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Possible matches: 9
Possible matches1
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Ray CharlesGenius Hits The Road (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Rhino, 1960. Used ... $4.99
A stunning standout from Ray Charles' years on ABC Records – and a set that brings in a bit of hard-swinging jazz to the country-styled groove Ray was hitting at the time! Backings are by Ralph Burns, who keeps things pretty hip – not as modern as some of his 50s charts for other singers, but with some great horns that cascade beautifully alongside Ray's raspy vocals in the lead. The "road" title leads to a bunch of travel-themed tunes – but that approach also yields one of Charles' biggest classics – his version of "Georgia On My Mind" – heard here amidst other tracks that include "New York's My Home", "Moonlight In Vermont", "Deep In The Heart Of Texas", "Blue Hawaii", "Carry Me Back To Old Virginny", "Alabamy Bound", and "Mississippi Mud". CD features 7 more bonus tracks – mostly travel-related numbers from later years – with titles that include "Hit The Road Jack", "I Was On Georgia Time", "Take Me Home Country Roads", "Blue Moon Of Kentucky", and "The Long & Winding Road". CD

Possible matches2
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Buddy DeFranco & Oscar PetersonBuddy DeFranco & Oscar Peterson Play The George Gershwin ... CD
Verve, 1954. Used ... $9.99
Classic mid 50s jazz takes on Gershwin! As the title indicates, the session features Buddy DeFranco and Oscar Peterson – but the real guy we wanna thank here is arranger Russ Garcia! Unlike some of the other Verve "soloist with the Peterson Trio" albums of the 50s, this one is more of a shared effort that has Buddy and Oscar both acting as soloists over larger backings directed by Garcia. Russ takes a lot of cues from Ralph Burns on the session – and like Burns on earlier Verve recordings, he sets things up so that the orchestrations never overwhelm the players – and instead simply augment their moods and shade in the colors of the tunes. We especially like Peterson in this format – as he was so often recorded heavily in trio format – but DeFranco is great too, snaking out over the top of the strings with a lean and angular tone on clarinet. Players include Herb Ellis, Ray Brown and Bobby White, augmented by wind & strings. Titles include "S Wonderful", "Strike Up The Band", "I Wants To Stay Here", "Someone To Watch Over Me", "I Was Doing All Right", "I Got Rhythm", "The Man I Love", and "It Ain't Necessarily So". CD features 2 bonus tracks: alternate, slightly longer takes of "I Want To Stay Here" and "Someone To Watch Over Me". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches3
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Sonny StittSensual Sound Of Sonny Stitt/Sonny Stitt & The Top Brass ... CD
Essential Jazz, Early 60s. Used ... $9.99
Long-overdue reissue of this excellent album that has Stitt playing with moody string backings by Ralph Burns. This sort of album became one of the Verve trademarks after the success of the Charlie Parker & Strings sessions – but this Stitt LP gives the sound a whole new twist, thanks largely to Burns' fantastically off-kilter arrangements. Stitt's tone is right on the money, and he soars dreamily, cut free from a rigid bop rhythm section. The sound is better than we'd ever expect, and the album's a beautiful suite of late night tracks that show Stitt as a master ballad player, on material like "Try A Little Tenderness", "Once In A While", "Talk To Me", "All of You", and "World Really Isn't". Next up is a heck of a great little record – one that shouldn't work so well, but it does! For the set, Sonny Stitt's blowing in front of a larger brass section – and while the prospect of a Sonny Stitt big band record might not sound that great at first, this one really kicks, largely because of Sonny's great solo work! Stitt's in perfect form by this point – blowing freely above a core brass group that features Blue Mitchell, Jimmy Cleveland, and Willie Ruff – arranged tightly by Tadd Dameron and Jimmy Mundy, yet still given enough room to swing with a heck of a lot of soul! Also quite nice is the organ work on the set by the obscure female player Perri Lee – a great little groover with a lean sound that cuts through the arrangements and really makes them sparkle! Titles include "Souls Valley", "On A Misty Night", "Stittsie", "Poinciana", "Sea Sea Rider", and "The Four Ninety". CD

Possible matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Lee WileyWest Of The Moon (plus bonus tracks) ... CD
RCA/Mosaic, 1956. Used ... $15.99
A great set of torchy ballads from Lee Wiley – a singer who virtually helped invent the genre on record with her classic sets for Columbia Records! This album's done a few years after those – and features backings by Ralph Burns, who brings a fair bit more sentimental moments to his work here than you might expect from some of his other more modern outings. The proceedings have a nice touch of jazz – thanks to players who include Urbie Green on trombone, Nick Travis on trumpet, and Moe Wechsler on piano – and although Lee's vocals have a slightly aging quality, that only serves to help the fragile emotions of the best numbers in the set. Titles include "You're A Sweetheart", "This Is New", "Who Can I Turn To Now?", "My Ideal", "Limehouse Blues", "I Left My Sugar Standing In The Rain", and "Keepin' Out Of Mischief Now". CD also features 2 bonus tracks – "Stars Fell On Alabama" and "Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousJazz Scene (2CDs & book) ... CD
Verve, 1950. Used 2CDs ... $8.99
A fantastic package – a must-have for any fan of older jazz! This CD set reissues material originally packaged in the rare Jazz Scene box set issued by Verve at the end of the 40s – a limited package of 78rpm singles that documented the styles and sounds of modern jazz at the time, filled with great drawings and photos, and one of those super-rare collectibles that you never ever see! This set does a fantastic job of re-presenting the material – filling one CD with tracks in the original box set, and a whole other CD with bonus material that was never issued at the time! Plus, it comes with great notes, reproductions of the original art, photos, and a whole lot more. It's a rare treasure both visually and musically – as the edgey recordings are in the best late 40s modern mode, blending bop, swing, and influences from other fields – really incredible work that deserves to be heard again and again! Titles include "Introspection" by Ralph Burns, "Sono" by Duke Ellington, "Swingin For Julie & Brownie" by Flip Phillips, "Spring In Naples" by Ralph Burns, "Tailspin" by Billy Strayhorn, "Tea For Two" by Willie Smith, and "Tanga" by Machito. CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Ben WebsterWarm Moods ... CD
Reprise, 1961. Used ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
One of the all-time great ones by Ben Webster! The album was recorded near the end of Webster's all-too-short time on this planet – at a point when he had really perfected a sorrowful tone on tenor, and a strangely sinister approach to ballads – one that gave even familiar tunes an unusual edge. The great Johnny Richards handled backings for the set – in a mode that uses light strings in the background, and which lets the solos step right out front – in a style that rivals the great work of Ralph Burns for Verve's classic "with strings" albums. But the real strength here is Webster's tone, which is fantastic – as you'll hear on titles like "Stella By Starlight", "Nancy", "It's Easy To Remember", and "Accent On Youth". CD
(Out of print, original CD pressing.)

Possible matches7
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Art FarmerBrass Shout/Aztec Suite ... CD
United Artists/Blue Note, 1959. Used ... Out Of Stock
An amazing 2-in-1 CD – filled with sublime work from the mighty Art Farmer! First up is Brass Shout – a great little album by this wonderful trumpeter – and one that we passed up for years because we were afraid of the words "brass" and "shout" in the title! If you're a Farmer fan, though, don't worry about this being some sort of snoozy "bold n brassy" session – because it's a much more subtle record, and features some excellent lead solos by Farmer, set amidst a larger group arranged wonderfully by Benny Golson! Golson brings a great sense of balance to the album – mixing some larger horn passages with soulfully snapping rhythms, all at a level that still allows plenty of space for Farmer to solo sweetly on trumpet. Other players on the record include Lee Morgan on trumpet and Curtis Fuller on trombone, Percy Heath on bass, and either Philly Joe Jones or Elvin Jones on drums – and titles include "Minor Vamp", "Nica's Dream", "Stella By Starlight", "Moanin", "April In Paris", and "Five Spot After Dark". Aztec Suite is a rare Latin outing from trumpeter Art Farmer – one that has him working with the mighty Cuban arranger Chico O'Farrill! The grooves here are hardly "Aztec", as Chico brings a hip postwar vibe to the session – a blend of American jazz and Latin rhythms that's totally great, and played by an all-star array of players conducted by Al Cohn! Side one of the record features the extended "Aztec Suite" – an ambitious number that begins with modern moments that are somewhere in a space between Stan Kenton and Ralph Burns' experiments of this nature, but which always has Farmer's trumpet as the center focus. Side two features tracks that are a bit more conventional Latin jazz – still played by the bigger group, but with an even stronger sense of swing! Titles include "Aztec Suite", "Heat Wave", "Drume Negrita", "Alone Together", "Woody N You", and "Delirio". CD

Possible matches8
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Carmen McRaeBirds Of A Feather (LP sleeve edition) ... CD
Verve, 1958. Used ... Out Of Stock
A gimmicky album – but a nice one! Carmen sings a set of "bird-related" songs – like "Skylark", "Bob White", "Flamingo", "Bye Bye Blackbird", and "Baltimore Oriole" – and while the idea of such a record might be painful, it's made surprisingly great thanks to some help from arranger Ralph Burns! Burns backs Carmen with some strong mid-size combos, and comes up with some shimmering approaches to the songs that get past the hokier style they might have, and suits them perfectly to Carmen's deeply soulful vocals. CD
(Out of print. Includes US obi!)

Possible matches9
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Carmen McRaeTorchy/Blue Moon ... CD
Decca (UK), 1955/1956. Used ... Out Of Stock
Two early gems from Carmen McRae – back to back on one CD! Torchy is a wonderfully titled set that's certainly plenty torchy all the way through! Carmen's singing in a lush, romantic style – working with backings from Jack Pleis and Ralph Burns – in a mode that features larger orchestrations, but which still very much has Carmen's vocals at the top of the mix. As was well demonstrated by Carmen in many later recordings, she hardly needs a band to help her set a mood – and on this set, although the orchestra is large, they're there mostly to color in the spaces between the notes, and create more of backdrop for Carmen's evocative vocals. Titles include "But Beautiful", "Midnight Sun", "My Future Just Passed", "Yesterdays", "Star Eyes", "We'll Be Together Again", and "Speak Low". Blue Moon is some of the hippest early work ever cut by Carmen McRae – with backings by Tadd Dameron and Jimmy Mundy, and a great selection of songs that brings out all the sophistication in Carmen's style, yet stays away from overly-done standards and love numbers. The set's a perfect example of how great Carmen could be in the right setting – and it's filled with great tracks like "All This Could Lead To Love", "I'm Putting All My Eggs In One Basket", "Summer Is Gone", "I Was Doing All Right", and "Even If It Breaks My Heart". CD
 
 
 



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