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CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Elmer Bernstein/Chico HamiltonSweet Smell Of Success (with bonus track) ... CD
Decca/Verve, 1957. New Copy ... Just Sold Out!
A jazz soundtrack double-header – one that features both the small combo and larger band version of the soundtrack to The Sweet Smell Of Success! Part of the CD features the Chico Hamilton Quintet's album of music – a wonderful bit of cinematic jazz from the 50s. The combo was a key part of the LA scene at the time, but are oddly featured as a regular club act in the movie's New York setting – but we'll gladly forgive that geographic error, given that the music on the set is so great. The quality's a bit like some of the Hamilton Quintet work on World Pacific – but there's a slightly freer, more urgent feel here too – work that's sometimes somewhat driving, and beautifully blended from the guitar of John Pisano, clarinet of Paul Horn, cello of Fred Katz, piano of Carson Smith, and drums from Chico. Side one features a lot of short incidental cuts – like "Susan", "Cheek To Chico", "Jam", and "Night Beat" – and side 2 is an extended "Concerto Of Jazz Themes From The Soundtrack Of Sweet Smell Of Success". The second half of the CD features the full orchestral version of the Sweet Smell Of Success soundtrack – but done in a style that's almost as jazzy and swinging as the small combo one! Elmer Bernstein's at the helm here – and the music's a wonderful pastiche of modes that's right up there with his sublime score for The Man With The Golden Arm – done in a similar blend of driving jazz, somber moments, and some slightly more raucous touches! As with that album, the players are all great – and soloists on the album include Pete Candoli, Ted Nash, and Shelly Manne – west coast players despite the New York setting of the film, and playing here with a fair bit of grit in their groove. Titles include "The Street", "Hot Dogs & Juice", "Toots Shor's Blues", "Nite Spot Rock", "Love Scene", and "Out Of Darkness". CD

Possible matches302
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Jane BirkinBirkin Gainsbourg – Le Symphonique ... CD
Warner, 2017. New Copy ... $12.99 19.99
A wonderful setting for the great Jane Birkin – working here with a full symphony orchestra, in very fresh interpretations of the classic songs of her onetime partner, Serge Gainsbourg! The orchestrations are wonderful – never sleepy, and always nicely light – so that Jane's voice is very upfront in the mix, but has a vibe that's quite different than most of her other later work – almost more fragile, in a way – and certainly with more world experience in her tone than when she sang some of these songs in her youth. The project is a surprising treat, and has us loving Birkin all over again – as well as being really amazed that some of Serge's songs could sound so different. Titles include "Baby Alone In Babylon", "Jane B", "L'Anamour", "La Javanaise", "Amour Des Feintes", "Valse De Melody", "Ces Petits Riens", "La Chanson De Prevert", and "Requiem Pour Un Con". CD
Also available Birkin Gainsbourg – Le Symphonique ... LP 23.99

Possible matches303
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Jane BirkinBirkin Gainsbourg – Le Symphonique ... LP
Warner, 2017. New Copy 2LP ... $23.99 25.98
A wonderful setting for the great Jane Birkin – working here with a full symphony orchestra, in very fresh interpretations of the classic songs of her onetime partner, Serge Gainsbourg! The orchestrations are wonderful – never sleepy, and always nicely light – so that Jane's voice is very upfront in the mix, but has a vibe that's quite different than most of her other later work – almost more fragile, in a way – and certainly with more world experience in her tone than when she sang some of these songs in her youth. The project is a surprising treat, and has us loving Birkin all over again – as well as being really amazed that some of Serge's songs could sound so different. Titles include "Baby Alone In Babylon", "Jane B", "L'Anamour", "La Javanaise", "Amour Des Feintes", "Valse De Melody", "Ces Petits Riens", "La Chanson De Prevert", and "Requiem Pour Un Con". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Birkin Gainsbourg – Le Symphonique ... CD 12.99

Possible matches304
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Black NoteNothin' But The Swing ... CD
Impulse, 1995. Used ... $4.99
A great little record that came out a few years ago and never got the success it deserved. The album's got a beautifully classic sound, and feels like one of the more melodic and lyrical sides from the Blue Note late 60s era – like stuff by Lee Morgan or Duke Pearson. This critically acclaimed LA combo never resorts to tricks to put over their bag, and instead, the record's filled with the kind of solid writing and playing that we'd never expect from an album of this vintage (especially one on Impulse, who seem to be making a lot of other weaker choices with jazz). The record's one we come back to quite a bit, and it's filled with loads of nice tunes like "The Core", "Double Indemnity", "An Open Letter", and "West Coastings". CD
(Out of print. Digipack has a clear promo sticker. Penmark through barcode.)

Possible matches305
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Blahzay BlahzayDanger (part 2) (radio, street, inst)/Danger (remix) (radio, street, inst, acapella) ... 12-inch
Fader, 1995. Very Good+ ... $5.99
The hit single from Blahzay Blahzay, that made good use of some Q-Tip ("Oh my God") and Jeru ("The east is in the house") samples for the chorus. Plus a remix by Premier and guest vocals from Smooth The Hustler, Trigger, and La The Darkman. 12-inch, Vinyl record
(Promo.)

Possible matches306
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Bobby Blue BlandDreamer ... LP
ABC, 1974. Very Good Gatefold ... $13.99
Sure it's not his Duke recordings, and sure, the sound's a bit 70s-ish – but Bobby's voice is always fantastic, and he still sounds great in this smooth batch of tracks recorded in LA. Backings were arranged and conducted by Michael Omartian – but it's Bobby's vocals that really make the set shine. Titles include "Ain't No Love In The Heart Of The City", "The End Of The Road", "I Ain't Gonna Be The Fist To Cry", "Dreamer", "Who's Foolin Who", "Cold Day In Hell", "Lovin On Borrowed Time", and "Yolanda". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has light wear & a cut corner.)

Possible matches307
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Bob & GeneIf This World Were Mine ... CD
Modo/Daptone, Late 60s. New Copy ... $11.99 12.98
A previously-unreleased sweet soul treasure – now finally getting its due! Bob & Gene were an obscure duo from Buffalo at the end of the 60s – recording briefly together under the guidance of Bob's father, who recorded the young pair in his home studio with the help of some great funk and soul musicians from the local scene – with a sound that's fresh, fragile, and deeply personal. Many numbers have a slow, sad quality that's right up there with some of the best harmony soul of the time – a wispy late nite kind of sound that's captured perfectly here, with just the right balance of roughness and sweet. Other numbers get a bit more upbeat, and almost a bit funky – showing the pair to have a bit more punch than some of their contemporaries, and a sometimes sunny sound that really sparkles amidst the darkness. Most of the work here was recorded in the late 60s, but never released – making this the first-ever album by the group. And as a bonus note of trivia, Bob here is none other than Bobby Nunn – who went onto record under his own name, and did a lot of great work in the LA scene of the 70s! Titles include "Gotta Find A Way", "Your Name", "It Won't Go", "I Can Be Cool", "Sailboat", "Interlude", "Which Love", "Don't Leave Me Girl", "You Gave Me Love", and a great cover of "If This World Were Mine". CD

Possible matches308
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Willie BoboBobo! Do That Thing/Guajira ... CD
Tico, 1963. Used ... $16.99
An excellent set from Willie – recorded in the years before he moved to Verve, with a very different sound! The Willie Bobo here is less of the pop instrumentalist on some of his later sides – and is more of a hard-hitting Latin leader with a heck of a lot of soul. There's an early boogaloo approach to a number of the cuts, one that really makes them kick hard with some very catchy rhythms – and other numbers have a stripped down, rhythm-heavy small combo approach that's equally great, and which really helps expand the sound. Willie's vocals are kept to a minimum, and there's some really great instrumental touches on the best cuts – including some nice electric piano! Titles include "Bobo Do That Thing", "A La Bobita", "Azulito", "Chickadee", "Rigor Mortis", "Ritmo Tymbale", and "Grab Your Hat". CD
(Out of print "white back" pressing.)

Possible matches309
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Fabrizio Bosso/Guido DiLeone/Bassi/CampanaleFour Friends In Bari ... CD
Four (Italy), 2012. New Copy ... $14.99
Four friends in Bari, making really beautiful music together – a lineup that features sparkling trumpet from the great Fabrizio Bosso, plus guitar from Guido Di Leone, bass from Giuseppi Bassi, and drums from Mimmo Capanale! The set's got all the subtle charm of Bosso's best work in recent years – that stone classic approach to jazz trumpet – played with a talent that we'd rank right up there with folks like Freddie Hubbard or Art Farmer at their best – set to some inventive arrangements that really make great use of guitar in the place you'd normally find piano in such a group. The change of instrument makes for a nicely gentle quality at times in the rhythms, which seems to make Fabrizio's horn sound even more upfront and soulful – and titles include "E La Chiamano Estate", "King Dorian", "Wide Green Eyes", "Bernie's Tune", "Mack The Knife", and "Nostalgia Di Cuba". CD

Possible matches310
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Bobby BradfordLove's Dream (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Emanem (UK), 1973. New Copy ... $16.99 19.99
Seminal sounds from cornet player Bobby Bradford – a date recorded in the UK in the early 70s, but with all the free-thinking and imaginative energy as his best sessions in LA! The group pits Bobby's horn against three young modernists – Trevor Watts on alto and soprano sax, Kent Carter on bass, and John Stevens on drums – all working in these long-flowing, very rhythmic numbers that lie somewhere between Bradford's work with John Carter, and the early 60s sound of Ornette Coleman. The alto/cornet interplay is especially nice – very mesmerizing over the course of the album's very long tracks – and Watts turns out to be a great musical partner for Bobby. Titles include "Love's Dream", "Coming On", and "Roswita's Dance". CD features bonus tracks ""She", "HM Louis 1", and an alternate take of "Coming On". CD

Possible matches311
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
BreakawayBreakaway ... LP
BBE (UK), 1977. Near Mint- Gatefold (reissue)... $14.99
A St Louis combo from the late 70s – with a groove that's equal part jazzy club and blue-eyed soul! Breakaway is the group's debut – recorded in 1977 with a surprisingly tight sound – especially given that the group were essentially a local club act who got the chance to record a bit in a local studio! The feel is very much in the best LA mode of the time, but maybe a bit looser too – with emphasis on some funky riffing from the male members of the group, plus sweet lead vocals from singer Kathy Newbry-Taylor – an artist who might have been pop, had she worked on the coasts – but who stretches her style nicely here. The album's been made famous by both On Track and Americana comps on BBE – and titles include "There's A New Group In Town", "Who Was It This Time", "Love My Eyes", "Understudy DJ", "Everything's Been Said About You", and "My Symphony". LP, Vinyl record album
(Still in the shrink, with obi and bonus CD.)

Possible matches312
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Jacques BrelLive In Paris 1960/1961 ... CD
Fremeaux & Associates (France), 1960/1961. Used ... $4.99
Rare live material from the great Jacques Brel – almost all of which has never been issued before, and stands as a much-needed addition to his catalog of classics in the 60s! The recordings are great – done for radio, and re-presented here with fidelity that's every bit as rich as Brel's live recordings on Philips – which, like these tracks, really show the sense of animation and expression that Jacques brought to his presentation of his lyrics – the sense of wit and intelligence that always made Brel the best (and possibly only) true interpreter of his songs! The tunes are the stuff of legend – biting commentary on love, live, and postwar French society – with backings from the larger Olympia Orchestra on most tracks, plus accordion by Jean Corti, and piano by Francois Rauber. Titles include "Bruxelles", "La Statue", "Rosa", "La Valse A Mille Temps", "Seul", "La Dame Patronnesse", "Les Singes", "Les Paumes Du Petit Matin", "L'Ivrogne", and "Quand On A Que L'Amour". CD

Possible matches313
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Dee Dee BridgewaterJ'Ai Deux Amours ... CD
Verve/DBB Recrods, 2005. Used ... $6.99
A beautiful love letter from Dee Dee Bridgewater to her adopted home of Paris – sung in French, and with a feel that's quite different than much of her recent work! The style here wonderfully mixes together bits of jazz and more traditional chanson – in a style that recalls some of the recent work by Claude Nougaro, but which also has traces of some of Dee Dee's more intimate work as well. Marc Berthoumieux plays accordion on a number of tunes on the set, and Ira Coleman contributes some warmly soulful basslines that give the session a nice bottom grounding – especially on the mellower tunes. Titles include "Mon Homme", "Et Maintenant", "La Belle Vie", "Dansez Sur Moi", "Avec Le Temps", "Les Feuilles Mortes", and "Ne Me Quitte Pas". CD

Possible matches314
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Albert BrooksStar Is Bought ... CD
Asylum/Wounded Bird, 1975. New Copy ... $10.99 11.99
A wonderfully hip comedy album from the early years of Albert Brooks – very much in the spirit of the LA Warner scene of which Brooks was a part! The album's set up as an "all format radio" record – and as such, also offers a great snapshot of mid 70s radio – with tracks that are attempts to cash in on the nostalgia, talk radio, classical, country, and other growing formats of the time. As such, the record's got some really great bits that show Brooks' off-kilter sense of humor strongly, in the same manner as early classic films like Real Life and True Love, and works in a genre-spanning style that's pretty darn great. Brooks really uses the format of the album as part of the comedy – he doesn't just tell jokes, but he works together in an overall mix of sound, music, and words – very similar to the best format of the early National Lampoon albums – which makes the whole thing as much of a masterpiece in audio creativity as it is a darn funny record! The set was co-written and produced with Harry Shearer, and Brooks gets help from Andrew Gold, Sid Feller, and a range of other LA jazz musicians – and routines include the great radio parody "Phone Calls From Americans", plus "The Albert Brooks Show 112", "The Beginning Of The End", "Near The Beginning", and "Party From Outer Space". CD

Possible matches315
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Bobby BrownDon't Be Cruel ... LP
MCA, 1988. Very Good+ ... $9.99
Breakout brilliance from Bobby Brown – the album that really showed the world he could stand on his own strongly after leaving New Edition! Given the tight production from LA & Babyface, among others, the sound here is hardly cruel – and instead, the album's got a catchily commercial groove that holds up surprisingly well – and arguably sounds a lot better these days, many years after these tunes were getting a bit too overplayed on the radio. Includes the hit singles "Don't Be Cruel" and "My Prerogative", plus "Every Little Step", "Rock Wit'cha", "Take It Slow", "All Day All Night" and "Roni". LP, Vinyl record album
(Record club pressing. Cover has an index label on one corner.)

Possible matches316
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Charles Brown & Johnny Moore's Three BlazersSunny Road ... LP
Route 66 (Sweden), Late 40s/1950s. Near Mint- ... $6.99
Includes classic LA material with Johnny Moore's group – plus more obscure 50s material recorded in New Orleans and Cincinnatti! LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches317
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Mel BrownBlues For We ... LP
Impulse, 1969. Very Good Gatefold ... $16.99
A record that's a lot more jazz than you'd guess from the title – a seminal set from the mighty Mel Brown! The "blues" here are hardly the familiar kind – and instead, the album really stresses the more soul-based sound of Mel Brown's work – thanks to some very groovy arrangements from Artie Butler! Tracks have a vamping, stomping sort of sound that's all-soul all the way through – using both Mel's guitar and some of his vocals to top some wonderful grooves from Artie – all done up in the best mix of soul jazz and more conventional vibes that was going down at Verve and Impulse in the late 60s. The tunes are all plenty hip too – with titles that include a great version of Tom Scott's "Freaky Zeke", plus Mel's own takes on "Son Of A Preacher Man", "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da", "Indian Giver", and "Set Me Free". LP, Vinyl record album
(Rainbow label pressing. Vinyl has a short click on one track.)

Possible matches318
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Dennis BudimirCreeper ... CD
Mainstream/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1965. New Copy ... $13.99
One of the coolest albums ever from guitarist Dennis Budimir – a player who worked on countless sessions for other artists, but hardly ever got time in the spotlight in a setting like this! The album's nice and dynamic, and has Budimir playing with a great mix of tones – sometimes a cooler jazz mode, but other times with this slight element of fuzz – not what you'd expect if you even knew his few other albums as a leader for Revelation. His guitar rings out with a nice twang borrowed from the rock instrumental world, but tuned more towards jazz – in a cool LA group that features Lyle Ritz on bass, Chuck Britz on organ, and the mighty Hal Blaine on drums. Titles include "The Creeper", a nice sock-boogaloo number, plus "The Cobra", "Diamond Back", "The Python", "Cast Your Fate To The Wind", "Like A Rolling Stone", and "In". CD

Possible matches319
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Eric Burdon & The AnimalsLove Is ... CD
MGM/Music On Vinyl (UK), 1968. New Copy ... $16.99 18.99
A fantastic double-length set from The Animals – recorded in LA in the late 60s, and with plenty of great Sunset Strip influences in the mix! The band here is different than before – with Zoot Money handling both organ and piano, plus a bit of vocals, and Andy Summers joining in on guitar – and production is by the group itself, who shake off some of the trippier styles of previous records, and almost go for a "live in studio" sort of sound! There's a confluence of styles here that's really great – some of the blues of the group's roots, bits of Eric Burdon's growing love of soul, and some fuzzier touches as well. Some tracks are quite long jams, and titles include "Gemini", "Madman", "As The Years Go Passing By", "To Love Somebody", and "I'm An Animal". CD

Possible matches320
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Calibro 35CLBR35 Live From Space ... CD
Record Kicks (Italy), 2016. Used ... $8.99
Calibro 35 have always had a soundtrack style to their music – but here, they seem to hit an even trippier, spacier version of the mode – playing an all-live, all-instrumental set that's bubbling over with loads of wonderful elements! Some tracks are still as funky as before, but others really show the group finding their own sort of bigger picture sound – writing and playing with complexity that allows for some nicely dark corners, while still keeping the overall sound nice and lively! The music's not in that retro-horror mode that some groups are using these days – and instead is more funk at the core, but with lots of cool electric inflections from keyboards that include an Eko Tiger, clavinet, and Korg microsynth – alongside more familiar guitar, sax, flute, trumpet, and trombone. Titles include "Across The 111th Sun", "Ungwana Bay Launch Complex", "An Asteroid Called Death", "Serenade For A Satellite", "A Fistful Of Lead", "Notte In Bovisa", "La Mala Ordina", and "Eurocrime". CD
Also available
CLBR35 Live From Space ... CD 13.99
CLBR35 Live From Space ... LP 15.99
 
 
 



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