A pretty sublime album from Bill Evans – one that has him playing both Fender Rhodes and Steinway, overdubbed together, for an effect that's laidback and completely wonderful! The Fender Rhodes was a natural choice for Evans – given his fluid lyrical style, and on this set (and on his equally great record for MGM) Bill opens up with an approach that really suits him well. Each track features him shifting back and forth between electric and acoustic modes, dancing from one to the other in a way that makes the instruments come together beautifully – supported by some incredibly soulful bass work by Eddie Gomez, and drums by Marty Morrell. Titles include "Sugar Plum", "Funkallero", "Waltz for Debby", "TTT", "Re: Person I Knew", and "Comrade Conrad". LP, Vinyl record album
The second album by The Freedom Sounds – a very cool west coast soul jazz collective, headed by Wayne Henderson, and featuring a great mix of jazz, soul, and Latin rhythms! This set's a little more ambitious than the group's first album – with a number of tracks that groove in a very strong Latin jazz mode, sounding a lot like some of the best work on Atlantic at the time by Mongo Santamaria, Hubert Laws, and others. Henderson's trombone is still a key solo instrument, but the album also features some incredible sax work from Willie Gresham – a player we know little about, but who makes the album cook in the same fantastic way that Hubert Laws and Sonny Fortune did for Mongo's best work of the 60s! The grooves are very right-on, with plenty of excellent percussion work – and titles include the originals "Love-Out", "Behold The Day", and "Soul Sound System", plus some groovy covers, like "All You Need is Love", "What The World Needs Now Is Love", and "Are You Sure?" – all done with a great Latiny groove! LP, Vinyl record album
(Red & green label pressing. Cover has some moderate wear.)
Peter Gabriel at the top of his solo game – tight, focused, and coming across with a nice sort of edge – one that really sits nicely in the same late 70s generation that includes Bowie in Berlin, early Talking Heads, and some of the darker-minded work on the left side of the mainstream at the time! The guitars have a nice edge, but never dominate – and Gabriel's vocals are totally great – soaring with majesty, but never overblown, and deeply personal in all the right spots – but without any fake soul modes. Instrumentation is right on the money – processed nicely, but never overproduced – and hell, players on the album even include Brit jazz legend Dick Morrisey on a handful of tracks! Titles include "No Self Control", "I Don't Remember", "Biko", "Intruder", "And Through The Wire", and "Games Without Frontiers". LP, Vinyl record album
A warmly melodic session from Blue Note's greatest guitarist! The sound of the set's as evocative as the title – an idle moment of space between the notes, explored by Green's tight single-note work on guitar – and wonderfully supported by a lineup that includes Joe Henderson, Bobby Hutcherson, and Duke Pearson. Hutcherson and Pearson are always a treat together – bringing out the best exotic side of each other, and crafting a set of spiritually soulful grooves that are really great! The album's got 4 long tracks – exploratory and open, in the best manner of Green's mid 60s work – and titles include "Nomad", "Idle Moments", and "Jean De Fleur". LP, Vinyl record album
Sweet 70s electric work from the mighty Herbie Hancock – a live performance that's got some of the best spiritual elements of his late Warner Brothers years, mixed with some of the Headhunters modes to come! The album only includes two very long tracks – "Hornets" and "You'll Know When You Get There" – stretched-out, opened up, and with these magical moments from Eddie Henderson on trumpet, Benny Maupin on reeds, Julian Priester on trombone, and Buster Williams on bass. Billy Hart is on drums and "Scorch" plays congas – but both players sit back some times, and just let the magic happen from the other instrumentalists. And in addition to lots of keyboards from Hancock, Pat Gleeson adds in a bit more electronics to the mix as well. CD
Herbie Hancock —
Sextant ... CD Columbia/Legacy, 1973. Used ...
Just Sold Out!
An incredible record – and virtually the blueprint for countless other keyboard records to come! At the height of his 70s powers, Herbie really takes off into space with this set – moving away from more commercial music, and hitting a groove that's totally righteous, totally electric, and completely mindblowing! The album's got a bit of a Headhunters vibe, but it also veers off into some very wild analogue electronics too – a mix of Fender Rhodes, clavinet, melotron, and echoplex processing – augmented by additional work on Arp from Patrick Gleeson. Other players on the set include Bennie Maupin on reeds, Eddie Henderson on trumpet, Julian Priester on trombone, Buster Williams on bass, and Billy Hart on drums – and the great Buck Clarke rounds out the combo on percussion. The album only features three long tracks – "Rain Dance", "Hidden Shadows", and "Hornets" – but all of them are killers! CD
Eddie continues the funky groove begun on Instant Funk, and smoothed out over albums like I Need Some Money – and although jazz fans probably gave him hell for going this way, we think this is actually a pretty darn great album! The record takes all of Eddie's experimentation with groovy styles from the early 70s, and filters it through some tighter playing that actually makes the groove a lot more compelling than before. A number of the tracks have vocals, almost in a humorous Bill Cosby mode – but in a way that also preserves the party feel of the cuts. Players include Bobby Lyle, Paul Humphrey, Buck Clarke, and Bradley Bobo – and one Chicago-recorded track features a great assortment from older years that includes Muhal Abrams, Odell Brown, Marshapp Thompson, Willie Henderson, and Richard Evans. Titles include "Tryin Ain't Dyin", "Ooh", "Exempt", "Live Again", "Flowers", "Why Do You Hurt Me", and "It's All Right Now". LP, Vinyl record album
Not a best-of, as you might guess from the title – but a really special set of late work from Hawkins – shorter numbers, but played with plenty of flair with a small combo that also includes Oscar Peterson on piano, Ray Brown on bass, Herb Ellis on guitar, and Alvin Stoller on drums! CD
Eddie Henderson —
Mahal ... LP Capitol, 1978. Very Good+ ...
Just Sold Out!
An excellent document of how the rawer soul jazz spiritualism of the early 70s smoothed out to become the spacey mellow fusion of the late 70s. The players all have their jazz funk chops – and include Paul Humphrey, Herbie Hancock, Bennie Maupin, and Bill Summers – and they've taken years at their craft to perfect their interplay in a subtle fashion, without the heavier full-on message of earlier days. Skip Drinkwater's producing the set – and as on some of his best work from the time, he manages to give the whole thing a smooth sound, yet still retain a lot of the soul. Lots of nice grooves, with almost a Larry Mizell feeling to them. Titles include "Mahal", "Ecstasy", "Butterfly", and "Cyclops". LP, Vinyl record album
(Includes the printed inner sleeve. Cover has a cutout hole.)
We love Joe Henderson's 70s sides, and though this is reaching the end of the decade, it still smokes. Joe sounds great, with his raw edge still intact, playing nice far reaching solos that never leave the pocket. The set opens with "Y Todavia La Quiero", a nice groover with a feel like an uptempo "Love Supreme" set to cook rather than open you up spiritually. Chick Corea, Tony Dumas and Peter Erskine are the band, though Richard Davis and Tony Williams guest on two cuts. The set also includes one of our favorite Corea compositions, 'Yes, My Dear", plus the title track, "Crimson Lake" and "My One And Only Love". CD
(Out of print.)
Knack ... LP Cadet, 1965. Very Good ...
Just Sold Out!
Fantastic bit of lost Chicago jazz, featuring an incredibly tight and soulful combo made up of a bunch of obscure players who never really made it otherwise. The group features George Patterson on alto and soprano, Charles Kinnard (not Kynard) on tenor, Cleo Griffin on trumpet, and Tom Washington on piano. The set includes a number of incredible originals by the group which have sort of a late Horace Silver sound, but with a soulful Coltraney twist in parts. Cuts include "Sadder Days", "Time is of the Essence", and "Our Mambo", and a great cover of the theme from "The Knack"! Some tracks have a vocal group behind the combo, but they have a swingin' sound, and they're not on all tracks. One of our favorite lost albums ever! LP, Vinyl record album
(Blue label stereo pressing with deep groove. Cover is in great shape!)
A very cool collection from the early years of rock and roll – featuring work by an assortment of mainstream pop artists who were very quick to jump on the bandwagon of the new music! The styles here aren't just boring pop attempts to rehash rock, but also show a strong current of R&B at play as well – the kind of sounds that jump blues and other postwar styles had already brought to the mainstream – served up almost in a post-swing mode, with a cool mix of jazzy inflections and electrified instrumentation that's almost a precursor for the sound of popcorn soul! Most tracks are in an upbeat, swinging mode – one that's equally pleasing if you like crossover country from the time, or some of the more playful modes from pop singers too – all with a much wider range than you'd expect from the title and cover. As with other volumes, the notes are great, as is the track selection – and this third volume features 33 titles that include "Every Night" by Peggy Lee, "Bo Diddley" by Joe Reisman, "Fool Fool Fool" by Kay Starr, "Get A Job" by The Mills Brothers, "Juke Box Baby" by Perry Como, "Rock The Joint" by Lola Ameche, "Rockin Shoes" by Ames Brothers, "Baby Don't Do It" by Jaye P Morgan, "Honolulu Rock A Rolla" by Eartha Kitt, "Money Honey" by Ella Mae Morse, and "Rock & Roll Party" by Big Dave & His Orchestra. CD
Stunning sounds from reedman Kalaparusha Maurice McIntyre – a late 70s live performance in a quartet that also includes trumpeter Longineu Parsons, whose sound and spirit is a really wonderful match for Kalaparusha! The music is free and open, but still with these soulful, spiritual currents – almost loft jazz in approach, as the two horn players soar over open-ended work from Leonard Jones on bass and King Moch on drums – two players that we don't know at all, but who do a great job here, and often let Kalaparusha get some especially open space to do his thing! LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited to 69 hand-numbered copies, in hand-pasted covers.)
Beautiful sounds from Max Richter – doing plenty to evoke the quality of its title, but all without ever sounding sleepy at all! Instead, Richter works here with that careful blend of subtle sounds he's brought to other projects – mixing his own work on piano, organ, and keyboards with contributions from a string quartet and wordless soprano – as the blend of instruments and voice unfold at a level that almost reminds us of the pairing of Ennio Morricone and Edda Dell'Orso! Yet Richter's approach is less dramatic – and each new passage builds slowly, subtly – sometimes with these older echoes that almost take us back to Albioni or Pachelbel, yet without any hoke at all. Sounds from the project were distilled into the lovely, hour-long From Sleep record, but this is the full 8 hour experience – same as full night's rest – but even dreamier as a conscious experience! Titles include "Dream 1 (Before The Wind Blows It All Away)","Cumulonimbus", "Aria 1", "Nor Earth, Nor Boundless Sea", "Moth-Like Stars", "Patterns (Lux)", "Space 2 (Slow Waves)", "Never Fade Into Nothingness", "If You Came This Way", "Sublunar", "If You Came This Way", "Non-Eternal", "Path 17 (Before The End Of The Daylight)" and many more. Box set includes 8CDs plus 1 high definition Blu Ray audio disc! CD