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Exact matches: 3
Exact matches1
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Soulful StringsAnother Exposure ... LP
Cadet, 1968. Very Good+ ... $9.99
Hip hip stuff from Richard Evans and the gang at Cadet Records! The record is the second outing by The Soulful Strings – a group that kind of started as a studio side project, but who became a surprisingly popular act during the late 60s. The album includes some excellent original tunes by Evans – including "Soul Message" and "The Stepper", the latter of which is virtually a blueprint for the jazzy stepping groove that's always been a hit on Chicago dancefloors. A wonderful mix of strings, flute, organ, and more – all with a strong rhythm section that keeps the whole thing soulful and grooving! Titles include "Jericho", "Minor Adjustment", "The Who Who Song", "Alice Blue Gown", and "Inner Light". LP, Vinyl record album
(Blue label stereo pressing. Cover and labels have a small drill hole. Cover has light surface wear, some edge wear, a partially split top seam and a sticker spot and some aging on the back.)

Exact matches2
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Soulful StringsIn Concert ... LP
Cadet, Late 60s. Very Good+ ... $4.99
Given that the Soulful Strings were really just a studio side project of the Chi soul arranger Richard Evans, it seems sort of strange to have them cut a live LP, but the session, recorded at Chicago's London House, works quite well, and has a bit more lively feel than some of their classic studio recordings. The group includes Phil Upchurch on guitar, Bobby Christian on vibes, and Lennie Druss on woodwinds – and tracks include a version of "Listen Here", plus "Oboe Flats", "There Was A Time", "Pavane", and "MacArthur Park". LP, Vinyl record album
(Stereo pressing with deep groove. Cover has some edge wear, two small cutout holes and a name in marker.)

Exact matches3
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Soulful StringsPaint It Black ... LP
Cadet, 1966. Very Good+ ... $14.99
One of the better albums by this great Chicago soul studio group – but all of them are pretty nice! The great Richard Evans is still at the head of The Strings, and the album features solo work by Charles Stepney and Lennie Druss, in a cool breezy Chess/Cadet soul jazz kind of mode. The group runs through jazz standards like "Take Five" and "Sidewinder", plus some pop and soul tracks like "Sunny", "Eight Miles High", "Lover's Concerto", and "Paint It Black". A bit funky, a bit groovy, and some nice instrumental tracks from the legendary Cadet studios! LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has some light wear, but vinyl is nice and clean.)
 
Possible matches: 52
Possible matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Cannonball AdderleyGreat Love Themes – The Cannonball Adderley Quintet With Strings x ... CD
Capitol (Japan), Mid 60s. Used ... $28.99
A nice once – certainly not as funky as some of Cannon's other work for Capitol, but with a dark edge that really makes it great! The core Cannonball quintet of Nat Adderley, Joe Zawinul, et al, is set up in string arrangements by Ray Ellis – a bit flowery at times, but in a way that makes for an edgey juxtaposition against the undeniably soulful groove of the quintet, even when they're playing ballads and love songs. Adderley's horn breaks out in these free solos, a bit like some of the Charlie Parker/Ralph Burns work from the early 50s – which makes for a very nice sound to our ears! Titles include "Morning Of The Carnival", "Stella By Starlight", "So In Love", "The Song Is You", and "The End Of A Love Affair". CD
(Out of print, includes obi.)

Possible matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
San Remo Golden StringsHungry For Love ... LP
Ric Tic, Late 60s. Very Good- ... $3.99
The name on this one sounds cheesy – but the record's actually a great batch of Detroit soul instrumentals, with way more of a Northern Soul groove than you'd expect! The San Remo Golden Strings were a group of Detroit soul musicians – kind of similar to the Soulful Strings of Chicago Cadet fame, using strings to create a soulful stepping groove, but given a more exotic name here to "class" things up a bit. "Hungry For Love" is one of the group's most enduring instrumental tracks, the kind that you'll hear on some of those Goldmine collections filled with rare non-vocal soul tracks. The rest of the record features some original grooves – like "Joy Road", "Lonely One", and "I'm Satisfied" – as well as some San Remoed versions of tracks like "Everybody Loves A Lover", "People", and "Blueberry Hil". LP, Vinyl record album
(Stereo Gordy pressing.)

Possible matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Ferrante & TeicherIn A Soulful Mood/Killing Me Softly ... CD
United Artists/Vocalion (UK), 1973/1974. Used ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A pair of hip 70s albums from the team of Ferrante & Teicher – back to back on one CD! In A Soulful Mood is a surprisingly soulful set from the team of Ferrante & Teicher – filled with lush instrumentals that mix their piano-heavy technique with some seductive 70s grooves! George Butler heads up the record on production, and definitely draws from some of his best orchestrated jazz albums of the time – bringing in currents you might not normally expect from the aging pair – and, in a way, making the larger orchestrations more of the lead than the keyboards. Although we've also got to admit, F&T play some sweet Fender Rhodes at times – on titles that include great 70s soul covers – like "Love's Theme", "Break Up To Make Up", "You Are Everything", "I'm Stone In Love With You", and "Betcha By Golly Wow" – plus an original called "Hong Kong Soul Brother", which has a nice funky soundtrack vibe! Killing Me Softly is a set that's heavy on strings, but still has some of the nice punch you'd find in the best Ferrante & Teicher albums of the 70s – done in conjunction with producer George Butler, but still with some traces of the old days too! The piano is mostly acoustic, and arrangements often have that lush mode the duo used when a bit less pyrotechnic – but there's a few gently funky numbers that still round out the set nicely. Titles include "Ben", "Also Sprach Zarathustra", "Seesaw", "Night Sounds", "Try Again", and "Living Together Growing Together". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches7
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Young-Holt UnlimitedSoulful Strut ... LP
Brunswick, Late 60s. Very Good+ ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A funky soul instrumental classic – all the way through! The team of Eldee Young and Redd Holt first came to prominence with Ramsey Lewis' first Chicago trio, then branched out on their own as a jazz act – but by the time of this set, they'd picked up a hipper, funkier late 60s sort of soul groove – and were working with larger backings and a nice deal of extra bass! The pianist in the group is the super-dope Ken Chaney – a player who uses space as much as he uses notes – providing a cool counterpoint to the funky and jazzy riffing of the Young/Holt bass/drum combo. The album includes the landmark track "Soulful Strut" – with tinkling piano over funky backings mixed with sweetened strings – and other tracks include "Funky Is As Funky Does", "Baby Your Light Is Out", "Who's Making Love", "Ain't There Something Money Can't Buy?", "Be By My Side", and "Please Sunrise". A high point in the Chicago soul scene – with backings by Willie Henderson! LP, Vinyl record album
(Stereo pressing.)

Possible matches8
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Cecil Holmes Soulful SoundBlack Motion Picture Experience ... LP
Buddah, 1973. Sealed ... Out Of Stock
An album that tries to do a heck of a lot in such a short space – and turns out to be even better than you might guess! Few folks would try to take on the entire black motion picture experience of the 70s with a single record – but funky arranger Cecil Holmes does just that, and turns out this beautiful blend of the best cuts from famous soundtracks – all remade by his ensemble in a soaring melange of strings and soul! There's plenty of funky currents here – thanks to sharp arrangements from Tony Camillo, and a killer group that also includes the mighty Pat Rebillot on keyboards – plus plenty of wah wah guitar, and enough strings to make the album rank up there with the soundtrack feel of the day. Titles include versions of "Superfly", "Slaughter", "Freddie's Dead", "Across 110th Street", "2001", "Ben", and "Trouble Man". LP, Vinyl record album
(Sealed original pressing! Cover has a cutout mark.)

Possible matches9
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ BirdChance (orig, inst)/Zero (live at blue note tokyo) ... CD
Sony (Japan), 2003. Used ... Just Sold Out!
A wonderfully trippy tune from the lovely Bird – a sweet bit of Japanese soul that's got some nice strings and even a bit of sitar! The lyrics are in Japanese, like Bird's other work – and the track's got an approach that's even a bit 60s rock inspired, oddly enough – but still done with enough soulful touches to make it appealing to our ears. It's supported here by a great live version of the tune "Zero" – a number that was co-written by Monday Michiru, and which is performed here with cool instrumentation that includes Fender Rhodes and violin CD
(Out of print. Includes the obi.)

Possible matches10
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Johnny BristolHang On In There Baby ... LP
MGM, 1974. Near Mint- ... $14.99
The first solo album from Johnny Bristol – a genius soul talent who did a bunch of great work for Motown as a writer and arranger, breaking out here on his own! Like so many other behind-the-scenes talents from the late 60s, Johnny turned out to be an excellent soul artist in his own right – even though he only got to cut a rare few albums during the 70s – and this debut album already has him emerging straight away as a fully-formed talent! The vibe is a great mix of Detroit and California Motown – arranged by HB Barnum, and produced with a style that's tight, but still open and fluid too. Backings mix soulful strings with sweet harmonies – and lots of the tunes have a great 70s mellow soul groove. Titles include "Woman Woman", "I Got Your Number", "You & I", "It Don't Hurt No More", and the anthemic "Hang On In There Baby". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ CerroneCerrone's Paradise ... CD
Malligator/Because (France), 1977. New Copy ... Just Sold Out!
Cerrone's second album – a swirling mix of disco beats and strings that follows very clearly on the spirit of his landmark first one! Like that album, this one's got a title track that runs well over 15 minutes long – building in a slowly dancing way that says everything about European disco styles that one track could ever hope to do! Other tunes on the album are shorter and tighter – with soulful vocals dancing in and out, and some nice keyboard work that makes the tunes sparkle with a sweet electric groove. Titles include "Take Me", "Time For Love", and "Cerrone's Paradise". CD

Possible matches12
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
ChangeEverything & More – The Complete Collection 1980 to 2019 (Glow Of Love/Miracles/Sharing Your Love/This Is Your Time/Change Of Heart/Turn On Your Radio/Love 4 Love) (7CD set) ... CD
Edsel (UK), 1980s. New Copy 7CD ... $64.99 69.99
A huge batch of work from Change – all the group's classic albums from the 80s, plus some great work from later years too – all with bonus tracks added to most of the records! First up is Glow Of Love – the classic debut from Change – and the start of an amazing run of groovers in the early 80s! The set's got a tight, jazzy feel throughout – a stripped-down approach to disco modes, with the same focus on the basslines that you'd find in work by Chic – but a style that's almost even more instrumentally focused overall, given the great range of studio players who worked on the set. Yet there's also some key vocal moments, too – work by Luther Vandross that really helps make some of the best tracks sparkle, and which went onto catapult Vandross into a rich solo career on his own. Next is Miracles – a brilliant second set from Change – working here without Luther Vandross on lead vocals, but hardly missing a beat at all! As before, the basslines are at the core of the set – a sweet stripped-down approach that brings even more focus onto the bottom of the groove for early 80s dancefloors – with loads of numbers that step along in a really groovy mode – one quite far from the cliches of disco, and inflected by loads of jazzy elements that keep things fresh over the years! Vocals are by James Robinson – previously with Lonnie Liston Smith – Diva Gray, and Jocelyn Shaw. Sharing Your Love is sweet modern soul from this great group – one of the brightest points in major label soul during the early 80s! Change, ironically, is a group that went through a number of line-up changes, even in their prime – with the tight, clubby, yet genuinely soulful production a constant. This record is made all the better for the beautifully soulful dual lead vocals of James Robinson and Deborah Cooper. The tracks have deeply layered live instrumentation – keyboards, guitar, percussion, horns and strings – blended seamlessly with early 80s production touches. This Is Your Love is an overlooked set from Change – a record that possibly wasn't as hit-worthy as some of their previous efforts – yet one that still had the group very much at the top of their game! By this point, Change had really evolved past being just a studio project, into a rock-solid soul group with a definite ear for a groove – particularly the tight, lean sort of rhythms that percolated in the post-Chic era – making a perfect fit for the slightly jazzy production of the record. Bassbits and beats drive most of the rhythms, but there's still a nice degree of warmth – and vocals are handled by Deborah Cooper, James Robinson, Rick Brennan, and Timmy Allen – who each seem to get their moment in the spotlight, furthering the well-rounded sound of the record. Next is Change Of Heart – a game-changing album from Change – a real breakthrough for the early 80s international soul combo! Change Of Heart has some great production by Jimmy Jam/Terry Lewis – and on top of that, it's perhaps the best set of songs the group had recorded to to date. Jam/Lewis wrote half the tunes and produced most of the album, which is front-loaded with some of the best of them. Turn On Your Radio is not nearly as well-known as their first few hits, but still in that all-solid approach to the groove that was the Change trademark during the early 80s! The sound is a bit more stripped down than before – tight beats and keyboards, mostly in a mellow to midtempo mode – all topped with vocals from male and female members of the group! Change still have a great way with a hook here – an approach to soul that's tight and professional, yet not nearly as cloying as some of the chart-climbing acts of their generation. And as before, the keyboards are almost as great as the vocals – with slight jazzy inflections that warm up the tunes nicely! Last up is Love 4 Love – a 2018 comeback for Change – still sounding great all these many years later, but in a slightly different way! The balance between all elements here is fantastic – as the music has all the best parts of the group's earlier music, but also updates the sound a bit – in the way that a combo like Incognito or Brand New Heavies were updating older soul music back in the 90s, by grabbing all the strongest parts of the past, and fusing them into a fresh lean groove. The songs are upbeat, positive, and full of the kind of catchy hooks that Change always did so well! Box set features 78 tracks in all – with bonus tracks added to most albums! CD

Possible matches13
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Alice ColtraneUniversal Consciousness ... CD
Impulse (Japan), 1971. New Copy ... $18.99
One of Alice Coltrane's most adventurous albums – a beautiful blend of organ, harp, percussion, and strings – much of which are transcribed for the album by Ornette Coleman! The most haunting aspect of the album is Alice's work on organ – spare, jagged, with a nascent soulful quality that's quite different from her piano work on other Impulse albums. The strings provide a sheet of sound – a shimmering backdrop to support Alice's work on the keys – moving forward tentatively, but growing in energy as the album progresses through a host of Eastern spiritual influences. Alice is way past jazz at this point – moving towards the new level of consciousness hinted at in the title, growing majestically on tracks that include "Oh Allah", "Sita Ram", "Hare Krishna", "Universal Consciousness", and "The Ankh of Amen-Ra". CD
(SHM-CD pressing!)

Possible matches14
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Hank CrawfordI Hear A Symphony ... LP
Kudu, 1975. Very Good ... $7.99
Not really a symphony, but a great album that features the soulful alto sax of Hank Crawford blowing over some rich larger backings from David Matthews – all with a sweetly funky Kudu sound! The style's a bit more polished than some of the other Kudu sessions of the time – almost a bit disco or clubby at times – as Matthews brings in a fair bit of strings and horns to the backings, and also has some female backing singers sweetening up the sound. But as usual with Kudu, the record's no cheap cash-in sort of set – and Matthews ensures that it's got a tightly-crafted groove that's almost like mainstream 70s soundtrack funk at its best moments. Keyboards are by Richard Tee and Leon Pendarvis – and titles include "Sugar Free", "I Hear A Symphony", "The Stripper", "Hang It On The Ceiling", and "Love Won't Let Me Wait". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches15
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Sonny CrissJoy Of Sax ... LP
ABC, 1977. Very Good+ ... $2.99
A sweet batch of soulful fusion from alto saxophonist Sonny Criss – quite different than the small group acoustic sessions that made up most of his career – but a shining light in his later revival, and an album that really got him in touch with a wider range of listeners! The style here is full and soulful – arranged by Wade Marcus with a mix of larger jazz ensemble playing, and a bit of strings – similar to styles used a the time for Lou Donaldson, Willis Jackson, and other 60s reedmen. Criss is right out front on alto, and other players include Blue Mitchell on trumpet and Patrice Rushen on keyboards – working nicely here in a style that's almost Kudo or CTI. Titles include "Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing", "Turn Me Loose", "Stolen Moments", and "Midnight Mellow". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has a cut corner, some surface wear, small sticker spot, and is bent around the edges.)

Possible matches16
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Richard EvansRichard Evans ... LP
Horizon, 1978. Very Good ... $5.99
One of the few albums as a leader by Chicago Soul genius Richard Evans – a key late 70s effort that perfectly sums up all his genius on record for countless other artists! The album's got a warm, smooth groove that's totally great – one that builds tremendously from the sophisticated soul advances on the Chicago scene of the 70s – and which features bits of jazz, soul, and even Brazilian influences gliding wonderfully through the mix! There's a sense of pride, power, and confidence here that graces every single number – and in a way, the album's almost like a Quincy Jones effort from the same stretch – with Evans' showcasing a new side of his talents, and his collaborators, on every different number. Linda Williams sings vocals on the groovy "Capricorn Rising", Eddie Harris plays on "Do Re Me For Soul", Billy Durham sings on "Windy City", Tower Of Power guest on "Educated Funk", and the group offers up a remake of Evans' Soulful Strings classic "Burning Spear". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has a promo stamp, some wear, and patches of marker.)

Possible matches17
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Gloria GaynorLove Tracks ... LP
Polydor, 1979. Very Good ... $6.99
THE lasting classic from Gloria Gaynor – the record that contains her tremendous hit "I Will Survive", and a great batch of disco grooves overall! The album's got a simple, honest sort of approach, despite its release in an era of overblown dancefloor sets – and arranger Freddie Perren does a great job of balancing all the elements here – hitting strong on the rhythms, but mixing in bits of strings from Gene Page and others – all in a sound that's round, warm, and surprisingly soulful, despite the big crossover fame of the hit on the record. In addition to a nice long take of "I Will Survive", other tracks include "Anybody Wanna Party?", "Please, Be There", "I Said Yes", and "You Can Exit". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has a cut corner. Labels and front and back cover have initials in marker.)

Possible matches18
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Tom Glide & The Luv All StarsIn The Name Of Luv ... CD
Expansion (UK), 2010. New Copy ... $8.99 16.99
A fresh, soulful, well-produced set from Tom Glide & The Luv All Stars – inspired by the mid 80s funky soul, and a very well done batch of tunes! Although the inspiration is 80s-rooted, it's notes come from the fully arranged, live instrument sound rather than the programmed and drum machine style. To that end, this record is terrific – with composer & producer Glide on key, synth guitar, bass and background vocals and Rahmlee Michael Davis of the Earth, Wind & Fire's Phenix Horns on horn arrangements – with lead vocals traded between Tio and Orlando Johnson – and full instrumentation that includes some nice strings on a couple of slow jams. Includes "Get It Off", "What's Your Fantasy", "Can U Feel It", "Kool Party", "Luv" and "Come To Me" feat Tio, "I'm Crazy" and "I'm The Same Man" and "In The Name Of Luv" feat Orlando Johnson. 11 tracks in all. CD

Possible matches19
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Gene Harris & His Three SoundsElegant Soul ... LP
Blue Note, 1968. Very Good ... $59.99
A key meeting between the Three Sounds trio and the amazing Monk Higgins – done at a time when Higgins was taking his Chicago-crafted grooves to work on the west coast – and doing some really wonderful productions with Dee Ervin! The set features full Higgins backings throughout – a mix of jazz and strings that takes the usual Gene Harris sound into territory that you'd be much more likely to hear on Cadet Records back in Chi-town – a very hip, very soulful style that's totally great throughout, and a much-needed break from the straighter piano trio sound of other 60s albums the group did on Blue Note. Some tracks are laidback, but others are hard and funky – the kind of sock-solid cuts that have made the album a favorite with sample heads and soul dancers over the years – much heavier keyboard work than we'd ever heard before from Gene Harris, and a great precursor to funky favorites to come. Cuts include the excellent numbers "Sitting Duck", "Sugar Hill", "Black Gold", and "Book of Slim" – plus "Elegant Soul", "African Sweets", and "Walls Of Respect". LP, Vinyl record album
(Liberty pressing. Cover light wear, aging and a light stain at the bottom corner.)

Possible matches20
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Isaac Hayes & Dionne WarwickMan & A Woman ... LP
ABC, 1977. Very Good+ 2LP Gatefold ... $5.99
A wonderful duet set from Ike Hayes and Dionne Warwick – one that draws on the classiest side of the Hayes spectrum, and uses his groove to help Dionne find some great new energy! Even in performance, the music has that great rich quality that Isaac always brought to his solo recordings in the 70s – with strings, backup singers, and some tight undercurrents that help keep things soulful throughout – really cutting through the schmaltz of Ike's shiny tux on the cover! Dionne really sparkles in his company – and the record features duo numbers, solo spots, and even some nice medley tracks. The band behind the pair are electric, mellow, and very soulful – and titles include "Can't Hide Love", "Chocolate Chip", "Then Came You", "Come Live With Me", "Unity", and "By The Time I Get To Phoenix" and "I Say A Little Prayer", done nicely in a medley together. LP, Vinyl record album
(In the die-cut gatefold cover, with a mark from sticker removal, a cut corner, light wear, and some aging.)

Possible matches21
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
John KlemmerLifestyle (Living & Loving) ... LP
ABC, 1977. Near Mint- ... $1.99
Sweet, smooth, and soulfully beautiful work from John Klemmer – not as all-out cosmic or trippy as some of his earlier albums for ABC, but with some really nice moments! Klemmer's really got the power of his horn in firm control here – playing with that Eddie Harris-schooled use of economy and tone – coming across with an approach that's subtle, but effective, and more deeply soulful than you might expect. Backings are by a small group on most tracks – and include keyboards from Milcho Leviev and drums by Harvey Mason. Klemmer plays a bit of echoplex and phaser alongside his usual tenor, and a few numbers are slightly sweetened by strings – but that's never a problem where Klemmer's concerned! Titles include "Caress", "Quiet Afternoon", "Tough & Tender", "Lifestyle", "Pure Love", "Purity", "Forever", and "Lovin Feelings". LP, Vinyl record album
(Original yellow label pressing. Cover has fairly large stains and some waviness at the corners on the right side.)

Possible matches22
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Earl KlughSoda Fountain Shuffle ... CD
Warner, 1985. Used ... $7.99
Smooth, soulful work from the great Earl Klugh – a set that's got plenty of electric elements in the rhythms, mixed with lots of acoustic interplay from Earl over the top! Klugh's touch on the strings has only gotten better over the years, and he dances magically amidst some light rhythms and keyboard lines – warming things up a lot more than on similar fusion albums by some of his contemporaries, with that classic Klugh touch that's made him a lasting favorite over the decades! Titles include "Baby Cakes", "Incognito", "One Night", "April Love", "Close To Your Heart"," Just Pretend", and "Rainbow Man". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches23
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Timo LassyTimo Lassy Trio ... CD
WeJazz (Finland), 2021. New Copy ... $14.99 18.99
A really great record from Finnish saxophonist Timo Lassy – and one that's a bit different than you might expect from the title – as the set doesn't just feature Timo blowing with his trio, but also work from a larger set of strings, who really take the record into sublimely soulful territory! The vibe is maybe late 60s Cadet Records, with all the complexity in the arrangements – straight blowing from Timo on tenor, with a wonderfully raw, raspy sound – but set against these larger charts that are wonderful – almost like an Eddie Harris record with Charles Stepney, or some of the earliest John Klemmer material for Chess! Titles include "Sointu", "Orlo", "Pumping C", "Better Together", "Foreign Routes", and "Subtropical". CD

Possible matches24
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Ramsey LewisMovie Album ... LP
Cadet, Mid 60s. Sealed Gatefold ... $13.99
Jazzy and classy – and one of the first of Ramsey's albums to feature him working with larger arrangements instead of the usual trio. In this case, the whole thing was arranged and conducted by Richard Evans – with a spacey hip sound that's not too far from some of Ramsey's later work for Cadet with Charles Stepney. Evans' arrangements are in that strident stepping Soulful Strings mode – and Ramsey's working the keys hard and soulfully over the top, bouncing around the piano in a hard mode that wipes away any schmaltz that you might have caught on the records otherwise. The whole thing grooves quite nicely in a mix of spacey jazz and easy soul – and titles include "The Pawnbroker", "Saturday Night After The Movies", "Girl Talk", "Matchmaker", "Return To Paradise", "Goin Hollywood", "From Russia With Love", and "The Gentle Rain". LP, Vinyl record album
(Sealed original pressing! Cover and label have a small cutout hole.)

Possible matches25
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Jon LucienI Am Now (plus bonus track) ... CD
RCA/Big Break (UK), 1970. Used ... $7.99
The beginning of an amazing run on RCA for vocalist Jon Lucien – working here in a sublime blend of styles that's way beyond simple soul or standard jazz! Lucien's got a sound that's unlike anything we can think of – apart from the countless imitators who've tried for his style in recent years – and this initial RCA album is a musical masterpiece that's filled with joy, life, and emotion – all without any of the cliches that such a reference might imply! Arrangements are by Lucien, with some occasional help from Horace Ott and Stanley Rubinstein – all a swirling blend of strings, jazz, and some groovier rhythms at the bottom that have made this record an underground favorite for years. Titles include a killer version of "Who Will Buy", done as a breezy jazz groover, in a way that's made it a classic jazz dance track for years – plus "I Am Now", "How Insensitive", "Love For Sale", and "Dindi" – all given the lush, lovely, swirling, soulful Lucien sound! This remastered edition from Big Break UK includes the bonus "Who Will Buy (Mono Version)". CD

Possible matches26
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Sabrina MalheirosNew Morning ... CD
Far Out (UK), 2008. New Copy ... $7.99 16.99
Sabrina Malheiros just keeps on getting better and better – and she really sparkles wonderfully here in a set of fully soulful backings! The album's put together by Daniel Maunick, aka Venom, and son of Bluey from Incognito – and there's a bit of an Incognito sensibility to the whole thing – a warmly soulful feel, touched with lots of jazzy instrumentation and a deeply classic sensibility – all of which makes for a wonderful setting for Sabrina's Portuguese vocals! Arthur Verocai helped on arrangements, and brings in some beautifully soaring strings – really helping to push the sound past the standard Far Out approach – and the whole thing's one of the most compelling albums we've heard from the label in recent years. Titles include "Brisa Mar", "Eira Nem Beira", "Vou Voar", "Nuances", "Essa Cancao", "Nova Estacao", "New Morning", and "It's Too Late". CD

Possible matches27
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Mikio MasudaCorazon ... LP
Electric Bird/Holy Basil, 1979. New Copy (reissue)... $35.99 39.98
Keyboardist Mikio Masuda cut plenty of great fusion records in 70s Japan – but this set was recorded in the US, with some very soulful help from a great American lineup! David Matthews arranged the set, with a bit of a Kudu Records vibe – which means that Mikio's got lead solos on both acoustic and electric piano, amidst tight backings that not only use rhythms from Bernard Purdie on drums, mixed with larger strings – but which also include occasional backing vocals from Lani Groves and Diva Grey! Rhythms sometimes have some warm Latin inflections – echoing the title – and tracks include "Ride On The Donkey", "Samba Em Praia", "Let's Get Together", "Love Talkin", and a nice version of Carole King's "Corazon". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited to 500 copies!)

Possible matches28
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Curtis MayfieldRoots ... LP
Curtom, 1971. New Copy Gatefold (reissue)... $18.99
One of our favorite Curtis Mayfield albums ever – a massive early 70s effort that's filled with wonderful songs all the way through, and quite possibly one of the most perfect realization of the righteous vibe of the early 70s Curtom years! Curtis is in fine form throughout – as a singer, composer, and producer – but he's also got some excellent Chicago soul help from arrangers Riley Hampton and Johnny Pate – both key talents on the 60s Windy City scene, still able to come up with a deeply soulful groove here – and both able to blend together strings and funk in the way that Curtis was going for at the time. Titles include the massive "We Got to Have Peace" – a tune that never gets old – plus "Underground", "Keep On Keepin On", "Now You're Gone", "Get Down", "Love To Keep You In Mind", and "Beautiful Brother of Mine". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches29
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Curtis MayfieldRoots (orange vinyl pressing) ... LP
Curtom/Rhino, 1971. New Copy (reissue)... Just Sold Out!
One of our favorite Curtis Mayfield albums ever – a massive early 70s effort that's filled with wonderful songs all the way through, and quite possibly one of the most perfect realization of the righteous vibe of the early 70s Curtom years! Curtis is in fine form throughout – as a singer, composer, and producer – but he's also got some excellent Chicago soul help from arrangers Riley Hampton and Johnny Pate – both key talents on the 60s Windy City scene, still able to come up with a deeply soulful groove here – and both able to blend together strings and funk in the way that Curtis was going for at the time. Titles include the massive "We Got to Have Peace" – a tune that never gets old – plus "Underground", "Keep On Keepin On", "Now You're Gone", "Get Down", "Love To Keep You In Mind", and "Beautiful Brother of Mine". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Roots ... LP 18.99

Possible matches30
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Lou Ragland/Hot ChocolateI Travel Alone (Hot Chocolate/Conveyor/bonus & unreleased tracks) (3CD set) ... CD
Numero, Mid 70s. New Copy 3CD ... $16.99 29.99
An amazing set of music – two rare albums from Ohio funk legend Lou Ragland, plus bonus tracks, and a whole set of unreleased sessions too – a huge amount of new music, even if you've got some of the previous reissues! First up is the legendary Hot Chocolate album – one of the greatest lost funk records of all time! The group is not the British pop band, but an Ohio funk group led by the great guitarist Lou Ragland. The album's originally from Canada, which makes it super rare – and these guys are funky funky funky, and kick some major booty with a heavy guitar sound that's just great! Some of the cuts are instrumental, and some of them have some excellent soul vocals that are produced with a nice deep sound that's brought out nicely by the excellent quality of the reissue. The record's got a bit of Sly Stone, a bit of Grant Green, and a bit of Mike James Kirkland – with a tasty raw indie soul vibe – and the original album was only pressed up at 500 copies. Titles include "So Dam Funky", "Ain't That A Groove", "Sexy Moods Of Your Mind", "Messin With Sly", and "What You Want To Do" – plus 8 more tracks from the same vintage – "Good For The Gander" by Hot Chocolate, "I Travel Alone" and Big Wheel" by Lou Ragland, "Red Robin" and "I've Got Something Going On" by Volcanic Eruption, and "I Can't Take It" and "What The Doctor Prescribed" by Lou Ragland & Hot Chocolate. Next is The Conveyor – the second album from Lou Ragland, stepping out here in a great set of mellow soul tracks! The album's quite different from the heavy funk of the Hot Chocolate album – more of a message-oriented approach to soul, in the vein of similar 70s indie work by Mike James Kirkland. The arrangements are also bigger – not smooth, but ambitious, in a style that perfectly matches the higher vision Lou's going for in tracks like "Understand Each Other", "What Should I Do?", "The Next World", and "It's Got To Change". Conveyor also comes with bonus tracks too – "Tend To Your Business" by Wildfire, plus "Since You Said You'd Be Mine" and "I Didn't Mean To Leave You" by Lou Ragland. And last up is an incredible batch of unreleased material – maybe the biggest and best so far from Ragland – tracks that have this really ambitious quality that mixes soul, funk, and larger orchestrations – especially some light strings, which really expand the sound, and push the music into this righteous territory that reminds us a lot of the creative experiments in Chicago during the Cadet/Concept years! Lou's vocals are great, and the message is totally righteous – and even though the tape quality is slightly aged, the soulful vibe really comes through – on cuts that include "Understand Each Other", "It Ain't My Fault", "Could It Be I'm Falling In Love", "Spend My Life Loving You", "Until I Met You", and "Brother Louie". Lovingly packaged by Numero – with a huge booklet of photos and history – and cool mini-LP sleeves too! CD
Also available I Travel Alone (Hot Chocolate/Conveyor/bonus & unreleased tracks) (4LP set) ... LP 48.99

Possible matches31
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Lou Ragland/Hot ChocolateI Travel Alone (Hot Chocolate/Conveyor/bonus & unreleased tracks) (4LP set) ... LP
Numero, Mid 70s. New Copy 4LP ... $48.99 49.99
An amazing set of music – two rare albums from Ohio funk legend Lou Ragland, plus bonus tracks, and a whole set of unreleased sessions too – a huge amount of new music, even if you've got some of the previous reissues! First up is the legendary Hot Chocolate album – one of the greatest lost funk records of all time! The group is not the British pop band, but an Ohio funk group led by the great guitarist Lou Ragland. The album's originally from Canada, which makes it super rare – and these guys are funky funky funky, and kick some major booty with a heavy guitar sound that's just great! Some of the cuts are instrumental, and some of them have some excellent soul vocals that are produced with a nice deep sound that's brought out nicely by the excellent quality of the reissue. The record's got a bit of Sly Stone, a bit of Grant Green, and a bit of Mike James Kirkland – with a tasty raw indie soul vibe – and the original album was only pressed up at 500 copies. Titles include "So Dam Funky", "Ain't That A Groove", "Sexy Moods Of Your Mind", "Messin With Sly", and "What You Want To Do" – plus 8 more tracks from the same vintage – "Good For The Gander" by Hot Chocolate, "I Travel Alone" and Big Wheel" by Lou Ragland, "Red Robin" and "I've Got Something Going On" by Volcanic Eruption, and "I Can't Take It" and "What The Doctor Prescribed" by Lou Ragland & Hot Chocolate. Next is The Conveyor – the second album from Lou Ragland, stepping out here in a great set of mellow soul tracks! The album's quite different from the heavy funk of the Hot Chocolate album – more of a message-oriented approach to soul, in the vein of similar 70s indie work by Mike James Kirkland. The arrangements are also bigger – not smooth, but ambitious, in a style that perfectly matches the higher vision Lou's going for in tracks like "Understand Each Other", "What Should I Do?", "The Next World", and "It's Got To Change". Conveyor also comes with bonus tracks too – "Tend To Your Business" by Wildfire, plus "Since You Said You'd Be Mine" and "I Didn't Mean To Leave You" by Lou Ragland. And last up is an incredible batch of unreleased material – maybe the biggest and best so far from Ragland – tracks that have this really ambitious quality that mixes soul, funk, and larger orchestrations – especially some light strings, which really expand the sound, and push the music into this righteous territory that reminds us a lot of the creative experiments in Chicago during the Cadet/Concept years! Lou's vocals are great, and the message is totally righteous – and even though the tape quality is slightly aged, the soulful vibe really comes through – on cuts that include "Understand Each Other", "It Ain't My Fault", "Could It Be I'm Falling In Love", "Spend My Life Loving You", "Until I Met You", and "Brother Louie". Lovingly packaged by Numero – with a huge booklet of photos and history! LP, Vinyl record album
Also available I Travel Alone (Hot Chocolate/Conveyor/bonus & unreleased tracks) (3CD set) ... CD 16.99

Possible matches32
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Real ThingReal Thing – The Anthology 1972 to 1997 (7CD set) ... CD
Cherry Pop (UK), 1970s/1980s/1990s. New Copy 7CD ... $44.99 65.99
Essential work from one of the hippest British groups of the 70s – the amazing Real Thing, one of the few UK acts who could go head to head with soul artists from the US! The Real Thing groove is often heavy on strings and rhythm – a sound that's kind of an English take on the 70s grooves from the Philly scene in the US – tuned towards a slightly different end, and topped with a mix of soulful leads and soaring harmonies by the group. And like the Philly groups, these guys also managed to really grow and evolve over the years – which you can especially hear over a short space of time in their recordings of the 70s. The collection strongly focuses on those years – and offers up expanded versions of the Pye albums The Real Thing, 4 From 8, Step Into Our World, and Saints Or Sinners – all with as many bonus tracks as were on the original albums, if not more. Then, the final three CDs feature later material – one CD of material for Jive Records, one for RCA with remixes, and one more for EMI, Calibre, and Catawa Records. There's a massive 109 tracks in the set, plus a 28 page booklet of notes – with a huge amount of material that's not been on CD for years! CD

Possible matches33
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Minnie RipertonCome To My Garden (180 gram lilac vinyl pressing) ... LP
GRT, 1970. New Copy Gatefold (reissue)... $23.99 24.99 On November 12, 2021
Mindblowing work from Minnie Riperton – her first solo album, cut at the end of the 60s, after a number of years of work with the group Rotary Connection. The album builds off the now famous sound of Rotary Connection – but takes it to the next level, with arch-baroque production by the great Charles Stepney – who couches Minnie's fantastic vocals in a suite of shimmering soulful tracks that mix strings, horns, jazzy piano, and slight touches of bouncing rhythms. The overall sound is impossible to describe – sort of a cross between Burt Bacharach on A&M, Scott Walker's 3rd album, and the sound of Marvin Gaye's What's Goin' On. The album's pure genius all the way through – one of the highlights of the Chicago scene of the 60s – and proof that Riperton, Stepney, and crew were shooting for the outer limits of soul music! Titles include "Les Fleur", "Only When I'm Dreaming", "Rainy Day In Centerville", "Memory Band", "Expecting", "Whenever Wherever", and "Oh, By The Way". LP, Vinyl record album
(RSD Essentials pressing. Quantities pressed on demand and strictly limited!) This item will not be delivered to you before Friday, November 12.

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Marlena ShawFrom The Depths Of My Soul ... LP
Blue Note, 1973. Very Good+ ... $26.99
An excellent set of sophisticated soul cuts from Marlena Shaw – and a album that more than lives up to the title! Marlena really sparkles here – thanks to impeccable arrangements by Wade Marcus that perfectly mix together jazz and soul – finding that unique space that Shaw and a handful of other singers were exploring at the time. As with some of her other Blue Note albums, the record's got a great sense of cohesion – beginning with a nice dramatic prelude, which then gives way to sublime vocals from Marlena. Along with the soulful strings, the instrumentation includes lots of clavinet and electric piano – another nice approach, one that ushers a little bit of funk into the mix – and titles include "Easy Evil", "Hum This Song", "But For Now", "The Feeling's Good", "Just Don't Want To Be Lonely", Wildflower", "Waterfall", and "Say A Good Word". LP, Vinyl record album
(Original pressing. Cover has a cut corner and a tiny bit of seam splitting.)

Possible matches35
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Slum Village & Abstract OrchestraFantastic 2020 Vol 1 (blue vinyl pressing) ... LP
Ne'Astra, 2020. New Copy ... $21.99 24.98
Slum Village teams up with the hip hop-reared jazz funk collective Abstract Orchestra for this worthy revisit/live band rework of the legendary Fantastic Vol 2 – a soulful Detroit hip hop classic and a vital piece of the late great J Dilla's legacy! A few cuts have prominent vocals, others have atmospheric backing vocals, but it's Abstract Orchestra's jazzy hip hop soul instrumentals – taking flight on the inspiration of the Jay Dee & Slum Village Detroit hip hop classic – that serve as the driving soulful spirit of this one. They are indeed a sizable crew more than earning the orchestra part of their name, but they know how to keep the core groove in a tight, headnodding mode befitting late 90s soulful hip hop, while finding space to soar within. It's also a testament to Dilla's original production that it makes so much sense fleshed out with horns, strings and more orchestral atmosphere. Vol 1 includes "Contant Garden", "Jealousy", "Hold Tight", "Tell Me", "Untitled", "Fall In Love" and more. LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches36
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Slum Village & Abstract OrchestraFantastic 2020 Vol 2 (red vinyl pressing) ... LP
Ne'Astra, 2020. New Copy ... $21.99 24.98
Slum Village teams up with the hip hop-reared jazz funk collective Abstract Orchestra for this worthy revisit/live band rework of the legendary Fantastic Vol 2 – a soulful Detroit hip hop classic and a vital piece of the late great J Dilla's legacy! A few cuts have prominent vocals, others have atmospheric backing vocals, but it's Abstract Orchestra's jazzy hip hop soul instrumentals – taking flight on the inspiration of the Jay Dee & Slum Village Detroit hip hop classic – that serve as the driving soulful spirit of this one. They are indeed a sizable crew more than earning the orchestra part of their name, but they know how to keep the core groove in a tight, headnodding mode befitting late 90s soulful hip hop, while finding space to soar within. It's also a testament to Dilla's original production that it makes so much sense fleshed out with horns, strings and more orchestral atmosphere. Vol 2 includes "Raise It Up", "Once Upon A Time", "Players", "2U4U", "Thelonius", "Who We Are" and more. LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches37
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Leon SpencerBad Walking Woman ... LP
Prestige, 1972. New Copy (reissue)... $13.99
Supremely heavy work from organist Leon Spencer – one of his classic jazz funk sessions for Prestige Records, and a record that shows him opening up his sound a bit more than before! The album has Spencer working in a few different lineups – some with small groups that feature Melvin Sparks on guitar and Idris Muhammad on drums – others with some slightly larger instrumentation and even a bit of strings, used in a sophisticatedly soulful style that reminds us a bit of CTI or Kudu backings of the time! Billy Ver Planck handles the larger arrangements, but even on these Leon's organ is right out front in the mix – really dominating the tunes, and soaring over the top with a newly fluid style that reminds us of Charles Earland at his own best during this time. Titles include the killer funky title cut – "Bad Walking Woman" – plus "When My Love Has Gone", "In Search Of Love", "Down On Dowling Street", "Hip Shaker", and "Bad Walking Woman". Cool cover, too, with a huge collage of photos of the backsides of exactly 99 "bad walking women"! LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches38
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Phil WoodsNew Phil Woods Album ... LP
RCA, 1972. Very Good+ ... $3.99
Phil Woods really outdoes himself here – offering the world a whole new side of his talents, and stepping forth at the head of a larger ensemble than usual! The album features Woods' core quartet augmented by larger strings and horns – all in shadings and tones that are incredibly expressive, and filled with warm colors and rich tones that never get bogged down in hoke or too-easy inflections! Most impressively of all, Phil arranged and conducted the whole set – save for one number – and all this while playing in that sharp-edged and soulful mode that graced his best 70s work, a sound that's filled with new intentions and imagination we never would have expected from his already-great records of the early years! Titles include "The Sun Suite", "At Seventeen", "Gee", "Mimi", "Sacre Coeur", and "Body & Soul". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has light wear and a promo stamp.)

Possible matches39
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Bobby BlandGet On Down With Bobby Bland ... LP
ABC, 1975. Near Mint- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Brilliant later work by Bobby Blue Bland – done with backings that are much fuller than on his earlier albums – a mixture of strings and horns that really expand the sound! That doesn't keep things from being soulful, though – as Bobby's in incredible form vocally, really rising to the occasion of the session with some of his best vocal performances of the decade. Great throughout – and one of his few true classic sessions after the early Duke years. Titles include "Today I Started Loving You Again", "I Take It On Home", "I Hate You", "If Fingerprints Showed Up On Skin", and "Too Far Gone". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has a cut corner, light wear and a small sticker spot.)

Possible matches40
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✨✧ Donald ByrdThank You For Funking Up My Life/Loving You ... 12-inch
Elektra, 1978. Near Mint- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Tightly stepping funk from Donald Byrd – two great soulful numbers from his post-Blue Note years! "Thank You" is a tune that's as catchy as you might guess from the title – a track that bounces along on a bassline, with Byrd solos over the top – plus some all-soul vocals that echo the chorus! "Loving You" is even better – a tune that soars high on sweet strings, but still keeps a really funky groove at the bottom – really one of the best mainstream blends of 70s club and soulful fusion from the time! 12-inch, Vinyl record
(In an Elektra/Asylum sleeve. Label has a bit of pen.)

Possible matches41
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✨✧ DellsFreedom Means ... LP
Cadet, 1971. Near Mint- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A stunning set from the mighty mighty Dells – a cool collaboration with the legendary arranger Charles Stepney and songwriter Terry Callier – and a record that shows just how far the group had come since their streetcorner harmony days! The vocals are incredible – that rich blend of deep notes and soaring highs that made The Dells one of the most technically amazing soul groups in the 70s – and Stepney's arrangements follow in the same mode as his work for their Dionne Warwick album, and his music for Minnie Riperton and Ramsey Lewis – with lots of groovy currents on the bottom and soaring strings on the top – sophisticated, but completely soulful too – at a level that nobody else can touch! Terry Callier wrote the original tunes "The Love We Had Stays On My Mind", "Freedom Means", "Melody Man", "Free & Easy", "Rather Be With You", and "It's All Up To You" – and the set also includes great remakes of "One Less Bell To Answer", "Make It With You", and "If You Go Away/Love Story". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has a cut corner, light wear, and initials in marker on back. Labels have initials in marker.)

Possible matches42
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ ImpressionsIt's About Time ... LP
Cotillion, 1976. Near Mint- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
The Impressions first album for Cotillion, cut after a great 70s run on Curtom – but one that's done with a sound that still carries on the groove nicely! The more righteous tones of the earlier work are shaken loose a bit, to be replaced by a fuller approach to the music built from arrangements by HB Barnum, Gene Page, and Gil Askey – a bit more LA than Chicago, but with a soaringly soulful quality that almost recalls the sound of The Spinners during their best Philly years. As with that work, the harmonies here are all right on the money, and get plenty of space to sparkle amidst the full strings and tight rhythms – and new group member Nate Evans really brings a deep sense of soul to the group's work. Many tunes were written by the team of Mervin Seals and Melvin Steals – and titles include "I'm A Fool For Love", "Same Old Heartaches", "This Time", "Stardust", "I Need You", and "What Might Have Been". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has light wear and some small marks from sticker removal.)

Possible matches43
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✨✧ Jon LucienI Am Now (1st Pressing) ... LP
RCA, 1970. Very Good ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
The beginning of an amazing run on RCA for vocalist Jon Lucien – working here in a sublime blend of styles that's way beyond simple soul or standard jazz! Lucien's got a sound that's unlike anything we can think of – apart from the countless imitators who've tried for his style in recent years – and this initial RCA album is a musical masterpiece that's filled with joy, life, and emotion – all without any of the cliches that such a reference might imply! Arrangements are by Lucien, with some occasional help from Horace Ott and Stanley Rubinstein – all a swirling blend of strings, jazz, and some groovier rhythms at the bottom that have made this record an underground favorite for years. Titles include a killer version of "Who Will Buy", done as a breezy jazz groover, in a way that's made it a classic jazz dance track for years – plus "I Am Now", "How Insensitive", "Love For Sale", and "Dindi" – all given the lush, lovely, swirling, soulful Lucien sound! LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has some wear, aging, a tracklist sticker, a lightly bumped corner and a split spine.)
Also available I Am Now (plus bonus track) ... CD 7.99

Possible matches44
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✨✧ Johnny MathisHeart Of A Woman/When Will I See You Again/I Only Have Eyes For You/Mathis Is (bonus tracks) ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), Late 70s. New Copy 2CD ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Four great albums from the 70s soul years of Johnny Mathis – all brought together in a single set, and with bonus cuts too! First up is The Heart Of A Woman – on which the voice of Johnny Mathis meets the soulful arrangements of Paul Riser and HB Barnum – all wrapped up with Johnny Bristol production! Johnny's tender voice, the gently sweeping arrangements and soul-rooted production make this one a gem. Titles include "Woman Woman", "Sail On White Moon", "Feel Like Makin Love", "It's Gone", "Memories Don't Leave Like People Do", "Strangers In Dark Corners", and "The Way We Planned It". When Will I See You Again finds Johnny taking on a comparably diverse batch of tunes, from a bright & breezy take on the Gamble & Huff penned title track, to a soaring Roger Nichols/Paul Williams medley, to more intimate strings-backed numbers. Another sweet set from a legendary vocalist, and the titles includes "Mandy", "Nice To Be Around", "You're Right As Rain", "You And Me Against The World", "The Things I Might've Been" and more. I Only Have Eyes For You has Johnny finding a new sort of groove with arranger Gene Page! Page had done funkier work in other settings, but here he mixes up soul and strings in a nice balance of modes for Mathis – blending ballads with a few gentle groovers, the latter of which really have Johnny taking off in great new directions – and finding a way to hold onto the spotlight as the 70s move on! Titles include "Do Me Wrong But Do Me", "The Hungry Years", "I Only Have Eyes For You", "Do You Know Where You're Going To", "Ooh What We Do", "When A Child Is Born", and "Every Time You Touch Me I Get High". Mathis Is has Johnny working with lots of strong Philly soul currents – thanks to arrangements and production from Thom Bell – which makes for a much more soul-based record than usual! Titles include "Hung Up In The Middle Of Love", "I Don't Want To Say No", "Sweet Love Of Mine", "I'll Make You Happy", and "As Long As We're Together". 2CD set features bonus tracks "Fifty Fifty" and "Nothing In This Whole World". CD

Possible matches45
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Nancy WilsonWelcome To My Love (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Capitol, 1967. Used ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Nancy Wilson gets some great help here from Oliver Nelson – whose solid arrangements make the record one of our favorites from Wilson's early Capitol years! There's a feel here that's a bit earthier and bluesier than some of Wilson's other albums – a mode that's a nice extension of the post-R&B sound that Ray Charles was forging, but done with more of the class and sophistication you'd expect from Nancy. Nelson still uses a fair bit of strings in the mix, and although the pace is often gentle, there's an undercurrent to the record that keeps things soulful and strong! The set features a great reading of "I'm Always Drunk In San Francisco", plus versions of "Why Try To Change Me Now", "You Don't Know Me", "Ode To Billie Joe", and "May I Come In?". CD features the bonus track "Let's Make The Most Of A Beautiful Thing". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches46
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Dorothy AshbyDorothy's Harp (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Cadet/Music On Vinyl (Netherlands), 1969. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
One of the grooviest Dorothy Ashby albums of the 60s – a set that has her already-great jazz work on harp backed by Chicago soul arrangements from Richard Evans – all in a blend that's somewhere in the territory of the Soulful Strings, but even groovier! And as an added bonus, Odell Brown even plays a bit of Fender Rhodes on the record – which sounds especially great! Both Ashby and Evans are at the height of their powers here – mixing together bits of jazz, soul, and trippier elements in a sublime late 60s Cadet Records blend – one that's carried off perfectly on the original tunes "Truth Spoken Here", "Tornado", "Cause I Need It", and "Just Had To Tell Somebody" – but which also sounds great on some of the album's cool covers too! Other titles include Brazilian numbers "Reza" and "Canto De Ossanha" – both of which are transformed in Dorothy's hands – plus "This Girl's In Love", "By the Time I Get to Phoenix", and "Windmills of Your Mind"! LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches47
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✨✧ Eddie HarrisPlug Me In ... LP
Atlantic/Get On Down, 1968. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
Killer stuff – and an amazing album that not only showcases the varitone sax talents of Eddie Harris, but also features some fantastic arrangements by Chicago soul genius Charles Stepney! Harris plugs in right from the start – blowing an electric sax that comes up with some groovy groovy sounds – perfect for Stepney to work with on the backdrops – mixing together funky orchestrations, off-kilter strings, and even some prepared piano, ala John Cage – similar to the mode he used with Ramsey Lewis at Cadet! Tunes are wonderful – offbeat, funky, and plenty darn soulful – and titles include "Live Right Now", "It's Crazy", "Winter Meeting", and "Theme In Search Of A TV Commercial". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches48
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Les McCannBeaux J Pooboo ... LP
Limelight, Mid 60s. Near Mint- Gatefold ... Out Of Stock
A very groovy album from pianist Les McCann – one that adds some great guitar work from Vincent Corrao to the usual trio – which features the great Paul Humphrey on drums and Victor Gaskin on bass! The guitar opens the tunes up a bit more than usual, and lets Les and crew move from hard and soulful, to mellow and bluesy with one easy sweep of the strings on the guitar. Titles include two vocal numbers – "The Great City" and "Green Green Rocky Road" – plus "The Grabber", "Les McNasty", "Beaux J Pooboo", "Bat Man", and "Send Me Love". LP, Vinyl record album
(Non-gatefold pressing. Cover has some light aging on one side – vinyl is great.)

Possible matches49
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✨✧ Orchestra USA/John LewisDebut ... LP
Colpix, 1963. Very Good+ ... Out Of Stock
The first recordings ever from Orchestra USA – the landmark third stream jazz group co-led by John Lewis and Gunther Schuller! The group sprang out of Schuller and Lewis' preoccupations with bringing jazz to a more serious environment – merging traits of 20th century classical with jazz-based improvisation – in a format that included standout solo players, as well as larger backings from strings and woodwinds. And while some of that group's recordings were a bit dull, this one's totally great – not nearly as stiff and academic as you'd think – with some really strong solo work on saxes, and a soulful approach that gets past any formalism that could mar the proceedings. Players include Eric Dolphy, Phil Woods, Leo Wright, Nick Travis, and Jim Hall – and titles include "Three Little Feelings (parts 1, 2, & 3)", "Milesign", "Milano", "Natural Affection", and "Donnie's Theme". LP, Vinyl record album
(White label mono promo.)

Possible matches50
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✨✧ Black IvoryFeel It (LP sleeve edition) ... CD
Buddah/P&C, 1975. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
Sweet mellow soul meets the burgeoning east coast club soul sound – and the results are incredible! Leroy Burgess arranged the rhythms and Patrick Adams arranged the strings and horns – both masterfully – but it's this warm, emotionally resonant and supremely soulful Black Ivory vocal arrangements that shoot this one so high into the stratosphere. Feel It was the first album in a few years from the group, marking a bit of transition in styles from the earlier, more ballad-heavy approach, but it carries that genuinely emotional vibe really, really well. An album we've always dug, but love even more after revisiting it – we think you'll love it, too! Includes the vocal and instrumental versions of "Daily News", plus the cuts "Warm Inside", "Feel It", "Will We Ever Come Together", "You're What's Been Missing From My Life", "Love, Won't You Stay" and "All In A Day's Love". CD

Possible matches51
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✨✧ Arthur BlytheDa Da/Basic Blythe ... CD
Columbia/BGO (UK), 1986/1988. New Copy 2CD ... Out Of Stock
A pair of 80s albums from saxophonist Arthur Blythe – back to back in a single set! Da Da is a set that mixes some of the sharper edges of Blythe's earlier records with a few more contemporary touches – but always at a level that still has the reedman standing far from the mainstream! The core group here features Olu Dara on trumpet, Cecil McBee on bass, John Hicks on piano, and Bobby Battle on drums – and on the acoustic tracks, there's some great energy between them that soars with a soulful spirit birthed in the loft jazz years, maybe swung a bit straighter than before. A few other tunes add in some extra elements – an electric bass on one number, some light strings on another – but the core of the album still has a magnificent focus on that tone that Blythe had only perfected even more on records like this, especially on the more laidback numbers, which come as a real surprise, and reflect a ballad style we might not have guessed in the early days. Titles include "Odessa", "Esquinas", "After Paris", "Crescent", and "Break Time". Next up is Basic Blythe – not exactly basic work from Arthur Blythe, as the set features an added string ensemble too – but a record that certainly has the saxophonist really hitting a whole new level of genius! There's a great core group here – with John Hicks on piano, Anthony Cox on bass, and Bobby Battle on drums – and the strings are added in around the edges, never getting to much in the way of the combo energy, but also fleshing out the sound with this beautiful richness that only seems to enhance the sharp tone of Arthur's alto sax! The arrangements are great, too – hardly the usual "with strings" material, and instead very creative – with this mix of soul and sophistication that reminds us a bit of the Bill Lee scores for early Spike Lee films, but even longer and with the key addition of Blythe in the lead. Titles include "Lenox Avenue Breakdown", "Faceless Woman", "Ruby My Dear", "Heart To Heart", and "As Of Yet". CD

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✨✧ J DillaJay Love Japan ... LP
Operation Unknown, 2007. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
Uncut, full version Jay Love Japan – one of the best of the early posthumous Dilla releases – originally slated exclusively for the Japanese market! This is Dilla in a mostly uptempo vibe, with soulful strings and vocal samples and blunt, snapping beats. There are a couple vocal appearances from Detroit fellows – Baatin of Slum Village and Ta'Raach – plus additional scratch work in a couple spots by Exile and and Ricci Rucker. Includes a short intro, "Yesterday", "Say It" feat Ta'Raach and scratches by Exile, "Oh Oh", "First Time" feat Baatin and scratches by Tha Ruckazoid, "In The Streets", "Feel The Beats", "Believe In God", "Can't You See" and "Say It". LP, Vinyl record album

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✨✧ Milton MarshMonism ... CD
Strata East/Manufactured, 1975. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
Rare spiritual jazz by reed player Milton Marsh – one of the harder-to-find albums on Strata East – and one of just a couple incredible records to Marsh's name! Obscurity aside, this is prime Strata East – with some sprawling moments in a larger band formation that go just far out enough, but an overall approach that's pretty inside, very much in the label's strong 70s soul jazz tradition. There's a pretty large cast of players in action, including some legendary ones like saxophonist David Ware, percussionist Greg Bandy, Cedric Lawson on piano and others. Titles include "Vonda's Tune", the incredible "Monism" with its spoken word excerpt from Hazrat Inayat Khan's Sufi Message, nicely read by Marsh himself over an amazing mix of soulful strings and tense interplay, plus "Metamorphosis", "Community Music", "Sabotage 3 Preparations" and "Ode to Nzinga". A lost masterpiece! CD

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✨✧ Rita Reys5 Original Albums (Meets Oliver Nelson/Rita A Go Go/Today/Relax With Rita & Pim/Sings Antonio Carlos Jobim) (5CD set) ... CD
Philips/Universal (Germany), Mid 60s. New Copy 5CD ... Out Of Stock
A wonderful tribute to this European singer – the lovely Rita Reys, served up here in a package that features five of her best albums, all in little LP-styled sleeves! First up is a record on which Rita Reys meets Oliver Nelson – and a host of other great jazz talents, including Lee Konitz, Benny Bailey, Sahib Shihab, and Klaus Doldinger! The tracks on the set are all standards, but they're done in the tightly swinging style of Nelson's best backing work for vocalists at the time – complete with those warm tones and colors that always made his work some of our favorite in this mode. The mode is a bit different for Reys, who we normally know from more fragile settings – but it works especially well here, and almost seems to compensate for a faltering quality in her vocals at the time. Titles include "The Very Thought Of You", "Quiet Nights", "The Second Time Around", "If I Were A Bell", "Ill Wind", and "Wives & Lovers". Rita A Go Go is a wonderful live set – recorded with backings by a full orchestra led by Pim Jacobs, who bring a soulful punch to the proceedings that's really wonderful – and which helps Reys step out even more strongly than usual! Jacobs plays a bit of Hammond on the set, which is especially nice to hear next to Rita's vocals – and titles include "Call Me", "So Nice", "Sunny", "Day Tripper", "Goin Out Of My Head", and "Goodbye Sadness". Today is an incredibly groovy record from Dutch singer Rita Reys – quite possibly her grooviest ever, thanks to some very hip London touches from the Scott Walker team of Peter Knight on arrangements and Johnny Franz on production! At the end of the 60s, London was definitely one of the hippest places for a vocalist to work – a place where singers like Elis Regina, Blossom Dearie, and Ella Fitzgerald all opened up their talents tremendously. Rita does the same here – working with instrumentation that's full, flowing, and perfectly pitched to handle both the upbeat moments on the record, and the more contemplative ones – cast out over a well-chosen batch of tunes that go way beyond the standards! Titles include "The Moment Of Truth", "Soon It's Gonna Rain", "Our Language Of Love", "Sing A Rainbow", "You'd Better Love Me", "More Than You Know", and "Come Back To Me". Relax With Rita & Pim is a collection of work recorded by Dutch singer Rita Reys – all done with very jazzy backing by the Pim Jacobs Combo, a group that Rita often sang with at the time! The tunes on the set have some very groovy 60s touches – light bossa rhythms, sweet 60s approaches to rhythm, and a syncopated swing that makes the record groove a bit more than some of her other work from the time. In fact, the feel of the set's so nicely swinging, that the "relax" in the title is a bit misplaced – as out of all of Rita's records, this is the one that makes us want to get up out of the chair! Titles "Summertime", "Waltz For Debby", "Can't Buy Me Love", "Desafinado", "Bluesette", "The Boy From Ipanema", "Shadow Of Your Smile", and "Fly Me To The Moon". The last album is Rita Reys Sings Antonio Carlos Jobim – a set that shows that move into moodier modes that the vocalist took in later years – with a style that works beautifully here for the bossa compositions! Backings are by Rogier Van Otterloo, but the set also features a core combo with frequent collaborator, pianist Pim Jacobs – and the blend of piano, strings, and vocals has all the right lofty currents for these classic tunes by Jobim, with almost a mature Claus Ogerman vibe to the whole record. Titles include "Dindi", "How Insensitive", "This Happy Madness", "Triste, "Song Of The Sabia", and "Once Again". CD

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✨✧ Johnny GriffithTogether, Togetherness ... LP
RCA, 1974. Sealed ... Out Of Stock
Very very very groovy mix of soulful instrumentation and cool RCA production. Johnny Griffith lays down some cool piano lines set amidst a wave of groovy strings and rhythm, and grooves come crashing in and echo away as the next one falls into line. The monster cut is "Love is Just a Word", but there's loads of other good ones like "Detroit Renaissance", "Grand Central Shuttle", and "Let Me Learn to Love You". LP, Vinyl record album
(Shrinkwrap is lightly shopworn.)
 
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Derek Bailey & Mototeru TakagiLive At Farout ... CD
No Business (Lithuania), 1987. New Copy ... $14.99 18.99
Two sharp-edged players, coming together here in a wonderful set of live improvisations – Derek Bailey on guitar and Mototero Takagi on alto sax – each working as if they've understood each others special qualities through years of performing together on stage! Bailey's strings have a metallic quality that mixes well with Takagi's raspy soprano sax – sometimes blown soulfully in straighter lines, but often spun out with lots of angular elements that really match Derek's famous approach to guitar. Either way sounds great to our ears – and titles include "Duo 1", "Duo III", and "Duo IV". CD features the bonus "Duo II". CD

Partial matches57
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Matthew HalsallInto Forever ... LP
Gondwana (UK), 2015. New Copy (reissue)... $26.99 29.99
The music of Matthew Halsall really opens up here – still staying in the spiritual jazz style we love from earlier records, but with an even more expansive vision overall! The album brings in some added string players to a core group that includes flute, harp, and koto alongside the usual jazz instrumentation – but the overall feel is still quite intimate – as the group's still under the larger assemblage you might think from the "orchestra" on the cover! Instead, the strings act in this way to expand and shade in colors initiated by the various members of the group – at a level that makes the sound incredibly rich, and which gives the harp, piano, and koto even more focus. Halsall's trumpet lines are as wonderful as always – soulfully breathtaking – and the record also features vocals on a number of tracks, from righteous singers Josephine Oniyama and Bryony Jarman Pinto – both of whom hit a 70s current that takes us back to Jean Carn with Doug Carn on the Black Jazz label, or maybe some of the female vocals on the first few Oneness Of Juju albums. Titles include "Only As A Woman", "As I Walk", "Dawn Horizon", "The Land Of", "Jamais Vu", and "Daan Park". LP, Vinyl record album
 
 
 



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