virtual obscurity on the Detroit scene – as an early project from the legendary Juan Atkins, with guitarist Jon-5, and the mysterious electronician 3070! There's more funk here than most of the group's electro contemporaries – but the sound is still nicely cold in all the right parts too – and titles include the seminal "Clear", which was years ahead of its time – plus "Cosmic Cars", "Cosmic Raindance", "Industrial Lies", "The Line", and "Alleys Of Your Mind". CD reissue also features some nice bonus cuts – including "Clear (Jose Animal Diaz rmx)", "Cosmic Cars (Detroit style mix)", "Techno City (voc)", "Techno City (inst)", "R-9 (inst)", and "Eden (voc)". CD

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Golliwogs (Creedence Clearwater Revival)Fight Fire – The Complete Recordings 1964 to 1967 ... CD
Fantasy/Craft, Mid 60s. New Copy ... $13.99 14.99
Fantastic freaky sounds by The Golliwogs – the group who later morphed into Creedence Clearwater Revival – but who already sound pretty great themselves! The style is close to Creedence, but nicely different too – much more garage rock overall, with the vocals of John Fogerty maybe tuned more towards a sound used by The Animals – although his guitar work also has plenty of fuzz! There's a definite influence from R&B, but maybe not as pronounced as in later years – and all the charms of CCR are clearly bubbling right there under the surface. The tracks were all recorded by Fantasy Records in the early days, and for years were considered something of a footnote to their later fame – but taken together here, they're more than strong enough to stand on their own. This new Craft presentation is the best they've ever looked, too – as the package has very detailed notes, and information on all the original recordings – with 23 titles that include "You Came Walking", "Little Tina", "Don't Tell Me No Lies", "Brown Eyed Girl", "Fight Fire", "Walking On The Water", "You Can't Be True", "She Was Mine", "Gonna Hang Around", "Call It Pretending", "Little Girl", and even an "Action USA Spot". CD
Also available Fight Fire – The Complete Recordings 1964 to 1967 ... LP 24.99

Close matches5
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Vince Guaraldi/Rod McKuen/John Scott TrotterBoy Named Charlie Brown – Complete Score (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Fantasy/Kritzerland, 1964. New Copy ... $19.99
An incredible addition to the world of Charlie Brown soundtracks – and a record that's different both from the jazz album of Vince Guaraldi tunes issued by Fantasy, and the album of Rod McKuen and other instrumental tunes issued by Columbia! Instead, this one goes right to the source tapes for the original cartoon, instead of featuring later re-recordings – and the result is a batch of music that's wonderfully fresh, and which offers up a sublime mixing of both Guaraldi and McKuen modes! There's certainly lots of jazzy tunes by Vince – those cool piano cuts that he did so famously for Peanuts shows – but served up here in versions that are different than the ones on record, and interspersed with some larger orchestrations from John Scott Trotter – and the McKuen tunes are different than those recorded for Columbia – as they sometimes feature vocals by the characters, mixed with a few sung by Rod – and also a few instrumentals too. Plus, the whole thing comes with 10 more bonus tracks – a whopping 32 titles in all – with alternate and unused versions. Titles include "Percussion Swinger/Baseball Theme", "Blue Charlie Brown", "I Before E", "Champion Charlie Brown", "Linus & Lucy (Big City)", "Charlie Brown & His All Stars", "Bus Wheel Blues", and "Failure Face". CD
(Limited edition of 1000!)

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✨✧ PleasureGlide – The Essential Selection 1975 to 1982 ... CD
Fantasy/Decision, 1970s/Early 80s. New Copy 2 CDs ... $9.99
A jazzy combo with a heart of soul – and a group who may well be one of our favorite funk groups from the 70s! Pleasure has an amazing way of being tight, yet never slick or commercial – a sound that's right on the money, but far from the mainstream too – which has kept them at the top of the stacks for crate-diggers and rare groove collectors for years! This sweet double-length package is a very well-chosen set of their gems for Fantasy records, and a few later tracks for RCA – a really expansive look at all that's great about the group – with classics mixed with overlooked album cuts and some great funky numbers you might have missed otherwise. Nearly everything Pleasure ever cut is fantastic, but this set is even more fantastic than the rest – and features 25 titles that include "Bouncy Lady", "Dust Yourself Off", "Joyous", "Ghettos Of The Mind", "Only You", "Sassafras Girl", "Glide", "Farewell Goodbye", "Special Things", "Thoughts Of Old Flames", "Give It Up", "Sending My Love", "Stone Love", "Glide (special disco rmx)", "Space Is The Place", "Living Without You", "Let's Dance", and a previously unreleased "Foxy Lady (disco version)". CD

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Cal TjaderAgua Dulce ... CD
Fantasy/BGP (UK), 1971. New Copy ... $9.99 13.99
One of our favorite Cal Tjader albums ever – and one of the first to have his vibes working alongside Fender Rhodes! The record's a surprising little set from the start of the 70s – one that almost has Cal picking up some of the New York sounds of a few years before, then mixing them up with a hipper west coast electric style in the end – a Fantasy Records vibe that meshes together a few different modes, and comes up with a rich new style in the process! There's a bit of vocals on the set – somewhat unusual for Cal Tjader, and often used to augment the soulfully snapping grooves of the best tunes – but even more amazing is the heavy use of Fender Rhodes, played here by the amazing Al Zulaica, who's work on the album really ranks right up there with the best early 70s keyboardists on the coast! Zulaica's piano is amazing next to Cal's warmly chromatic vibes – and other instrumentation includes saxes from Bill Perkins, flute from Mel Martin, trumpet from Luis Gasca, moog from Rita Dowling, and percussion from both Pete and Coke Escovedo. Titles include the killer "Aqua Dulce (Cool-Ade)", a fantastic version of "Gimme Shelter", a sublime of Clare Fischer's "Morning", and the cuts "Ran Kan Kan", "Descarga Cubana", "Curacao", and "Somewhere In The Night". CD

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

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

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✨✧ Vince Guaraldi TrioCharlie Brown Christmas (2CD 50th Anniversary Edition) ... CD
Fantasy, 1965. New Copy 2CD ... Out Of Stock
An amazing record – one with a depth that goes way beyond its simple roots, and which has gone on to become one of the true Christmas classics of the 20th Century! Although a Christmas soundtrack, the album's more of a tapestry of sadness, longing, and loss – the best qualities that always emerge in true Christmas classics – underscoring the blue side of the season that's always lurking around corners from the happier moments. Vince Guaraldi penned this score back when he was a rising talent on the San Francisco scene – and in a way, it was almost his musical contribution to the cartoon that made it such a lasting favorite – even over and above the appeal of the famous animated characters. Most tunes are simple piano ones, but played with a phrasing that's beautifully timeless – and the few vocal numbers feature voices from the cartoon, singing softly with the music. Titles include the classic "Linus and Lucy" – plus "My Little Drum", "Christmas Is Coming", "Christmas Time Is Here", "Skating", and "Fur Elise". This 50th Anniversary edition features the core album, a replica of the 1965 book by Charles Schultz, and four double-sided postcards – similar to those from the early Fantasy Records version! Also includes the bonus CD Peanuts Portraits – key character themes penned and played by the legendary Vince Guaraldi, in a set of recordings that features both acoustic piano and Fender Rhodes! A few cuts get really funky, too – the electric numbers, which remind us that back when we were wee ones, watching these cartoons, Guaraldi was already shaping our consciousness with his great way with a groove. The package is one that really gets right to the heart of Guaraldi's genius – and shakes free of some of the holiday spirit of other Peanuts jazz packages, to get into some incredibly groovy numbers that include "Peppermint Patty", "Joe Cool", "Charlie's Blues (variation)", "Blue Charlie Brown (version 2)", "Frieda (alternate)", "Little Birdie", and "Schroeder (alternate)" – plus the famous "Linus & Lucy". CD
(A great package for the price – nicely oversized, too!)

Close matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Johnny Guitar WatsonListen/I Don't Want To Be Alone, Stranger ... CD
Fantasy/Ace (UK), 1973/1975. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
2 of Johnny Guitar Watson's best albums ever – back to back on a single CD! First up is Listen – quite possibly the rarest of all Johnny Guitar Watson albums – and his first from the 70s – a mindblowing batch of trippy soul tunes that sounds far different than much of his later work! Johnny's not yet in the funky mode here – and he's working in a very cool flanged-out approach that has his vocals tripping lightly with his guitar – in a spacious soul mode that captures some of the energy of Shuggie Otis at the time. The overall sound is incredibly righteous – and the album's a delight throughout! Titles include "Lovin You", "If I Had The Power", "You Bring Love", "I Get A Feeling", and "You're The Sweetest Thing I've Ever Had". I Don't Want To Be Alone Stranger is sublime mid 70s work from Johnny Guitar Watson – a Bay Area blend of soulful production, jazzy playing, and bits of bluesy phrasing, with a hard-to-match quality that we'd put in the same camp as work by Shuggie Otis from the time. Johnny's vocals and guitar are amazing – very laidback and trippy, without all the silly stuff that you sometimes get on later records. "I Don't Want To Be A Lone Ranger" is a great stepper with a jazzy finish and a really catchy hook – and other good cuts include "Lonely Man's Prayer", "You Make My Heart Want To Sing", "Tripping", "Strong Vibrations", and "It's Way Too Late", a reworking (and real steal) of a song from Jon Lucien's great "Rashieda" album! CD
 
Possible matches: 31
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Duke EllingtonLive In Paris – Octobre/Novembre 1958 ... CD
Fremeaux & Associates (France), 1958. New Copy 2CD ... $18.99 29.99
Fantastic live work from Duke Ellington – recorded in Paris during the late 50s, during the same stretch when he was really doing some groundbreaking albums for Columbia! Like the material on those sets, especially the live ones, Ellington has a way of pulling forward the entire history of the group, while also refitting everything for a much more modern jazz generation – both when working out new material, and when returning to older favorites, which are often re-arranged and given a nice edge by the soloists. The performances are fantastically recorded – done originally for radio, with superb sound – and titles include "Harlem Airshaft", "Such Sweet Thunder/Sonnet To Hank Cinq", "Kinda Dukish/Rockin In Rhythm", "El Gato", "Together", "What Else Can You Do With A Drum", "Jam With Sam", "Hawk Talks", "Medley", "Diminuendo & Crescendo In Blue", "Newport Up", "MC Blue", "Caravan", and "Black & Tan Fantasy/Creole Love Call/The Mooche". CD

Possible matches13
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Harris & Orr (Michael Orr)Harris & Orr EP (aka Spread Love) (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
P-Vine (Japan), 1976. New Copy ... $24.99
A gem of a smooth soul album – completely rare in the original, and a completely honest soul testament from singer/songwriter Michael Orr and Chris Harris! The record's got a sound that reminds us of a lot of the tracks you'll hear on the Modern Soul comps on the Goldmine label – a smooth approach at the base, with touches of soul jazz, and handled with a bit of roughness that makes things sound a lot more real than some of the other soul coming out at the time. Orr's got a real talent for a song – and his commitment to strong vocals can be heard in his mix of styles that recall bits of Andy Bey, bits of Jon Lucien, bits of Gil Scott-Heron, and bits of DJ Rogers. This version is a 6-track EP that pulls all the best songs from the original album Spread Love – and titles include "Ecstasy, Fantasy, & Dreamland", "Let Me Be With You Awhile", "Here I Go", "Afterwhile", "A Piece Of Mine", and "Feelings". CD

Possible matches14
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In The TraditionAncestral Alliances ... CD
AFJ, 2017. New Copy 2CD ... $19.99
Fantastic sounds from this ultra-hip Detroit ensemble – a contemporary group, but one whose musical message takes us back to the sounds of older acts like Fertile Ground or Oneness Of Juju! As with both of those groups, the style here mixes jazz with a wider sense of message and purpose – music that soars out to the skies with pride and positive energy, while also offering a deeper, more introspective conception of its role and power in culture. Tracks are instrumental and vocal – and the double-length album has nary a slow moment at all – as the group burst forth in a warm array of percussion and horns – sometimes a bit funky, always quite spiritual throughout. Olujimi Tafataona arranged, produced, and provided creative vision – and titles include his own "We Cry Freedom", "Stephen", "Brother Chokwe Lumumba", "War Is Here", "Assata", and "Fantasy For Violin & Four Winds" – plus versions of Lee Morgan's "Caramba", Jimmy Heath's "Gemini", John Coltrane's "The Sleeper", Wayne Shorter's "Footprints", and the Kool & The Gang classic "Chocolate Buttermilk". CD

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IngramJazzed Up & Funked Out – 50 Years Of Good Music ... CD
Essential, Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy ... $11.99 15.99
Fantastic work from Ingram – pulled from a time when the Philly group was really coming into their own! Ingram first recorded under the name Ingram Family – and later gave the world producer Butch Ingram – but the material here is all from a really special time when they were taking their group funk sound and honing it to a razor-sharp edge – creating a style that was perfect for a mellow or midtempo groove – in a way that was often different from some of the bigger funk acts at the start of the 80s! There's almost a less-is-more approach going on here – one that makes the vocals really sound great too – and the set brings together ten classic tracks, with titles that include "Smoothin Groovin", "I Like It", "Drivin Me Crazy", "We Like To Do It", "Fantasy", "Everybody Get On Up & Get Down", "Share A Dream", "Would You Like To Fly", and "Just For You". CD

Possible matches16
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IngramNight Stalkers (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Mirage/FTG, 1984. New Copy ... $11.99 12.98
Wonderful work from Ingram – an incredibly talented soul family who'd spent more than enough time woodshedding in earlier years, and emerged to become one of the strongest mainstream acts of the 80s scene! There's a solid feel here that goes way beyond commercial soul – a great way with some of the gentler tunes, pointing back to a Philly Soul legacy with ballads – and a hip way with the upbeat numbers, which carefully avoid some of the clunkier 80s soul modes of the period. James, butch, William, John, and Robert Ingram all had a hand in writing the tunes – and titles include "With You", "When You're Hot You're Hot", "Just For You", "Fantasy", and "I Like It". CD has 2 bonus tracks – "With You (ext 12" mix)" and "Girl What's Going On (12" mix)". CD

Possible matches17
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✨✧ Lavice & Company/EJ GarrisonTwo Sisters From Bagdad ... CD
Jazzman (UK), 1973. New Copy ... $14.99
An incredibly righteous album from the Detroit scene of the early 70s – nothing like anything you'd expect with "Bagdad" in the name – even more obscure than some of the city's spiritual jazz treasures on the Tribe and Strata labels from the time – and done for a very unusual theatrical presentation that had a very limited run! The overall vibe is hard to peg – the album's got that very special mix of music and knowledge that you'd get on Chicago gems like the work of Paris Smith or Haki R Madhubuti, or the Black Fairy album – with sounds that encompass jazz, funk, soul, and gospel – but come out with a result that's completely unique and individual! There's a small group on the set – using strong organ, flute, trumpet, and tenor over percussion – and the singers shift between a cool female group called The Intimates Of Soul, other soloists, and leader EJ Garrison, who handled arrangements and production. Titles include the funky "Thoughs Were The Days", plus "Happy & Blessed", "Two Sisters From Bagdad", "Good-By Suzy", "Fantasy", "Mr Devil", and "Yes I Do". CD

Possible matches18
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Art Pepper with Sonny StittWest Coast Sessions Vol 1 – Sonny Stitt (Groovin High/Atlas Blues/bonus tracks) ... CD
Yupiteru/Omnivore, 1980. New Copy 2CD ... $18.99 19.99
Two albums with a very unusual pedigree – both recorded for the Japanese Yupiteru/Atlas Records label – both as Art Pepper sessions, but with Sonny Stitt in the lead – because Pepper was then under contract to Fantasy Records! Both albums are great, and have Art in some of the sharpest settings of his later years – as Sonny Stit's alto sax seems to bring out an even bolder tone in Pepper's horn – as does the approach of the record label, with is maybe a bit more focused than some of the freewheeling tracks from the Fantasy/Galaxy years. The groups feature Lou Levy or Russ Freeman on piano, John Heard or Chuck DeMonico on bass, and Carl Burnett on drums – and titles include "Walkin", "Wee", "Bernie's Tune", "Atlas Blues", "Lester Leaps In", "Imagination", "Autumn In New York", "My Funny Valentine", and "Lover Man". Also features four bonus alternate takes from the first album! CD

Possible matches19
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Players AssociationPlayers Association/Turn The Music Up! ... CD
Vanguard/Ace (UK), Late 70s. New Copy ... $10.99 18.99
A pair of gems from The Players Association – back to back on a single CD! First up is the fantastic first album from The Players Association – a group who may well have gotten their name for the great jazzy musicians in their lineup! Players Association are best known for their disco grooves, but they've got a core sense of instrumentation that's really a cut above – with strong leadership from jazzman Chris Hills – who plays drums, guitar, and keyboards – and other players who include Joe Farrell on tenor and flute, Bob Mover on alto and soprano, Jon Faddis on trumpet, and Mike Mandell on keyboards! Ray Mantilla and Buddy Williams add in some great percussion to the mix – which furthers the spontaneous, jazzy vibe of some of the tunes – and titles includes the funky cut "I Like It", which has a nice break in the beginning, plus the tracks "Let's Groove", "Hustlin", "Moon In Pisces", and a sweet cover of "For The Love Of You". Turn The Music Up is wonderful work from The Players Association – a group who were equal parts jazz funk and equal parts 70s club – with a vibe that's maybe like The Blackbyrds or other Fantasy Records acts at their best! The mighty Chris Hills is at the helm – and the record is overflowing with top-shelf talent from the jazz side of the spectrum – work by Bob Berg on tenor, Tom Harrell on trumpet, and Bob Mover on alto – all with room to solo, and really helping bring a musical maturity to the record that other disco records never seem to have! Titles include "Everybody Dance", "Ride The Groove", "The Closer I Get To You", and "I Wish". CD

Possible matches20
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Return To ForeverReturn To Forever Live – The Complete Concert ... CD
Columbia (Japan), 1978. New Copy 2CD ... $16.99
Return To Forever Live – a vastly-extended exploration of this legendary 70s group at their best! The triple-length package offers the ensemble plenty of room to open things up – long tracks that stretch out with the boundless energy that Chick Corea first brought to the group, yet also coming together with the sort of soulful focus that really makes this second chapter so great too! Chick plays a huge host of keyboards, almost more than we can imagine being on a single stage – Fender Rhodes, minimoog, Arp, clavinet, and more – and Gayle Morgan also plays more keys, but more importantly lends some soulful vocals to the outing. Other players include John Thomas and James Tinsley on trumpets, Joe Farrell on saxes, and Stanley Clarke on bass – and titles include "Opening 77", "The Endless Night", "The Moorish Warrior & Spanish Princess", "Spanish Fantasy", "Music Magic", and "So Long Mickey Mouse". CD

Possible matches21
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Carlo RustichelliL'Armata Brancaleone ... CD
Digitmovies (Italy), 1966. New Copy ... $22.99
A dramatic soundtrack for L'Armata Bracaleone – a mid 60s Italian fantasy action film that starred Vittorio Gassman in a strange setting that was sort of a twisted version of the Middle Ages! The tunes on the set are often orchestral and mood-setting – but a few of the more standout numbers have a driving, chanting approach – to suit the more action-based scenes of the film. There's clearly a comedic current to the movie at times, but this doesn't always come through in the music, which is maybe at its best when most dramatic! Titles include "Marcia Di Brancaleone", "Combattimento", "La Citta Appestata E Cuccuruccu", "Tema D'Amore E Brancaleone Prigoniero", and "Brancalene Incontra Teodora". CD features 33 tracks in all – including lots of rare film versions and alternates! CD
(Limited edition!)

Possible matches22
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Arturo SandovalTuri/Arturo Sandoval (1982) ... CD
Egrem/Malanga (Spain), 1981/1982. New Copy ... $8.99 14.95
Early 80s genius from trumpeter Arturo Sandoval – 2 albums that were never issued in the US at the time! First up is the sublime Turi from 1981 – an album that mixes smooth spacey fusiony production with Sandoval's soulful trumpet style – and the result is a sweet grooving set that sounds like it could have been recorded at the Fantasy studios in the 70s! Chucho Valdes plays keyboards and piano on the session, and there's some excellent long solos that spin out over the album's extended tracks – really soaring in a way that gives the record a tremendous amount of soulful energy! Titles include "Turi", "Que Iras A Hacer Por El Resto De Tu Vida", "Claudia", and "Luna De Miel En Guama". Next up is the self-titled album Arturo Sandoval from 1982 – a session that follows a similar format, and which features full backings by the Egrem Latin Jazz Orchestra – all in a mode that mixes bits of strings with slight electric rhythms and plenty of real jazz support! The sound is rich in colors and tones, and has a depth that's almost worthy of soundtrack work at times – with titles that include "A Mi Manera", "Aguas De Marzo", "La Bikina", "Rabo De Nube", "Te Quiero", and "Penelope". CD

Possible matches23
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✨✧ Ben SidranFree In America ... CD
Arista (Japan), 1976. New Copy ... $13.99
A bit smoother than Ben's earlier albums – but a great little set all the way through – and about as classic as you can get for Sidran in the 70s! The album's got a bit more soul in the mix, but still has some jazzy elements in the backings – and where things were sometimes messed up in the past, they're much more straightforward here – in ways that make the record really sparkle nicely! Ben's voice is still really compelling, and as on his best albums, there's some nice funky grooves in the mix that keep things fresh. Players include Phil Upchurch on bass and guitar, Woody Shaw on trumpet, David Newman and Sonny Seals on saxes, and Richard Tee on organ. Titles include the great instrumental "Let's Make A Deal" – a fast groover with guitar and keyboards riffing away, sounding like some lost jazz funk gem from the Fantasy Records catalog – plus "Beg For It", "Cuban Connection", "Free In America", "New York State Of Mind", and "Feel Your Groove". CD

Possible matches24
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SunWanna Make Love/Sun Power/Sunburn ... CD
Capitol/BGO (UK), 1976/1977/1978. New Copy 2 CDs ... $14.99
A trio of records from Sun – an excellent funk ensemble from the end of the 70s! First up is Wanna Make Love – one of the greatest records ever cut by Sun – a group whose records never made the charts as strongly as their contemporaries, but not for lack of quality! This set's a great batch of heavy ensemble funk with an edge that's not always heard on other Sun records – lots of razor-sharp guitars riffing away in saw-cut modes, striking hard at the grooves of the record, and chilling out nicely for the mellower cuts. The blend is wonderful – totally tight, and totally top-shelf all the way through – yet never in a commercial way at all. Titles include "Wanna Make Love", "My Woman", "Live On Dream On", "The Show Is Over", "Love Is Never Sure", and "They're Calling For Me". Sun Power is a solid smoker from Sun – the kind of tight funk set that made the group one of the greatest soul acts on Capitol Records during the late 70s! There's a wicked Ohio vibe going on throughout – everything focused together, and right on the money – even despite the large size of the ensemble – and touched with a slightly jazzy undercurrent that carries strong echoes of Earth Wind & Fire! Rhythms are nice and tight, with keyboards, guitar, and brassy horns over the top – and on the mellower cuts the vocals have a nicely compressed quality. Titles include "Conscience", "We're So Hot", "Organ Grinder", "She Lives Alone", "Time Is Passing", and "Light Me Up". Last up is Sunburn – a tightly crafted batch of dancefloor funk that reminds us of some of our favorite work from Fantasy Records at the time – especially some of the more righteous groups that blended equal parts jazz and soul! Sun's got a tightness here that's amazing – right up there with Earth Wind & Fire at their best, but not as commercial overall – and instead, always delivered with a nice sense of righteous energy! The set kicks off with the wicked "Sun Is Here", a guitar-driven groover with a very famous sample riff – and a sound that's somehow more stripped-down and jazz funk-driven than a lot of the group's other tunes. Other cuts are pretty great too, with lots of warm bubbly soulful moments – and titles include "Dance", "Long Drawn Out Thang", "I Had A Choice", "Sun Of A Gun", and "You're The One". CD

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James Taylor QuartetQuickfire – The Audio Network Sessions ... CD
Cherry Red (UK), 2017. New Copy ... $11.99
A mighty nice set of funky instrumentals from the James Taylor Quartet – two albums' worth of material that was originally recorded for the Audio Network sound library! Given that James' early inspiration was from 60s and 70s cop and crime soundtracks, the move is kind of a nice "give back" sort of effort – as Taylor and his combo run through a sweet set of grooves that would be right at home on a classic TV show, or maybe in some Italian crime film – heavy on Hammond, with lots of riffing guitars and funky drums! The tunes are all originals, and pretty darn fresh, too – not copycats of familiar themes, but very groovy numbers on their own – with titles that include "Brooklyn Nights", "Monster Groove", "Mesmer's Fantasy", "Nail It", "Jerk Stuff", "Firebird", "Quick Fire", "Hot Gelato", "Rubbernecking", "Chop The Greens", "Head Shot", "Up With The Lark", and "Whiskey Attitude". CD

Possible matches26
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✨✧ Dave ValentinLand Of The Third Eye (with bonus track) ... CD
GRP/Vocalion (UK), 1980. New Copy ... $18.99
A fantastic funky album from flute man Dave Valentin – done right after his time on the New York Latin underground, including some work with Ricardo Marrerro – and in that lean, sharp sound of the early years of the GRP label! The vibe here is more CTI than the smoother later sound of the imprint – and the arrangements have plenty of space for Dave's flute to soar out in Bobbi Humphrey-like solos – amidst larger charts from Dave Grusin, Dennis Ball, and Valentin himself. Grusin also plays a fair bit of keyboards on the record, Marcus Miller plays bass, and one track features sweet guest vocals from Luther Vandross and Patti Austin. Titles include "Open Your Eyes", "Fantasy", "Astro March", "Land Of The Third Eye", and "Sidra's Dream". CD features a bonus 7" mix of "Sidra's Dream". CD
(Hybrid Super Audio CD pressing – works on standard CD players!)

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Charles WilliamsStickball ... CD
Mainstream/Solid (Japan), 1972. New Copy ... $13.99
Full-on funky backings for saxophonist Charles Williams – a set that almost has him in the same territory as Stanley Turrentine during his late 70s years on Fantasy Records, or Hank Crawford over at Kudu! The style here is a bit more lush than some of the other Mainstream Records dates of the time – full backings arranged and conducted by Ernie Wilkins – always plenty darn soulful, and built around a mix of strings and jazzier instrumentation – set up with the care and precision of a hip soul soundtrack, and topped by well-crafted alto sax solos by Williams. Other players include Chris Woods on baritone sax, Bubba Brooks and Frank Wess on tenor, Don Pullen on organ, Paul Griffin on electric piano, David Spinozza on guitar, and Ray Barretto on congas – and titles include some great versions of "Who Is He (And What Is He to You)", "People Make the World Go Round", and "Where Is The Love" – plus "Iron Jaws", "Just Before Day", "Ain't No Blues", and "Drown In My Own Tears". CD

Possible matches28
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VariousDJ Kicks – Kerri Chandler ... CD
K7 (Germany), Late 70s/1980s/1990s/2000s/2010s. New Copy ... $13.99 14.99
Kerri Chandler's given the world lots of his own great music over the past decade or two – but he's also a hell of a selector when it comes to the classics, and here he brings together a rich array of classic 70s and 80s grooves, and mixes them with a few more contemporary cuts as well! The volume's more of a funk collection than some of the other titles in the DJ Kicks series – and Chandler does a hell of a job of blending old school numbers with modern cuts – always going for tunes that have the deepest sound, and the warmest glow. Most tracks are clubby and soulful, but there's also a few hip hop numbers – and titles include "Look Into Tomorrow" by Lesette Wilson, "When Will The Day Come" by Rasa, "Stock No 1" by Andre Ceccarelli, "Stop Wasting My Time" by Kerri Chandler, "People Make The World Go Round" by Innerzone Orchestra, "You Can't Turn Me Away" by Sylvia Striplin, "If You Feel It Say Yeah" by Fruit, "Body" by Foreign Exchange, "Cool Out" by Leroy Hutson, "Getting It Back" by Cymande, "You've Gotta Have Freedom" by Uptown Funk Empire, "Sweet Power Your Embrace" by James Mason, "Liquid Love" by Roy Ayers, "It's Your Love" by Ethel Beatty, and "It's Your Rock (inst)" by Fantasy Three. CD features a continuous mix of 21 tracks! CD
Also available DJ Kicks – Kerri Chandler ... LP 28.99

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VariousEven Mo' Mod Jazz ... CD
Kent (UK), 1960s/Early 70s. New Copy ... $10.99 18.99
The latest volume in one of our favorite series of soul jazz tracks! This one opens the scope way past previous volumes, and features a rollicking party of tasty little groovers – most of them with a raw, uptempo, funky 45 jukebox kind of feel! Tracks are from the Chess, Fantasy, Jewel, and Brunswick catalogs – with many rare numbers like "Fever" by Sharon Cash, "Get Ready" by Ella Fitzgerald, "Ain't There Something That Money Can't Buy" by Young Holt Unlimited, "Light My Fire" by Erma Franklin, "Hush" by Woody Herman, "Another Plan For School Mix Up" by The Cals, "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" by Karen Hernandez, "Caesar's Pad" by Googie Rene, "The Point" by Aaron (Chico) Bailey & The Family Affair Band, "I Got To See My Baby" by Lee Jones & The Unforgotten Two, and "Ain't It A Groove" by Dave Hamilton. 23 cuts in all – and very very groovy! CD

Possible matches30
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VariousGet Your Lie Straight – A Galaxy Of Funky Soul ... CD
Galaxy/BGP (UK), Late 60s/Early 70s. New Copy ... $10.99 18.99
An absolute funky monster! This set lays out an incredible batch of funk era singles from the vaults of Galaxy Records – and it shakes and burns all the way through, with lost funk bombs Bobby Rush, Rodger Collins, Bill Coday, Bobby Eaton, the Debonairs and others! It's comprised of mostly obscure 45s representing the stone funkiest records ever released by the Oakland-based Galaxy label – which was at this point sort of serving as the farm club for big brother label Fantasy Records. This one's essential, kids – just as worthy of your funk-loving dollar as the legendary rare funk compilations on Jazzman, Soul Fire or Stones Throw! 22 tracks in all: "Foxy Girls In Oakland", "Get Your Lie Straight", "Chicken Heads" by Bobby Rush, "Bring It On Up" by Loleatta Holloway, "I Love Her Too" by Lenny Williams, "People Say" by JJ Malone, "Try The Life" by Everyday People, "Man Power" (previously unreleased) by Ben & Larry, "My Money Is Funny" by the Right Kind, "The Iron Horse" by Merl Saunders & Heavy Turbulence, "I Get What I Want" by the Sequins and lots more! CD

Possible matches31
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VariousMen In The Glass Booth – Groundbreaking Re-edits & Remixes By The Disco Era's Most Influential DJs (3CD set) ... CD
BBE (UK), Late 70s. New Copy 3CD ... $29.99 34.99
An incredible collection – and one that fills in a crucially under-documented side of the New York dancefloor generation – the wealth of special mixes and edits that were made for that city's important DJs for their own use in clubs! The package sorts through a mountain of never-issued acetates, and goes way past conventional disco or rare club collections – to showcase the special mixing talents these DJs brought to their re-presentation of the material – which was usually done on tape, then pressed onto acetate discs for their own private use! Those rare treasures are brought forth here – in a beautiful package that's also overflowing with fantastic notes that finally give this lost history its due – all handled by Al Kent – who's a hell of a mixer himself, as well as an underground club historian. 3CD set is overflowing with gems – and titles include "I Just Wanna Say I Love You (John Luongo rmx)" by Leon Collins, "What About Love (Tony Gioe rmx)" by Marboo, "Ten Percent (Walter Gibbons Sunshine Sound acetate edit)" by Double Exposure, "Inside America (Rick Gianatos disco queen acetate edit)" by Juggy Murray Jones, "Dancing Free (John Luongo rmx)" by Hot Ice, "Black Water Gold (Sunshine Sound acetate edit)" by The Sunshine Band, "Magic Bird Of Fire (Francois Kevorkian Sunshine Sound acetate edit)" by Salsoul Orchestra, "It's Good For The Soul (Jay Negron Sunshine Sound acetate edit)" by Salsoul Orchestra, "My Love Is Free (Walter Gibbons disco madness rmx)" by Double Exposure, "Reaching Out For Happiness (Jonathan Fearing rmx)" by Fay Hauser, "Let Me Be Your Fantasy (Tom Savarese rmx)" by Love Symphony Orchestra, "The Beat Goes On & On (Jim Burgess rmx)" by Ripple, "I Wanna Be Near You (John Morales Sunshine Sound acetate edit)" by Ruby Andrews, "I've Been Looking For Somebody (Walter Gibbons rmx)" by TC James & The Fist O Funk Orchestra, "The Disco Scene (Rick Gianatos rmx)" by Lake Shore Drive, "Bumpsie's Whipping Cream (Tom Savarese rmx)" by TC James & The Fist O Funk Orchestra, "Janice (Bobby DJ Guttadoro rmx)" by Skip Mahoney, "My Number's Up (Tee Scott rmx)" by The Salsoul Orchestra, "The Love Bug Done Bit Me Again (David Todd rmx)" by Skyliners, "LA Sunshine (Robert Ouimet rmx)" by Aura, "Love Has Come My Way (Jim Burgess rmx)" by Tony Valor Sound Orchestra, "Handsome Ma (Bobby DJ Guttadoro rmx)" by Sparkle Tuhran & Friends, "Love Thang (Tee Scott rmx)" by First Choice, "Burn Me Up (Jellybean Benitez edit)" by Kay Gees, "Love Is The Message (Tee Scott rmx)" by Brooklyn Express, "Changes (Jellybean Benitez rmx)" by Chain Reaction, "J'Ouvert (Frank Sestito rmx)" by John Gibbs & The Jam Band, "By The Way You Dance (Bobby DJ Guttadaro rmx)" by Bunny Sigler, "It's Good For The Soul (Walter Gibbons disco madness version)" by Salsoul Orchestra, and "It's A Better Than Good Time (Walter Gibbons rmx)" by Gladys Knight & The Pips. CD
Also available Men In The Glass Booth – Groundbreaking Re-edits & Remixes By The Disco Era's Most Influential DJs – Part 2 (5LP set) ... LP 61.99
 
 
 



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