Chet Baker —
Daybreak ... LP Steeplechase (Denmark), 1979. Very Good+ ...
An excellent later set – a trio date with Doug Raney on guitar and Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen on bass – on long tracks that include "For Minors Only", "Down", "Broken Wing", and "Daybreak". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has a cutout hole in the corner, and top seam is slightly unglued.)
Some of the last recordings ever made by the late tenor great Bill Barron – and some of the best as well! The CD presents previously unheard live recordings from Cobi's nightclub – a late 80s New York club where Barron played often upon his return from the European scene in the years before his death – and an extremely comfortable setting that let Bill stretch out on long tenor solos, in a style that's quite different than a lot of his studio work for other labels. There's still a very modern feel to the work – especially in Barron's tone – but the tunes also have a solidly inventive solo approach, one that rivals that of classic live recordings by Dexter Gordon or Sonny Rollins. The group's a quartet with Fred Simmons on piano, Santi Debriano on bass, and Ben Riley on drums – and most tracks stretch out for quite some length, dominated by Barron's beautiful solos. Titles include Kenny Barron's "Row House" and "Voyage", and Bill's own "Until Further Notice", "This One's For Monk", and "Easy Does It". CD
Federico Bonifazi with Philip Harper —
East 74th Street ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
Federico Bonifazi is great pianist, and also a hell of a writer too – one with a very fully-formed voice in jazz – able to fit complex ideas in a very tight space, while still very much letting the soloists do their thing! And yet Federico also seems to bring out a new depth in his group members too – as he did on a recent album that starred Eric Alexander on tenor, and he does this time around with Philip Harper on trumpet – sounding better than we've heard him in years! The richness of Bonifazi's writing, and his piano work, is tremendous – and gives Harper a platform from which to really soar – which he does wonderfully on some of the best tracks here. Credit should also be given to the strong bass work, which also really helps shape the sound of the set – from either John Webber or Lorenzo Sandi, depending on the track – and the group also features Billy Kaye on drums. Titles are all originals – and include "High Line", "Steps House", "Ballamorando Brando", "Crash", "Sounds Good", and "Borotalco". CD
Wonderful work from Anthony Braxton – an album that has him playing straight ahead jazz – but at a time when he was also making some of his most complex recordings of the 70s! The approach here is sublime – as Braxton's reputation has ears already anticipating some far-out playing, but then marvel at his restraint – his care for keeping alto and bass clarinet work inside a straight jazz tradition, yet always hinting at the modern inflections he can bring to his music! Tunes are almost all jazz standards, blown beautifully – with a tone that's crisp, cool, and very inviting – surprisingly soulful, and never cold at all – matched well with the rhythm trio of Tete Montoliu on piano, Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen on bass, and Albert Tootie Heath on drums. Titles include "Body & Soul", "Donna Lee", "My Funny Valentine" and "Half Nelson". LP, Vinyl record album
Wonderful work from Anthony Braxton – an album that has him playing straight ahead jazz – but at a time when he was also making some of his most complex recordings of the 70s! The approach here is sublime – as Braxton's reputation has ears already anticipating some far-out playing, but then marvel at his restraint – his care for keeping alto and bass clarinet work inside a straight jazz tradition, yet always hinting at the modern inflections he can bring to his music! Tunes are almost all jazz standards, blown beautifully – with a tone that's crisp, cool, and very inviting – surprisingly soulful, and never cold at all – matched well with the rhythm trio of Tete Montoliu on piano, Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen on bass, and Albert Tootie Heath on drums. Titles include "Goodbye Porkpie Hat", "Ornithology", "Marshmallow", "Body & Soul", "Donna Lee", "My Funny Valentine" and "Half Nelson". CD features both albums, with 13 tracks in all – apparently bonus tracks that weren't on the original records, too! CD
A lyrically swinging set from alto saxophonist Chris Byars – one that often has his own instrument balanced alongside colorful tones from the guitar of Pasquale Grasso – in a way that's angular, but always easygoing! The blend is very nice – and augmented with additional bass clarinet from Stefano Doglioni and trombone from John Mosca – both of whom can come together with ensemble performances that, with a nice bottom sound, often make the album feel richer than the number of players on the date – and at other times, they step out singly, but with a tonal range that separates them a bit from the union of Byars and Grasso. The rest of the group features Ari Roland on bass and Stefan Schatz on drums – and titles include "Little India", "Taxi Bird", "Seabreeze", "Berk Bop", "Hello Pork Pie Hat", and "Lady Linda". CD
(Spine has a cutout notch.)
Michael Carvin —
Camel ... CD Steeplechase (Netherlands), 1975. New Copy ...
A real gem of an album – the kind of spiritual 70s soul jazzer that we never tire of putting on the turntable! Drummer Michael Carvin heads a great group that features Cecil Bridgewater on trumpet, Sonny Fortune on alto and soprano, and Ron Burton on piano – and the ensemble grooves in a way that reminds us a lot more of recordings on Strata East from the time, than some of the snoozier sides on Steeplechase. The record fits nicely in with some of the few recordings of this nature on the label – work by Billy Gault and Rene McLean – and the album's worth it alone for Fortune's incredible post-Coltrane solos. Tracks include "The Camel", "MC Blues", "Kwebena's Blues", and "Osun". CD features a few bonus alternate takes, too. CD
Brian Charette —
Back Up ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
Brian Charette's a contemporary organist who's always out to set himself apart from most of the rest – not by forcing any sort of experimental modes on the Hammond, or by trying to race up and down the keys – but just by relaxing into a tune, and really finding a way to deliver a performance that's clear and crisp, yet undeniably soulful! Whereas other younger Hammondists might be driven to work in the territory of the Jimmys – McGriff and Smith – or Jack McDuff – Charette's almost got more of the understated quality of Shirley Scott, especially on a trio date like this. Brian keeps his tone nicely in check – always playing with these round, fully-formed notes – even on material by artists like Larry Young or Joe Henderson – and he's balanced out here by the piano of Henry Hay and drums of Jochen Rueckert, in a way that uses the piano to almost underscore and echo the lines of the organ. Titles include "The Blessing", "Backup", "A Shade Of Jade", "Tadd's Delight", "These Are Soulful Days", and "Dahoud". CD
A great little live record, and one that shows that pianist Stanley Cowell never had to answer to anyone else – as he's able to handle so much in such a tight setting – from classic bop numbers, to reworked standards, to the kinds of spiritual compositions that made him such a standout from the start – all performed with effortless ease, and a mindblowing level of creativity throughout! The trio's not one of Stanley's most classic, but is still quite strong – with Cheyney Thomas on bass and Wardell Thomas on drums – although Cowell seems to lead the energy at every twist and turn – showing a rhythmic pulse at some times, a lyrical flow at others, and some especially strong angles on the bop numbers. Titles include "Brilliant Circles", "Bright Passion", "Stella By Starlight", "In Walked Bud", "Prayer For Peace", "Anthropology", "Autumn Leaves", and "It Don't Mean A Thing". CD
A nicely fresh setting for pianist Stanley Cowell – a record that moves past his more frequent trio format, to feature the longstanding genius in a quartet with Bruce Williams on alto and flute! Williams has a laidback, lyrical tone that seems to bring out a different side in Cowell's music – especially as the album mostly features the pianist's own compositions – a way of building up his sound slowly, with a more quiet-burning version of the spiritual energy of Stanley's youth – yet still with end results that are equally redemptive, and very beautiful overall. The rest of the group features Jay Anderson on bass and Billy Drummond on drums – and Cowell also plays a bit of thumb piano and kyma too. Titles include "Celestial Women", "No Illusions", "Miss TE & O", "Sunlight Shifting", "B Minor Folksong", and "Nostalgia For Homelands". CD
Harold Danko sounds wonderful here with his long-established trio – a group so well-matched, most of the songs on this set arose from collective improvisations during the recording sessions! Yet these aren't outside, avant tunes – in which all players roam freely in space – and instead, they're melodic, rhythmic, very tuneful extrapolations that are often based on older standards – but which are so transformed, you can't really hear any roots of the originals – as the players take flight in that magical collaborative creation that marks jazz at its best! Danko plays piano, Jay Anderson is on bass, and Jeff Hirshfield is on drums – and titles include "Sky Blues", "Stream Of Tears", "Shallow Waters", "Mademoiselle Dreamy", "Total Obsession", and "Ancient & Distant". CD
A really proud, bold session from pianist Olegario Diaz – almost all original tunes, written with a very vibrant feel! The group here has some massively strong work in the lead from Alex Sipiagin on trumpet and Seamus Blake, both of whom really sound great in the company of Diaz'z fluid, soulful piano – especially Blake, who's at his best forward-moving, without any of those more arch tones that sometimes hold him back. The rhythms bristle with excitement, too – thanks to work from Scott Colley on bass and Jeff Tain Watts on drums, both pulled along with strong inspiration from Diaz. Titles include "JM Baquiat", "Dance Steps", "Wayne & Joe", "Astoria Years", "By Night/Day", and "Trane Station". CD
A tribute to the late trumpeter Chet Baker, but one that's got a rock-solid swinging feel that's quite different than most of Baker's music on record! The group here is a fantastic lineup – with Alex Sipiagin handling the trumpet parts, but in a way that's often quite un-Chet-like – alongside strong tenor from Seamus Blake, bold bass from Scott Colley, and dynamic drums from Bill Stewart – all working under the leadership of pianist Olegario Diaz, who colors the tunes with nicely vivid notes that fly from his fingers with a sparkling sense of imagination. Many numbers are from the Chet Baker songbook, but Diaz also wrote a few great songs of his own – and titles include "Everything I Love", "Star Eyes", "Just Friends", "CTA", "Rise & Fall Baker", "Bernie's Tune", and "I Remember Chet". CD
Walt Dickerson —
Peace ... CD Steeplechase (Netherlands), 1975. New Copy ...
Great 70s work from one of the most inventive talents on the vibes – the mighty Walt Dickerson! Like some of his other sessions from the time, this album has a beautiful open feel – very sparse and free-ish, but never jumping off the deep end too far into the new thing. There are 2 side-long tracks by the trio, which includes bassist Lyle Atkinson and drummer Andrew Cyrille – and titles include "Universal Peace" and "Chant of Peace", both of which have a wonderful spiritual searching quality throughout! CD also features the bonus track "Warm Up". CD
Walt Dickerson & Sun Ra —
Visions ... CD Steeplechase (Netherlands), 1978. New Copy ...
Dickerson and Ra are reunited – after only playing together on the seminal 60s album Impressions Of A Patch Of Blue! The session's a very spare one, in the typical mode of Dickerson's Steeplechase work of the late 70s – and most titles have Dickerson taking the main lead on vibes, with Ra providing flourishes of color and tone to the tracks – unusually restrained, but in a way that also adds a whole new level to our understanding of his genius! Titles include "Space Dance", "Constructive Neutrons", "Astro", and "Utopia". CD also features 2 tracks recorded at the time, but never issued – "Light Years" and "Prophesy". CD
Kenny Drew/Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen —
Duo ... LP Steeplechase, 1976. Near Mint- ...
... LP, Vinyl record album
(Danish pressing. Cover has light wear.)
Johnny Dyani —
Afrika ... CD Steeplechase (Netherlands), 1983. New Copy ...
One of the more African-styled albums recorded by bassist Johnny Dyani – recorded with a septet that includes extra percussion and steel drums, in a groove that recalls Dyani's best work with British jazz players of the early 70s! The added percussion makes for a much greater emphasis on the rhythmic component of the set than on other Dyani albums for Steeplechase – and the group's augmented by some great work by Charles Davis on alto, and Ed Epstein on both tenor and alto. Titles include "Blame It On The Boers", "Funk Dem Dudu", "Grandmother's Teaching", and "Kalahari Lives". CD features a few bonus tracks as well! CD
Johnny Dyani —
Mbizo ... CD Steeplechase (Netherlands), 1981. New Copy ...
One of the last great records by legendary South African bassist Johnny Dyani – recorded here in a piano-less quartet with Dudu Pukwana and Ed Epstein on reeds, and Churchill Jolobe on drums. The overall feel of the session is quite "outside" – with some very free solos from the sax players – but there's also some rhythmic elements that hearken back to Dyani's roots, and which nicely ground the set. Titles include "Dedicated To Mingus", "Dorkay House", and "Musician's Musician". CD
Key work as a leader from Johnny Dyani – the legendary bassist from the pioneering South African combo The Blue Notes – recorded with a great quartet featuring Don Cherry, Makaya Ntshoko, and Dudu Pukwana! The album features a wonderful extended tune, running for all of side two, entitled "Jo'Burg–New York" – a musical journey that's worth the price of the album alone – and the set also features a number of great shorter tunes that include "Wish You Sunshine", "Song For Biko", and "Confession of Moods". CD also features a bonus 21 minute track – "Lonely Flower In The Village" – recorded at the original session, and never issued before! CD
Johnny Dyani With John Tchicai & Dudu Pukwana —
Witchdoctor's Son ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1978. New Copy ...
A late 70s classic from South African bassist Johnny Dyani – and an album that reunites him with Dudu Pukwana, the saxophonist in their original group The Blue Notes! The album also features John Tchicai on both alto and soprano sax, as well as added guitar from Afredo Do Nascimento, plus some added percussion. Tunes have a nice rhythmic feel, but the solos are also quite raw and searing – really blowing open the whole thing, in the manner of some of the post-Blue Notes early 70s work by Pukwana, Dyanai, and sadly departed bandmate Mongezi Feza. Titles include "Heart With Minor's Face", "Magwaza", "Eyomzi", "Mbiza", and "Radebe". CD also features 4 bonus alternate takes! CD
Brilliant work from a great player who never stopped growing! After a 70s career laced with some free and spiritual playing, Foster moves back to basics here by teaming up with pianist Horace Parlan and some European rhythm accompaniment – in a set that concentrates on tone, sound, and color! Foster's tenor solos alone seem to carry the album on some tremendously strong and soulful shoulders – and the set's filled with great original compositions that include "John R & Garfield", "The House That Love Built", "Dunbar's Delight", and "Lightly Stroking". CD features an unissued bonus track – Kenny Dorham's "Scandia Skies". CD
Great stuff – and a beautiful album of spiritual jazz recorded by this obscure piano player who worked briefly with Jackie McLean in the seventies. Billy Gault had an amazingly soulful way of putting together his work, but never got bogged down in too much sentiment. There's some beautiful stuff on here, including the awesome "Mode for Trane", and "The Time of this World is at Hand", a great track that features vocals by Joe Lee Wilson (some of his best) and Ellen Deleston. Wilson and Deleston also sing on a few others too – in a moody, soulful and spiritual way that's almost a post-Coltrane take on the sound of Andy & The Bey Sisters. Other titles include "Aisha", "When Destiny Calls", "Portrait Of A Joaner", and "Nothing But A Man". This truly is an incredible record – one of our all time favorites of this generation! CD
Lost genius from Dexter Gordon's initial years in Europe – a set that has him still stretching out in familiar Scandinavian modes, but with a slightly tighter sound too! The group's notable in that it features trumpeter Rolf Ericson – whose horn really adds a lot to the frontline, and has a surprisingly strong talent for matching Gordon's beautifully-blown longform solo modes! Rhythm is from the trio of Lars Sjosten on piano, Sture Nordin on bass, and Per Hulten on drums – and titles include "All The Things You Are", "Darn That Dream", "Straight No Chaser",and "I Remember You". LP, Vinyl record album
Important early European work by Dexter Gordon – recorded during his successful 60s run at the legendary Cafe Montmartre, where using the new freedoms of that scene, he re-invented himself as a player, and gave a much needed boost to European-American jazz relations! The tracks on the set are all very much in the best spirit of Gordon's Montmartre years – long and open-ended, with a real focus on the tenor solo work, but also some excellent support by a rhythm trio that includes Kenny Drew, Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen, and Alex Riel. Titles include "So What", "You've Changed", "Heartaches", and "Devilette". CD
Dexter Gordon —
Lady Bird ... CD Steeplechase (Netherlands), 1965. New Copy ...
Excellent live work from Dexter Gordon's 60s stay at the Cafe Montmartre in Copenhagen – previously unissued, but easily some of Gordon's best of the time! The set varies slightly from Gordon's mostly-quartet live sides from Montmartre – in that it adds in trumpeter Donald Byrd, for a performance that's almost an extension of the One Flight Up album on Blue Note. Byrd's hard-edge sound on the trumpet really pushes the recording with a deeper feel than usual – creating some tight ensemble horn work up front, before rolling into the longer Gordon-styled solo feel of other Montmartre recordings. The rest of the quintet includes Kenny Drew on piano, Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen on bass, and Alex Riel on drums – and the set features extremely long versions of "So What" and "Lady Bird" – plus the shorter "Who Can I Turn To" and "Blues By Five". CD
A later cooker from this former Jazz Messengers trumpeter – with a group that also features Junior Cook on tenor, Robin Eubanks on trombone, and Mickey Tucker on piano! Titles include "Fuller Up", "Yo What's Up", "PB", and "Whisper Not". CD
An incredible return to form for Billy Harper – and a landmark album recorded at the end of the 80s, when we'd all but given up on him! The session returns Billy to the majesty of his 70s work – placing him in the setting of long tracks, modal rhythms, and spiritual motivation – the uniquely Harper territory first forged with Lee Morgan and Max Roach, sounding better than ever here, with all the confidence of his youth. The group's a quintet – with Eddie Henderson on trumpet, Francesca Tanksley on piano, Clarence Seay on bass, and Newman Baker on drums – working perfectly as a unit, with a power level that's simply amazing. Harper's the main star, reaching towards the heavens with some incredible solos – but he also clearly knows that he wouldn't be able to do what he does without the great level of support he's getting from the rest of the group. Tracks include "Destiny Is Yours", "If One Could Only See", "Groove From Heaven", and "East West Exodus". CD also features 2 bonus tracks – "Dance In The Question" and "My Funny Valentine". CD
Some of the best Billy Harper work of the past decade or two – a 3 volume series of live performances, all recorded in the Far East in 1991! This first volume features Billy recorded in Korea, with a group that includes Eddie Henderson on trumpet, Francesca Tanksley on piano, Louis Spears on bass, and Newman Baker on drums – stretching out on long tunes that recall the brilliance of Harper's incredible Japanese recordings of the 70s – a masterful blend of searching and soulfulness! Titles include "I Do Believe", "If One Could Only See", "Croquet Ballet", and "Insight". CD
Volume 2 in this great series of live work recorded by Harper in 1991 – a set of tracks performed in Taiwan, with a quintet that includes Eddie Henderson on trumpet! The feel here is similar to Harper's best late 70s work – with long tracks that open up in modal fashion, setting the stage for exploratory passages on the tenor – yet never going too far or too freakish to lose their soul. The blowing's in a perfect post-Coltrane mode, and the set features original Harper tunes that include "Destiny Is Yours", "Priestess", and "Trying To Make Heaven My Home". CD
The last and longest of Harper's 3 albums recorded in the Far East in 1991 – a mindblowing set of tracks performed in Malaysia, with a quintet that features Eddie Henderson on trumpet, Francesca Tanksley on piano, Louie Spears on bass, and Newman Baker on drums. The rhythmic component of the group is extremely strong – very well-suited to Harper's free-thinking explorations in sound – urging him onward with long spiralling passages that have one foot firmly planted in the soil, with the other pointed towards the heavens. Titles include "Soran Bushi BH", "Cry Of Hunger", "Call Of The Wild & Peaceful Heart". CD
Louis Hayes —
Blue Lou ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1993. Used ...
A timelessly soulful session by drummer Louis Hayes – one with a feel that sums up much of the 70s underground soul jazz scene, but which also has roots that stretch back to Hayes' time with Horace Silver in the 60s! The ensemble's a sextet, playing with Silver-esque overtones – and featuring Eddie Allen on trumpet, Gerald Hayes on alto, Javon Jackson on tenor, Ronnie Matthews on piano, and Clint Houston on bass. Matthews' piano lines are especially strong – really setting up and leading the group through a great set of lesser-known numbers that roll and groove with a really righteous sound. Titles include a great reading of George Cables' "Quiet Fire", plus "Honey Dip", "Lament For Love", "The Walk", "New Endings", and"Spur Of The Moment". CD
Sam Jones —
Visitation ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1978. New Copy ...
Just Sold Out!
One of the strongest statements ever recorded by bassist Sam Jones – a wickedly soulful session that cooks on all burners! The album's got a rich depth that far surpasses most of Jones' trio sessions – and is a full quintet album, with Terumasa Hino on cornet, Bob Berg on tenor, Ronnie Matthews on piano, and Al Foster on drums. Matthews' strong and soulful lines really push the whole group along – stretching out with modal energy that really seems to set the horns free. All tracks are extremely fresh, and played at a level that brings out the best we'd expect from the players – possibly more in fact – and the record's an under-appreciated gem in the Steeplechase catalog of the 70s! Titles include "Del Sasser", "Visitation", "Occurrence", "Jean Marie", and "Before You". CD also features 3 bonus alternate takes! CD
Clifford Jordan —
Firm Roots ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1975. New Copy ...
A great little album from Jordan – one of a number of very hip sessions he cut in the mid 70s, working with his Magic Triangle group that included Cedar Walton on piano, Sam Jones on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums. The group come together with an energy that's extremely rare – creative and experimental, yet never failing to swing, and working as one to explore a slightly cosmic approach to jazz, one that rarely shows up in Jordan's later work. The album's filled with great original tunes – including "One For Amos", "Inga", "Voices Deep Within Me", and "Scorpio" – and Jordan plays tenor and flute. CD also features a bonus unreleased version of "Bearcat". CD
Kirk Knuffke —
Cherryco ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
A beautifully unique take on the music of Don Cherry and Ornette Coleman – served up here by a trio that features Kirk Knuffke on cornet, Jay Anderson on bass, and Adam Nussbaum on drums! The tunes are all classic Cherry or Coleman compositions – but the performance here is very different, with a robust quality that comes not just from the deeper range of the cornet, but also from the bold work on drum and bass – which still keeps things in that rompingly rhythmic mode of the group that Cherry and Coleman had together, but maybe both a bit more open in terms of the groove – and more focused on the one lead solo instrument. Knuffke's really opened up the sound of others in the past – but this record might well be his greatest achievement so far – as you'll hear on titles that include "Roland Alphonso", "The Sphinx", "Jayne", "Song In D", "Mind & Time", "Cherryco", "Golden Heart", "Paris Ambulance Song", and "Angel Voice". CD
A great singer in a great group – a vocalist who's really coming into her own, and turning out to be a heck of a writer – as you'll hear on this album that features both original music, and lyrics set to tunes by jazz musicians who include Duke Jordan and Dexter Gordon! Allegra Levy's never going for an easy approach here – not trying crossover ballads or torch material, but also not trying to overdo things with too many tricks and gimmicks – just delivering rock-solid, jazz-based presentation of the tunes – which include some surprisingly poetic lyrics on a few of our favorite numbers. The group's got the right balance to make the music sparkle in all the right ways – with Stephen Riley on tenor, Kirk Knkuffke on cornet, Carmen Staaf on piano, Jay Anderson on bass, and Billy Drummond on drums – and titles include "Lullaby Of The Orient", "Cities Between Us", "Cherry Blossom Song", "I Shouldn't Tell You", "Misery Makes The Music", "Sleepwalk With Me", and "Soy Califa". CD
Jackie McLean —
Dr Jackle ... LP Steeplechase (Denmark), 1979. Near Mint- ...
Just Sold Out!
With Lamont Johnson on piano, Scotty Holt on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums. Titles include "Little Melonae", "Melody For Melonae", "Dr Jackle", and "Closing". LP, Vinyl record album
(Original pressing. Cover has clear tape on the bottom seam.)
Jackie McLean & Dexter Gordon —
Meeting Vol 1 ... LP Steeplechase (Denmark), 1976. Near Mint- ...
A great meeting of two generations of jazz – and one that really blows the top off some of Dexter Gordon's other European sessions of the time! The setting here is definitely one that's more a Gordon-based date – long tracks with rhythm backing from a trio with Kenny Drew on piano, Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen on bass, and Alex Riel on drums. But unlike some of the other long-blown Gordon-heavy albums for the stretch, the presence of Jackie McLean really brings in a new sort of fire – the kind of soaring, soulful energy he brought to his own records in these immediate post-Blue Note years – almost a Coltrane influence, and a sense of spiritualism that really comes through on some of his solo moments – even in this relatively straight setting. Titles include Gordon's "All Clean", Sahib Shihab's "Rue De La Harpe", Drew's "Sunset", and a nice take of "On The Trail". LP, Vinyl record album
(US pressing on Inner City.)
Jackie McLean & Gary Bartz —
Ode To Super ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1973. New Copy ...
Just Sold Out!
A great meeting of these two alto giants – and a wonderfully soulful session that matches Gary Bartz's own great work from the same time! The overall feel of the session is quite spiritual – as Bartz and McLean seem to egg each other on, into far-reaching lines and freespirited grooves that are totally great. Rhythm is by a European trio of Thomas Clausen, Bo Steif, and Alex Riel – but the trio does more than enough of a good job to set the mood – especially on the excellent track "Great Rainstreet Blues", which sounds like some lost dark groove from the Black Jazz label! Other titles include "Watercircle", "Monk's Dance", and "Ode To Super". CD features a few bonus alternate takes, too. CD
A double-helping of trio material from the great Tete Montoliu – a pianist with plenty of power to really open up in a setting like this! The album features Tete in clear command of the keyboard – playing with that amazing sense of flow that made him one of the leading European pianists from the 60s onward – really matured here to a point where he's constantly creating, but without any overdone sense that calls attention to itself – the kind of piano work that's initially quite subtle, but then really breathtaking when you sit back and realize how much has happened in such a short space! And on this album, the spaces are surprisingly large – lots of really long tracks that not only give Montoliu room to stretch out plenty, but which also feature great work on bass from John Heard and drums from Albert Tootie Heath. Titles include "Jo Vull Que M'Arcariciis", "Blue Bossa", "El Neu Carrer", "A Child Is Born", "Tune Up", "Doxy", "D&E", "Ladybird", and "My Old Flame". CD
Zaid Nasser —
Stroller ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
You might recognize the last name of alto saxophonist Zaid Nasser, as his father was Jamil Nasser – the wonderful bassist who made some incredible music with Ahmad Jamal in the 60s and 70s! And while Zaid certainly lives up to the family legacy, his sound here is very nicely different – a sharp-toned alto approach, and one that can come across in these effortless flurries of notes that are really beautiful – sounds that are pointed, but also set out in constellation in a very thoughtful way – as Zaid works alongside Pasquale Grasso on guitar, Ari Roland on bass, and Keith Balla on drums. The deftness of Nasser's playing is very striking, and almost reminds us of Lou Donaldson on his early 60s sides for Blue Note, in the pre-funk years. Not surprisingly, he takes on two Donaldson tunes – "Sputnik" and "The Stroller" – alongside original compositions "Redd's Tune" and "Junior's Soul" – plus a great version of "Naked City", and the tunes "SOS", "Kaqavik", and "Never Let Me Go". CD
Dick Oatts has a wonderful group here – a well-chosen quintet of musicians who really seem to open up the possibilities in each others' sound, especially when it comes to tone, texture, and color! Oatts is always great – his raspy alto is deft, but always very personal too – and it's offset here by the sparkling trumpet of Joe Magnarelli, who seems to be exploring a lot of fresh territory on the mostly-original tunes provided for the album by Dick. Pianist Anthony Wonsey blocks things out strongly with his work on the keys – bringing in a soulful, stepping vibe that's mighty nice – before soaring out on his own solos too. And bassist Ugonna Okegwo rounds out the snapping rhythms provided by drummer Chris Smith – making for a pair who's sense of timing really inspires the others. Titles include "Como Uno", "Speaking Relative", "Do Da Day", "Yesteryear", "Lossofyou", and "Midwest Mideast". CD
Horace is always one of our favorites, but the real stars of this album are the Franks – Frank Foster and Frank Strozier, working in a twin-horn frontline style that's simply magic! The set's got the same gentle groove as Strozier's excellent Steeplechase sides from the time – a 70s soul jazz sort of approach that's rich in tones and colors, and which has the tracks building nicely on one another in an almost blocky formation. Strozier's alto is incredibly soulful, and breaks out some nice moments from Foster that really stretch his sound – and titles include "Frank-ly Speaking", "Hit It", "Mirror Lake", "Chocolate Cadillac", "UAI", and "Misty Thursday". CD also features the bonus track "Veronica's Walk". LP, Vinyl record album
Jimmy Raney & Doug Raney —
Duets ... LP Steeplechase, 1980. Near Mint- ...
Spare strings – just the guitars of Doug and Jimmy Raney, working together in a set of mostly standards – swinging things surprisingly well, even without any other players helping them out – thanks to a natural sense of rhythm in both musicians! The pairing of the instruments is wonderful here – sensitive collaboration that has each of them shading their sounds, inflecting their tones, and really finding a way to support without overwhelming each other – the kind of father/son relationship that's already quite rare, and just about non-existent in music! The interplay is wonderful – no "two generations" gimmick at all, and instead just some really well-matched players who clearly delight in finding new ways to work together. Titles include "Action", "Invitation", "My One & Only Love", "Have You Met Miss Jones", "Days Of Wine & Roses", "Oleo", and "It Might As Well Be Spring". LP, Vinyl record album
Two great later albums from guitar legend Jimmy Raney – back to back in a single set! First up is Stolen Moments – a sweet set that has Jimmy's guitar matched with that of son Doug – both players working rhythm and melody, and skipping around each other in this joyous way that's quite different from some of Jim's earlier work. That sublime Raney tone is still very firmly in place – but it's matched by the youthful energy of Doug, too – and given a gentle swing that's really appreciated, thanks to work from Michael Moore on bass and Billy Hart on drums. Titles include "Jonathan's Waltz", "Stolen Moments", "I Should Care", "Samba Teekens", and "Alone Together". Duets features spare strings – just the guitars of Doug and Jimmy Raney, working together in a set of mostly standards – swinging things surprisingly well, even without any other players helping them out – thanks to a natural sense of rhythm in both musicians! The pairing of the instruments is wonderful here – sensitive collaboration that has each of them shading their sounds, inflecting their tones, and really finding a way to support without overwhelming each other – the kind of father/son relationship that's already quite rare, and just about non-existent in music! The interplay is wonderful – no "two generations" gimmick at all, and instead just some really well-matched players who clearly delight in finding new ways to work together. Titles include "Action", "Invitation", "My One & Only Love", "Have You Met Miss Jones", "Days Of Wine & Roses", "Oleo", and "It Might As Well Be Spring". CD
With Rockwell on tenor and soprano sax, Butch Lacy on piano, Jesper Lundgaard on bass, and Jukkis Uotila on drums – on titles that include "The Downside", "Away", "On The Natch", and "Built In". LP, Vinyl record album
Hilton Ruiz —
Excition ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1977. Used ...
An incredible record from the young Hilton Ruiz – the kind of fresh-voiced session that first got the attention of a jaded jazz crowd in the 70s! Ruiz is playing here with equal parts Latin roots, soulful rhythms, and free-thinking solos – pushing the envelope of 70s soul jazz with a style that's a bit in the bag of that displayed by Chick Corea in the mid 60s, when he was making waves with Blue Mitchell, Stan Getz, and others. Ruiz clearly seems to know where "outside" is – but he stays enough on this side of the fence to keep things swinging and soulful, yet always holds the outer realm forth as a secret promise. Players on the set are all great – with Richard Williams on trumpet, Frank Foster on tenor and soprano, Buster Williams on bass, and Roy Brooks on drums – and titles include "Blues For Becky", "Excition", "Dedicated To The Cooker", and "The House That Love Built". CD also features a bonus track – "Origin". CD
A great early album by Hilton Ruiz – recorded at a time when he was coming off of work with Roland Kirk, with all the soulfulness that you'd expect him to pick up from such a setting. The album features a mixture of trio and quintet tracks, the latter of which are the best, as they feature Richard Williams and Frank Foster in the frontline on horns, plus rhythm by Buster Williams and Roy Brooks. These tunes bounce along nicely with a stretched out groove – searching modally, with some of those great 70s solos that Foster could lay out when he was at his best. Titles include "Origin", "Steppin Into Beauty", "The Last Profit", and "Excition". CD
Gene Segal —
Spiral ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
Guitarist Gene Segal has his instrument wrapped up nicely here in a trio – with work on Hammond Charette and drums from Bruce Cox – in a group that has a nicely different vibe than some of the more retro-styled organ combos! Segal changes up his sound a bit from track to track – sometimes playing with a bit of chromatic fuzz – sometimes more string-sensitive – and almost always working with his own compositions, which again really change things up in a good way – providing a fresh perspective on the traditional mix of Hammond and guitar, while also never resorting to any gimmicky modes. Titles include "Dharma", "Us", "Two Sides To Every Story", "Creeper", "Spiral", "Blues Out", and "Sunken Treasure". CD
Archie Shepp & Jasper Van't Hof —
Mama Rose ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1982. Used ...
A mindblowing little record – one of those jazz meetings you might never have thought possible, and every bit as great as you'd expect! By the time of this set, Lars Gullin had already reached the heights of jazz in Scandinavia – one of the hippest players of the 50s, ready to branch out into even new ideas and expressions in the 60s! Enter Archie Shepp, quite young at the time, but already a fiercely creative talent on the tenor – blowing here alongside Gullin in the relaxed, open format of a live date at the Club Montmartre in Copenhagen – a well-recorded performance that was done for Swedish radio, and which has both players taking very long solos. It's great to hear Lars really stretch out – sounding looser and grittier than on some of his studio work – and Shepp's really on fire blowing through the standards on the date – almost hinting at that approach he'd use in the late 70s, but with all the burning quality of his youth! Other players include Tete Montoliu on piano, Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen on bass, and Alex Riel on drums – and titles include "You Stepped Out Of A Dream", "The House I Live In", "I Should Care", and "Sweet Georgia Brown". LP, Vinyl record album
Fantastic work from Gary Smulyan – a baritone saxophonist who may well be one of the few really standout players on his instrument these days – working in a legacy that puts his mighty talents right up there with Pepper Adams, Serge Chaloff, and a rare few others who could really make the baritone swing! Smulyan plays here in just a trio – David Wong on bass and Rodney Green on drums – and the tracks are long, flowing, and open – really illustrating Gary's strength as a soloist, and his deft imagination on an instrument that doesn't easily give itself to some players. The song list is great, too – titles by Ted Curson, Al Cohn, Mal Waldron, and Jimmy Giuffre – plus one tune by Gary too. Titles include "Ahma See Ya", "Vodka", "Deep People", "Cohn Pone", "Tale Of The Fingers", and "Hanid". CD
Pianist Mark Soskin has played on dozens of records over the decades, yet has given us just a handful as a leader – which is quite a shame, as his work on an album like this is totally great! The pianist has this warmth and flow right from the start – the kind of understated accompaniment he can bring to others, but which really sparkles out in the lead here – in the company of bassist Jay Anderson and drummer Anthony Pinciotti – who both often really let Mark take off, and overwhelm the proceedings with his many charms! Soskin's work on the keys often is so effortless, it might be easy to miss the subtle shadings and personality he brings to the music – but we're guessing that, like us, you'll be grabbed by the album right away. Titles include a great version of Luiz Eca's "The Dolphin", plus the Soskin originals "Hearts & Minds" and "Slider" – plus takes on "If I Should Lose You", "Sometime Ago", "Eiderdown", and "Old Folks". CD
As a rule, we shouldn't like sessions that have a Marvin Gaye tune as the title – but in this case, we'll make an exception! The album's great one – filled with warmth, fire, and imagination – and key proof that Frank Strozier was still going strong in the 70s – after some early breakout work on the Chicago scene, and two brilliant early 60s albums on Riverside. The session has Strozier reunited with Memphis hometown partner Harold Mabern – a perfect accompanist to his fluid sound and soulful tone – and the rest of the group features Stafford James on bass, Louis Hayes on drums, and Danny Moore on trumpet. Tracks include some great originals – like "Chelsea Drugs", "The Chief", "Ollie", and "Psalm For John Coltrane". CD also features 5 other bonus tracks – all alternates. CD
Tenorist Gregory Tardy comes on here with a surprising degree of complexity – a range of expressions on his instrument that run from straightforward, to sharply angular, to dark-toned and sonorous – all in the space of a single session! The sense of individual spirit is stronger than ever with Tardy – as he reaches into so many different areas with his well-developed approach to the music – especially sharp on his own compositions, which make up a good amount of the album here. The group also features well-matched trumpet from Philip Dizack, who seems to shift his mood to match Tardy's – and the rest of the quintet includes John Chin on piano, Sean Conly on bass, and Jaimeo Brown on drums. Titles include "The Law Of Biogenesis", "Lil Patient One", "Ancient Of Days", "Song For Joshua", "The Myth Of Privacy", "The Narrow Door", and "Precious Abby". CD
Joel Weiskopf —
Message ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
Pianist Joel Weiskopf has been making records for a number of years – but with each recent release, he seems to be honing his craft even more – able to balance darkness and light with effortless ease, but often in a way that never calls too much attention to itself, or to its maker! There's a subtle sort of brilliance going on here – a way of working things under the surface, which is offset by some of the bolder lines from tenorist Rob Scheps, who also plays a bit of soprano sax on the record – and illuminates the sound nicely, often in contrasting ways with Weiskopf! Joel's not afraid to hit a few more sensitive, lyrical moments, but can shift gears easily too – which he seems to do especially well when urged on by the bass of Joe Fitzgerald and bass of Marcello Pellitteri. Titles include "LML", "The Message", "Song For Karla", "The Original Search", "Temporary Estrangement", "Another Chance Today", and "Victory March". CD
Christian Winther —
Only Plan ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2006. Used ...
Eliot Zigmund —
Time Was ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
Drummer Eliot Zigmund rose to great fame in the trio of Bill Evans in the late 70s – and after that, he also had a strong stretch with pianist Don Friedman – both artists he seems to really pay tribute to here! The date's a nicely understated one – warm sounds that are spacious, but swinging – piano from Mike Eckroth, tenor and soprano from Chris Cheek, and bass from Morrie Louden – all players whose sense of timing is strongly matched with that of Zigmund, who only seems to take a few points in the recording to really state his presence. The choice of material here is wonderfully thoughtful, too – a range of tracks by Charles Minugs, Kurt Weil, Steve Swallow, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Gordon Jenkins, and others – all of which might have come out sounding a lot more hodge-podge in the hands of another leader, but which work together beautifully here. Titles include "Supposition", "Liebslied", "Duke Ellington's Sound Of Love", "Olha Maria", "Eiderdown", "Goodbye", and "Time Was". CD
One of the few 70s albums as a leader from pianist Albert Dailey – a player who was making great magic with Stan Getz at the time, but who also seems to have a completely different voice on his own! Dailey's got a way of being open, joyous, and very creative – but always in a style that's never too familiar, nor ever aping the modes of some of his more famous 70s contemporaries – which creates a very fresh sound to the whole record, that kind of special, stand-alone spirit that maybe graces some of the best of the Japanese-recorded trio dates of the 70s, and a rare few American sessions too. Accompaniment is superb – Buster Williams on bass and Billy Hart on drums – both players with more than enough imagination to both keep up with Dailey's creativity, and augment him in just the right way – on titles that include "Body & Soul", "Yesterdays", "Lover Man", "Music That Makes Me Dance", and "That Old Feeling". CD features the bonus track "Night & Day". CD
Johnny Dyani With John Tchicai & Dudu Pukwana —
Witchdoctor's Son ... LP Steeplechase (Denmark), 1978. Used ...
Temporarily Out Of Stock
A late 70s classic from South African bassist Johnny Dyani – and an album that reunites him with Dudu Pukwana, the saxophonist in their original group The Blue Notes! The album also features John Tchicai on both alto and soprano sax, as well as added guitar from Afredo Do Nascimento, plus some added percussion. Tunes have a nice rhythmic feel, but the solos are also quite raw and searing – really blowing open the whole thing, in the manner of some of the post-Blue Notes early 70s work by Pukwana, Dy anai, and sadly departed bandmate Mongezi Feza. Titles include "Heart With Minor's Face", "Magwaza", "Eyomzi", "Mbiza", and "Radebe". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has some light wear, but is great overall.)
Trombonist Vincent Gardner really knows how to make an album cook in an old school sort of way – and here, he steps out with a tight sextet in a soulful set of bebop classics – handled in long takes that point more towards a late 50s/early 60s hardbop style! The combo is excellent – Ryan Kisor on trumpet, Dick Oatts on alto, Peter Zak on piano, Peter Washington on bass, and Ali Jackson on drums – grooving hard right from the get-go, and in ways that are definitely their own – and avoid the too-familiar takes that you'd sometimes hear on tunes like these. The horn players respond especially strong to the setting – and titles include "Sid's Delight", "Dizzy Atmosphere", "Another Hair Do", "Double Talk", "Darn That Dream", "Compulsion", and "I Waited For You". CD
Dexter mostly plays tenor, in this great 1964 date with Tete Montoliu on piano – but he also vocalizes a bit on a version of the Benny Green tune "I Want To Blow Now". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has clear tape on the seams.)
Carl Winther & Jerry Bergonzi —
Inner Journey ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. Used ...
Temporarily Out Of Stock
A really great pairing, and one we're not sure we've ever heard before – the tenor of Jerry Bergonzi and the piano of Carl Winther – coming together here in an album that sparkles especially strongly on its big number of original tunes by Winther! Winther's got a round, rolling approach to his music that's also greatly supported by the bass of Johnny Aman in the quartet – and while Bergonzi retains some of his sharper edges on tenor, he also seems to hit this lyrical beauty that we might not always associate with his music – not mellowing out, but maybe opening more emotionally – in ways that really illuminate his longstanding genius on his horn. The quartet also features Anders Mogensen on drums – who often seems to kick back a little bit, and let the bass and piano really shape the tunes – on titles that include "Triton", "Bar None", "KMA", "Inner Journey", "Requiem For JW", "Talisman", "Golem", and "Long Gone". CD
Fantastic vibes all around – a double set of work from the team of Walt Dickerson and Richard Davis! First up is the album Divine Gemini – a set that has some incredible interplay between the vibes of Walt Dickerson and bass of Richard Davis – both players who've already had a long resume of creative music by the time of this session, yet coming together here in ways that are completely new and fresh! Dickerson's often in the warmer side of his tones – still quite free at points, but never too obtuse – and always with plenty of room for the lovingly soulful sounds of Davis' bass. Titles include "Lucille", "Divine Gemini", "Always Positive", and "Her Intuition". Next up is the album Tenderness – a set recorded during the same space as the previous album from Walt Dickerson and Richard Davis – but sometimes with a slightly different feeling in the sound! There's definitely some of the tenderness promised by the title – especially at those great points when the colors of Dickerson's vibes are flowing beautifully next to Davis' mellow basslines. But there's also other points that are a bit more dynamic, too – bold notes from Walt that have this sense of texture that's really amazing – followed by equally wonderful sounds from Richard. Titles include "Tenderness", "So Thoughtful", "The Road Must End", and "Play Son Play". CD
A standout 70s set from Dexter Gordon – one that's a bit tighter than some of his longer-blown dates from overseas – and which almost sparkles with the same power as his 60s albums on Blue Note! The group here is nice and tight – with Kenny Drew on piano, Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen on bass, and Albert Heath on drums – all grooving in a style that's sharply focused, and which really sets the stage for Dex's wonderful tone on the solos. Pedersen's bass is great too – sometimes stepping out with a presence not usually heard on a set like this – and titles include the Gordon originals "The Apartment", "Antabus", and "Candlelight Lady" – plus "Wee Dot" and "Old Folks". CD also features the bonus track "Stablemates" – from the same session, but previously unissued. CD
A very unusual set that has Dexter Gordon blowing with larger backings from Palle Mikkelborg! Titles include "Naima", "Tivoli", "Ernie's Tune", and "The Girl With The Purple Eyes". LP, Vinyl record album
(Original Danish pressing. Cover has some edge wear.)
Some of the greatest work ever recorded by tenorist Buck Hill – a local player on the DC scene, and one who hardly ever got his due on record! We'd rank Buck right up there with Von Freeman – another local player who spent years honing his tenor sound in a local setting, yet who never got the right sort of fame because he kept away from the New York or LA scenes. And here, Hill's got an incredibly timeless sound in his horn – really deep, beautiful, and undeniably soulful – a sense of raspy tone that goes back to Lester Young or Ben Webster, but a freer, more open sense of swing too – brought out nicely by rhythm work from Reuben Brown on piano, Wilbur Little on bass, and Billy Hart on drums. This set features the second half of a great live European performance from 1981 – with titles that include "Alone Together", "Impressions", and "Penn Station". CD
Great European work from Shirley Horn – recorded live, in a setting that really lets her stretch out nicely – almost as if she's finding the new sort of maturity that would mark her music in the 80s, right during the space of the concert! The format is quite spare – just Horn's piano behind her vocals, plus bass from Charles Ables and drums from Billy Hart – the last of whom is especially restrained – often keeping way off to the side, but stepping in nicely when Shirley needs him to swing. And as on some of Horn's best records, the bass is key to the whole sound – inflecting the vocals with these deep tones that are beautiful – almost a nodding response to the careful emotion she brings to her lyrics. Titles include "You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To", "Good For Nothing Joe", "Someone Like That In Your Life", "Git Rid Of Monday", "Mediation", "If Dreams Came True", "Lover Man", "Violets For Your Furs", "Baby Won't You Please", "My Man", "More Than You Know", and "Our Love Is Here To Stay". CD
Khan Jamal Quartet —
Dark Warrior ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1984. New Copy ...
Out Of Stock
A sweet little set – and a strong international meeting of talents, of the sort European labels were fond of putting together at the time! The group has a cohesive sound, as all have experience in both out and more swinging styles – and the great, and under-recorded, Charles Tyler plays alto & bari, and the mighty Johnny Dyani is on bass – with drummer Leroy Lowe finishing up the group. Jamal's vibes provide a dark, rich backdrop for Tyler's expressive blowing over the elastic rhythms played by Dyani and drummer Leroy Lowe. The set features 6 Jamal originals, and titles include "Dark Warrior", "Johnny's In Malmo", "Just Us", "Principal", "Whisper Sweet", and "Hucksterman". CD features a bonus track too! CD
LeeAnn Ledgerwood —
Renewal ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
Out Of Stock
An album that bursts out beautifully, right from the very first note – then continues to hold us rapt throughout, with that strong sense of surprise we love from a really well-done piano trio album! LeeAnn Ledgerwood's no stranger to the recording studio, but this album really feels like something special and different – a set that has her musical imagination maybe sparked with even more swing than before, all balanced with a warmly lyrical touch – and set up in perfect communication with the bass of Ron McClure and drums of Billy Hart! The album's the sort that someone might be playing, and you'd step over and ask "What's that?" – especially on the more upbeat numbers, which really grab us. Titles include the originals "Renewal" and "I Wish You Knew" – plus "All Blues", "Summernite", "502 Blues", "A Shade Of Jade", and "Autumn Leaves". CD
Mike Richmond Cello Quartet —
Pendulum ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. Used ...
Out Of Stock
Not a record with four cellos in the lead – but a set that features bassist Mike Richmond picking up the instrument in a glittering tribute to the genius of Oscar Pettiford! The set features all Pettiford compositions, played by a swinging group that features Peter Zak on piano, Jay Anderson on bass, and Billy Drummond on drums – players who provide a warm core while Richmond mostly plucks the cello, and uses the instrument in wonderfully melodic ways – that mixture of deep groove and lyrical swing that Pettiford brought to his most unique recordings of the 50s. Zak's piano has a harder bite, which makes for a nice contrast in tones – and titles include "Why Not That's What", "Laverne Walk", "Cello Again", "The Pendulum At Falcon's Lair", "My Little Cello", "Tamalpais Love Song To The Winds", and "Oscalypso". CD
A great later date from this trumpeter who made a few key 50s sessions on Prestige! The quintet date features Idrees on trumpet and flugelhorn – with Per Goldschmidt on tenor, Horace Parlan on piano, Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen on bass, and Kenny Clarke on drums! LP, Vinyl record album
Johnny Dyani Quartet —
Angolian Cry ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1985. New Copy ...
Out Of Stock
A strong quartet session from bassist Johnny Dyani – recorded with John Tchicai on sax, Harry Beckett on trumpet, and Billy Hart on drums! The sound on the session is quite "outside" – letting Tchicai and Beckett plenty of room to solo freely – but there's also a soulful component at the bottom of the set, with warm rolling basslines that show that Dyani's still very much in charge of the session, and some great work on drums from Billy Hart. Titles include "Blues For Moyake", "UDF", "Year Of The Child", and "Angolian Cry". CD also features the bonus track "Portrait Of Mosa Gwangwa". CD
Andy Laverne —
Faith ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 2017. New Copy ...
Out Of Stock
Pianist Andy Laverne is really showing us all sides of his talents here – not just his wonderful skills on the keys of the piano, but also his strong ear for fresh compositions as well! All the tracks here are originals by Andy, and they're beautiful tracks that sparkle nicely with dark colors and tones – elements underscored strongly not just by Laverne's work on piano, but also by the album's sparkling contributions from Alex Sipiagin on both trumpet and flugelhorn! The pair together are a delight throughout – balanced out with a depth that seems so much more than just the sum of their parts – given a strongly soulful rhythm current by Mike Richmond on bass and Jason Tiemann on drums – the latter of whom has this snap to his work on the kit that moves along tunes that might have otherwise got lost in a moody morass. The whole thing is great – maybe one of the best sessions we've ever heard from Laverne – and titles include "Enigma", "Faith", "Touch Sensitive", "All Things Considered", "Paramour No More", and "Double Down". CD
Frank Strozier —
Remember Me ... CD Steeplechase (Denmark), 1976. New Copy ...
Out Of Stock
A gem of a record – the kind of overlooked 70s session we really treasure! Reed player Frank Strozier was one of the all-time under-discovered greats – and this set reunites him with his old Memphis partner/MJT+3 bandmate, Harold Mabern – a perfect pairing for Strozier's warm and fluid style on alto sax and flute! The pair always worked perfectly together, and on this session of laidback modern soul jazz material, they hit a very nice groove, and play off the best of each other's warm lyrical tendencies. Other players include Danny Moore, Lisle Atkinson, and Michael Carvin – and the set's filled with great original tutnes that include "Kram Samba", "Neicy", "Sidestreet", "Hit It", and "For Our Elders". CD