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CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Roland AlexanderPleasure Bent ... LP
New Jazz/Prestige, 1961. New Copy (reissue)... $9.99
One of the few albums ever cut by this incredible tenor sax player – a wonderful talent that we only know from a handful of records – all of which we love! This date's got a bold sound that very much lives up to its cover, and Alexander's placement on Prestige's New Jazz label – a vibrant sound that's got elements of the 60s underground of Eric Dolphy or Ken McIntyre, but which also has a more flowing, soulful vibe as well – almost a precursor to later spiritual jazz elements of the 70s. No surprise, the great Marcus Belgrave is in the quintet on trumpet – as is Ronnie Mathews on piano, with rhythm support from Gene Taylor on bass and Clarence Stroman on drums. Almost all tracks are originals – and titles include "I'll Be Around", "Dorman Road", "Lil's Blues", and "Orders To Take Out". LP, Vinyl record album

Partial matches2
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Arnaldo Antunes, Edgard Scandura & Toumani DiabateA Curva Da Cintura (Brazilian pressing) ... CD
Rosa Celeste (Brazil), 2011. Used ... $11.99
One of the coolest records in years from the always-creative Arnaldo Antunes – a trio effort that has him working with Toumani Diabate and Edgard Scandurra – in a pan-Atlantic set of sounds that's really amazing! Antunes' creative approach to songwriting is very much in place – but it's also inflected by an earthier element than before, given the presence of the two other artists – kora and percussion from Diabate, and some great acoustic guitar from Scandurra – both of which really warm up the tunes, and help unlock a whole new side of Arnaldo's vocals! The album was recorded both in Mali and Brazil – with results that definitely show that blend – and titles include "A Curva Da Cintura", "Cara", "Um Senhor", "Psiu", "Ce Sabe Como E", "Ir Mao", "Kaira", and "Grao De Chaos". Also features some great bonus tracks too – written by Diabate and Scandurra. Not even the MTV logo on the front can take away our enthusiasm for the record! CD
(Out of print.)

Partial matches3
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Archie WhitewaterArchie Whitewater ... CD
Cadet/RPM (UK), 1970. New Copy ... $3.99 13.99
A damn legendary record from the last years of Chess Records – and for good reason, too! Archie Whitewater were a group that was years ahead of its time – a rock combo, but one with real genre-crossing sensibilities that made them perfect for the experimental styles at the Cadet/Concept side of Chess – the same slice of the musical universe that gave us Rotary Connection and important productions from Charles Stepney! The sound here has some surprisingly soulful elements at times – especially the instrumentation, which features some great break moments that get nice and funky, and strands of soulful jazz and blues that really make the music way different than most other groups we can think of – or maybe a bit like a rare elite who shared such visionary territory with Archie Whitewater, such as Shades Of Joy on their first Fontana record. The keyboards and sax lines are as great as the drums – and the vocals have a melancholy undercurrent that's a really refreshing change from some of the overly-postured modes you'd get from other groups in 1970. Titles include the sublime sample cut "Cross Country" – but there's loads of other nice ones with the same stripped-down "Dusty Fingers" sort of groove – and other titles include "Life Is A River", "Home Again", "Lament For The Walking Dead", "Seacoast", "Country To the City", "Friends & Neighbors", and "Mist Of The Early Morning". CD
Also available Archie Whitewater (180 gram pressing) ... LP 18.99

Partial matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Archie WhitewaterArchie Whitewater (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Cadet/Get On Down, 1970. New Copy (reissue)... $18.99 19.98
A damn legendary record from the last years of Chess Records – and for good reason, too! Archie Whitewater were a group that was years ahead of its time – a rock combo, but one with real genre-crossing sensibilities that made them perfect for the experimental styles at the Cadet/Concept side of Chess – the same slice of the musical universe that gave us Rotary Connection and important productions from Charles Stepney! The sound here has some surprisingly soulful elements at times – especially the instrumentation, which features some great break moments that get nice and funky, and strands of soulful jazz and blues that really make the music way different than most other groups we can think of – or maybe a bit like a rare elite who shared such visionary territory with Archie Whitewater, such as Shades Of Joy on their first Fontana record. The keyboards and sax lines are as great as the drums – and the vocals have a melancholy undercurrent that's a really refreshing change from some of the overly-postured modes you'd get from other groups in 1970. Titles include the sublime sample cut "Cross Country" – but there's loads of other nice ones with the same stripped-down "Dusty Fingers" sort of groove – and other titles include "Life Is A River", "Home Again", "Lament For The Walking Dead", "Seacoast", "Country To the City", "Friends & Neighbors", and "Mist Of The Early Morning". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Archie Whitewater ... CD 3.99

Partial matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Eddy ArnoldEach Road I Take – The 1970 Lee Hazlewood & Chet Atkins Sessions (Love & Guitars/Standing Alone/bonus tracks) ... CD
RCA/Real Gone, 1970. New Copy ... $16.99 18.99
A surprisingly great set of work from countrypolitan giant Eddy Arnold – 1970 sessions that have him both reforging his strengths with producer Chet Atkins, and taking up a whole new groove with the great Lee Hazlewood! The Atkins material can be heard here on the album Love & Guitars – a set that allows Arnold to answer back to all the others who, by that time, were hitting his own sort of mature way of putting over a tune – with backings that are almost more traditionally country than anything that Eddy had been getting on other recent records. The choice of material is great – songs by Merle Haggard, Wayne Thompson, Kris Kristofferson, and others – and titles that include "When The Wind Blows In Chicago", "Shadows Of Her Mind", "Today I Started Loving You again", "Just Enough To Start Me Dreamin", "With Pen In Hand", and "Soul Deep". Producer Lee Hazlewood works with Eddy Arnold on material from the album Standing Alone – a set that almost has Lee taking a tongue-in-cheek approach with strings and larger arrangements – giving Eddy the kind of setting that might have been darkly double-sided if Hazlewood were singing, but which comes across more in familiar Arnold territory overall. Still, there's definitely some nice touches around the edges – and titles include "Closest I Ever Came", "My Way Of Life", "She Believes In Me", "July You're A Woman", "Where Love Has Died", and "Some Lonely Picker". CD also features additional tracks from the same year, including two unreleased outtakes – for a total of 27 titles in all. CD

Partial matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Chet AtkinsSolid Gold 68/Solid Gold 69 ... CD
RCA/Vocalion (UK), 1968/1969. New Copy ... $16.99
Heavyweight gold from guitarist Chet Atkins – two albums back to back! Solid Gold 68 is a sweet set that has the guitar of Chet Atkins taking on the big hits of the year – with surprisingly groovy results! The arrangers here are Bill Walker and Cam Mullins, and a number of the tunes get a bit more of a 60s bounce than some of Chet's other records – maybe less Nashville and more pop instrumental – not just in the choice of the tunes, but in the way they're carried across! Chet's guitar is still quite upfront in the mix, with that wonderful sound – and titles include "The Sound Of Silence", "Stoned Soul Picnic", "Slick", "Harper Valley PTA", "Light My Fire", and "Grazing In The Grass". Solid Gold 69 follows the formula of some of the Chet Atkins Gold albums from previous years – but also reflects the very groovy changes taking place in music at the time – as Chet moves into a great range of material that moves quite far from his country roots! The setting is all instrumental – with arrangements by Bergen White, John Ragsdale, and Norbert Putnam – and titles include "So What's New", "Son Of A Preacher Man", "Both Sides Now", "Hey Jude", "Aquarius", "Folsom Prison Blues", and "I'll Never Fall In Love Again". CD

Partial matches7
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Chet AtkinsYestergroovin/Lover's Guitar ... CD
RCA/Vocalion (UK), 1969/1970. New Copy ... $16.99
Two late 60s RCA albums from Chet Atkins – back to back on a single CD! On Yestergroovin, Chet Atkins is groovin, but in a yesterday sort of way – hence the title of this sweet set from the start of the 70s! The record still has plenty of that excellent Atkins guitar work right up front in the mix – picking and strumming with the sublime sound that Chet created in the Nashville studios of RCA – in a mode that's maybe got some even jazzier currents on the guitar at times than some of his previous records – an upfront quality to the way the instrument steps up in the mix, especially on some of the more contemporary numbers. Titles include the slightly funky "Tennessee Pride", plus "Bring Me Sunshine", "Country Champagne", "Steeplechase Lane", "Yestergroovin", "Liberty", and "Gotta Travel On". Lover's Guitar is a record that has Chet Atkins working with arrangements from his own pen, and those of conductor Bill McElhiney – in a mode that's got the mellower touches you'd expect from the title – as Chet gently works his guitar magic on a set of ballads that include "The Look Of Love", "Until It's Time For You To Go", "If I Should Lose You", "Estudio Brillante", and "La Madrugada". CD

Partial matches8
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Albert AylerSwing Low Sweet Spiritual ... LP
Osmosis (Netherlands), 1964. Very Good+ ... $39.99
Pre-ESP Records work from the legendary Albert Ayler – and a really special set that definitely shows his strong ties to a previous legacy of African-American music! Ayler always clamed blues and other roots in his sound, but didn't always show them as clearly – given his free-thinking, forward-moving approach – yet this set has Albert really reworking an older influence, by taking older songs from gospel and secular sources, and using them as a completely compelling springboard for his new ideas on tenor and soprano sax! The album's the sort that David Murray might have cut in the mid 80s – but conceived by Ayler two decades before – and sadly unissued for years after its recording, possibly because it's a very sensitive, soulful set that's different than the frenetic power of later albums on ESP. A real treasure throughout – with work from Call Cobbs Jr on piano, Henry Grimes on bass, and Sonny Murray on drums – on titles that include "Swing Low Sweet Chariot", "Deep River", "Goin Home", "Ol Man River", "Down By The Riverside", and "Nobody Knows The Trouble I've Seen". LP, Vinyl record album
(Original pressing.)

Partial matches9
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Babe RuthAmar Caballero ... CD
Harvest/Warner (Japan), 1974. New Copy ... $15.99
An album with a horse on the cover, and a sound that's maybe even more soulful than the first mighty outing by Babe Ruth – quite a lot, given the strength of that debut! Female singer Jenny Haan seems to have an even greater presence here – working some nice currents of color through the group's great ability to riff, groove, and sometimes step into more acoustic modes – all while holding onto one of the hippest currents going in the Harvest Records scene – and one of the most unique as well! There's plenty of surprises throughout – and in addition to great cuts like "Broken Cloud", "Gimme Some Leg", "We Are Holding On", "Amar Caballo", and "Doctor Love" – the group also turn in a nicely offbeat remake of "Cool Jerk" too! CD
(SHM-CD pressing!)

Partial matches10
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Babe RuthBabe Ruth ... CD
Harvest/Warner (Japan), 1975. New Copy ... $15.99
There's few groups who could ever hope to wrap together influences from Stax Records, Ennio Morricone, and Curtis Mayfield – and whole the whole thing could ever turn out well – but the mighty Babe Ruth do exactly that, and still find time for some of their own unique grooves as well! The group are every bit as groovy here as on their previous records – mixing fuzzy guitars, well-crafted rhythms, and a nicely compressed version of prog into an amazingly fresh sound that still delights all these many years later – thanks to well-crafted vocals from Jenny Haan, and sharp arrangements from Alan Shacklock, whose guitars and sense of wit really keeps the whole thing moving nicely. Shacklock penned most of the original tunes here – like "Dancer", "Somebody's Nobody", "Jack O'Lantern", and "The Dutchess Of Orleans" – and the group also turn in nice remakes of "Fistful Of Dollars", "We The People Who Are Darker Than Blue", and "Private Number". CD
(SHM-CD pressing!)

Partial matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Bob Bach & Ginger MercerJohnny Mercer – The Life, Times & Song Lyrics Of Our Huckleberry Friend ... Book
Cherokee, 2009. New Copy ... $8.99 25.00
A pretty great book about the wonderful songwriter Johnny Mercer – key force behind the birth of Capitol Records, and a whole host of songs and careers in the 20th Century! The book's about the size of a songbook, and does include lyrics to a number of classic Mercer tunes – but it's also filled with loads of vintage photos, images from films, sheet music, and even some very cool documents pulled from Mercer's private papers – all used to tell the tale of this powerful force in popular music. Book is oversize, softcover, 305 pages, and filled with black and white images. Book

Partial matches12
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
BachsOut Of The Bachs (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Time Lag Records/Out-Sider (Spain), 1968. New Copy (reissue)... $25.99
Raw sounds from the US underground, circa 1968 – by a group who clearly grew in the garage, but sprung forth with a whole range of new ideas too! Sometimes the Bachs can have this bite that's almost pre-punk, but other moments have this warmly harmonic feel that's quite a surprise – still delivered with a nice edge, given the indie production of the set – which definitely lives up to the spirit of the album's original print run of only 150 copies! All songs are originals, and surprisingly well-written at times – with these dark lyrical turns that are a great foil for the twin lead vocals – almost with the moody feel of Syd Barrett on the shorter, spookier early Pink Floyd tunes, but a lot rougher. Titles include Free Fall", "Answer To Yesterday", "Minister To A Mind Diseased", "Show Me That You Want To Go Home", "I'm A Little Boy", and "Tables Of Grass Fields". LP, Vinyl record album
(Heavy vinyl pressing – with bonus insert of notes!)

Partial matches13
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Dave Bailey SextetGetting' Into Somethin' ... CD
Epic (Japan), 1960. New Copy ... $13.99
Heavy duty hardbop – one of three amazing Epic Records sessions cut by drummer Dave Bailey! Dave didn't ever cut many sessions as a leader – but when he did, they really cooked hard – with a quality level and sharpness of vision that easily rivals the best on Blue Note or Prestige Records at the time! In fact, this album would have been right at home on either imprint – a smoking session of soulful hardbop, with very long songs that allow plenty of room for solos by players who include Charlie Rouse on tenor, Clark Terry on trumpet, Curtis Fuller on trombone, and Horace Parlan on piano – who are all in the group with Dave, alongside bassist Peck Morrison. There's a nicely unbridled feel to the whole set – a real "something extra" that's always made the album a treasure – and titles include the side-long 17 minute "Blues For JP", plus "Slop Jah", "Little Old Mongoose", and "Evad Smurd". CD

Partial matches14
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Billy BangCommandment (For The Sculpture Of Alain Kirili) ... CD
No More Records, 1997. Used ... $28.99
CD
(Out of print.)

Partial matches15
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Arnaldo BaptistaArnaldo Baptista Box (Loki/Elo Perdido/Faremos Uma Noitada Excelente/Singin Alone/Let It Bed) (5CD set) ... CD
Philips/Canal (Brazil), 1970s/1980s. New Copy 5 CDs ... $49.99 102.99
A special box set of work from this key member of Os Mutantes – one that looks at all the many facets of his compelling solo career! The first album in the set is the landmark Loki – an incredibly crazy and messed-up album of tracks cut by Arnaldo Baptista after the breakup of Os Mutantes. Baptista wrote all of the songs, except for one, which lists "Os Mutantes" in the credits – and the tracks feature his booze-drenched vocals right up front, with backing by piano, and some very theatrical arrangements that are quite different than the work of his earlier Tropicalia group. The record is tough to describe – sort of a mix of early 70s Euro singer/songwriter trends, particularly those of the Saravah scene – with maybe a bit of post-psyche rock, with piano as the most dominant instrument in the mix. There's a surprisingly personal feel to the whole thing – and titles include "Uma Pessoa So", "Nao Estou Nem Ai", "Desculpe", "E Facil", and "Navegar De Novo". The package also features Singin Alone, from 1982 – a very spare, very boozy solo LP by this ex-Mutantes member. Most of the tracks have him sitting at the piano, singing along in very raspy vocals, with most of the lyrics in English. The record is very different from the Mutantes records, but is an excellent bit of work in the rock singer-songwriter tradtion (which might here include Leonard Cohen or Tom Waits, as comparable examples.) We don't really know what Baptista's up to at this point, but the record is a haunting solo work, with many great tracks like "Jesus, Come Back To Earth", "I Fell In Love One Day", and "O Sol". Next is Elo Perdido – a collaboration with Patrulha Do Espacao - followed by Let It Bed, a more recent album that shows that Baptista had developed into a surprisingly sensitive songwriter. But maybe most amazing is Faremos Uma Noita Da Excelente – a live set from 1978 that also features work from Patrulha Do Espacao – and which wasn't issued at the time! CD

Partial matches16
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Les BaxterPanic In The Year Zero ... CD
MGM/La La Land, 1962. Used ... $12.99
A killer soundtrack from Les Baxter – recorded right after his initial exotica run for Capitol Records, and done with some surprisingly jazzy touches as well! Baxter does a great job of mixing stark drama with some cool mellower moments here – really expanding his musical palette from before, yet also using lots of those beautiful painterly colors and tones that first came to the forefront in his exotica years! The players on the record are all great – and include Conte Candoli on trumpet, Harry Betts on trombone, Gene Cipriano on saxes, Tommy Tedesco on guitar, and Milt Holland on percussion – players well-suited to Baxter's LA approach to the music. This beautiful reissue features very detailed notes, and excellent sound quality too – and titles include "No Girls/No Civilians/A Boy & His Gun", "Bridge/To The Cave/Atavistic", "The Hoods", "Trigger Happy", "Panic In Year Zero", "Atomic Subdominant", "First Aid", and "Chop Chop". CD
(Out of print.)

Partial matches17
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
William BellThis Is Where I Live (with download) ... LP
Stax, 2016. New Copy ... $18.99 21.98
A great return to form for the legendary William Bell – one of the first singers to make the Stax Records label so great back in the 60s – finally back on the imprint, working here in one of the best settings he's had in decades! The album was recorded in New York, not Memphis – but there's definitely a deep soul flag flying throughout – as Bell sings wonderfully in the company of a small group of sympathetic musicians who flavor the lyrics with just the right currents, while nicely avoiding some of the overdone cliches that can sometimes mar a "return" album by a legendary soul singer like William! Best of all, there's no guests at all – just the man himself, sounding wonderful from a vocal perspective – maybe even more compelling, given the passage of years, and what they've brought to his lyrical presentation. Titles include "The Three Of Me", "The House Always Wins", "More Rooms", "Walking On A Tightrope", "Poison In The Well", "People Want To Go Home", "Mississippi Arkansas Bridge", and "All Your Stories". LP, Vinyl record album
(Includes MP3 download.)

Partial matches18
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
George BensonBody Talk ... CD
CTI, 1973. Used ... $6.99
A sweet funky classic from George Benson – featuring dope arrangements by Pee Wee Ellis, all with a groovy Kudu-type sound! George is the main soloist – but the group is super-hip, with Harold Mabern on electric piano, Frank Foster on tenor, and a little bit of extra guitar from Earl Klugh. George is pulling no punches on this one – really hitting hard on his solos with a freer approach than he used on most of his other records from the time. Titles include "Dance", "Plum", "Body Talk", and "Top Of The World" – and most tracks are looong! CD
(Out of print.)

Partial matches19
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Brook BentonRainy Night In Georgia – The Complete Reprise & Cotillion Singles A's & B's ... CD
Atlantic/Real Gone, Late 60s/Early 70s. New Copy 2CD ... $27.99 28.98
A great run of music from a really key point in the career of the great Brook Benton – a time when all the country soul ideas he'd been brewing for years were finally able to hit a level of mature, modern expression! The music here begins with a few late 60s singles for Reprise Records – some of the most obscure work here, and a great introduction to the work that Brook would soon do for Atlantic/Cotillion – which only furthers the qualities of the Reprise singles – showing an evolution that's arguably deeper and more sophisticated than any of the more rockish singers who were treading a similar path, but could never do it this well! Brook can bring in Otis Redding-like phrasing when he wants, or slide into a more casual down-home vibe at other points – always working with top shelf help from the staff at Fame and Criteria Studios, as well as Jimmy Bowen on the Reprise singles, or Arif Mardin on some other tracks. There's definitely songs here that we've never seen reissued before – and the 31 track set features titles that include "Poor Make Believer", "Movin Day", "Soul Santa", "A Black Child Can't Smile", "You're The Reason I'm Living", "Weakness In A Man", "Lonely Street", "The Glory Of Love", "Do Your Own Thing", "Touch Em With Love", "Woman Without Love", "Rainy Night In Georgia", "I've Gotta Be Me", "Shoes", "Let Me Fix It", and "Take A Look At Your Hands". CD

Partial matches20
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Maria BethaniaMemoria De Pele – Memory Of Skin ... CD
Verve, 1989. Used ... $5.99
One of Maria Bethania's great collaborations with arranger Jaime Alem – an artist we loved as part of the team of Jaime & Nair back in the 70s, and who's really helping Bethania find some deeper space here in the middle years of her career! At a time when Maria had moved into some of the warmer, more electric modes of her contemporaries, Alem helped her regain the sense of power heard in her classic 70s work – but at a level that was quite different than on those records, with a more restrained sensibility overall – making some especially great use of the aging qualities of her voice. Titles include "Junho", "Confesso", "Tenha Calma", "Reconvexo", "Memoria Da Pele", "Salve As Folhas", "Guerra No Mar", and "Vinganca". CD
(Out of print.)
 
 
 



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