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CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Nicolas BeardeI Remember You – The Music Of Nat King Cole ... CD
Right Groove, 2019. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
Nicolas Bearde is a singer with equal parts experience in jazz and soul – which makes him a perfect artist to take on the music of Nat King Cole – which he does here in a way that may well be better than any other Cole tribute we've heard, including a recent effort by Gregory Porter! This set's got more of a jazz vibe, and a very open style – classics associated with Nat's years recording for Capitol Records, but swung with a modern small combo style – thanks to arrangements from pianist Josh Nelson, whose talents really shape the set in a great way – as does tenorist Eric Alexander, who appears on a few tracks too – adding a tenor/vocal approach that Nat never used. Titles include "Funny", "That Sunday That Summer", "Sweet Lorraine", "Tenderly", "Rules Of The Road", and "I Wish You Love". CD
 
Possible matches: 370
Possible matches2
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
DonovanCatch The Wind (right side cover) ... LP
Hickory, Mid 60s. Very Good ... $19.99
... LP, Vinyl record album
(Mono pressing with deep groove. Cover has ring and edge wear.)

Possible matches3
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Jimmy RuffinGroove Governor ... CD
SOUL/Elemental (France), 1970. New Copy ... $9.99
One of those Motown treasures that would have been a runaway hit, were it issued on a label with less going on – but which somehow got lost amidst the shuffle of all the other Motor City greatness of the time! Don't let obscurity make you think that Jimmy Ruffin's not giving his best, though – as the album's a stunner right from the start – one of those you pick up, check out, and wonder how you've lived with before – as Jimmy takes all the darker energy that the Four Tops and Temptations were bringing to their late 60s material, and gievs it an even spookier showcase with his fantastic lead vocals! The tunes are a mix of fresh numbers and under-recorded cuts, too – which further makes the record great – and the whole thing's got that special pre-Cali sound from Motown, that point when the label was really hitting some new creative moments. Titles include "Gathering Memories", "Just Before Love", "Honey Come Back", "Living In A World I Created For Myself", and "If You Will Let Me I Know I Can". CD
(Limited edition!)

Possible matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Johnny TillotsonIt Keeps Right On A-Hurtin' ... LP
Cadence, 1962. Very Good+ ... $2.99
... LP, Vinyl record album
(US mono red label deep groove pressing.)

Possible matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousRockin The Groove – When Groove Was More Than Just A Habit ... CD
Bear Family (Germany), Mid 50s. New Copy ... $15.99 25.99
A massive amount of great groovers from the Groove Records subsidiary of RCA in the 50s – home to a hotbed of R&B, early soul, and other killer cuts from the postwar underground of the 45 rpm single! Nobody's ever dug so deeply into the Groove catalog before – and Bear Family have done a wonderful job of unearthing rare nuggets we've never heard before, and mixing them with other Groove gems that are still mostly on the obscure side of the 50s R&B spectrum – all to make a killer assortment that has plenty of greatness to offer, even if you've already got lots of jump blues and R&B in your collection! The music is as lively as the look of the package – and the booklet features over 60 pages of track by track notes on the selections – 35 titles that include "Charmaine" by Frank Brunson, "Big Foot Mammy" by Paul Williams, "Where Is Joe" by Emmett Hobson, "Doo Ba Dee" by Maymie Watts, "Shake Till I'm Shook" by Beverly Wright, "Love Ya Like Crazy" by Chris Powell & The Blue Flames, "A Little Boy's Dream" by George Benson, "Bye By Baby" by Clayton Love, "Hoodoo" by Roy Gaines, "Right Now" by Zilla Mays, and "My Head Goes Round" by Oscar Black. CD

Possible matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousSouthern Groove – Hotlanta, Aware, & Clintone Funk & Soul – Masterful & Obscure 1970s Funk & Soul From Georgia & Alabama ... CD
BGP (UK), 1970s. New Copy ... $12.99 18.98
Funky soul from one of the less-discovered scenes in the south – the hotbed of small labels that were making some mighty great grooves in Atlanta during the 70s! The Peachtree city isn't nearly as well-cited as a soul music source in comparison to places like Memphis, Muscle Shoals, and even Miami – but back in the mid 70s, there was something really special going on – and for a strong moment, a few different labels really gave the city some great music! Much of the work here represents the changing character of Atlanta itself – deep soul vocals that were forged in a longer southern tradition, mixed with well-crafted grooves that show all the modern elements coming into play as the city grew and matured. Most of this work has a pre-disco vibe – with rhythms that are similar to the early work of Fatback or Kool & The Gang – with the difference that the singers in the lead are all pretty darn great on their own. BGP did an excellent job of choosing the tracks for the set, and the notes, as always, are great – and the package features 22 titles that include "Let's Dance" by Family Plann, "Seeds Of Life" by East LA Car Pool, "Down At The Disco" by Maggabrain, "Ain't It Funky" by Johnny Jacobs, "The Bump" by Floyd Smith, "Help Me (parts 1 & 2)" by Archie Russell, "I Don't Know What It Is But It Sure Is Funky" by Ripple, "Funk Pump" by The Counts, "Claim Jumpin" by Bill Brandon, "Checkmate" by The Ebony Godfather, "Shouldn't I Be Given The Right To Be Wrong" by Joe Hinton, "Husband In Law" by CL Blast, "Only A Fool" by Loleatta Holloway, "When I Build My World" by Jimmy Lewis, and "Complain To The Clouds" by Deep Velvet. CD

Possible matches7
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousTwelve Inch Eighties – Let's Groove (3CD set) ... CD
Crimson (UK), 1980s. New Copy 3 CDs ... $9.99 12.99
Easy to groove with cuts this great – a sweet range of 80s 12 inch singles, mostly in soul-based styles, but also featuring a few nice bits from leftfield too! The core of the set comes from a time when a 12" remix could really take a soul cut in a whole new direction – and some of the other tracks here follow suit in a similar spirit – making for an overstuffed set of 30 titles that includes "Let's Groove (remixed holiday version)" by Earth Wind & Fire, "Love Come Down (12" version)" by Evelyn Champagne King, "This Time I Know It's For Real (12" ext rmx)" by Donna Summer, "Take Your Time Do It Right (12" version)" by SOS Band, "Go Deh Yaka (club)" by Moyaka, "Move Closer (new mix)" by Phyllis Nelson, "Another Night (dance mix)" by Aretha Franklin, "Conga (dance mix)" by Miami Sound Machine, "All Fall Down (full length version)" by Five Star, "All Around The World (long version)" by Lisa Stansfield, "Caribbean Queen (ext mix)" by Billy Ocean, "Loco In Acapulco (PH balance mix)" by Four Tops, "Party All The Time (special version)" by Eddie Murphy, "Walk Right Now (12" John Luongo disco mix)" by The Jackson, Use It Up & Wear It Out (12" single edit)" by Odyssey, and "Doctorin The House (vocal verse)" by Coldcut with Yazz. CD

Possible matches8
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ MarzMake It Right ... LP
Liberty, 1982. Very Good- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Warm harmony soul from Marz – sometimes sweet and mellow, sometimes upbeat and grooving – but always done in a tight style that's right on the money all the time! Marz echo a bit of the sound of LA soul in the early 80s – particularly some of the bassier modes of the Solar Records groups on their funkier cuts – but they've also got a nicely unique way of putting over a warm ballad without making things too sleepy or too commercial – almost a bit spacey and stepping, when they really get things right! Titles include "Hooked On That Lovin' Thing", "Stay With Me", "Seriously", "You Got Me Crying Again", "Move It Groove It", "Make It Right", "One More Minute", and "Everybody Get Up". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has light wear.)

Possible matches9
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Charlie RichToo Many Teardrops – The Complete Groove & RCA Recordings ... CD
RCA/Ace (UK), Early 60s. New Copy 2CD ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A great look at a really lost legacy in music from Charlie Rich – obscure sides recorded for RCA Records in the early 60s – done after his initial rush of genius on Sun Records, and before his later commercial success on Epic! Charlie's got one of the all-time great voices in pop music – a richness that easily rivals that of Memphis contemporary Elvis Presley, and which never fully got its due at the time – even though labels like RCA and Smash provided Rich with some fantastic material and production! Charlie's work for Smash has been picked up by the cognoscenti in recent years, and we'd honestly put these RCA tracks right up alongside them – with a similar Tennessee blend of soul and rock, rural and urban – all delivered by Charlie's incredibly charming vocal approach, and recorded with a depth that goes way beyond the usual RCA production modes of the time. There's plenty of currents of soul in the mix – even some New York-styled modes, which really work well with Rich – and this 40 track set is the first time this material has ever been pulled together – long-overdue, and a real treat to our ears! Titles include "Like Someone In Love", "Lady Love", "Nice & Easy", "Big Boss Man", "It's All Over Now", "The Grass Is Always Greener", "Now Everybody Knows", "My Mountain Dew", "The Big Build Up", "She Called Me Baby", "Gentleman Jim", "Christmas Greetings", "All Of My Friends Are Gonna Be Strangers", "Is Goodbye That Easy To Say", "Tragedy", "Ten Dollars & A Clean White Shirt", "Tomorrow Night", and "No Room To Dance". CD

Possible matches10
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Lonnie SmithWhen The Night Is Right ... LP
Chiaroscuro, 1980. New Copy (reissue)... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Great later work from Lonnie Smith – a set that's quite different than his initial Hammond material for Blue Note – but equally excellent in its own sort of way! The album has Lonnie playing both Fender Rhodes and organ – the former with this sweet, tight groove that's mighty nice – a bit like when Johnny Hammond or Jack McDuff touched the instrument on their own albums from the 70s – with all the chunky, funky qualities learned from their solos on the Hammond. Production is by Sonny Lester, and the groups here are relatively big, which gives a bit of a blacksploitation funk to the record – but part of the record also has a leaner group with Joe Lovano on tenor, blowing some beautifully extended solos – as well as George Benson on guitar. Titles include a great ten minute take on "Impressions" – plus "Apex", "Lean Meat", "When The Night Is Right", and "It's Changed". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Snowy RedRight To Die ... LP
Dirty Dance, 1982. Near Mint- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A great second set from Snowy Red – aka Micky Mike – filled with spare electronics, great drum machine patterns, and a bit more bass and guitar than before! There's plenty of processing on the production – very much in the best Sheffield mode of the early 80s – with a quality that's arguably even darker than some of the best British work of the time. Yet there's also a groove, too – almost like Human League hit the dancefloors, but still kept all the fuzzy analogue synth of their earliest records – making for mix that few others could do this well! Titles include "Nowhere", "Relax", "The Right To Die", "Madman", "Opium", and "Euroshima". LP, Vinyl record album
(Recent reissue.)

Possible matches12
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ VariousSoul Music Lovers Only – Early Days Of Disco 1973 to 1977 – Selected By T Groove ... CD
Ultra Vybe (Japan), Mid 70s. Used ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A huge look at the early days of disco music – served up in tracks from a host of the small indie labels who helped get the groove going in the first place! Lots of these tracks represent a version of soul stepping forward with a fuller groove – great arrangements, impeccable production, and very strong vocals that add a whole heck of a lot of heart to the songs – sung both by groups and solo artists. Titles include "I Wanna Give You Tomorrow" by Benny Troy, "I Wanna Spend My Whole Life With You" by Street People, "Love In Motion" by George McCrae, "Dreaming A Dream" by Crown Heights Affair, "Free Man" by South Shore Commission, "Let It Flow" by Tamiko Jones, "Party Music" by Pat Lundy, "Where Has Our Love Gone" by Ronnie LaShannon, "Venus" by Frankie Avalon, "Let's Make Love" by Jeanne Napoli, "We're On The Right Track" by Ultra High Frequency, "Stoned Out Of My Mind" by Maryann Farra & Satin Soul, and "Rockin In The Cradle Of Liberty" by LB Bonanza. CD

Possible matches13
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ VariousSoul Music Lovers Only – Early Days Of Disco 1973 to 1977 – Selected By T Groove ... CD
Ultra Vybe (Japan), Mid 70s. New Copy ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A huge look at the early days of disco music – served up in tracks from a host of the small indie labels who helped get the groove going in the first place! Lots of these tracks represent a version of soul stepping forward with a fuller groove – great arrangements, impeccable production, and very strong vocals that add a whole heck of a lot of heart to the songs – sung both by groups and solo artists. Titles include "I Wanna Give You Tomorrow" by Benny Troy, "I Wanna Spend My Whole Life With You" by Street People, "Love In Motion" by George McCrae, "Dreaming A Dream" by Crown Heights Affair, "Free Man" by South Shore Commission, "Let It Flow" by Tamiko Jones, "Party Music" by Pat Lundy, "Where Has Our Love Gone" by Ronnie LaShannon, "Venus" by Frankie Avalon, "Let's Make Love" by Jeanne Napoli, "We're On The Right Track" by Ultra High Frequency, "Stoned Out Of My Mind" by Maryann Farra & Satin Soul, and "Rockin In The Cradle Of Liberty" by LB Bonanza. CD

Possible matches14
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ VariousWheedle's Groove Vol 2 – Seattle Funk, Modern Soul, & Boogie 1972 to 1987 ... CD
Light In The Attic, Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy Gatefold ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A second set of grooves from the Seattle scene – and a much-needed follow-up to the first Wheedles Groove compilation! This set picks up where the last one left off – still digging the funk and soul of the 70s, but also following the scene into clubby territory, modern soul, and boogie too – with a range of under-discovered gems that groove right into the mid 80s! Just about all the work here is new to our ears – pulled from obscure indie singles from the city's small labels – and served up in some surprisingly sophisticated styles that match all the poise and class of the best Cali soul of the time. Light In The Attic have done a really wonderful job with the package – deep notes that really match the research that went into the record – but a sense of funk and flair that makes the whole thing way more than just a history project. The grooves are totally great – a really fresh discovery, especially if you dig 80s boogie and club – and tracks include "Don't Lose Your Love" by Don Brown, "Get Off The Phone" by Epicentre, "Trouble In Mind" by Malik Din, "Love One Another" by Frederick Robinson III, "I Don't Wanna Lose Your Love" by Bernadette Bascom, "I'm Through With You" by Romel Westwood, "Holding On" by Unfinished Business, "You Turn Me On (Portland session mix)" by Push, "I Wonder Love" by Seattle Pure Dynamite, "Darlin Oh Darlin" by Steppen Stones, and "Let's Backtrack" by Cold Bold & Together. CD

Possible matches15
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Ray Parker JrFor Those Who Like To Groove – The Essential Ray Parker Jr & Raydio ... CD
Arista/Big Break (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy 2CD ... Out Of Stock
For those who like to groove, Ray Parker Jr is often the obvious choice – as the man's got a cool, classy style that helped redefine the role of the male singer in soul for a whole new generation – but also almost always finds a way to make things move! Parker began recording during the height of the disco years, but right from the start he was always looking forward to something new – in territory matched by contemporaries like Frankie Beverly or Teddy Pendergrass, which aimed for a modern soul style that was perfect for the maturing audience of the time – yet which still could come across with an undeniable hook and groove. And while Ray's hits are pretty well known, the many recorded a heck of a lot more great music – both as a solo act, and with his Raydio group too – a good deal of which is included on this set. Like other BBR collections, this one features a fair bit of mixes from singles alongside album cuts – and titles include "Jack & Jill", "A Woman Needs Love", "All In The Way You Get Down (12" rmx)", "Hot Stuff", "Is This A Love Song (single version)", "More Than One Way To Love A Woman (single)", "Two Places At The Same Time", "Honey I'm Rich", "Get Down", "Still In The Groove", "Betcha Can't Love Me Just Once", "Tonight's The Night", "Stay The Night", "After Midnite", "One Sided Love Affair", "Over You", "The People Next Door", "Ghostbusters (12" version)", "The Other Woman (12" vesion)", "Let Me Go (single)", "I Don't Think That Man Should Sleep Alone (12" version)", "Girls Are More Fun (single", and "Bad Boy". CD

Possible matches16
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ CJ YoshizawaJapanese Groove Disc Guide A to Z (paperback) ... Book
Rittor (Japan), 2015. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
One of the most essential discographies we've ever seen – mostly because we own almost none of the records in the book, which makes it an essential volume to use for digging in the crates! This time around, the folks at Rittor – who've given us other great record books over the years – turn their talents to the world of Japanese groove, particularly from the 70s and early 80s – a time when so many Japanese artists were picking up on the best styles in American soul, and using the music to come up with some great grooves of their own! The book is filled with hundreds of full color images of rare Japanese records by a variety of artists – soulful, funky, even a bit of fusion and AOR groove too – and each record is listed with a label and date of release, plus a lot more information in Japanese. Unlike other books of this nature, which focus on American or European artists, and feature information in alphabetic characters, this one has a lot more Japanese overall – but the covers and other English text are more than enough to point you in the right direction to dig – for hundreds of great records you never even knew existed! Book

Possible matches17
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Harada KazunoriKotekote Sound Machine – Masterpieces Of Jazz Groove, Funk, & Soul ... Book
Space Shower (Japan), 2019. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
A very cool book on rare funky records – one done in a style that's similar to some of the Japanese label discographies on the market, but which has a very special focus! This book features a well-selected array of funk, soul, and jazz records with an emphasis on the classic years of the 60s and 70s – but balanced out with entries from other years too, all in a format that's really unusual! The core of the book is a "top 100" list of entries – which all appear on the left-facing page – with a full color image of the cover, titles, dates, and other details in English – and a larger description of the record in Japanese. Then, on the right-facing page, you'll find other suggestions – sometimes records, sometimes CDs – some old, some newer – again with core details in English and the rest in Japanese. The book has a great look and an excellent approach – and like the other Japanese books of this nature, there's still plenty to understand and enjoy for the English-speaking record collector. 224 pages, softcover, full color. Book

Possible matches18
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ World Sax QuartetComplete World Sax Quartet On Black Saint & Soul Note (Steppin With/WSQ/Revue/Live Zurich/Live Brooklyn Academy/Moving Right Along) (6CD set) ... CD
Black Saint (Italy), Early 80s. New Copy 6CD ... Out Of Stock
Genius work from the World Sax Quartet – a really unique ensemble who not only set the tone for a generation of jazz musicians to come, but also gave focus to some richly expressive talents from the 70s underground! The quartet is something of a supergroup right from the start – graced with tremendous reed work by David Murray, Julius Hemphill, Oliver Lake, and Hamiet Bluiett – all key American players who really helped transform the sound of jazz in the 70s – coming together here in a whole new way on seminal sides for the Black Saint/Soul Note label! The format – which inspired many others – is really compelling – as the group's sounds come only from saxes, no other instrumentation at all – with the four wind players handling all rhythm and melody, and making some really amazing music in the process. Horn interplay had never been heard so clearly before – especially as here, the stars put aside their egos, and never try to overblow each other – and instead have this brilliant way of working together to craft a new sort of groove. The box set features the albums Steppin With, WSQ, Revue, Live In Zurich, and Live At The Brooklyn Academy Of Music – all with the classic lineup – plus Moving Right Along, which actually features a quintet with Bluiett, Murray, and Lake – joined by James Spaulding and Eric Person. CD
(All albums come in paper sleeve replicas of the original album covers!)

Possible matches19
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Gwen McCraeSomething So Right ... LP
Cat, 1976. Near Mint- ... Out Of Stock
Sexy soul from the great Gwen McCrae – a key follow-up to her massive Rockin Chair, and an album that showed that she could go a lot deeper than just crossover soul! Given Gwen's contribution to the early disco years, the record's got a surprisingly laidback feel – classic female southern soul at its best, with a number of tracks that hit a great sort of late nite, lovelorn sort of mode – almost like some of Ann Sexton's work from the time. Other tunes pick up the groove a bit more, but still go for more of a funky soul sort of style than a disco one – and all tracks really make the best use of Gwen's deep soul vocals. Clarence Reid wrote most of the material, and great cuts include "Love Without Sex", "Something So Right", "Tears On My Pillow", "Mr. Everything", "Damn Right It's Good", and "Iron Woman". LP, Vinyl record album
(Original pressing. Cover has a cutout hole.)

Possible matches20
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Sly & The Family StoneBack On The Right Track ... LP
Warner, 1979. Sealed ... Out Of Stock
Sly Stone's definitely back on the right track here – returning to the heights of his earlier powers in this late 70s comeback album for Warner Brothers! The record's got a lot of touches of the old Sly funky sound, but it's done in a slightly tighter style too – a bit more polish than before, yet still never slick – just nicely focused, and proof that Stone still had his groove together at the time! There's some really great songwriting on the record – and a nice undercurrent of gentler soul, too – and titles include the sublime "The Same Thing (Makes You Laugh Makes You Cry)" – plus "Remember Who You Are", "Shine It On", "If It's Not Addin Up", "Who's To Say", "Sheer Energy", and "It Takes All Kinds". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has a cutout notch.)

Possible matches21
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Mose AllisonRamblin' With Mose ... LP
Prestige, 1958. Very Good ... $16.99
A pivotal album for Mose Allison – and one of the first records to ever feature his voice, even if only on one track! During the 50s, Allison was mostly known for his work as a bop-styled pianist – on records by Stan Getz and others – but at the end of the decade, he really returned to his roots, and began to forge a New Orleans-styled approach to jazz that had lots of bluesy inflections and a much earthier sensibility. This album offers a bit of both Allison sides of the fence – some straighter piano jazz with a trio that features Addison Farmer on bass and Ronnie Free on drums, but also some rootsier numbers that come off nicely. Mose sings on "I Got A Right To Cry", and other titles include "Ramble", "Saritha", "Ingenue", "Old Devil Moon", "The Minstrels", "Old Man John", and "The Kissin Bug". CD features 3 bonus alternate takes too! LP, Vinyl record album
(Yellow & black label NJ pressing with deep groove and RVG etch. Cover has light wear and a promo stamp.)

Possible matches22
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Amp Fiddler/Amp Dog KnightsKeep Coming (Jayda G rmx, Jahn Cloud & Meftah rmx, Julian Dyne rmx, Brenk Sinatra rmx) ... 12-inch
Mahogani, 2019. New Copy ... $16.99 18.98
A mighty soulful groove from Amp Fiddler – one that's maybe even more classic than his classic work – and that's really saying a lot! The Jayda G remix begins with just vocals and really spare Fender Rhodes – a stripped-down cut that kicks up the beat only when it's nice and ready – and bursts with fantastic energy throughout! The Jahn Cloud and Meftah remix has beats right at the start, but a beautiful warm glow throughout – and Julian Dyne has maybe a harder groove, but even more keyboard interplay – leaving Brenk Sinatra to maybe slow things down a bit, with wicked vocal inflections next to moogy keyboards! 12-inch, Vinyl record

Possible matches23
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Apple & The Three OrangesFree & Easy – The Complete Works 1970 to 1975 ... CD
Now Again, Early 70s. Used ... Just Sold Out!
A funky treasure trove from Apple & The Three Oranges – a group we hardly know at all, but who really blow us away with the cuts on this collection! The groove is plenty hard right from the get-go – the best of the funky 45 underground of the early 70s – which means that there's more 60s rawness on the record than you'd get from bigger-label funk at the time – as Ed "Apple" Nelson still works here with a mostly underground vibe! Ed plays drums – which are mighty hard on most numbers – and his vocals have this offbeat, off-kilter, over the top quality that almost reminds us a bit of the Hank Ballard/James Brown recordings for late 60s King – particularly in the way that Nelson's completely unbridled with his energy. The whole thing's great – one of the best funky collections we've heard in years – and presented with a rich amount of notes and historical information too. Titles include "Free & Easy (parts 1 & 2)", "Moon Light", "Curse Upon The World", "What Goes Around Comes Around", "Down Home Publicity", "True Love Will Never Die", "Gotta Stand For Something (parts 1 & 2)", and "I'll Give You A Ring". CD features a massive 52 page booklet, too! CD

Possible matches24
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Jack AshfordHotel Sheet ... LP
Magic Disc/Everland (Austria), 1977. New Copy (reissue)... $22.99
One of the coolest club records ever cut – and one with a great gimmick too! That gimmick is the "hotel sheet" – an instrument created by percussionist Jack Ashford, which is a light piece of metal that's snapped back and worth to create these cool wibbly, wobbly waves of sound – almost like a moog at times, which gives some of these tracks a bit of a P&P Records vibe! Ashford was a member of The Funk Brothers – and a percussionist on countless classic Motown sessions – but this album was recorded in LA with a sweet electric groove, and a mix of strings and funk that almost rivals Jack's only other full album – a rare blacksploitation soundtrack. The set features full arrangements from Paul Riser, orchestrations from Gordon Staples, and the whole thing was recorded at the Marvin Gaye studios – which you can almost hear in Ashford's surprisingly great vocals. The title cut "Hotel Sheet" has this wonderful popping moogy sound that's very nice – and other tracks include "Funky Disco Party", "Shar", "Hi Mom, Hi Al", and "Get Right On Top". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches25
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Atlantic StarrAtlantic Starr (with bonus track) ... CD
A&M/PTG (Netherlands), 1978. Used ... $12.99
The first album by Atlantic Starr – a tight set of modern soul tunes with a very different feel than their later work! Part of the credit goes to Bobby Eli – who arranged and produced the set, giving it a feel that's almost late Philly – tight, sophisticated, and right on the money at all the best points! There's a number of sweet mellow ballads with lead vocals by Sharon Bryant, and other tracks that groove in an uptempo way that points towards more of the group's 80s work – a great mix of modes that makes for a really well-developed album right out of the gate. Titles include "Gimme Your Lovin", "The Love I Never Had", "Visions", "Keep It Comin", "Stand Up", "Where There's Smoke There's Fire", "We Got It Together", and "Being In Love With You Is So Much Fun". CD features a bonus track – "Stand Up (single version)". CD
(Still sealed with the hype sticker.)

Possible matches26
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
David AxelrodSeriously Deep ... LP
Polygram/Get On Down, 1975. New Copy (reissue)... $19.99 24.98
An amazing slice of music from the legendary David Axelrod – quite different than his better-known sides for Capitol and Reprise Records – and plenty darn funky overall! Axelrod is at his studio best here – stepping off the funky jazz modes he produced for Cannonball Adderley, and taking a shot at that territory on his own! In a reversal of modes, Cannonball actually handles the production – with help from Jimmy Bowen – which leaves Axelrod alone to compose, arrange, and direct the group on the set. The album's got a fair bit of electricity in the mix – heavy keyboards from Joe Sample, and some really fuzzy guitars – plus lots of choppy reed work from Joe Sample and Ernie Watts, all wrapped up with some monstrously funky drums from Ndugu Chancler. There's a very bottom-heavy groove to the record – one that makes for a few completely amazing breaks, and a very funky sound overall – and Axelrod does an amazing job of controlling the players here – so that nobody jams too much, and the grooves are always right on the money! The whole thing's great – a sublime symphony of instrumental funk all the way through – and titles include "Reverie", "Miles Away", "Go For It", "Ken Russell", "1000 Rads", and "One". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches27
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Bar-KaysDefinitive Collection (3CD set) ... CD
Robinsongs (UK), Late 60s/1970s/1980s. New Copy 3CD ... $19.99
The only career-spanning collection we've ever seen on The Bar-Kays – and a set that does a mighty nice job of hitting all the right bases! The group first rose to fame as a funk combo on Stax in the late 60s – then shifted a bit after part of the group was killed in the same plane crash that took the life of Otis Redding – a tragedy that soon saw the group rising from the ashes, and sounding even better than before! Their sound was a huge part of the Stax Records funk sound of the early 70s – and the group took that groove over to Mercury once the decade got going – where they found a very welcome home, and the perfect environment to perfect their ultra-sharp talents. Unlike some groups who started out funky, then went smooth and commercial, The Bar-Kays never lost the qualities that made them great – and even when recording for a bigger label, with a bigger budget, they continued to turn out rock-solid rhythms laced with super-tight instrumentation – even at times when some groups were letting more machines do all the work for them. This 3CD set follows The Bar-Kays on that long musical journey, complete with a big booklet of notes that tell their full story – and the package features 46 tracks in all – including "Shine", "Up In Here", "I'll Dance", "She Talks To Me With Her Body", "Soul Finger", "Bar-Kays Boogaloo", "Sang & Dance", "Son Of Shaft", "Spellbound", "Cozy", "Freaky Behavior", "Traffic Jammer", "Nightcruising", "Animal", "Stuck By You", "Banging On The Walls", "Don't Stop Dancing To The Music", "Six O'Clock News Report", "Money Talks", "Holy Ghost", "Shake Your Rump To The Funk", "Cozy", "Whitehouseorgy", "Shut The Funk Up", and "Today Is The Day". CD

Possible matches28
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Jorge BenBen (LP sleeve edition) ... CD
Philips/Dusty Groove, 1972. New Copy ... $5.99 18.98
A stunner of a record from the mighty Jorge Ben – and a record that catapulted the Brazilian singer to international fame at the time! Ben had already been making magic for almost a decade down in Brazil – and his compositions and grooves left an undeniable impact on the scene in the post-bossa years – but this album has Jorge really emerging as the global soul star he was destined to be – from his powerful stare on the cover, right down to the grit in the grooves! The sound here is a refinement of the samba soul mode that Ben had been brewing up from the late 60s onward – a skittish mix of older samba elements, American soul, and some slight fuller production that really comes into its own here – mixing all the acoustic elements at the core with just a slight electric flourish, but never losing its edge in the process – all to provide Jorge with a sublime backdrop for his really amazing vocals. The set's a monument in funky Brazilian soul – and it includes the huge hit "Taj Mahal", which still sounds great, even after all these years – plus loads of other gems that include "O Circo Chegou", "Domingo 23", "Fio Maravilha", "Paz E Arroz", "Morre O Burro Fico O Homem", and "Que Nega E Essa". A gem all the way through – and a record we'd never part with! CD
(Limited edition of 2000 copies – in a nice LP-styled sleeve!)

Possible matches29
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John Berberian & The Middle Eastern EnsembleMiddle Eastern Rock (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Verve (Japan), 1969. Used ... $34.99
Don't think "rock", think "groove" – because oud player John Berberian takes his instrument into some very groovy territory here – mixing its Mid-East roots with a sweet array of modal rhythms and psychedelic elements – all of which make for an album that's even trippier than you'd guess from its cover! The album's one of the few "jazz meets world" sets that really gets things right – bringing together different global elements to come up with a sound that's wonderfully new and fresh – and which moves the whole thing way past its roots in Turkish, Greek, Armenian, and North African styles! Joe Beck plays some great electric guitar on the record – but the main string focus is on the oud, which Berberian uses with this exotic tinge that rivals the instrument in the hands of Ahmed Abdul-Malik on his own albums like this. The lineup also includes tenor and other reeds from Souren Baronian, plus other percussion, and nice use of electric bass to hold the whole groove together – and titles include "The Oud & The Fuzz", "Tranquility", "Chem-oo-Chem", "Iron Maiden", "Flying Hye", "3/8=5/8=8/8", and "The Magic Ground". CD
(Out of print SHM CD pressing – with obi!)

Possible matches30
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Polly BergenAll Alone By The Telephone ... LP
Columbia, 1958. Very Good ... $7.99
A bittersweet set of vocals from Polly Bergen – recorded with a sound that really fits her sad-eyed look on the cover! Although Bergen's voice is sometimes confident and full, it's nicely restrained here – often somewhat dark-toned and moody – in ways that remind us of Morgana King, especially in the way that Polly holds back at just the right moments – keeping things mature by never getting too overly emotive. There's a nice sense of depth to the record that goes way beyond simple pop singing – and Luther Henderson's arrangements further help color the sound of the set – by giving it a sense of unity that almost reminds us of some of Sinatra's best blue-toned late 50s albums for Capitol. Titles include "By Myself", "When The Wind Was Green", "All Alone", "Glad To Be Unhappy", "Too Late Now", "He Didn't Call", and "Not Like Me". LP, Vinyl record album
(Stereo 6 eye pressing with deep groove.)

Possible matches31
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Cilla BlackSher-oo/Modern Priscilla (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Parlophone/SFE (UK), 1968/1978. New Copy 2CD ... $15.99
A pair of EMI classics from Cilla Black – separated by the space of a decade, and filled in with 21 more bonus tracks too! First up is Sher-oo – fantastic work from Cilla Black – only her third full length album, but a set that already has the singer growing way past some of her British female contemporaries of the 60s! There's still a bit of the uptown soul of Cilla's roots – the dark-stepping groove that always served her so well – but there's also a wider range of song styles and arrangements, with a majestic flow that really does great things with Black's incredible vocal approach. Johnny Harris and Johnny Scott both had a hand in putting the charts together – and the set also features the classic "Step Inside My Love", written for Cilla by Lennon & McCartney. Other tracks include "Yo Yo", "Take Me In Your Arms & Love Me", "Misty Roses", "Something's Gotten A Hold Of My Heart", "Follow The Path Of The Stars", and "What The World Needs Now". Modern Priscilla is a record that takes Cilla Black in an unusual direction – a set that has her moving into more disco modes overall, but still keeping things relatively special, thanks to strong production work from Mike Hurst, and a track selection of unusual material! Given that Black's vocals always had a lot more range than some of the mainstream disco singers of the European scene, she fits right in – and manages to turn out a few gentler tracks amidst all the funkier upbeat numbers. As mentioned, the set features a huge number of bonus tracks – including "This Time I'm In It For Love", "Songs", "Follow", "Silly Boy (Paul Hulme mix)", "From Now On", "Work Is A Four Letter Word (film version)", "Step Inside My Love (almighty 12" definitive mix)", "M'Innamoro", "Step Inside Love (first take)", and "All My Love". CD

Possible matches32
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Fabrizio Bosso & Spiritual TrioSomeday ... CD
Warner (Italy), 2020. New Copy ... $19.99
A very groovy record from Italian trumpet legend Fabrizo Bosso – one that features a group referred to as his Spiritual Trio, but a combo that's maybe got more of a soul jazz vibe overall – as the lineup features Alberto Marsico on organ and Alessandro Mnetto on drums! The spare format is great – open in ways that always seem to bring out the best phrasing in Bosso's horn, but with just the right moments of groove that have the trumpet and organ dancing together nicely – almost a newly-conceived variation on the the older 60s pairing of tenor and Hammond! Mario Biondi provides guest vocals on a remake of the Donny Hathaway tune "Someday We'll All Be Free" – and other instrumental tunes include "Sermonette", "Cold Duck Time", "Bernie's Toon", "I Shall Wear A Crown", "Forward", "A Lullaby", and "Say It Loud". CD

Possible matches33
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Bob Brookmeyer & Bill EvansIvory Hunters – Double Barrelled Piano ... CD
United Artists/Universal (Japan), 1959. Used ... $19.99
A compelling album of twin-piano lines – one in which Bill Evans and Bob Brookmeyer play head-to-head, in a spiraling modernist style that brings out the best in each player! Although Brookmeyer's best known as a trombonist, he's pretty great here on piano – and the album's a real treasure from his legendary late 50s years – a time when Bob was really opening up tremendously in his music! The album separates out the players via stereo – with Bill Evans in the right channel and Brookmeyer in the left – and the format usually has one player in a rhythm groove while the other solos over the top. The bass of Percy Heath and drums of Connie Kay complete the group – and titles include longish versions of "As Time Goes By", "I Got Rhythm", "The Man I Love", and "The Way You Look Tonight". CD
(SHMCD pressing, includes obi.)

Possible matches34
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James BrownSuper Bad ... CD
King/Universal (Japan), 1971. New Copy ... $13.99
Super Bad is right! This is hard-hitting funky James – from the badass cover right down to the extended tracks on the record, which point the way towards the hard live jamming of the classic Payback years! Everything wonderful is in place on the set – from the band's grooves at the bottom to James' on-fire vocals on the top – heard beautifully on the extended 10 minute version of the title cut "Super Bad" – which rolls through parts 1, 2, and 3 of the song! The album also includes another 10 minute funky cut – "Giving Out of Juice" – plus the classic "A Man Has to Go Back to the Crossroads", and three mellower ballads, but even they end up sounding kind of hip! CD
(Part of the Rare Groove Funk 1000 Best Collection!)

Possible matches35
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Sidiku BuariFeelings In Africa/Sidiku Buari & His Jam Busters ... CD
Precious/BBE (UK), Early 80s. New Copy ... $13.99 16.99
A pair of rare records by Sidiku Buari – issued back to back on a single CD! Feelings is a record that was issued on the tiny Precious label – home to only two Buari albums in its tiny catalog – and the set follows strongly on the work that Sidiku recorded in New York during the 70s, records that were initially issued just under his last name! The groove on some tracks is full of early 80s NYC touches – sweet electro keyboards that provide some great middle-ground shocks to the tunes – while beats crackle crispy at the bottom, and Buari sings these slinky soul vocals that are a lot more American than you'd guess from the Ghanaian recording of the album. But other numbers have more of a West Africa vibe – that updating of older modes that was taking place in Nigeria too. Titles include "Music", "Feelings", "Anowar", and "Yayo Papa". Sidiku Buari & His Jam Busters has a groove that definitely lives up to its name – a sweet 80s crackle with lots of tunes that jam in an old school funk style – keyboards, basslines, and rhythms right on the money – in a great Transatlantic bridge between Ghana and New York City! The set begins with the super-funky "Let's Go To Funky Town" – a tune with a break on the intro to rival some of the best funky club work of the time – and the vibe continues strongly through the rest of the set, on titles that include "Sophisticated Jammer", "Power To My People", "Rhythm Of Africa", "Minsumobo", and "Karambani". CD

Possible matches36
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Leroy Burgess & Saving CocoWork It Out (voc, dub)/Til I Found You (voc, dub) ... 12-inch
Favorite (France), 2019. New Copy (pic cover)... $19.99
Two contemporary cuts from 80s soul master Leroy Burgess – both of them pretty darn fantastic! "Work It Out" features bass-heavy boogie backings by Saving Coco – a group who have this great vibe that hits on the jazzier, more sophisticated side of early 80s club – while Leroy's vocals soar out over the top, and hit a nice breakdown in the middle! "Til I Found You" is a tune that gets production help from Patchworks – with a groove that's slightly more complicated, but still very much right on the money! 12-inch, Vinyl record

Possible matches37
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George BurtonReciprocity ... CD
George Burton, 2020. New Copy ... $14.99
An album that explodes with life, soul, and energy right from the very first note – a jazz set from keyboardist George Burton, but a record that weaves in lots of different strands along the way – with a sense of imagination that's certain to make Burton's music something to really keep an ear on for years to come! Yet already, this record is more than enough – and grabs us in a way we're not usually grabbed – as George balance his own bold energy on piano and Fender Rhodes with occasional vocals from a female singer, work by Tim Warfield on soprano sax, Chris Hemingway on alto, and Andy Bianco on guitar, and a trio of different drummers who really know when to kick in and propel the album forward! Burton is never content to just lay down a solo, or swing a groove – and there's a larger sonic palette of soul to the record that has to be heard to be understood – yet even the few straighter jazz numbers are pretty amazing too. Imagine the joy you felt when you first heard the early records of Robert Glasper, and you'll get some of the energy this record can deliver – on titles that include "Finding", "Gratitude", "Spirit", "Reciprocity", "Third Prayer", "Finite Space", "Us", "Power", and "Turn". CD

Possible matches38
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Donald ByrdByrd's Eye View (Japanese paper sleeve) ... CD
Transition/Blue Note (Japan), 1955. Used ... $34.99
A wailer! This rare 1955 album is one of Donald Byrd's first records as a leader – recorded for the tiny Transition label in Boston, but with a hardbop groove that's right up there with his early work for Savoy and Blue Note. The record is practically a Jazz Messengers session – as it features Art Blakey on drums, Horace Silver on piano, Hank Mobley on tenor, and Doug Watkins on bass – and it's also got the unique aspect of a two-trumpet frontline, as the young Joe Gordon joins Donald on the instrument for the session. Tracks are long and open-ended – with incredibly well-crafted playing that really keeps the set fresh, despite the young age of Donald at the time. Titles include "El Sino", "Doug's Blues", "Hank's Tune", and "Hank's Other Tune". CD
(Out of print, includes obi.)

Possible matches39
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Donald ByrdChant (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Blue Note, 1961. New Copy Gatefold (reissue)... $28.99 34.99
A Donald Byrd treasure – and an album that was almost left in the vaults by Blue Note, until they briefly released it at the end of the 70s! The cover and title are a bit unfamiliar, but the music is right up there with Byrd's classic sessions with baritonist Pepper Adams – a great player here, with a deftness on his horn that's incredible – matching all the sharp changes and soulful undercurrents of Byrd's sparkling trumpet! There's a nice hard sound to the whole thing – almost the raw power of the pair's albums for the Warwick label – and as with those, Herbie Hancock is on piano – giving the whole thing an excellent soul jazz groove that really kicks the main soloists into action! Titles include "Great God", "I'm An Old Cowhand", "That's All", "You're Next", and "Chant". LP, Vinyl record album
(Part of the Blue Note Tone Poet series – heavy vinyl and cover!)

Possible matches40
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California PlayboysJust Say A Four Letter Word/She's A Real Sweet Woman ... 7-inch
Kent (UK), 1976. New Copy ... $11.99
A great bit of sharply-timed funk from the California Playboys – a tune that's got some great changes at the start, then rolls into a wicked groove that supports the vocals with this nicely-toned riffing guitar! The flipside has an equally great sound – the kind of funk group that can be right on the money without ever sounding slick – perfect for the vocals, which have more of a deep soul vibe! 7-inch, Vinyl record

Possible matches41
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Jim CapaldiOpen Your Heart – The Island Recordings 1972 to 1976 (Oh How We Danced/Whale Meat Again/Short Cut Draw Blood/bonus material) (3CD/DVD set) ... CD
Island/Esoteric (UK), Mid 70s. New Copy 3CD & DVD set ... $34.99
Three full albums from Jim Capaldi, plus lots of bonus work – and a DVD of live BBC performances too! First up is Oh How We Danced – the first solo album from Jim Capaldi – and a wicked little set that has Capaldi not only working with fellow bandmates from Traffic, but also with some of the best musicians on the Muscle Shoals scene! The combination of both unlock an even more soulful style than you'd expect from any Traffic side project – and provide a perfect focus for Capaldi's great vocals – already crossing over big to a soul scene with his Traffic recordings, but sparking even new interest here with Muscle Shoals rhythms. The sound is wonderful – quite different than Capaldi's bigger hits in later years, and with a rootsy, earnest feel that reminds us that at their roots, all these British acts really got things right at the start – with a freshness that needs to be remembered, even amidst their later cliches. Titles include "Eve", "Don't Be A Hero", "Last Day Of Dawn", "Oh How We Danced", "Open Your Heart", and "Love Is All You Can Try". Next is Whale Meat Again – a record with a beautiful mixing of modes – Jim Capaldi's Traffic-bred, London-styled vocals, and the sweet southern soul grooves of Muscle Shoals – all wrapped together with a sound that's even tighter than Capaldi's debut album! Jim's a big edgier here overall – both in the way he delivers the vocals, and in the lyrics of the tunes – and his singing's underscored perfectly by help from Jimmy Johnson on guitar, Barry Beckett on piano and organ, David Hood on bass, and Roger Hawkins on drums – all of whom create the right sort of warm Muscle Shoals vibe to make Capaldi's music sound wonderfully soulful. Steve Winwood plays a bit of guest organ on the set, and may well help with backing vocals – and titles include the funky "Low Rider" (different than the War tune) – plus "We'll Meet Again", "Summer Is Fading", "My Brother", "It's Alright", and "Yellow Sun". Short Cut Draw Blood is the third solo album from Traffic's Jim Capaldi, and maybe the most obscure of his early work – a set that was done after Traffic had broken up, but still with some strong help from Steve Winwood – working here in an all-star array of London and Muscle Shoals musicians, which includes Barry Beckett, Rebop Kwaku Baah, Pete Carr, Jess Roden, Chris Spedding, and others! Capaldi's easygoing groove and great way with a tune are fully intact – and titles include "Living On A Marble", "Johnny Too Bad", "Goodbye Love", "Seagull", "Keep On Trying", and "Love Hurts". Box set features bonus tracks "Going Down Slow All The Way", "Tricky Dick Rides Again", "Sugar Honey", "Still Talkin", and "Talkin About My Baby". DVD features a Old Grey Whistle Test performance from 1976, with the Jim Capaldi Band – and one more from 1976 with Jim Capaldi & The Space Cadets. CD

Possible matches42
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Chi-LitesGive It Away (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Brunswick/Solid (Japan), 1969. New Copy ... $13.99
Excellent early material by The Chi-Lites – work that instantly soars above that of most of their contemporaries – with that incredible Windy City soul sound forged by the group's Eugene Record and producer Carl Davis! The groove is wonderful – free and easygoing, yet tight and right on the money too – lighter than the dancefloor styles of Detroit, a bit more sophisticated too – yet never apt to fall into all of the overly-emotive styles of the east coast too. This balance is what makes the group so wonderful – and really comes through on this early album – a treasure trove of songs penned by Eugene Record too! Titles include "Let Me Be The Man My Daddy Was", "Give It Away", "What Do I Wish For", "My Whole World Ended", "24 Hours Of Sadness", and "To Change My Love". CD has some great bonus tracks too – "Love Me", "Love Is Gone", "My Baby Loves Me", "Price Of Love", and "Baby It's Time". CD

Possible matches43
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City ChampsSet-Up ... CD
Electraphonic, 2010. Used ... $7.99
The City Champs are at it again – and sounding even funkier than the first time around! This set's an amazing batch of Hammond-heavy instrumentals – one that really revels in the lean, mean, Memphis heritage of Booker T & the MGs – with all the tight, funky elements that might imply! The City Champs come from the same scene as Booker – just 50 years later – and they bristle with energy we haven't heard from the Memphis scene in years – a totally right on the money, totally right in the pocket, totally right over the edge sort of funky groove – one that reminds us that there's still plenty of brilliant funky instrumentals out there these days, if you just know where to look! There's no fake retro modes going on here – no too-easy riffing either – and somehow, these guys just get it all totally right – a massive cohesion of Hammond, guitar, and drums – just augmented a bit with some extra horns at a few points, plus guest tambourine by the legendary Jack Ashford. Titles include "Drippy", "The Set-Up", "Ricky's Rant", "Crump Street", "Rigamarole", "Break It Up", "Comanche", "Chinatown", and a wonderful take on the "Theme From Mad Men". CD

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CJ & CoAin't It Amazing – The Unreleased Westbound Masters ... CD
Westbound/Ace (UK), Late 70s. New Copy ... $12.99 18.99
The lost third album from CJ & Co – that totally groovy, totally tight group who were one of the best things going on Westbound Records in the late 70s! CJ & Co had a groove that was just right for the new club world of the time – but they also had a sharp instrumental approach that was much more tied to the Detroit funk of early 70s Westbound – and their sound was given a fantastic push and polish by the production team of Mike Theodore and Dennis Coffey, who really keep things sounding strong throughout! These aren't leftover cuts, or the kind of material that was rejected at the time – and instead, the whole package has a quality level that really matches the classic Devil's Gun record by the group – a funky disco spectacular all the way through. Titles include "Is Your Love Life Better", "Ain't It Amazing", "Rainbow Music", "Brassband", "Get Lucky", "Rainmaker", "The Golden Touch", "Can't Believe You'd Break Your Promise", "Let Them Talk", "Boogie Love", and a rare "original mix" of "Devil's Gun". All tracks previously unreleased! CD

Possible matches45
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✨✧ Sonny ClarkSonny Clark Trio (Blue Note) ... CD
Blue Note, Late 50s. Used ... $6.99
Sublime trio material from Sonny – recorded with Paul Chambers on bass and Philly Joe Jones on drums, and a crackling full-on approach that makes the album one of the best straight trio sessions ever cut for Blue Note! Tracks are longish, with a very hardbop groove – complicated in that way that Clark's modern edge could often bring to the piano, but never failing to swing, and always sticking right in the pocket! Titles include "Be Bop", "Two Bass Hit", "Tadd's Delight", and "Softly As In A Morning Sunrise" – and the CD features 3 bonus alternate takes! CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches46
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Lyn CollinsThink (About It) ... LP
People, 1972. Very Good+ ... $19.99
The funkiest album ever recorded by Lyn Collins – a stone solid set that really lives up to the legacy of her funky 45s! Like those gems, this one has Collins working with James Brown on production and the JBs in the background – creating a razor-sharp groove that's probably the closest any female singer ever came in the 70s to matching The Godfather's groove! The album's got Lyn shifting between heavy funk numbers and mellower soul cuts – really pushing things to the max with an incredibly deep take on a few older favorites, plus some killer new numbers – all produced to funky perfection, with just the right sort of balance between the rough and the tight. Titles include her great version of "Think", a funky sample cut that never gets old – plus the cuts "Things Got To Get Better", "Women's Lib", "Never Gonna Give You Up", "Just Won't Do Right", "Wheels Of Life", and the funkiest version ever of "Fly Me To The Moon". LP, Vinyl record album
(Get On Down reissue, including the poster and heavy plastic sleeve, but missing the bonus 7".)

Possible matches47
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✨✧ CommodoresNightshift ... LP
Motown, 1985. Near Mint- ... $2.99
By this point in their career, The Commodores have lost Lionel Richie and any sort of funk credibility they had from their early years – but they also somehow manage to reemerge with a great new talent for a sweet mellow groove! The title tune "Nightshift" was one of those tracks that crossed over massively at the time – but to our ears, it also kind of redeemed the group too – as it's got a surprisingly soulful quality that really got the group past the soppiness of their ballads and love songs – gliding along with an almost-righteous quality that makes it a nice later cap to an earlier Motown 70s groove. Other tunes on the album don't always fare as well, but there's still some nice moments here – tunes that benefit from some Dennis Lambert production and hit just the right kind of mellow groove to follow up on the spirit of the single. Tracks include "Nightshift", "Slip Of The Tongue", "Lay Back", "Lightin Up The Night", and "The Woman In My Life". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has cutout notch.)

Possible matches48
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Con Funk ShunFever ... CD
Mercury/Vinyl Masterpiece (Netherlands), 1981. Used ... $11.99
One of the sweetest-grooving albums ever from Con Funk Shun – proof that the group was almost better when they tightened things up a bit! The set was produced by Deodato at the height of his hit-making soul powers – and it's got a sharpness that really helps bring the Con Funk Shun groove into focus – a style that's not nearly as commercial as Deodato's work with Kool & The Gang, but which shares a similar blend of jazz and modern soul elements! Most tracks groove nicely, even some of the mellower ones – and Deodato's got a perfect balance in the sound of the set – keyboards, beats, and bass all in the right places, with plenty of soulful vocals flowing warmly over the top. Titles include "Don't Let Your Love Grow Cold", "Hard Lovin", "If I'm Your Lover", "Can You Feel The Groove Tonight", "Indiscreet Sweet", and "Baby I'm Hooked". CD

Possible matches49
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Arthur ConleyMore Sweet Soul ... CD
Atlantic/Collectors Choice, 1969. Used ... $4.99
Not Sweet Soul, but deep soul – courtesy of one of the best artists recording for Atlantic Records in the 60s! The album's way more than a similarly-titled follow up to Conley's debut for the label – and stands beautifully on its own with a host of great numbers that are right up there with the best 60s soul on Atlantic! Production was handled both at Fame Studios and American Recording – giving a mixed Memphis/Muscle Shoals groove to the set that really keeps things fresh. Also keeping things fresh is a good selection of tunes that includes original Conley tunes "Aunt Dora's Love Soul Shack", "Run On", and "Shing A Ling" – plus the cuts "Stuff You Gotta Watch", "Take A Step", "Speak Her Name", "Ob La Di Ob La Da", and "Something You Got". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches50
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Ivan Mamao ContiPoison Fruit ... CD
Far Out (UK), 2019. New Copy ... $12.99
Really mindblowing work from legendary drummer Ivan "Mamao" Conti – a key part of Azymuth through that group's many years – and still going strong here as a solo artist on his own! The album's almost a 21st Century realization of the sound that Azymuth was going for back in the day – cascading percussion with plenty of influences from Brazilian music and jazz, often given some electric elements along the way – but always in a style that's warmly organic, and right on the groove! Conti gets help from younger Azymuth and Incognito generations – as Alex Malherios plays bass on the record and Daniel Maunick handles keyboards, more percussion, and production – all at a level that never stomps on Ivan's vision at all – and which instead makes the whole thing as rewarding as any Azymuth session we've heard over the past few decades. Most tracks are instrumental, save for some airy wordless vocals – but Thiago Martins sings lead on "Que Legal", and other titles include "Aroeira", "Bacurau", "Poison Fruit", "Jemburi", "Ecos Da Mata", "Encontro", and "Tempestades". CD features bonus mixes – "Ilha Da Luz (Tenderlonius rmx)", "Encontro (Glenn Astro rmx)", "Que Legal (Reginald Omas Mamode IV rmx)", "Encontro (Max Graef rmx)", and "Poison Fruit (Dokta Venom's digital dub rmx)". CD
Also available Poison Fruit (180 gram pressing with download) ... LP 19.99

Possible matches51
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Ivan Mamao ContiPoison Fruit (180 gram pressing with download) ... LP
Far Out (UK), 2018. New Copy ... $19.99
Really mindblowing work from legendary drummer Ivan "Mamao" Conti – a key part of Azymuth through that group's many years – and still going strong here as a solo artist on his own! The album's almost a 21st Century realization of the sound that Azymuth was going for back in the day – cascading percussion with plenty of influences from Brazilian music and jazz, often given some electric elements along the way – but always in a style that's warmly organic, and right on the groove! Conti gets help from younger Azymuth and Incognito generations – as Alex Malherios plays bass on the record and Daniel Maunick handles keyboards, more percussion, and production – all at a level that never stomps on Ivan's vision at all – and which instead makes the whole thing as rewarding as any Azymuth session we've heard over the past few decades. Most tracks are instrumental, save for some airy wordless vocals – but Thiago Martins sings lead on "Que Legal", and other titles include "Aroeira", "Bacurau", "Poison Fruit", "Jemburi", "Ecos Da Mata", "Encontro", and "Tempestades". LP, Vinyl record album
(Includes download – which includes two more tracks.)
Also available Poison Fruit ... CD 12.99

Possible matches52
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Ivan Mamao ContiPoison Fruit (colored vinyl with bonus 7 inch) (2020 Record Store Day Release) ... LP
Far Out (UK), 2018. New Copy ... On August 29, 2020
Really mindblowing work from legendary drummer Ivan "Mamao" Conti – a key part of Azymuth through that group's many years – and still going strong here as a solo artist on his own! The album's almost a 21st Century realization of the sound that Azymuth was going for back in the day – cascading percussion with plenty of influences from Brazilian music and jazz, often given some electric elements along the way – but always in a style that's warmly organic, and right on the groove! Conti gets help from younger Azymuth and Incognito generations – as Alex Malherios plays bass on the record and Daniel Maunick handles keyboards, more percussion, and production – all at a level that never stomps on Ivan's vision at all – and which instead makes the whole thing as rewarding as any Azymuth session we've heard over the past few decades. Most tracks are instrumental, save for some airy wordless vocals – but Thiago Martins sings lead on "Que Legal", and other titles include "Aroeira", "Bacurau", "Poison Fruit", "Jemburi", "Ecos Da Mata", "Encontro", and "Tempestades". (Note: Record Store Day 2020 has been rescheduled to separate special release days of August 29, September 26 and October 24. The specific release date for each previously announced title is yet to be announced and subject to change. Titles are in limited supply – and will be offered for sale first to customers who visit the Dusty Groove retail outlet in Chicago on August 29, September 26 and October 24 only if it is safe and responsible to open the store, with Covid-19 shelter in place orders no longer in place. Items will not be pre-sold or reserved in any way. However, we will offer up whatever we have left for sale online after 12pm Central on release day.) LP, Vinyl record album
Also available
Poison Fruit ... CD 12.99
Poison Fruit (180 gram pressing with download) ... LP 19.99

Possible matches53
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Kirk Degiorgio Presents SambatekSambatek ... CD
Far Out (UK), 2013. Used ... $6.99
Brazilian percussion mixed with 21st Century sounds – all served up sublimely in the hands of Kirk Degiorgio – one of the few artists we could ever expect to get a project like this just right! The album follows nicely off Kirk's previous collaboration with Azymuth – but has an even starker sound overall, as core acoustic percussion bits are worked into contemporary rhythm programs – then topped with some of the crackling electric touches that you'd expect – often with a warmer sound than other projects of this nature, but a groove that's plenty driving overall. Titles include "Babilonia", "Morro Da Formiga", "Dende", "Borel", "Vidigal", "Rocinha", "Prazeres", and "Complexo Do Alemao" – plus remixes "Babilonia (Rick Wilhite dub)", "Borel (Jonas Kopp my vision of samba rmx)", and "Borel (Nxi rmx)". CD

Possible matches54
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✨✧ DelfonicsLa La Means I Love You (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Philly Groove/FTG, 1968. New Copy ... Just Sold Out!
A landmark album in harmony soul – one of those records that pushed the genre to a whole new level! The Delfonics emerge fully formed here as one of the most compelling groups of their time – a tremendous trio with a really unique approach to soul music – one that's heartfelt and heartbreaking, but never too sweet to be cloying or poppy – definitely just the right groove to keep things hip while also cracking the charts! The album's their first full collaboration with legendary producer Thom Bell – and it's got a sound that's summed up perfectly in the quintessential cut "La La Means I Love You" – and which is followed through beautifully on a batch of tracks that includes "Losing You", "Can You Remember", "You're Gone", "I'm Sorry", and "Break Your Promise". 5 bonus tracks: "Can't Get Over Losing You" (7" version), You Got Yours And I'll Get Mine" (7" version plus a version w/intro), "Loving Him" and "Funny Feeling". CD

Possible matches55
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DelfonicsSuper Hits ... CD
Sony/BMG, Early 70s. New Copy ... $4.99 7.99
Legendary early 70s Philly Groove recordings by the Delfonics – all of them tiny little masterpieces of 70s group soul harmony! The band were one of the best of the decade, and they have an amazing talent for making their vocals come together with a real edge, hitting lots of strange notes and weird chord changes that end up sounding fantastic together. Titles include "Hey Love", "Trying To Make A Fool Of Me", "Walk Right Up To The Sun", "Tell Me This Is A Dream", "La La Means I Love You", and the huge hit "Didn't I (Blow Your Mind This Time)". CD

Possible matches56
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DiazporaPing Pong Powerplay ... LP
Legere (France), 2020. New Copy ... $19.99
No time for table games here – as Diazpora jump right in the groove from the very first note – working with a sweet 70s funk approach to their music, which means lots of riffing guitar, funky basslines, and horns punctuating the keys – all while lead singer Axel Maximilian Fiege sings in this very strong way – able to go deep one minute, inflect a falsetto the next – all with these twists and turns that make him way more than just another soul singer working with a funk band! Axel's strong presence in the lead really gives the whole thing a heck of a lot of power and shape – and titles include "Hit Me", "The Bachelor", "Hangin On", "Ready To Go", "Play The Ball", "The Olympians", and "You Shot Me Down". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches57
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Dining Rooms with Sean MartinWhen You Died (original, Massimo Martellotta rmx) ... 7-inch
Schema (Italy), 2020. New Copy (pic cover)... $11.99
Sean Martin provides some great lead vocals on this slinky groove from The Dining Rooms – a tune that's got riffing guitar nestled right down in the rhythms, and a fuller, funkier feel as things move on! The remix on the flip really changes things up nicely – dropping the guitar for a more 80s-styled bassline that's also peppered with plenty of warm keys – an equally great setting for Martin's vocals! 7-inch, Vinyl record

Possible matches58
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Diana DorsSwingin Dors ... LP
Columbia, 1960. Very Good ... $9.99
One of the sexiest sets of vocal jazz to ever come from the British scene – a classic 1960 album by the lovely Diana Dors – easily one of England's best answers to American cheesecake singers of the 50s! As you'll notice by the cover, Diana's got a look that's right up there with Marilyn Monroe or Jayne Mansfield – but as a singer, she's far better – with a full range, and good sense of expression – often delivered in the manner of some of the best vocalists working in the US for RCA in the late 50s. The backings are great too – handled by the Wally Stott orchestra with a nice sense of jazz throughout – some really swinging horns that are quite unusual for a UK session like this at the time – and which really further the American feel of the set. Titles include "That's How It Is", "Namely You", "The Point Of No Return", "Roller Coaster Blues", "The Gentleman Is A Dope", "April Heart", "I'm In Love For The Very First Time", and "Tired Of Love". LP, Vinyl record album
(Mono 6 eye pressing with deep groove. Cover has light wear.)

Possible matches59
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Dr JohnRemedies/Desitively Bonnaroo ... CD
Atlantic/BGO (UK), Early 70s. New Copy 2CD ... $14.99
Two funky classics from Dr John – back to back in a single set! First up is Remedies, one of the records that made Dr John a legend back in the day – a set that steps off from New Orleans roots into a world of weird funk, tripped-out sounds, and lots and lots of super-heavy grooves! The album's got a nicely exploratory vibe – as the first side features shorter funky cuts, but the second half really stretches out, and features a side-long track that has the Doctor at his most freewheeling – mixing deep currents from soul and blues with all the great ear for studio techniques he'd developed over the years – fused into a sound that's almost a fantasy of a soulful subculture in the swamps. Titles include "Loop Garoo", "Wash Mama Wash", "What Goes Around Comes Around", "Mardi Gras Day", and "Chippy Chippy" – plus the side-long "Angola Anthem". Desitively Bonnaroo is filled with tight funky work from Dr John – a second collaboration with producer Allen Toussaint, and a set that follows strongly on their Right Place record of the year before! The groove's not as messed-up as on the first few Atlantic records by the Doctor – but in it's place is a sweet electric funk mode, kind of an update on 60s New Orleans grooves – handled here by The Meters and a host of other key players from the Crescent City scene! Toussaint's production and arrangements are tight, but never slick at all – still much earthier than the later work, especially that on Warner Brothers, that was handled by the producer. And the tunes have a good focus that keeps Dr John on track lyrically – even though we'll admit that our main love of this record comes from the keyboards, bass, and funky drums! Titles include "Stealin", "What Comes Around (Goes Around)", "Mos' Scocious", "Rite Away", "R U 4 Real", "Let's Make A Better World", "Sing Along Song", "Go Tell The People", "Quitters Never Win", and "Can't Git Enuff". CD

Possible matches60
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✨✧ DynastyAdventures In The Land Of Music ... LP
Solar, 1980. Near Mint- ... $9.99
Lots of musical adventures here – most of them in that tightly-romping style that made Dynasty so great back in the day – almost a fusion of older sweet group soul with some of the more bottom-driven modes forged by the Solar label! The keyboards are upfront, the basslines strong, and the group is completely tight on the money – at a level that made them one of the strongest 80s proponents of the Solar Records groove. The title cut here is our favorite – a sweet stepper that bursts out with this blast of sound that's totally great – completely captivating, and filled with cascading sounds that really grab us. Other tracks include "Ice Breaker", "Something To Remember", "Day & Night", "Do Me Right", and "I've Just Begun To Love You". LP, Vinyl record album
(UK pressing.)

Possible matches61
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✨✧ Earth PeopleDance (club mix, dub mix, bonus beats) ... 12-inch
Underworld, 1991. Very Good- ... $11.99
A sweet little jazz house groove, cut by Pal Joey right around the time of "Hot Music" with a similar downtown crossover club vibe, fusing the best of the acid jazz scene with a NY house style! 12-inch, Vinyl record
(Label has some sticker residue.)

Possible matches62
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Bill EvansSome Other Time – The Lost Session From The Black Forest (2 X 180 gram pressing) (2020 Record Store Day Release) ... LP
MPS/Resonance, 1968. New Copy ... On August 29, 2020
Never-heard studio work from the great Bill Evans – not another one of those many (and great) live performances from overseas – but a well-conceived, beautifully recorded set of tracks that were done for MPS Records in their famous studios in the Black Forest! The group here is Evans sublime trio with the great Eddie Gomez on bass and a young Jack DeJohnette on drums – perfect players for completely reworking the sound of the jazz piano trio, with all the new ideas that Bill had bursting forth at the time – and this material is the only studio session by the group, recorded right after their famous live appearance at Montreux in 1968 (documented on a well-known album on Verve.) The set's a double-length outing – recorded with the kind of crisp, clear sound that MPS brought to its other classic piano albums of the time by artists like Hampton Hawes or Tete Montoliu. The whole thing's wonderful – and Gomez has a wonderful presence in the mix – as the trio really shines on titles that include "Wonder Why", "Green Dolphin Street", "These Foolish Things", "Walkin Up", "Turn Out The Stars", "Very Early", "You Go To My Head", "Lover Man", and "Baubles Bangles & Beads". (Note: Record Store Day 2020 has been rescheduled to separate special release days of August 29, September 26 and October 24. The specific release date for each previously announced title is yet to be announced and subject to change. Titles are in limited supply – and will be offered for sale first to customers who visit the Dusty Groove retail outlet in Chicago on August 29, September 26 and October 24 only if it is safe and responsible to open the store, with Covid-19 shelter in place orders no longer in place. Items will not be pre-sold or reserved in any way. However, we will offer up whatever we have left for sale online after 12pm Central on release day.) LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches63
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Exit 9Straight Up (180 gram pressing) ... LP
BRC/Demon (UK), 1975. New Copy (reissue)... $26.99
The one and only album by Exit 9 – an obscure funk combo who recorded this rare set for Brunswick in 1975! The group is extremely tight instrumentally – working at a very fast funky clip that's kind of similar to work by Bohannon or Sound Experience – both of whom shared Exit 9's pre-disco approach to dancefloor grooves – more fast-funk than the tighter club sound of later years, and proof that a funky combo could hit the dancefloor if it had the right groove! Most numbers have vocals, and instrumentation includes lots of nice guitar work that keeps a rawer edge on the tracks – choppy and gritty in a really great way. Tracks include "MFB", "Miss Funky Fox", "Fly", "Julie I Love You", "Jive Man", and "Rhapsody in Funk". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches64
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Sergio Fanni QuintetHard Suite ... LP
Right Tempo (Italy), 1975. Near Mint- ... $24.99
An excellent bit of soulful post-Coltrane jazz! The group is a sextet led by Italian trumpeter Sergio Fanni – and it features piano and electric piano by Sante Palumbo, plus tenor, drums, electric bass, and percussion. In a way, the album reminds us a lot of early 70s work by American groups like The Bridgewater Brothers or The Visitors – in that it's got a free style of blowing on some of the introductions and introspective moments, but slams into a hard modal groove for the bulk of the tracks. Fanni's solo work is especially great, and is filled with the soulful searching of players like Benny Bailey or Cecil Bridgewater, a style that sounds particularly nice over the album's long piano lines. Titles include "Shade", "Plan", "Drive Waltz", and "Dawn/Suffer". LP, Vinyl record album
(1996 reissue pressing.)

Possible matches65
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Art FarmerPortrait Of Art Farmer ... LP
Contemporary, 1958. Very Good ... $34.99
A beautiful set from Art – stripped-down and elegant, cut right at that time when his tone on trumpet was evolving into something sublime. The group's a perfect one for Farmer at this point – Hank Jones, Addison Farmer, and Roy Haynes, all lyrically-minded players with just the right touch to accompany Farmer without getting in the way of his sound. Titles include "Back In The Cage", "Stablemates", "Earth", and "Nita". LP, Vinyl record album
(Original mono pressing with deep groove! Vinyl has two short clicks, but is nice and clean overall. Cover has light wear, and a light bit of wear on the spine – but is nice and heavy!)

Possible matches66
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✨✧ Art FarmerSomething You Got ... LP
CTI, 1977. Near Mint- Gatefold ... $6.99
A sweet funky album from Art Farmer– an artist we don't normally associate with 70s funk, but who does a really great job on this CTI session! Art's working here in the frontline with Yusef Lateef on reeds – another unlikely candidate for a record like this – and the pair get some strong backing from the band of Dave Matthews, who manages to provide just the right blend of tight arrangements and jazz funk, so that each player gets plenty of room to soar, but the whole album sticks in a nice smooth groove on the rhythms! Includes a soaring version of Chick Corea's "Spain", a slow funk take on Chris Kenner's "Something You Got", and the cuts "Flute Song", "Hombre Del Sol", "Sauhade", and "Sandu". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has small peeled spots from sticker removal.)

Possible matches67
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Al FosterMixed Roots (Laurie) ... LP
Laurie, Mid 70s. Near Mint- ... $9.99
The cover's not much to look at – but it houses a mighty nice set of funky 70s jazz! Drummer Al Foster leads the crew on this obscure session produced by Teo Macero for the mostly-rock Laurie label – and even though the album's kind of hidden under a completely innocuous cover that has a closeup of a Christmas Tree (?), it bursts out with a strong funky jazz groove that reminds us of some of the best drum-heavy electric 70s sessions in our collection, like work by Ed Thigpen or Les DeMerle. Players include Masabumi Kikuchi on electric piano, Mike Brecker and Sam Morrison on saxes, and Paul Metzke on guitar – and Teo Macero also sits in on the electric keys on one of the album's mellower cuts. There's not really any standout drum breaks that we caught on the set – but there are a lot of great choppy funk tracks in that "heavy drums meet riffing reeds" style that was started by Elvin Jones and popularized by Stone Alliance. Titles include "Mixed Roots", "Ya Damn Right", "Pauletta", "Double Stuff", and "Dr Jeckyll & Mr Hyde". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches68
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FoxyHot Numbers (with bonus track) ... CD
Dash/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1979. New Copy ... $13.99
Way more than disco, a bit different than funk, and a lot cooler than you might guess from the image on the cover – a stone classic from Miami groovers Foxy, and easily one of their best records ever! The set's nice and tight right from the start – not really disco, but more of a compressed approach to funk, with some surprising Latin touches too – especially in some of the percussion moments that really open up, creating a nice sense of energy to the record! The group have more than enough tightness to cross over to the AOR crowd, but they still keep things sharp on most tracks – and make the album real TK standard from the glory days. Titles include "Devil Boogie", "Hot Number", "Chicapbon Chicapbon", "Headhunter", "Lady", "Give Me That Groove", "Lady Of The Streets", and "Give Me A Break". CD features the bonus track "Call It Love". CD

Possible matches69
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Rob Franken ElectrificationDon't Stop ... LP
678 Records (Netherlands), 1974. New Copy ... $24.99
Fender Rhodes and vibes – a combination that always sounds fantastic, but which maybe sounds especially great here in a rare 70s session from Dutch keyboard legend Rob Franken! Rob's usually fantastic, no matter what the setting – but here, he's working on a set of spacious grooves that get plenty of great tones and colors from the vibes of Wolfgang Schulter – who works alongside Rob in a groove that's right up there with some of the best MPS funky electric jazz from the early 70s! About half the tracks on the set were written by German pianist Michael Naura – who himself was also doing some great Fender Rhodes work in the 70s – and titles include "Call", "Samba For Sander", "Song For Josef", "Barracuda", "Brown Out", "Concensus", and "Serenade For Myself". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches70
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Aretha FranklinAretha In Paris ... CD
Atlantic/Rhino, 1968. Used ... $4.99
Aretha Franklin sings it loud and proud, in front of a classy crowd at the Olympia Theater in Paris – a move that would have made Berry Gordy proud, but which is carried off here in a classic Atlantic mode throughout! Given the tight studio handling of Aretha during these early Atlantic years, the live setting is a nice surprise – and shows that the Jerry Wexler touch could still hold strong, and present a concert version of Franklin's new groove that was every bit as great as the studio one. Aretha's vocals are right up front in the mix, and gets a bit of backing support from a trio that includes her sister Carolyn. Titles include "Baby, I Love You", "Soul Serenade", "Don't Let Me Lose This Dream", "Natural Woman", "Chain Of Fools", "Respect", and "Come Back Baby". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches71
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Erma FranklinSoul Sister (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Brunswick/Demon (UK), 1970. New Copy (reissue)... $24.99
Lost funky work from one of the soulful sisters of Aretha Franklin! Erma's got a hard-hitting style that's right up there with Aretha's best for Atlantic – and on this album, she's working in Chicago with Johnny Pate, Sonny Sanders, and Willie Henderson – for a harder-hitting sound than her famous sis, really in the groove with the best of Brunswick from the late 60s! There's as much funk on the record as there is the deep soul you'd expect from the Franklin family, and Erma's vocals are incredible – equally at home with the original tracks on the record, as well as some late 60s hits that are nicely soulized by the boys in the band! Titles include "Hold On I'm Coming", "Baby I Love You", "Light My Fire", "You've Been Cancelled", "Can't See My Way", and "Gotta Find Me A Lover". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches72
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George FreemanNew Improved Funk ... CD
Groove Merchant/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1973. New Copy ... $16.99
The title certainly gets it right – as the album's one of the funkiest ever from guitarist George Freeman, and one of the few to really hit that messed-up groove he was working in the clubs before his mid 70s retreat to Chicago! The style here is often all over the map – a mix of soul jazz and funkier numbers, but often served up with less of the direction than you'd get on Prestige, and even less of that on Groove Merchant – more in a raw small combo mode, with Freeman's guitar hitting plenty of raspy notes and weird solo excursions that keep even the mellower tunes exciting! The record features 2 different groups – one with John Young on piano, the other with Bobby Blevins on organ – and brother Von Freeman plays tenor sax on the whole set, although not nearly in the spotlight as George! (Definitely in keeping with something that Von told George many years back – quoted to us by George – "When you've got your own album, make sure that people know that you're the star!") Titles include "New Improved Funk", "Daffy", "Happy Fingers", "Confirmed Truth", "Guitar Lover Man", and "Big Finish". CD
(Part of the Groove Merchant Mo' Groovy Collection!)

Possible matches73
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Fresh StartWhat America Needs ... LP
ABC, 1974. Very Good+ ... $1.99
Despite the political overtones of the title, this funky rock band sticks mostly in conventional pop territory. The themes of the songs don't really belie any sort of fresh start for the USA, but the drummer's pretty tight, and he grooves it well with the guitarist on the best tracks. There's not really any standout drumbreaks, but the best cuts groove in the same way as good tracks on "rock break" albums from the same time – and some of the sweeter numbers have a good Free Soul sound. Titles include "Fresh Start", "Right Away", "Goin Down To Get Ya", "Takin Care Of Business", and "La La". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has light wear.)

Possible matches74
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Renato GamaOlhos Negros Vivo (colored vinyl – with bonus 7 inch) ... LP
Tropical Diaspora (Germany), 2018. New Copy Gatefold ... $14.99
A contemporary set from Brazil, but one with a groove that feels like it was lifted right from the 70s – especially that period later in the decade when samba soul modes were coming into play with warmer boogie modes! The set's a live one, and features the strong lead vocals of Renato Gama with a very strong backing combo – great keyboards, funky rhythms, and a pair of female singers who really balance out the rougher edges of Renato's vocals nicely – making for a blend that almost reminds us of some of our favorite work by Emilio Santiago back in the day, especially some of his albums for Philips. Titles include "Jogo", "O Futuro", "Rita", "Vai Bem", "O Iludido", "Banzo", "O Saudoso Guardador De Reses", and "Comida De Comer Com A Mao". Also features a bonus 7" single – with older album tracks "Essa Preta E Treta" and "Engraxate", both by the group Nhocune Soul. LP, Vinyl record album
(On colored vinyl with a bonus 7 inch!)

Possible matches75
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GayladsFire & Rain (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Doctor Bird (UK), 1969. New Copy ... $12.99
The title track is the big hit by James Taylor – but don't hold that against The Gaylads, as the trio make the tune very much their own – as they do with all the fantastic material in this set! The group work here with superb production from Leslie Kong – slow-burning rocksteady with a subtle groove – which really lets the fantastic harmonies of the trio soar right out front – in that mode that had acts like The Gaylads really giving American soul vocal groups a run for their money at the end of the 60s! The whole thing's got a nicely laidback groove, and a subtle current of righteousness – on titles that include "Tell The Children The Truth", "Fire & Rain", "Something Is Wrong Somewhere", "Peace Love & Understanding", "There's A Fire", and "Someday I Will Be Free". CD also features 13 more bonus tracks – other Leslie Kong singles by the group – with titles that include "My Jamaican Girl", "This Time I Won't Hurt You", "Cold & Lonely Night", "Young Gifted & Black", "ABC Reggae", and "I'll Be Yours". CD

Possible matches76
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Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz, & Sonny StittFor Musicians Only ... LP
Verve, 1957. Near Mint- ... $19.99
A tremendous little record – one that's greater even than the sum of its three mighty parts! Although we've always felt that some of the "all star" sets on Verve could sometimes be a bit too "easy", we're always very big fans of the few that feature strong performances from Dizzy Gillespie – as they have a tight bop groove that lets all the musicians find their right place, and solo in wonderful interplay with each other! Here, Dizz and Sonny Stitt provide the core of a group that also includes Stan Getz on tenor – and the three of them are given four nice long tracks to work through in a relaxed seamless fashion – moving openly and wonderfully over tunes that include "Dark Eyes", "We", and "Be Bop". LP, Vinyl record album
(70s Japanese pressing, with obi and insert!)

Possible matches77
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Dexter GordonSwingin' Affair (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Blue Note, 1962. New Copy (reissue)... $22.99 24.99
An amazingly simple – but amazingly satisfying session from Dexter Gordon! The group's a totally solid quartet with Sonny Clark on piano, Butch Warren on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums – and the groove is right in the pocket with a solid solid soulful feel that you don't always get on Gordon's other Blue Note albums! There's a simple elegance here that's really beautiful – Gordon at his post-bop best, but without any of the over-extended modes of his too-long solo years – a mix that's really rare, and carried off impeccably for this set. The record starts with the amazing "Soy Califa", a nice hardbop number with a good Latiny feel, then slides into lots of other nice ones like "McSplivens", "The Backbone", and "Don't Explain". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Swingin' Affair (XRCD24 pressing) ... CD 19.99

Possible matches78
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✨✧ Dexter GordonSwingin' Affair (XRCD24 pressing) ... CD
Blue Note, 1962. Used ... $19.99
An amazingly simple – but amazingly satisfying session from Dexter Gordon! The group's a totally solid quartet with Sonny Clark on piano, Butch Warren on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums – and the groove is right in the pocket with a solid solid soulful feel that you don't always get on Gordon's other Blue Note albums! There's a simple elegance here that's really beautiful – Gordon at his post-bop best, but without any of the over-extended modes of his too-long solo years – a mix that's really rare, and carried off impeccably for this set. The record starts with the amazing "Soy Califa", a nice hardbop number with a good Latiny feel, then slides into lots of other nice ones like "McSplivens", "The Backbone", and "Don't Explain". CD
(This is an XRCD24 pressing, with higher fidelity and imporved audio quality.)
Also available Swingin' Affair (180 gram pressing) ... LP 22.99

Possible matches79
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✨✧ Grant GreenBorn To Be Blue (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Blue Note, 1962. New Copy Gatefold (reissue)... Just Sold Out!
A rare one from Grant Green – recorded in 1962, but not issued until this first pressing of the material, in 1985. The set's one of Green's early classics recorded with pianist Sonny Clark – a deeply soulful player who really had the right feel for Green's more lyrical soul jazz numbers. The rest of the group includes Ike Quebec on tenor, plus Sam Jones on bass and Louis Hayes on drums. The tracks are laidback and introspective – but still have enough of a groove to fit with Green's best work at the time. Titles include "Count Every Star", "If I Should Lose You", "Born To Be Blue", and "My One And Only Love". LP, Vinyl record album
(Part of the Blue Note Tone Poet series – on 180 gram vinyl pressed at RTI! Cover and vinyl are beautiful!)

Possible matches80
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Tiny GrimesDefinitive Black & Blue Sessions – Food For Thought ... CD
Black & Blue (France), 1970/1974. Used ... $11.99
Tiny Grimes is one of the most unique guitarists in jazz – a player with a force and power that's clearly rooted in the blues – given that he can hit the strings like T Bone Walker or Pee Wee Crayton – but a style that's clearly jazz overall, and delivered with a heck of a lot of punch! This album has Grimes really shining in a small combo with Jay McShann on piano, George Kelly on tenor, and Francois Biensan on Hammond – working in a groove that's got just the right kind of open vibe to recall some of Tiny's best albums for Prestige Records from a decade before – nice in gritty, in the best possible way! Titles include "Morgantini With Mime", "Food For Thought", "Young Blood's Blues", and "Connie Hayes Groovy Eyes". CD also features a session from a few years later – similarly excellent, with Lloyd Glenn on piano – on tracks that include "Sid's West End Blues", "Lil Darlin", "Swingin Mama", and "Some Groovy Fours". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches81
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✨✧ Vince GuaraldiComplete Warner Brothers/Seven Arts Recordings (Oh Good Grief/Eclectic/Alma-Ville/bonus tracks) ... CD
Warner/Omnivore, 1968/1969. New Copy 2CD ... $27.99
A trio of wonderful records – plus rare bonus tracks too! First up is the classic Oh Good Grief – one of the coolest, grooviest albums that pianist Vince Guaraldi ever recorded – a set that's got the same Peanuts theme as his earlier dates for Fantasy Records, but which also features some sweet electric touches that only make things even better than before! In addition to his warmly vamping piano, with all those lyrical touches we love so much, Vince is playing an electric harpsichord too – which makes for some very groovy moments – in a cool quartet that features guitar from Eddie Duran, bass from Stanley Gilbert, and drums from the great Carl Burnett! All tunes are Peanut-themed – the music that Guaraldi wrote for the TV specials – but they're sometimes taken at a looser style that's even jazzier overall – as you'll hear on the classic "Linus & Lucy", plus "Red Baron", "Peppermint Patty", "Great Pumpkin Waltz", and "Rain Rain Go Away". The Eclectic Vince Guaraldi nicely expands Vince's sound of earlier years – by taking his lyrical piano groove and adding in a bit of electric harpsichord – plus slightly larger arrangements that feature a bit of electric bass, guitar, and just the right light touches of strings. The resulting sound is wonderful – as deeply reflective as some of Vince's better-known work, but with some cool late 60s touches that really give the album a fresh kind of feel. And heck, Vince even sings on 2 Tim Hardin tracks – "Black Sheep Boy" and "Reason To Believe" – using a great raspy style of vocals that we didn't even know he had! Other titles include a great electric version of "The Beat Goes On", plus cool originals "Nobody Else", "Coffee and Doe-Nuts", and "Lucifer's Lady". Alma-Ville was cut during Vince's late 60s hipster phase – and it combines work on piano with a bit of electric playing, plus hip LA arrangements that include drums by Dom Um Romao, guitar by Herb Ellis, and added percussion by Rubens Bassini. Tracks are mostly originals – short groovers and sing-song numbers, a lot cooler than some of Vince's earlier work – all dancing along in a sweetly breezy groove that makes for a heck of a delightful little album! Titles include "Rio From The Air", "Cristo Redentor", "Uno Y Uno", "Detained In San Ysidro", "Jambos", "Alma Ville", and "The Masked Marvel". 2CD set features 4 bonus tracks – "Oh Happy Day", "The Sharecropper's Daughter", "Do You Know The Way To San Jose (take 15)", and 'The BEat Goes On (alt take 14)". CD

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✨✧ Johnny HammondGears (with bonus tracks) ... LP
Milestone/BGP (UK), 1975. New Copy 2LP Gatefold (reissue)... Just Sold Out!
One of our favorite albums of all time – and a record that just gets better and better the more we listen to it – and we've listened to it for years! Johnny "Hammond" Smith began his career as a simple soul jazz organist – but by the time of this album, he'd teamed up with the mighty Larry Mizell, the genius arranger/producer who'd breathed new life into the careers of Donald Byrd and Bobbi Humphrey. Mizell works with Hammond in the same way he does with other jazz artists – by taking a groove that works best with their solo style, and slowly layering other instrumentation and effects on top of it, so that when the solo kicks in, it's supported on waves and waves of funky sounds and soulful grooves. Mizell and his brother Fonce both play keyboards on the record, and the rest of the group includes monster fusion players like Harvey Mason, Roger Glenn, Hadley Caliman, and Jerry Peters. The real treat is Johnny, though – as his solos are heavenly, the best of his 70s work, stripped mean and lean, laid in at just the right points. Includes the breakbeat classic "Shifting Gears", the house classic "Los Conquistadores Chocolates", and funky numbers "Fantasy" and "Tell Me What To Do". This stunning version adds in some killer bonus tracks – 6 never-heard cuts from the Milestone vaults, including "Song For My Family", "Funky Native", "Detroit Rainbow", "Can't We Smile (alt)", and slow and fast versions of "A Child's Love". LP, Vinyl record album

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Herbie HancockDirectstep (2019 Black Friday Release) ... LP
CBS/Sony/Get On Down, 1978. New Copy Gatefold (reissue)... $21.99 27.99
A rare Japanese-only session from Herbie Hancock – very electric, and nicely funky in all the right parts! The set was recorded at the end of the 70s with amazing fidelity – and features a unique lineup that includes Webster Lewis on additional keyboards and Alphonse Mouzon on drums – alongside more familiar partners Bennie Maupin on reeds, Paul Jackson on bass, and Bill Summers on percussion! Given these last three, there's almost a slight Headhunters feel to the set – but the overall groove is a bit more mellow, with some wonderfully spacey touches that are super-soulful – and miles above anything that Herbie was recording in the US at the time. Titles include the sublime mellow groover "Butterfly", plus "Shiftless Shuffle", and the side-long jazzy jammer "I Thought It Was You"! LP, Vinyl record album

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Herbie HancockThrust ... CD
Columbia, 1974. New Copy ... $4.99 6.99
Killer electric work from Herbie Hancock – right on par with his groundbreaking Headhunters set, but a bit spacier too! The album features a Headhunters-solid lineup – with Bennie Maupin on saxes, Paul Jackson on bass, Mike Clark on drums, and Bill Summers on percussion – all grooving wonderfully with Herbie on a set of super-long tracks! Hancock himself handles a host of incredible keyboards – Fender Rhodes, clavinet, Arp, and lots more – all in a lean electric style that still sounds as fresh today as it did way back in the mid 70s – perhaps even more so, given the return to this sort of basic groove that has happened in recent years! Tracks are long, tight, and super funky – and titles include "Actual Proof", "Palm Grease", "Spank-A-Lee", and "Butterfly". CD

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✨✧ Quinn Harris & The MastermindsAll In The Soul ... CD
Reynolds/Undercover Brother, 1970. Used ... $7.99
An obscure west coast soul set from Quinn Harris – a well-titled "mastermind" with a great ear for a gritty groove! The set's got a really unique sort of feel – not just straight funk, but not straight soul either – kind of a hip blend of modes that often includes some warmly jazzy touches next to deeper soul vocals from soul sister Lady Bianca! Harris directs the group, and plays sax, flute, piano, and organ – all of which are used to nice effect in an array of different modes – especially the flute, which is often mixed with a stepping bassline to create a blackspolitation sort of groove. There's a small horn section in the combo, and they play without cliche – just the right sort of coloring to shade in the tunes without overpowering them in the usual horn section way. Billy Street handles male vocals on a few other tracks in the set, and titles include "Stop Telling Me Lies", "All In The Soul", "We Got To Get Together", "Never Too Hard To Bear", "Doctor Of Love", and "This Summer". CD also features bonus 7" versions of "Stop Telling Me Lies" and "We Got To Get Together". CD
(Original Undercover Brother pressing.)

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HelloHello Again (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Polydor/7T's (UK), 1978. New Copy ... $6.99 13.99
Hello have cleaned up their look a bit from previous records, but they're still hitting hard in that glam-inspired groove we love so much! Guitars are fuzzy, the vocals flanged-out too, and even though the rhythms are tight, there's a spooky sort of mid-70s pop vibe going on overall – an undercurrent of nastiness that hides beneath the group's power pop look and catchy tune hooks. Production is relatively simple too – somewhat smoother than before, but still with more than enough rough edges in the right parts. Titles include "99 Ways", "Back Seat Talking", "The Cat Is Wild", "You Shot Me Down", "Oh Caroline", "How To Survive The Night", "Walking Midnight", "Elenore", and "Hi Ho Silver Lining". CD also features 8 more bonus tracks that include "Good Old USA", "Too Much Hesitating", "Night Watcher", "One By One", and "You Got Class Babe". CD

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Takehiro Honda with Sadao WatanabeTakehiro Honda Meets Rhythm Section Featuring Sadao Watanabe ... CD
Trio/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1969. New Copy ... $22.99
A fantastic pairing of two key Japanese talents of the late 60s – pianist Takehiro Honda and reedman Sadao Watanabe – both of whom come together here on a record that's one of their most soulful of the time! Honda's clearly drinking deep from the soul jazz modes of Ramsey Lewis, Les McCann, and Ray Bryant – and really makes the tunes move with a strongly rhythmic vibe on his left hand, which is amplified by the round basslines and tight drums in the combo – working with a well-crafted groove that would be right at home on an American label like Chess or Prestige at the time. Watanabe blows with a very soulful vibe, too – even more than on his own records on Takt – and while he's not on every track, his presence here is really wonderful. Titles include "Quiet Sea", "Stella By Starlight", "Minton Blues", "Hey Jude", and "Ain't Tell You A Good Way But". CD
(Part of the "Nippon Jazz Spirits 48" series!)

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Honey ConeSweet Replies (plus bonus tracks) ... CD
Hot Wax/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1971. New Copy ... $13.99
The second album by Honey Cone – and the one that really broke them out of the box! The record's got a groove that gets going right from the start – a sense of upbeat, soulful energy that really shows why the Honey Cone approach was so different than most of the girl groups who came before them – a groovier, more righteous style that shows that the ladies are very much in charge – and able to send things over the top with their unified energy! Production is great – very rumbling and bold, which further helps the groove – and titles include the huge hit "Want Ads" – a pre-disco cut that pointed the way towards future female soul groups of the mid 70s – plus "Deaf Blind Paralyzed", "Sunday Morning People", "My Mind's On Leaving", "We Belong Together", and "Blessed Be Our Love". CD features two bonus tracks – "Want Ads (unedited version)", and "The Day I Found Myself (single version)". CD

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Bobbi HumphreyFancy Dancer ... CD
Blue Note, 1975. New Copy ... $9.99 11.98
Sublime genius from funky flute player Bobbi Humphrey – a record we'd rank right up there with her classic Blacks & Blues set – and like that one, another fantastic collaboration with producer Larry Mizell! The groove here is tremendous throughout – a heady mix of Bobbi's flute, Larry's keyboards, and some additional work from Jerry Peters, Skip Scarborough, and other 70s funky jazz legends – all coming together in a large lineup that works together with an amazingly tight and stripped-down groove – a sound that seems to flow effortlessly from the breeze, but which was the long result of careful work in the studio by Larry Mizell and his brother Fonce, who also helped on arrangements. Humphrey is in excellent form – blowing with a tone that's hard, crisp, and very soulful – and the spacey keyboards and gentle grooves lift her flute way out into the cosmos, yet never push things too far! Every cut's a winner – and titles include "You Make Me Feel So Good", "Please Set Me At Ease", "Uno Esta", "The Trip", "Fancy Dancer", and "Mestizo Eyes". CD

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Bobbi HumphreyFancy Dancer (Japanese pressing) ... CD
Blue Note (Japan), 1975. Used ... $9.99
Sublime genius from funky flute player Bobbi Humphrey – a record we'd rank right up there with her classic Blacks & Blues set – and like that one, another fantastic collaboration with producer Larry Mizell! The groove here is tremendous throughout – a heady mix of Bobbi's flute, Larry's keyboards, and some additional work from Jerry Peters, Skip Scarborough, and other 70s funky jazz legends – all coming together in a large lineup that works together with an amazingly tight and stripped-down groove – a sound that seems to flow effortlessly from the breeze, but which was the long result of careful work in the studio by Larry Mizell and his brother Fonce, who also helped on arrangements. Humphrey is in excellent form – blowing with a tone that's hard, crisp, and very soulful – and the spacey keyboards and gentle grooves lift her flute way out into the cosmos, yet never push things too far! Every cut's a winner – and titles include "You Make Me Feel So Good", "Please Set Me At Ease", "Uno Esta", "The Trip", "Fancy Dancer", and "Mestizo Eyes". CD
(Out of print, 2006 Japanese pressing.)

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Phyllis HymanYou Know How To Love Me ... LP
Arista, 1979. Sealed ... $14.99
A classic 1979 album from Phyllis Hyman! Hyman was one of the few female singers who started in the pre-disco years and managed to move through the disco years with a good groove – but never get totally swamped by the production styles of the day. She stuck close to her roots as a jazzy soul singer, and produced great albums like this – which mixed pop club grooves with more sophisticated arrangements, handled very well here by the production team of Reggie Lucas and James Mtume. Titles include the stormer "You Know How To Love Me", plus "Some Way", "Under Your Spell", "But I Love You", and "Give A Little More". LP, Vinyl record album
(Sealed original pressing! Shrinwrap is open along the top, right under the top edge, but not entirely.)

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Ibibio Sound MachineIbibio Sound Machine ... LP
Soundway (UK), 2014. Near Mint- ... $14.99
A really fresh group with a very unique sound – a combo that's partly rooted in older Afro Funk modes, but who also deliver their groove with kind of a leaner, New York street soul vibe as well! The album's cover image really gets the groove right – as the vintage is more 70s through 80s – with some playful crisscrossing of modes that never hurt the core soul of the music, but which provide some really fresh touches throughout! Some rhythms are programmed, but in a spare old school mode – and then mixed with acoustic drums and percussion, warmed up with keyboards and horns – and carried off with some great vocals from Eno Williams Uffort in the lead! Imagine Fela recording for 99 Records – or ESG getting some time in Lagos – but that's only part of the album's appeal, which only broadens with repeat listens. Titles include "Voice Of The Bird", "Ibibo Spiritual", "Got To Move Got To Get Out", "Let's Dance", "The Tortoise", "Uwa The Peacock", and "The Talking Fish". LP, Vinyl record album

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Igna IgwebuikeBomp ... CD
PMG (Austria), 1980. New Copy ... $6.99 16.99
Sweet funky sounds from east Nigeria, circa 1980 – a great little set that's got a laidback groove, and a style that's clearly learned plenty from the hipper corners of the American funk universe! The approach is a bit like funky club at times, a bit more like some of the larger funk acts of the time at others – all handled with a groove that's every bit as badass as you might guess from the cover! The music has a few more tropical touches at times, almost Caribbean energy when the rhythms speed up – but some of the best tracks are right on the money, with a superdope vibe. Titles include "World Of Misery", "Take Me High", "Funk In A Ghetto", "Disco Bomp", and "World Of Love". CD

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Fumio ItabashiRise & Shine – Live At The Aketa's ... CD
Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1975. New Copy ... $22.99
A soaring live set from Fumio Itabashi – one of our favorite Japanese pianists of the 70s, and a tremendous player with a strong McCoy Tyner-like sound! The session features Fumio stretching out on 3 long tracks in trio mode – only bass and drums to back him up, and plenty of space to take off on long-spiraling lines on the keys! There's a pulsating groove to the first track in the set – the 20 minute long "Jumping Board", which dips, turns, and flies with the right kind of energy you'd expect from the title. That's followed by a mellower reading of "My Funny Valentine" – but one that's still quite long, and really builds nicely through the set. And last up is another Itabashi original – "Rise & Shine" – presented here in the full 17 minute version, which layers sound upon sound as the tune builds on – really cascading beautifully along! CD
(Part of the "Nippon Jazz Spirits 48" series!)

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Bob JamesTwo ... LP
CTI, 1975. Very Good Gatefold ... $9.99
A monster – and quite possibly one of the greatest Fender Rhodes albums of all time! Bob James is really at the height of his powers here – stepping out with a sound that's a lot smoother than some of his earlier work, yet in a groove that's never too slick or too overproduced – as happened with some of his later records on the Tappan Zee imprint. Here, James is still a master of space and sound – using the Fender Rhodes with bell-like tones to craft some key grooves that are still having an amazing impact today, more than 30 years after the album was initially recorded! There's a darkness here that we totally love – and tracks include the legendary "Take Me To The Mardi Gras", which has been sampled by Run DMC and loads of others – plus"The Golden Apple", "I Feel A Song", "You're As Right As Rain", "Farandole", and "Dream Journey". LP, Vinyl record album
(Original gatefold pressing with Van Gelder stamp. Cover has a small stain on the bottom left corner.)

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✨✧ Rick JamesThrowin' Down ... CD
Gordy (Japan), 1982. Used ... $11.99
Rick James is massively throwing down on this classic set – tight, right, and on the money all the way through – in that trademark groove that so many others would try to cop, but never get this right! The album bristles with energy right from the start – lots of bass at the bottom of the grooves, riffing guitar in the middle, and those badass vocals of James' that mange to sound nasty even when they're sweet! But if you know Rick, you know that sweetness isn't the aim here – and the album drips with party sex all the way through – over funk classics that include "Standing On The Top", "Teardrops", "Money Talks", "Throwdown", "Hard To Get", "69 Times" and "Dance Wit Me". CD
(Includes obi.)

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Jive TurkeysBread & Butter ... CD
Colemine, 2010. Used ... $6.99
Organ funk from the midwest scene – raw, tightly grooving instrumentals and the first full length release from Ohio's Jive Turkeys – numbers that sounds right in step with the 70s instro funk of The Meters and the best of the contemporary indie funk scenes! The group is a four piece – organ, drums, bass and guitar – keeping it simple, raw and funky. As hinted at on the on the couple of the stellar 45s that led up to Bread & Butter, they work well in both a slower cooking, Booker T indebted groove or a fast & furious,post-JBs style. Simple, straight up funky soul instrumentals is the order of the day, and these Jive Turkeys bring it! Titles include "Funky Turkey", "JT Strut", "Soul High", "Chickenfoot", "Straight Fire", "Bill Collector", "Stamp", "Funky Brewster", "Talkin' That Talk", "Grimmin", "BA" and "Otis Lament". CD

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JJ Johnson/Martha ReevesWillie Dynamite – Original Soundtrack ... LP
MCA/Geffen, 1974. New Copy (reissue)... $11.99 24.99
One of the greatest soundtracks of the blacksploitation era – served up with some incredible grooves from maestro JJ Johnson! The album's got a non-stop, hard-hitting groove that ranks it with the best of its time – and which is arguably even better, because most of the record isn't nearly as well known as Shaft, Superfly, or other classics. Martha Reeves sings some of the deepest vocals of her career on the great title track "Willie D" – an old sample cut that you're sure to recognize – and the instrumental tunes are even better, filled with great percussion and jazzy flourishes from JJ – in a style that really keeps things interesting! There's plenty of "chase" riffing on the album – and titles include "Willie Chase", "Parade Strut", "Make It Right", "Gospel Family", "Keep On Movin", and "Willie Escapes". LP, Vinyl record album

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Juaneco Y Su ComboEl Gran Cacique ... LP
Infopesa (Peru), 1972. New Copy (reissue)... $30.99
A cornerstone of the classic chica groove in Peru – and one of the albums that put Juaneco and his very groovy combo on the musical map of 70s South America! The tracks are mostly instrumental, and have a fantastically tight blend of percussion, keyboard lines, and electric guitar – the last of which has a style that's directly tied to surf guitar modes of the American west coast of the 60s – but with leaner, snakier, spookier styles that are completely sublime – and which often have a way of stepping around the rhythms that would have made The Ventures weep! Production is great – with just the right dose of echo to make everything sound even more wonderful – and titles include "El Pajarito Pajero", "La Marcha Del Sapo", "Aguita De Sachachorro", "Me Robaron Mi Runa Mula", "Vacilando Con Ayahuasca", "Volando", and "La Incognita". LP, Vinyl record album

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Kay-GeesKeep On Bumpin & Masterplan/Find A Friend/Kilowatt (bonus tracks) ... CD
De-Lite/Robinsongs (UK), Mid 70s. New Copy 2CD ... $12.99
Three full funky albums – and bonus tracks too! First up is Keep On Bumpin & Masterplan – the Kay-Gees' funkiest record ever – a set that's harder and sharper than anything else they'd ever record in years to come! Grabbing this one up is like finding a lost Kool & The Gang album from the early years – which is no surprise, since Ronald Bell of the group produced, and wrote a lot of the songs with the group – maybe acting as their mentor, and definitely giving the young group a great showcase for their boundless energy, and tight skills in the groove department! The band are incredibly tight – with lots of hard drums, choppy guitar, and the rolling party feel that made Kool & The Gang so great during their best years – captured here with a similarly raw production style. There's some great horns that blast in and out, sounding very off-beat at the best moments – like the classic "Who's the Man With the Master Plan", sampled by YZ many years ago – or other funky cuts like "Ain't No Time", "Get Down", and "You've Got to Keep on Bumpin". On Find A Friend, the Kay-Gee's are getting a little disco, but they also manage to lay down some nice funky tracks – in the best Kool & The Gang tradition of their early work! Ronald Bell of Kool & Gang is still working with the group – and he wrote a lot of material and also performs on the LP – which might be part of the album's strength – although the group have clearly got a very strong legacy on their own! The record shows signs of the direction that Kool & The Gang were taking at the time, with a move towards electric keyboards instead of raw funky guitars – but like Kool's work from the period, the use of these keyboards is nicely restrained, and adds some good jazzy elements to the sound, to create a more sophisticated style of funk. Cuts include "Waiting At The Bus Stop", "Mr. Nothin", "STP", "Be Real", "Keep On Saying", "Acknowledgement", and a number of versions of "Find A Friend". On Kilowatt, The Kay-Gees are burning bright – in that razor-sharp approach to funk that made the group one of the best of their generation – able to strongly step on the dancefloor, but without losing any of the rawness of their funky 45 years! The balance is a bit like Fatback at their best – and that group is maybe one of the few we'd match next to the Kay-Gees at this point – and although the basslines are up a bit more than before, they never hit any sort of too-cliched or overdone modes, as in some of the other big funk groups of the period. Guitars riff mightily, lyrics are plenty catchy, and the rest of the instrumentation is right on the money – on cuts that include their "Kay-Gee's Theme Song", plus "Fat Daddy", "Celestial Vibrations", "Space Disco", and "Kilowatt/Invasion". CD features bonus tracks – "Hustle Wit Every Muscle", "Cheek To Cheek (12" mix)", "Kilowatt (12" mix)", and "Kilowatt (12" ext)". CD
 
 
 



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