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Exact matches: 1
Exact matches1
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Charles TolliverImpact (Strata East) (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1976. New Copy (reissue)... $34.99 44.99
One of a few large group sessions recorded by Charles Tolliver during his years on Strata East – and an amazingly spiritual effort that really brings together the best strands of sounds running through the underground at the time! The format's a bit similar to Tolliver's previous Music Inc big band album for Strata, released 5 years before – with lots of strong lead action from Charles on trumpet, and Stanley Cowell on piano. But this time around, the larger group seems to be more fully integrated into the tunes – there not just to support the soloists, but to rise up with a full, proud sense of majesty that's really amazing. Other players include Cecil McBee and Reggie Workman on basses, Billy Parker and Warren Smith on percussion, Jon Faddis and Jimmy Owens on trumpets, John Gordon and Garnet Brown on trombones, and Charles McPherson, George Coleman, Harold Vick, and Charles Davis on saxes! Titles include great versions of the Tolliver classics "Plight" and "Impact" – plus "Mother Wit", "Lynnsome", and "Grand Max". LP, Vinyl record album
 
Close matches: 28
Close matches2
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Brother AhhSound Awareness ... LP
Strata East/Manufactured, 1972. New Copy (reissue)... $18.99
A very trippy album from the enigmatic Brother Ah – aka Robert Northern, former member of Sun Ra's Arkestra, and also a lecturer on the east coast. This album's his first, originally issued on the Strata East label – and a space mixture of other-worldly sounds. The first long track on the album is entitled "Beyond Yourself (The Midnight Confession)", and features a group with Ah on flutes and "natural" sounds, plus cello by Pat Dixon, percussion by Barbara Burton, and soprano voice by Barbara Grant. The track's a "sound journey in 7 parts" – floating across space with a mystical feel that slowly unfurls. The other long track on the set is "Love Piece", a tune in which Ah plays flute along with percussion by Max Roach and the M'Boom percussion ensemble – plus a 90-voice chorus, and a short rap by Roach. Very spiritual stuff! LP, Vinyl record album
(Volume 1 in the Brother Ahh series!)

Close matches3
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Ensemble Al-SalaamSojourner (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Strata East/P-Vine (Japan), 1974. New Copy ... $24.99
Sublime spiritual jazz from Strata East – one of the label's rarest recordings, and one of its hippest too! The set has an incredibly righteous feel – a blend of keyboards, saxes, guitar, percussion, and vocals that steps off with a very deep feel – one that's heavy on the best post-Coltrane modes of expression in jazz, and which really takes advantage of the freedoms of the Strata setting to open up the sound in really beautiful ways! Beatrice Parker handles the vocals, with a very warm and spiritual style that's not unlike some of the early, righteous recordings by Dee Dee Bridgewater – and other group members include Khaliq Abdul Al Rouf on saxes, Bevin Turnbull on keyboards, Mashujaa Aliye Salamu on guitar, Leroy Seals on bass, and Fred Kwaku Crawley on a host of hip percussion instruments. There's a slight undercurrent of funk on a few tunes, but most tracks are focused more in a soaring, spiritual groove – with titles that include "Circles", "The Sojourner", "Peace (Salaam)", "Traces Of Trane", "Ecstasy", "Music Is Nothing But A Prayer", and "Malika". CD

Close matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ John GordonErotica Suite ... LP
Strata East/Everland (Austria), 1978. New Copy (reissue)... $22.99
A fantastic little record – and very much the kind of set that the Strata East label was created to represent! The music here would hardly have found a home on the bigger jazz labels of the period – not because it's too avant garde or non-commercial, but just because it's so deeply personal and powerful – the boldest vision on record of trombonist John Gordon, who composed a mindblowing suite of tracks for the first side of the album, as well as some equally great tunes for the second half! Gordon leads the group on trombone – with solos that are soaring and soulful, alongside work by the great James Spaulding on alto and flute, Waymond Reed on trumpet, John Miller on piano and keyboards, Lyle Atkinson on bass, and Frank Derrick on drums! If you know some of the other players here from their own work of the time, you know you're in for a treat – as the music has this fantastic sound of strong individual voices coming together, instruments lifted high on a mission of music – with results that are as fantastic all these many years as they were in the 70s. Titles include the long "Erotica Suite", plus "Ora Lee Tingle", "Blue Na", and "Neleh". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Heath BrothersMarchin' On! ... LP
Strata East/Everland (Austria), 1975. New Copy (reissue)... $22.99
A masterpiece of spiritual jazz – and completely unlike anything else the Heath Brothers ever recorded! The set's incredible – far more spiritual and father-reaching than even the best early 70s albums by reedman Jimmy Heath – and certainly different than the later, tighter records put together by the brothers for Columbia at the end of the decade. The vibe is perfect Strata East – very open and creative – with so many new ideas flowing through, but never in a way that pushes the record off track – thanks to a warmly cohesive vision by the brothers. Jimmy plays flute, tenor, and soprano sax – with Percy Heath on bass and bass violin, and Albert Heath on drums and flutes. Stanley Cowell also plays both acoustic piano and mbira – really giving the album a strong Strata East pedigree. The record's well known for the fantastic "Smilin' Billy Suite" – a spare, spacey track that mixes together kalimba, bass, and piano, and which was sampled famously years back – and other titles include "Maimoun", "Tafadhali", and "Warm Valley". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
John HicksHells Bells ... LP
Strata East, 1975. Near Mint- ... $34.99
One of the first albums as a leader from pianist John Hicks – a record that really set the tone for countless great sides to come – and which follows on years of great work with Art Blakey, Lee Morgan, Hank Mobley, Charles Tolliver, and other soulful jazz giants! This set was Hicks' only date for the Strata East label – and has an open, flowing vibe that's very much in keeping with the imprint – and which is maybe a bit different than his later, more familiar material! Part of the strength of the record is bassist Clint Houston – who's completely sublime throughout, and has a way of shaping his notes with this depth that seems to set Hicks free to fly across the keys of the piano on these very long original tunes. Drummer Cliff Barbaro is also part of the trio – and can wind things up when needed, but also lay back and allow some great interplay between Houston and Hicks – on beautiful long tunes that include "Hells Bells", "Avojca", "Yemenja", and "Angie's Tune". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Hells Bells (180 gram pressing) ... LP 34.99

Close matches7
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
John HicksHells Bells (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1975. New Copy (reissue)... $34.99 44.99
One of the first albums as a leader from pianist John Hicks – a record that really set the tone for countless great sides to come – and which follows on years of great work with Art Blakey, Lee Morgan, Hank Mobley, Charles Tolliver, and other soulful jazz giants! This set was Hicks' only date for the Strata East label – and has an open, flowing vibe that's very much in keeping with the imprint – and which is maybe a bit different than his later, more familiar material! Part of the strength of the record is bassist Clint Houston – who's completely sublime throughout, and has a way of shaping his notes with this depth that seems to set Hicks free to fly across the keys of the piano on these very long original tunes. Drummer Cliff Barbaro is also part of the trio – and can wind things up when needed, but also lay back and allow some great interplay between Houston and Hicks – on beautiful long tunes that include "Hells Bells", "Avojca", "Yemenja", and "Angie's Tune". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)
Also available Hells Bells ... LP 34.99

Close matches8
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Piano ChoirHandscapes (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1973. New Copy 2LP Gatefold (reissue)... $48.99 58.99
A fantastic record on Strata East – and a concept that shouldn't work as well as it does, but which comes off perfectly – thanks to the strength of the players! As you might guess from the title, the group's an all-piano ensemble – one that features hip talents that include Harold Mabern, Sonelius Smith, Stanley Cowell, Nat Jones, Hugh Lawson, and Webster Lewis – coming together in ways that have the pianos handling every part of the music – rhythm, melody, and all these great little bits around the edges – all on these long, stretched-out tracks that have lots of room for solo contributions too! The vibe is very Strata East, just all-piano – and titles include "Effi", "Killers", "Precious Lord", "The Almoravids", and "Man Extensions". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition.)

Close matches9
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Pharoah SandersIzipho Zam (My Gifts) (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1973. New Copy (reissue)... $34.99 44.99
A rare non-Impulse Records album from the early days of Pharoah Sanders – but a set that ranks right up there with his classics for that legendary label! The album's one of the classics in Strata East's Dolphy Series – and it's a uniquely collaborative session from 1969, one that has Sanders working with a largeish group that includes Sonny Fortune on alto sax, Sonny Sharrock on guitar, Lonnie Liston Smith on piano, Leon Thomas on vocals, and Cecil McBee on bass – all coming together with a freely exploratory sort of energy, one that's a bit like some of Archie Shepp's most righteous sides from the same time. Sanders' tenor still dominates most numbers, but not as much as on some of the Impulse sides – and there's a nicely relaxed and personal feel to the whole album. The album features 3 long tracks – "Prince Of Peace", which has Leon Thomas doing his "Creator Has A Master Plan" thing, and the cuts "Balance" and "Izipho Zam", the latter of which jams for a full 28 minutes! LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

Close matches10
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Shirley ScottOne For Me ... CD
Strata East/ARC (UK), 1974. New Copy ... $17.99
One of the coolest albums ever recorded by female organist Shirley Scott – a very hip set that's got a very different flavor than her earlier work for Prestige and Impulse Records! As you might guess for a date issued on the Strata East label, the approach here is very soulful, and very far-reaching – much longer, looser tracks than Shirley Scott ever served up before – done with superb accompaniment from Harold Vick on tenor – a player who's also at his hippest here, and really showing off all the many changes in his style that he'd picked up since the 60s! All tracks are originals, and the group features Billy Higgins on drums and Jimmy Hopps on some additional cowbell – leaving Shirley to handle the bass parts with her Hammond, in a way that is groovier and more rhythmic than some of her work in the past. A gem through and through – with titles that include "What Makes Harold Sing", "Do You Know A Good Thing When You See One", "Big George", "Keep On Movin On", and "Don't Look Back". CD

Close matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Stanley CowellMusa ... LP
Strata East/Everland (Austria), 1974. New Copy Gatefold (reissue)... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A solo piano set from Strata East mainman Stanley Cowell – but a record that's got enough soul and spirituality to rival a full group recording! Although working alone here, Cowell's touch on the keys is astounding – often flowing and highly rhythmic, with a pulsating sense of energy that makes even the mellower tracks sparkle with soulful imagination. A number of tracks are intimate explorations of themes heard more famously on albums done with Charles Tolliver – but which come alive in a whole new way here in Stanley's solo setting! Most work here is on acoustic piano, but Cowell also picks up the electric keys for the tune "Travelin Man" – done here as an overdubbed "duet", and one of the hippest tunes on the entire record! Other titles include "Abscretions", "Equipoise", "Prayer For Peace", "Departure No 2", "Sweet Song", and "Emil Danenberg". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches12
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Juju (Oneness Of Juju)Chapter Two – Nia ... LP
Strata East/Now Again, 1974. New Copy (reissue)... Temporarily Out Of Stock
The rare second album from Juju – the avant jazz collective who'd later morph into funk band Oneness Of Juju, but who still sound pretty revolutionary here! There's a bit more focus than before – still energy that's a lot like the best righteous jazz groups coming out of Chicago or St Louis at the same time, but maybe a bit more direct, too – and really showing some of the stronger spiritual tones that would only blossom more strongly in later years! Reedman Plunky Nakabinde is firmly at the helm of the group – on tenor, flute, and soprano sax – but the set also features great work from Lon Moshe on vibes and percussion, Babatunde on congas and drums, Phil Branch on bass, and Al-Hammond Raul on piano and percussion. The sounds are a bit less Afro-styled than on the Oneness records, but still have all the great spiritual currents – and titles include an excellent version of Pharoah Sanders' "Black Unity", plus the original tunes "Contradiction", "Nia", "Black Experience", and "The End Of The Butterfly King". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition! Includes a great 12" square, 12 page booklet of notes and photos!)

Close matches13
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Juju (Oneness Of Juju)Message From Mozambique ... CD
Black Fire/Strata East, Early 70s. Used ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
The first album by the group that later went on to become Oneness Of Juju! The album was recorded with a group that featured Plunky Nakabinde and Lon Moshe on reeds and percussion – plus Babatunde on congas and drums – and the overall sound is very much in kind of an Art Ensemble Of Chicago mode - with more "out" soloing overall, mixed with some of the spiritual jazz leanings that would show up more on the group's later work. The album's a fitting record for the Strata East label – as it shows the imprint's equal ability to carve up heavy avant work and more strident spiritual soul jazz. And if we say so ourselves, Plunky's really a wailer on tenor and soprano – sounding a lot like Kalaparusha or some of the other AACM players from the time! Titles include "(Struggle) Home", "Soledad Brothers", "Freedom Fighter", and "Nairobi/Chants". CD
(Out of print.)

Close matches14
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ John Betsch SocietyEarth Blossom ... CD
Strata East/Heavenly Sweetness (France), 1974. Used ... Out Of Stock
A beautiful session of spiritual soul jazz – and one of the rarer albums on the legendary Strata East label! The obscure combo is led by drummer/percussionist John Betsch – and instrumentation includes guitar, piano, electric piano, and reeds – all used with plenty of warm touches, and a few sharp edges – all very much in the best Strata East mode of the time! The tracks have a soaring sort of sound – similar to some of the Keno Duke material on the label, but also touched with some trippier edges too – a great blend that really brings a lot of depth to the session, and which has made this one of our favorite Strata sides over the years. Titles include "Song For An Untitled Lady", "Ra", "Get Up & Go", and "Ode To Ethiopia". CD
(Out of print.)

Close matches15
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Charles BrackeenRhythm X – The Music Of Charles Brackeen (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1973. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
The only album ever cut as a leader by tenor saxophonist Charles Brackeen during his early years – and a real standout in the catalog of the legendary Strata East label! The set's got an unusual history – in that it's part of the Dolphy Series, recorded before the label started by Clifford Jordan – as a way of giving a strong showcase to so many new ideas that were bursting in jazz during the late 60s! Here, Brackeen's tenor is set up with a trio of musicians most familiarly associated with Ornette Coleman – Don Cherry on trumpet, Charlie Haden on bass, and Ed Blackwell on drums – a unit that's completely on fire, and freer than before – yet each graced with such strong individuality, every aspect of the record is a complete delight. Brackeen is amazing (why the hell didn't he record more like this at the time?) – but the bass, trumpet, and drums are all very distinct too – the perfect power of free improvisation when it's done right. Titles include "Rhythm X", "Hour Glass", "CB Blues", and "Charles Concept". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition 180 gram pressing!)

Close matches16
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Descendants Of Mike & PhoebeSpirit Speaks (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1974. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
One of the most unique albums on the Strata East label – and that's saying a heck of a lot, given the creative energies flowing through that legendary jazz outlet! Descendents Of Mike & Phoebe is a righteous little project put together by Spike Lee's father, Bill Lee, and his brothers and sisters (Cliff Lee, Grace Lee Mims, and Consuela Lee Moorhead) – working here in a group named after their slave ancestors, who are paid tribute in a beautifully flowing batch of tunes! Lee's round, warm bass tones are firmly at the head of the group on most numbers – recorded at a similar level to his excellent work with Clifford Jordan on Strata East during the same time – and other instrumentation includes piano from Consuela, flugelhorn from Cliff, and percussion from Sonny Brown and Billy Higgins – all used in a wonderfully evocative style that's even better than some of Lee's later soundtrack work. A few numbers feature vocals from Grace – singing wordlessly and with a really heavenly sort of quality – and together, the whole group have a undeniable sense of power and majesty, yet also one that's touched by a really personal sense of poetry too. Titles include a great version of Lee's "Coltrane", which was more famously recorded with Clifford Jordan – plus "Chick Chick", "Attica", "Too Little, Too Late", "Boll Weevil", "Don't Be A Stranger", and "Well Done, Weldon". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

Close matches17
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Shamek FarrahFirst Impressions (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1974. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
One of the hardest to find records on Strata East, and one of the best – a darkly-crafted session of pure beauty, one that lives up to all the best promise of the label! The tracks are long, the sound is bold, and the whole thing moves at a pace that none of the bigger jazz labels were matching at the time – the most righteous, most expressive side of jazz in the mid 70s! Alto player Shamek Farrah is at the lead of a unique group that features Norman Person on trumpet, Milton Suggs on bass, and Sonelius Smith on piano – plus lots of additional drums and percussion, especially on side two of the album, which features some really righteous numbers! Titles include the massive bass sample track "First Impressions" – a symphony of dark, descending chord structures – plus "Meterologicly Tuned", "Watch What Happens Now", and "Umoja Suite". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

Close matches18
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Clifford JordanGlass Bead Games (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1973. New Copy 2LP Gatefold (reissue)... Out Of Stock
An essential bit of 70s soul jazz – a real standout in both the catalogs of tenorist Clifford Jordan, and the Stata East label! This is one of those few records where every element is perfect, and all players rise together to a new level of expression – and we'd easily rank this one right up there with John Coltrane's Love Supreme or Pharoah Sanders' Kharma for sheer magnitude of sound and message! Clifford Jordan is at the height of his tenor powers – cutting sharp lines, stretching out his notes, and hitting all these dark edges that had never appeared in his work – and the rest of the group is great too – with Stanley Cowell on piano, Bill Lee on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums. Higgins is amazing, and gives the set a sort of lyrical freeplay that makes Jordan's hard solos come alive in a magical way – and Cedar Walton also plays piano on a few numbers, pushing things forward with the sense of warmth and imagination that always made him a treat in the 70s! Every cut's a winner, and the set list includes "John Coltrane", "Alias Buster Henry", "Glass Bead Games", "Biskit", and "Bridgework". Great stuff, and a huge amount of music! LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches19
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Cecil McBeeMutima (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1974. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
A great bit of spiritual soul jazz – and one of the few albums as a leader recorded by the legendary bassist Cecil McBee! Cecil's joined here by a large group of players that includes Billy Hart on drums, George Adams on tenor, Onaje Allen Gumbs on piano, Jimmy Hopps on percussion, Art Webb on flute, and Dee Dee Bridgewater on vocals – adding in just a touch of soulful color to the record, as she did on a few other 70s sides like this! The music's got that essential Strata East sound, with a rich and spiritual vibe on all tracks, and slight bits of funk hiding somewhere in the mix! Tracks are long and freely expressive – but never too outside, either – and titles include "Tulsa Black", "Feeling", "Life Waves", and "From Within". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

Close matches20
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Pharoah SandersIzipho Zam (My Gifts) (Italian pressing) ... CD
Strata East/Sunspots (Italy), 1973. Used Gatefold ... Out Of Stock
A rare non-Impulse Records album from the early days of Pharoah Sanders – but a set that ranks right up there with his classics for that legendary label! The album's one of the classics in Strata East's Dolphy Series – and it's a uniquely collaborative session from 1969, one that has Sanders working with a largeish group that includes Sonny Fortune on alto sax, Sonny Sharrock on guitar, Lonnie Liston Smith on piano, Leon Thomas on vocals, and Cecil McBee on bass – all coming together with a freely exploratory sort of energy, one that's a bit like some of Archie Shepp's most righteous sides from the same time. Sanders' tenor still dominates most numbers, but not as much as on some of the Impulse sides – and there's a nicely relaxed and personal feel to the whole album. The album features 3 long tracks – "Prince Of Peace", which has Leon Thomas doing his "Creator Has A Master Plan" thing, and the cuts "Balance" and "Izipho Zam", the latter of which jams for a full 28 minutes! CD
(Out of print.)
Also available Izipho Zam (My Gifts) (180 gram pressing) ... LP 34.99

Close matches21
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Shirley ScottOne For Me ... LP
Strata East/ARC (UK), 1974. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
One of the coolest albums ever recorded by female organist Shirley Scott – a very hip set that's got a very different flavor than her earlier work for Prestige and Impulse Records! As you might guess for a date issued on the Strata East label, the approach here is very soulful, and very far-reaching – much longer, looser tracks than Shirley Scott ever served up before – done with superb accompaniment from Harold Vick on tenor – a player who's also at his hippest here, and really showing off all the many changes in his style that he'd picked up since the 60s! All tracks are originals, and the group features Billy Higgins on drums and Jimmy Hopps on some additional cowbell – leaving Shirley to handle the bass parts with her Hammond, in a way that is groovier and more rhythmic than some of her work in the past. A gem through and through – with titles that include "What Makes Harold Sing", "Do You Know A Good Thing When You See One", "Big George", "Keep On Movin On", and "Don't Look Back". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available One For Me ... CD 17.99

Close matches22
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Charles TolliverCharles Tolliver & His All Stars (aka Paper Man) (180 gram pressing – with bonus track) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1968. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
The first moment of genius from trumpeter Charles Tolliver – a set that wasn't originally issued on the Strata East label, but which really set the tone for all the genius to follow on Tolliver's label! At the time of the record, Charles was part of a whole new generation of hardboppers who were coming up in a world of new ideas – a time when Coltrane, Shepp, and Ayler were transforming the left side of jazz – while other musicians were pushing the boundaries of more familiar modes too. Tolliver worked with Horace Silver, Max Roach, and others at the time – and here, he's a brilliant leader right out of the box – set up with an all-star combo that features Herbie Hancock on piano, Ron Carter on bass, and Joe Chambers on drums – perfect partners for exploring the new music that Charles brings to the record. Gary Bartz joins the group on the second half – another young player about to transform a generation – and the whole album's a dream all the way through, with the mix of soul and spirit of some of Woody Shaw's first records, or maybe Bartz's first few albums for Milestone. Titles are all Tolliver originals – and include "Household Of Saud", "Earl's World", "Paper Man", "Lil's Paradise", and "Right Now". Also features a bonus track – "Repetition (take 2)". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition 180 gram pressing!)

Close matches23
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Charles TolliverRight Now & Then – Charles Tolliver & His All Stars (aka Paper Man) ... CD
Strata East, 1968. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
The first moment of genius from trumpeter Charles Tolliver – a set that wasn't originally issued on the Strata East label, but which really set the tone for all the genius to follow on Tolliver's label! At the time of the record, Charles was part of a whole new generation of hardboppers who were coming up in a world of new ideas – a time when Coltrane, Shepp, and Ayler were transforming the left side of jazz – while other musicians were pushing the boundaries of more familiar modes too. Tolliver worked with Horace Silver, Max Roach, and others at the time – and here, he's a brilliant leader right out of the box – set up with an all-star combo that features Herbie Hancock on piano, Ron Carter on bass, and Joe Chambers on drums – perfect partners for exploring the new music that Charles brings to the record. Gary Bartz joins the group on the second half – another young player about to transform a generation – and the whole album's a dream all the way through, with the mix of soul and spirit of some of Woody Shaw's first records, or maybe Bartz's first few albums for Milestone. Titles are all Tolliver originals – and include "Household Of Saud", "Earl's World", "Paper Man", "Lil's Paradise", and "Right Now". Also features a bonus track – "Repetition (take 2)". CD

Close matches24
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Charles Tolliver & Music Inc.Live At The Loosdrecht Jazz Festival (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1972. New Copy 2LP Gatefold (reissue)... Out Of Stock
A searing live set from trumpeter Charles Tolliver – one of the few talents who could take his instrument into the kind of long-blown, beautifully open territory explored on a double length album like this! Tolliver maybe inherits a late Lee Morgan quality, but also opens up with the Woody Shaw generation – but at a level that's even more exploratory than Woody, and which follows up the fantastic sounds of his two part Live At Slugs albums, issued slightly earlier on the Strata East label! Strata is a name that's come to be synonymous with the best in spiritual jazz of the 70s – and Tolliver is the key figure at the top of that legacy – really making magic here in a quartet that includes John Hicks on piano, Reggie Workman on bass, and Alvin Queen on drums. Titles are all nice and long – and include "Grand Max", "Truth", "Prayer For Peace", "Our Second Father" and "Repetition". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

Close matches25
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Harold VickDon't Look Back (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1974. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
Maybe the most righteous album ever from reedman Harold Vick – a crowning achievement of all his soulful years in jazz, cut as one of the key 70s releases on Strata East! Vick is fantastic here – light years ahead of his work as the funky tenorist on 60s albums by John Patton and Jack McDuff in the 60s, even as great as that material was – and emerging here as an incredibly sensitive soul jazz player, capable of turning out some incredibly sophisticated and emotional compositions – which are then graced by these really spiritual solos! Harold wrote and produced the whole album – really controlling his musical vision – and other players include "Virgil Jones on trumpet, George Davis on flute, Joe Bonner on Fender Rhodes and piano, Sam Jones on bass, and Billy Hart on drums – a lineup that sounds even greater on the record than it does on paper. Titles include "Don't Look Back", "Melody For Bu", "Stop & Cop", and "Senor Zamora". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

Close matches26
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Brother AhhSound Awareness ... CD
Strata East/Manufactured, 1972. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
A very trippy album from the enigmatic Brother Ahh – aka Robert Northern, former member of Sun Ra's Arkestra, and also a lecturer on the east coast! This album's his first, originally issued on the Strata East label – and a spacey mixture of other-worldly sounds. The first long track on the album is entitled "Beyond Yourself (The Midnight Confession)", and features a group with Ahh on flutes and "natural" sounds, plus cello by Pat Dixon, percussion by Barbara Burton, and soprano voice by Barbara Grant. The track's a "sound journey in 7 parts" – floating across space with a mystical feel that slowly unfurls. The other long track on the set is "Love Piece", a tune in which Ah plays flute along with percussion by Max Roach and the M'Boom percussion ensemble – plus a 90-voice chorus, and a short rap by Roach. Very spiritual stuff! CD
Also available Sound Awareness ... LP 18.99

Close matches27
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Billy HarperCapra Black (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1973. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
One of the most spiritual recordings put out by the Strata East label – and the album that put tenor giant Billy Harper on the map! Harper leads a hip group here – one that features George Cables on piano, Reggie Workmanon bass, Jimmy Owens on trumpet, and Julian Preister on trombone – and they're joined by a quintet of voices that includes Eugene McDaniels, all singing behind the jazz players in an uplifting spiritual mode that cries out with the new soul jazz freedom of the 70s! Max Roach and Donald Byrd had begun experiments like this a decade before, but Harper's work here blows them all away – with a sense of righteousness and focus that's simply astounding, especially considering that the album was Billy's first as a leader! Harper's solos are worth the price of the record alone – searing with a raw, post-Coltrane energy as he darts in and out of the voices in the backings. Titles are all original compositions – and include "Capra Black", "Soulfully I Love You", "New Breed", "Sir Galahad", and "Cry of Hunger". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

Close matches28
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ 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

Close matches29
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Milton MarshMonism ... LP
Strata East/Manufactured, 1975. New Copy (reissue)... 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! LP, Vinyl record album
 
Possible matches: 73
Possible matches30
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Gary BiasEast 101 ... CD
Nimbus, 1981. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
A dream of a record from the LA spiritual underground of the 70s – and one of the only records we've ever seen from reedman Gary Bias! The date's got a soulful depth that makes it one of the most compelling albums on the legendary Nimbus label – a rhythmic pulse that's often modal, and a sense of spiritualism in the solos that often has Gary stretching out strongly on alto, soprano sax, or flute – yet always with an inherent focus, and strong sense of direction! Other players are equally great too – David Tillman on piano, Rickey Kelly on vibes, Roberto Miranda and John Heard on bass, and Fritz Wise on drums – and the tunes are wonderful original numbers that mark Bias as an extremely strong voice in jazz – one that should have gotten better exposure over the years. The album's got a great Strata East sort of vibe – and titles include "As Children Play", "East 101", "Asiki", "Arthur's Vamp", and "Dear Violet". CD

Possible matches31
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Juju (Oneness Of Juju)Live At The East ... LP
Now Again/Black Fire, 1973. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
A never-issued performance by the legendary spiritual jazz group Juju – the genre-crossing combo who'd later expand to the full Oneness Of Juju ensemble! This set captures the group in more avant formation than their later funky records – more clearly tied to a late Coltrane inspiration, but with some of the energy of the Art Ensemble Of Chicago and other creative improvisational groups – especially in the way the members of the lineup seem to effortlessly shift instruments over the course of the long tunes on the set! The vibe is very similar to the Juju albums on Strata East – and this set might be thought of as a chapter three to those two records – with a lineup that features the mighty Plunky Nakabinde on tenor, soprano, flute, and percussion – plus Al Hammel Rasul on piano, Lon Moshe on vibes and percussion, Ken Shabala on bass, and Babatunde and Jalango on percussion and vocals too. Titles include "Black Experience", "Struggle Home", "At Least We Have A Horizon Now", and "Soledad Brothers". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition – tip-on cover and booklet of notes!)

Possible matches32
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✨✧ Juju/Oneness Of Juju/Experience UnlimitedBlack Fire Set (Live At The East/Chapter Two/African Rhythms/Space Jungle Luv/Free Yourself) (5LP set) ... LP
Now Again, Mid 70s. New Copy 5LP ... Out Of Stock
Five full albums from the legendary Black Fire label – a DC-based imprint that was home to a heck of a lot of knowledge and power back in the 70s! First up is Live At The East – a never-issued performance by the legendary spiritual jazz group Juju – the genre-crossing combo who'd later expand to the full Oneness Of Juju ensemble! This set captures the group in more avant formation than their later funky records – more clearly tied to a late Coltrane inspiration, but with some of the energy of the Art Ensemble Of Chicago and other creative improvisational groups – especially in the way the members of the lineup seem to effortlessly shift instruments over the course of the long tunes on the set! The vibe is very similar to the Juju albums on Strata East – and this set might be thought of as a chapter three to those two records – with a lineup that features the mighty Plunky Nakabinde on tenor, soprano, flute, and percussion – plus Al Hammel Rasul on piano, Lon Moshe on vibes and percussion, Ken Shabala on bass, and Babatunde and Jalango on percussion and vocals too. Titles include "Black Experience", "Struggle Home", "At Least We Have A Horizon Now", and "Soledad Brothers". Next is Chapter Two – the rare second album from Juju – the avant jazz collective who'd later morph into funk band Oneness Of Juju, but who still sound pretty revolutionary here! There's a bit more focus than before – still energy that's a lot like the best righteous jazz groups coming out of Chicago or St Louis at the same time, but maybe a bit more direct, too – and really showing some of the stronger spiritual tones that would only blossom more strongly in later years! Reedman Plunky Nakabinde is firmly at the helm of the group – on tenor, flute, and soprano sax – but the set also features great work from Lon Moshe on vibes and percussion, Babatunde on congas and drums, Phil Branch on bass, and Al-Hammond Raul on piano and percussion. The sounds are a bit less Afro-styled than on the Oneness records, but still have all the great spiritual currents – and titles include an excellent version of Pharoah Sanders' "Black Unity", plus the original tunes "Contradiction","Nia", "Black Experience", and "The End Of The Butterfly King". On the next record, the group shifts into the new name Oneness Of Juju, and delivers African Rhythms – a landmark of 70s Afro-styled jazz – and the first album by this famous underground collective! Oneness of Juju were a Washington DC-based group that grew out of the ashes of the Juju avant jazz ensemble – formed in the culturally rich African-American community of DC in the 70s, with spiritual and political aspirations that stretched far beyond the average funky combo. This first album is a masterful blend of percussion, jazz, and a slight bit of funk – alternating vocal tracks with harder-hitting jazz instrumentals, all held together under the leadership of sax player Plunky Nakabinde – a reedman whose work here alone is worth the price of admission – laid out nicely alongside some great percussion, Fender Rhodes, and wonderfully worm vocals on a few tracks. The album's one of the greatest independent soul jazz albums of the 70s – and it's filled with great tracks, such as the breakbeat classic "African Rhythms" and "Liberation Dues" – plus "Kazi", "Funky Wood", "Don't Give Up", "Poo Too", and "Incognito". The group returns on Space Jungle Luv – a fantastic record from one of the greatest underground jazz groups of the 70s! Oneness of Juju are perhaps best known for the heavy funk of their first album, African Rhythms – but we're actually partial to this second album – a warmly spiritual batch of soul jazz tracks, and a set that's filled with life, emotion, and wonderful instrumentation throughout! The group are a bit more relaxed overall – easing into things, but in a way that really builds up as the album moves on – as they layer together heavy percussion, sweet keyboards, and lots of great sax solos from Plunky Nakabinde – plus wonderfully warm vocals that add a soulful edge the group never had before, but which still is very jazzy – and not like the funky club of later years. The whole thing's wonderfully cohesive, and a treasure throughout – and titles include the warm vocal number "River Luvrite", to the harder hitting "Space Jungle Funk", and other gems like "Soul Love Now", "Follow Me", "The Connection", and "Love's Messenger". Lastly, Experience Unlimited serve up a wonderfully spiritual album – and one that's maybe a bit of a surprise, given the later fame of the group! The group here is billed by their full name – Experience Unlimited – but where later known to most of the world as EU, the DC funk outfit that went onto become pretty big in the GoGo scene, and who scored big with the 80s party cut "Da Butt". Yet as a classic album on the Black Fire label, this record is nothing like their 80s material at all – and instead catches the group when they were part of a more spiritual scene, the same DC one that gave the world Oneness Of Juju and the larger family of Black Fire artists! This album has the group very much in a mid 70s Earth Wind & Fire mode – jamming hard and free, with plenty of electric guitar riffing, funky keyboards, horns, and lots of percussion. Some tracks have vocals, and some are instrumentals – but the whole thing's an extremely unified album with a great overall vibe – and a message to match the title and the cover. Titles include "Functus", "Free Yourself", "Hey You", "It's All Imagination", and "Funk Consciousness". LP, Vinyl record album
(Five full records, each with individual cover art and booklets – all in a slipcover!)

Possible matches33
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Horacee ArnoldTales Of the Exonerated Flea ... CD
Columbia/Wounded Bird, 1974. New Copy ... $6.99 11.98
A lost fusion classic from the early 70s – one of the only records cut under the leadership of drummer Horacee Arnold, but a heck of a great little set with a soaringly righteous sound! The style here is plenty full-on, but a bit less rock-leaning than some of the other Columbia fusion of the period – thanks to a spacious vision on Arnold's part, and the inclusion of a fair bit of sounds from world music. Players on the set include Art Webb on flute, Sonny Fortune on soprano sax, John Abercrombie on guitar, David Friedman on vibes and marimba, Dom Um Romao on percussion, and Jan Hammer on moog and electric piano – and although there's a fair bit of guitar in the mix, the other acoustic elements are kept nice and high too – for a blend that's almost like some of the best Brazilian fusion from later years, touched by a slightly funkier sound! Tracks really stretch out nicely, allowing for plenty of solo space as they roll on, in a way that's almost a cross between Strata East and some of the more familiar mainstream fusion modes of the time. Very hip stuff, with titles that include "Benzele Windows", "Tales Of The Exonerated Flea", "Euroaquilo Silence", "Puppet Of The Seasons", "Sing Night Jar", and "Delicate Evasions". CD

Possible matches34
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✨✧ Roy AyersVirgo Vibes ... LP
Atlantic, 1967. Very Good+ ... Just Sold Out!
A far-reaching early gem from Roy Ayers – a set that's much more jazz-based than his later work, and a record that has him touching base with the Blue Note and Strata East sides of the jazz spectrum! The lineup here is incredibly hip – a mix of players that includes a young Charles Tolliver on trumpet, Harold Land and Joe Henderson on tenor, Jack Wilson on piano, and Reggie Workman on bass – not to mention Roy himself on some mighty great vibes! There's a surprising spiritual undercurrent to the music – pointing the way towards jazz to come in the 70s – and titles include "Glow Flower", "Ayerloom", "Virgo Vibes", and "In The Limelight" – plus an early take on Charles Tolliver's "The Ringer". LP, Vinyl record album
(Green & blue label stereo pressing with 1A matrix. Cover has a small cutout hole and some staining and peeling along the bottom seam, mostly on back.)

Possible matches35
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Babatunde & PhenomenaLevels Of Consciousness (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Theresa/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1979. New Copy (reissue)... $34.99 44.99
A wonderfully soulful session from percussionist Babatunde Lea – and a shining example of the warm spirits and cross-cultural experimentation going on in the Bay Area scene of the 70s! The record mixes 70s soul jazz with bits of funk, Latin jazz, and breezy west coast touches – making for an album that's got some of the earthy charm of work on labels like Strata East or Black Jazz, mixed with the tighter soulful production of some of George Duke's early 70s sides for MPS. The vibe is incredible – a beautiful mix of warm vocals, tight soloing, and message-oriented grooves – and the whole thing's great all the way through! Titles include "Thailand Stick", "Use Your Hands", "Merely A Suggestion", "Levels Of Consciousness", "Thang", and "Plea From The Soul". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

Possible matches36
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Art Blakey & The Jazz MessengersBuhaina ... LP
Prestige (UK), 1973. New Copy (reissue)... $16.99 19.99
An amazing album that has Art Blakey completely reinventing himself for the 70s! Blakey shifts from straight hardbop to kind of a modal soul jazz groove, touched with some of the electric playing of the younger jazz generation, but not enough to qualify as fusion or funk. Instead, he's working with some great younger players – like Carter Jefferson, Woody Shaw, and Michael Howell – hitting a groove that reminds us of some of the best underground soul jazz on labels like Muse or Strata East. Includes the amazing long groovers "Mission Eternal" and "Chant For Bu", a famous Tribe Called Quest sample – plus new electric piano versions of "Moanin" and "Along Came Betty", both of which feature vocals by Jon Hendricks. LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches37
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Brother AhhDivine Music (Sea/Meditation/Searching) (3CD set) ... CD
Manufactured, 1978/1981/1985. New Copy 3CD ... $25.99
Three never-issued albums from Brother Ah – the enigmatic musician who may be known best for his work with Sun Ra, and his rare album on Strata East! Both of those moments date from earlier years, though – and past that time, Brother Ah was still working strongly on some amazing musical ideas of his own – work that includes the three albums presented in this package, which together really mark a shift for both Ah and some of his spiritual jazz contemporaries as the 70s moved on! The set begins with the beautiful set The Sea – recorded in 1978, with a long-flowing sound that's quite hypnotic, and very much in the spiritual territory of post-Coltrane material – including work by Trane's wife Alice. Brother Ah plays flute, in these fantastic lines that spin out slowly and echo strongly – amidst a mix of percussion, violin, mbira, bass, and drums – often used in ways that build beautifully, and which provide a great introduction to both the sung and spoken passages – presented by Abena Walker, Jeanean Gibbs, and Nataska Hassan Youssef. Titles include "Nuba", "Far Away", "The Village Drum", "Visoins", and "Africa We Are Your Children". Meditation is from a few years later, and has a different makeup – a sound that's much more spare overall, and which just features Brother Ah on flute, zither, and "nature sounds" – with help from Cleo Jomo Faulks on mbira and gong! The tunes have an earthier feel than you might guess from the album's title – still somewhat meditative, but also more open to the vibes of nature than the space of the studio – with moments that feel more more like the organic sounds of the young Moondog, or maybe some of Alice Coltrane's more home-made moments. Titles include "Stillness", "Spirit World", "Close Your Eyes & See", and "Song Of The Unseen". Last up is Searching – a record from 1985 that maybe moves the spiritual agenda from the political to the personal – that shift towards more interior solutions that some musicians took in the 80s, especially as funding for some kinds of spiritual jazz albums fell by the wayside, and some artists had to adapt to the new age underground. Yet although that shift might be in place here, Brother Ah is still as righteous as ever – just equipped with a slightly different voice – as he works alongside some electronics and percussion from Richard Ashman, and blows trumpet and a variety of flutes, while also handling percussion and harmonica in very spacious ways. The record is more about extended sound textures than individual instrumentation – and titles include "I Am", "Going Within", "Inner Voice", and "Know Thyself". First time release for all three records – presented in a really great package! CD

Possible matches38
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✨✧ Build An ArkPeace With Every Step (import pressing) ... CD
Kindred Spirits (Netherlands), 2004. Used ... $12.99
One of the most righteous albums of the 21st century so far – and an instant classic we'll be loving for years! Build An Ark are a seriously heavy soul jazz ensemble, with roots and traditions that stretch back to the most righteous days of the 70s underground – the brainchild of producer Carlos Nino and vocalist Dwight Trible – and featuring work by soul jazz stalwarts that include Phil Ranelin, Nate Morgan, Derf Reklaw, Adam Rudolph, and others – all coming together in a fresh, new expression of the righteous ideals that first motivated their original work! Under the guidance of Nino, the group really gels together nicely – working in a loose mode that's a nice change from the tighter cosmic 21st century soul of the European scene – and returning to the organic, almost folksy forms that first emerged on 70s independent labels like Tribe, Strata East, and Nimbus. LA luminary Nate Morgan plays some great Fender Rhodes on many of the album's best tracks – and singer Dwight Trible has a soulful range that's somewhere between the style of Terry Callier and Leon Thomas. The album features a massively beautiful remake of Pharoah Sanders "You've Got To Have Freedom" – one that's very different than the original – plus a host of other great cuts that include Stanley Cowell's "Equipoise", Phil Ranelin's "Vibes From The Tribe", Ronnie Laws' "Always There", and Michael White's "Guidance" – as well as the original tracks "Peace & Love", "Conversations", "Precious Priceless", and "Love Is Our Nationality". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches39
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Donald ByrdNew Perspective ... LP
Blue Note, 1963. Very Good ... $24.99
A classic album that mixes trumpet and voices in a swirling soulful sound that worked very well for Byrd's career! Byrd's sparkling trumpet fronts a tight septet that includes Hank Mobley, Herbie Hancock, and Kenny Burrell – and which is backed by arrangements by Coleridge Perkinson and Duke Pearson. The sound is beautiful and spiritual, with a sound that mixes Blue Note hardbop with a style that would later show up on labels like Strata East, or in the experiments of Max Roach and Billy Harper. The tracks are long and moody, and the vocal group never gets in the way, but instead backs Byrd in a way that lets him hit new heights, and which gives him a stronger sense of voice. Includes the classic "Christo Redentor", plus "Chant", "The Black Disciple", and "Elijah". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches40
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✨✧ CompostLife Is Round ... CD
Columbia/Wounded Bird, 1973. New Copy ... $6.99 11.98
A classic set of spiritual fusion from this short-lived allstar group Compost – featuring Harold Vick, Bob Moses, Jumma Santos, and Jack DeJohnette! Vick's at his moody soulful best here, in a mode that's similar to his Strata East work – and the record also features occasional vocals by Lou Courtney and Jeanne Lee. They hit a fairy feverish, funky jazz mode throughout, and every player is in incredible form here. Titles include "The Ripper", "Moonsong", "Changing Streams", "Mon Cherry Popsicool", "Compost Festival", "Life Is Round", and "Buzzard Feathers". CD

Possible matches41
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Norman ConnorsDark Of Light (Cobblestone) ... LP
Cobblestone, 1973. Very Good+ Gatefold ... $19.99
Early genius from drummer Norman Connors – a sensational bit of righteous soul jazz – right up there with the best work on Strata East and Black Jazz from the time! The sound here is full, soulful, and spiritual – as Connors heads up a large ensemble that includes luminaries like Herbie Hancock, Eddie Henderson, Gary Bartz, Carlos Garnett, Buster Williams, and Dee Dee Bridgewater – all working together in a formation that's free spirited, yet tightly unified – often at a level that's even stronger than their own recordings! The album mixes a few longer tracks with shorter numbers – in a mode that reminds us a lot of Garnett's classic Black Love album – and titles include "Song For Rosa", "Black Lightnin", "Dark Of Light", "Butterfly Dreams", and "Laughter". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches42
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Stanley Cowell, Billy Harper, & OthersSuch Great Friends (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1983. New Copy (reissue)... About November 15, 2020
A lost bit of late Strata East – and an all-star session that never lets up! The album's a quartet effort – led by Stanley Cowell, but equally featuring participation from Billy Harper on tenor, Reggie Workman on bass, and Billy Hart on drums. The overall feel is a lot like Harper's own work from the time – particularly his late 70s Japanese sessions – driven strongly by Cowell's modal approach to the groove, a sound that's perfectly executed by the team of Workman and Hart. The tracks are all quite long, spinning out with a freely expressive approach – and titles include "Sweet Song", "Destiny Is Yours", "Layla Joy", and "East Harlem Nostalgia". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches43
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Creative Arts EnsembleOne Step Out ... CD
Nimbus, 1981. New Copy ... $9.99
A great bit of work from the hip LA scene that centered around the Nimbus label at the end of the 70s – a collective who work together here with the same spiritual jazz modes you'd find on labels like Tribe or Strata East! The group features some bigger names from the scene, including some solo Nimbus acts – plus some other overlooked players – a lineup that includes Henry Franklin on bass, George Bohannon on trombone, Wilbert Hemsley on tenor, Dadesi Komolafe on flute, Jeff Clayton on baritone, and Gary Bias on alto and soprano sax. The album's also got some beautiful vocals from BJ Crowley – who co-leads the group, and sings out with a proud righteousness that recalls some of Dee Dee Bridgewater or Jean Carn's early early soul jazz recordings. The tracks are all long and spiraling numbers – never really "out", but in a free searching mode that's a perfect platform for the piano work of the other co-leader, Kaeef Ruzadun. Titles include "One Step Out", "Flashback Of Time", "All Praises Due", and "Stars In Lightyear Time". CD

Possible matches44
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Andrew CyrilleMy Friend Louis ... CD
DIW/Columbia, 1992. Used ... $10.99
One of the true soul jazz classics of the 90s! Although Andrew Cyrille is better known for some of his more "out" material, we totally dig this 1992 album – because it's got a sweeping spiritual feel, and a very soulful groove that recalls 70s work by players like Billy Harper or Marvin Hannibal Peterson! Tracks are long and very open-ended, but never go too far out – just progress along with a great sense of vision, courtesy of a group of players that includes Hannibal on trumpet, Oliver Lake on soprano and alto sax, Adegoke Steve Colson on piano, Reggie Workman on bass, and Cyrille on drums. The group is impeccably tight, and the whole thing sounds like a lost session from Strata East – with just the right mix of outside soloing and inside grooving – and titles include "Soul Brother", "The Prophet", "Shell", "Tap Dancer", "South Of The Border Serenade", and "Where's Nine". CD
(Out of print. Booklet has a faint mark from a price sticker, barcode has a cutout hole.)

Possible matches45
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Andrew CyrilleOde To The Living Tree ... LP
Venus (Japan), 1994. New Copy ... About August 1, 2020 (delayed)
A great album of spiritual modal jazz from Cyrille – and one that's a perfect example of the strong turn he's taken in the past decade! The session was recorded in Senegal in 1994, with a group of like-minded players like Oliver Lake, David Murray, Steve Colson, and Fred Hopkins – all of whom, like Cyrille, have had their free moments, but who are here uniting in a tight project of spirituality that recalls 70s Billy Harper sessions, or some of the more adventurous work on Strata East. The album includes a very nice 20 minute remake of "A Love Supreme", plus the originals "Dakar Darkness", "Ode To The Living Tree", "Coast To Coast", and "Water, Water, Water". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches46
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Jack DeJohnetteJackeyboard ... CD
Trio/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1973. New Copy ... $22.99
Jack DeJohnette is a hell of a drummer, and he's also a hell of a pianist too – a side of Jack's talents that isn't always shown on record, and which has maybe never been as well-recorded as on this fantastic Japanese session from the 70s! DeJohnette has a spiritual, long-building approach to the piano here – almost like Stanley Cowell on Strata East, but with his own flavors too – and the final track of the album features Jack on melodica, an instrument he handles in a different way, but with an equally compelling approach. The trio here features George Ohtsuka on the drum kit and Mitsukaki Furuno on bass – on four long tracks, "McCoy's Tune", "Fun Calypso", "Jack's Blues", and "Minority Blues". CD
(Part of the Jazz Legends In Japan series!)

Possible matches47
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Ensemble Al-SalaamSojourner ... LP
Strata East/P-Vine (Japan), 1974. New Copy (reissue)... About October 2, 2020
Sublime spiritual jazz from Strata East – one of the label's rarest recordings, and one of its hippest too! The set has an incredibly righteous feel – a blend of keyboards, saxes, guitar, percussion, and vocals that steps off with a very deep feel – one that's heavy on the best post-Coltrane modes of expression in jazz, and which really takes advantage of the freedoms of the Strata setting to open up the sound in really beautiful ways! Beatrice Parker handles the vocals, with a very warm and spiritual style that's not unlike some of the early, righteous recordings by Dee Dee Bridgewater – and other group members include Khaliq Abdul Al Rouf on saxes, Bevin Turnbull on keyboards, Mashujaa Aliye Salamu on guitar, Leroy Seals on bass, and Fred Kwaku Crawley on a host of hip percussion instruments. There's a slight undercurrent of funk on a few tunes, but most tracks are focused more in a soaring, spiritual groove – with titles that include "Circles", "The Sojourner", "Peace (Salaam)", "Traces Of Trane", "Ecstasy", "Music Is Nothing But A Prayer", and "Malika". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Sojourner (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD 24.99

Possible matches48
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Billy FosterReflections ... CD
Equistar, 1989. New Copy ... $6.99
Overlooked genius from pianist Billy Foster – a player who only issued a handful of records on his own label – which was run out of the city of Gary, Indiana! This date's far more obscure than similar efforts on labels like Muse, Strata East, or Black Jazz – and has a similar vibe that runs through the best currents of the jazz underground at the time – never avant, but always soulful – with Foster on acoustic piano throughout, in a lineup that features core contributions from a great trio on all numbers – plus trumpet from Odies Williams on one track, and vocals by Glenda Eskew and Sharmaine Congress on a track apiece. The titles are all originals – marking Foster as a hell of a writer – and there's a very hip feel to the album overall. Titles include "Steps", "Dreams", "A Swing Thing", "Prism 2", "Dedication", "Prism", "Straight Strut", and "Sunrise". CD

Possible matches49
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Matthew HalsallSending My Love (with bonus track) ... CD
Gondwana (UK), 2008. New Copy ... $16.99
A really incredible album – a set that's filled with far more soul and feeling than you might guess from the youthful image on the cover! Matthew Halsall's a pretty young player, but his sound here is really amazing – not just on his own trumpet solos, but on the overall feel of the album – which is beautifully composed, and put together with a sense of spirit that takes us back to Strata East at its most sophisticated in the 70s! There's a really beautiful balance here – ambition in the writing that recalls other UK efforts from The Heritage Orchestra or Nostalgia 77 Octet – but an execution that's much leaner overall, deeply personal lines played by a relatively small combo – quintet formation on all numbers, featuring Halsall's trumpet alongside great reedwork on soprano sax, flute, alto, and tenor – supported by soaring rhythms on piano, bass, and drums – all handled with the majesty of an early 70s McCoy Tyner album, or some of the other great modally-inspired work of the American post-Coltrane generation. Tremendous stuff throughout – a record that held us rapt from start to finish – with 5 original compositions that include "On The Other Side Of The World", "Reflections", "Freedom Song", "Sending My Love", and "Sachi". CD

Possible matches50
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Wendell HarrisonDreams Of A Love Supreme (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Wenha/Octave (Japan), 1980. New Copy ... $22.99
Pretty great stuff – even though Wendall Harrison has strayed far from the Tribe Records sound of his earlier years! The record takes the spiritual post-Coltrane jazz of Harrison's earlier days, and infuses it with a smooth fusion approach that's clearly an attempt to reach a wider audience with a soulful message – giving the whole thing a blend of soul and spiritual jazz that comes off surprisingly well overall! There's some nice dark edges to the record that really keep things interesting – maybe imagine Larry Mizell producing some of the more off-beat albums on Strata East – and there's a bit of vocals on the set, which also features work from Phil Ranelin on trombone. Tracks include "Where Am I", "Sea Minor Blues", "Take Time Out", and "Dreams Of A Love Supreme". CD features bonus tracks – "No Turnin Back", "Rocket Love", and the unreleased "Patrina's Dance". CD

Possible matches51
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Albert HeathKwanza (The First) (with bonus track) ... CD
Muse/Xanadu, 1973. New Copy ... $9.99 15.99
One of the coolest, hippest albums you'll ever hear from drummer Albert Tootie Heath – a set that's so different than his earlier work of the 60s, and which has the same sort of righteous, spiritual energy as the Heath Brothers album on Strata East! Albert's got a wonderfully loose vibe on the drums – and the added percussoin he brings into the mix – and the group here features slight electric currents from Kenny Barron on Fender Rhodes and Ted Dunbar on guitar – plus sublime reed lines from brother Jimmy Heath – who really blows it away on tenor, soprano sax, and flute – again like his best Strata East performance! Brother Percy Heath is on bass – which seems to be electric at points – and Curtis Fuller rounds out the group with some of that hipper, more searching trombone style he was using at the time – and the whole thing's wonderful, much more progressive than some of the other Xanadu Records sessions of the period. Titles include "Dunia", "Sub-Set", "Tafadhali", "Oops", and "A Notion". Features the bonus track "Wazuri Blues" – a piano solo by Kenny Barron. CD

Possible matches52
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Clifford JordanClifford Jordan & The Magic Triangle On Stage Vol 1 ... LP
Steeplechase, 1975. Near Mint- ... $14.99
Excellent work from Clifford Jordan – far better than the usual Steeplechase session of the time! The vibe here is similar to Jordan's work at the time on the Strata East label – played in a very similar group, with Cedar Walton on piano, Sam Jones on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums – way more than just a standard rhythm section, and with Jordan in tow, a compelling quartet with a really unique sound! There's a great depth to the work here – hardly the American soloist taking up space that you might get on other European live dates from the period – and the tracks are long, with an angular soul jazz finish. Both Jordan and Walton get plenty of room for expression – and titles on this first volume include "Pinocchio", "The Highest Mountain", "That Old Devil Moon", and "The Maestro". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches53
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Dadisi KomolafeHassan's Walk ... CD
Nimbus, 1983. New Copy ... $9.99
A soul jazz treasure from the LA scene of the early 80s – a fantastic record that we'd rank with the best Strata East sides of the time! The group's led by alto saxophonist Dadisi Komolafe, and features vibes by Ricky Kelly, piano by Eric Tillman, bass by Roberto Miranda, and drums by Sunship Theus – all working together in a style that's infused with soulful, post-Coltrane exploratory energy, never going too far outside, and always staying true to the rhythmic pulse at its core. Kelly's vibes are really great – sparkling underneath solos by Komolafe that remind us a lot of Gary Bartz's earliest work – and titles include "Calvary", "Speak No Evil", and "Hassan's Walk". CD
(Comes in a slim sleeve.)

Possible matches54
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Yusef LateefLast Savoy Sessions ... CD
Savoy, 1957/1959. Used 2 CDs ... $14.99
Incredible early work from Yusef Lateef – some of his best! On these early Savoy side, Lateef is drawing from the wealth of influences that were running through the Detroit jazz underground of the 50s that spawned him – and apart from a strongly-conceived bop-influenced sound, you'll also hear Lateef experimenting a lot with jazz exoticism, using different reed instruments and odd small-group arrangements in a manner that's sort of a more "inside" version of similar work done at the time by Sun Ra and group. Lateef's work at this point is a key link in a tradition of exploratory Afro-centric jazz that runs through Roland Kirk's "Black Classical Music" of the 60s, and the underground output of labels like Tribe or Strata East during the 70s. About half the cuts on here are fairly straight, and still pretty nice, but those that aren't will open your eyes to Lateef's genius! Includes titles from The Fabric Of Jazz, The Dreamer, Jazz & The Sounds Of Nature, and Prayer To The East – with 19 numbers that include "Arjuna", "Valse Bouk", "Check Blues", "Gypsy Arab", "Sram", "Lover Man", and "8540 Twelfth Street". CD
(Out of print, booklet is wrinkled from some water damage. Promtional stamp on cover.)

Possible matches55
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Curtis LundyAgainst All Odds ... CD
Justin Time, 1999. Used ... $9.99
Incredible stuff – one of our favorite jazz albums of the past decade, and a real treasure that we always find ourselves going back to! This album was only Curtis Lundy's second as a leader – recorded after a 10 year hiatus, and featuring a real return to the brilliance of his early career. The soulful bassist is at the height of his powers here – writing and arranging with a depth that we never thought possible, crafting a record that shines with the best of the 70s soul jazz classics on Strata East or Black Jazz. He's got plenty of great help on the record, too – as players include Bobby Watson, Peven Everett, John Hicks, and Roy Hargrove – and best of all, sister Carmen sings vocals on three tracks, all of which are great, and stand as some of the finest soul jazz vocal numbers we've heard in ages! Titles include "Do I Ever Cross You Mind", "All Things Being Equal Are Not", "Sweet Audrey", "Blue Woman", "Groydology", and "Where'd It Go?" CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches56
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Harold MabernLookin On The Bright Side ... CD
DIW (Japan), 1993. New Copy ... $24.99
A bright, positive set from pianist Harold Mabern – one that's overflowing with soul and spirit – and a perfect example of his strengths during the 90s stretch when his career really took off again! The trio's got a well-balanced approach to rhythm – bold basslines from Christian McBride, whose youthful tones seem to warm up Mabern's music more than ever – and tight drums from Jack DeJohnette, who knows nicely that less is more – and never tries to overwhelm the interplay between Harold and Christian! Titles include "Big Time Cooper", "Moment's Notice", "Look On The Bright Side", "Our Waltz", and "Too Late Fall Back Baby" – a number you might remember from Mabern's Strata East years, sounding mighty nice here, too! CD

Possible matches57
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Hugh MasekelaHome Is Where The Music Is ... CD
Blue Thumb/Verve, 1972. New Copy ... $10.99 11.98
Massively wonderful work from the mighty Hugh Masekela – easily one of his hippest, most soulful sessions ever! This double-length gem really has Hugh letting go – moving way beyond the pop modes of the late 60s, into a long-flowing, open-rolling groove that's played by a spare quintet lineup with plenty of African themes in the rhythms! Players include Larry Willis on acoustic and electric piano and Dudu Pukwana on alto sax – both of whom are wonderful, and really get a chance to sparkle in the session – almost sharing equal space with Masekela in the sound and shape of the record, although Hugh's horn work is pretty darn amazing too. Other players include Eddie Gomez on bass and Mahaya Ntshoko on drums – and the record has the sort of open, righteous feel of a session on Black Jazz or Strata East – a vibe that really blows away most other Chisa Records work of the time. Titles include Willis' classic "Inner Crisis", plus "Blues For Huey", "Part Of A Whole", "Maesha", "The Big Apple", "Minawa", and "Nomali". CD

Possible matches58
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Dawan MuhammadDeep Stream ... LP
Evidence/High Jazz (Switzerland), 1979. New Copy (reissue)... $22.99
A really amazing record from Dawan Muhammad – a west coast musician who never got the same sort of spiritual jazz credit as some of the giants of the 70s – but who kept on making really wonderful music as the years went on! Muhammad's recently known as the force behind the Life Force Jazz label – but here, he's stepping out in a mode that's much earlier, but already shows his sense of musical vision – a set that's almost like some of the more ambitious Strata East recordings of the 70s – with beautiful original compositions by Dawan, served up by a shifting set of musicians who really capture his spirit! Muhammad plays saxes and flutes – plus electric and acoustic piano, drums, and lots of percussion – and other players include Oscar Williams on trumpet, Paul Nagle on piano, and Daniel Sabanovich and Prince Lawsha on drums and percussion. Delores Pierce sings a bit on the record, but most tracks are instrumental – and titles include "Cataclysmic Decision", "East Wind", "Tambu", "Is That You", "Sun/Moon/Stars", and "Anxiety". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches59
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✨✧ Teruo NakamuraUnicorn ... CD
Three Blind Mice/Craftman (Japan), 1973. New Copy ... Just Sold Out!
A landmark album from the Japanese fusion scene of the 70s – a killer set of tracks recorded by bassist Teruo Nakamura, with help from a host of American soul jazz luminaries! The album's easily one of Nakamura's most sought-after sets – and for good reason too, as the cuts are long and jamming, but also have a soulful component too – a bit of the post-Coltrane spiritualism of some of Gary Bartz's early albums, and some of the open-ended styles you might hear on a label like Strata East! Nakamura's a bassist from the Japanese scene – but the record was cut in New York with a great lineup of American heavyweights – including Hubert Eaves and George Cables on keyboards, Charles Sullivan on trumpet, and Steve Grossman on tenor – plus Alphonse Mouzon and Lenny White on drums. Singer Sandy Hewitt sings on 2 tracks – including the funky "Umma Be Me", which almost feels like an Andy Bey groover from the same time – and the cut "Understanding". Other instrumental tracks include "Some Other Blues", "Derrick's Dance", "Unicorn Lady", and "New Moon". CD
(Part of the Three Blind Mice Supreme Collection!)

Possible matches60
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Oliver NelsonSwiss Suite ... CD
Flying Dutchman/BGP (UK), 1971. New Copy ... $8.99 14.99
A killer set of searing soulful spiritual material from Oliver Nelson – and one of his best albums of the 70s! There's hardly anything "Swiss" in the music – save for the fact that it was recorded at the Montreux Jazz Fest – as the large ensemble recording has Nelson at the helm of a very hip group of musicians – really stretching out into territory that's more Strata East than any of his other work, especially on the title track! In addition to the tenor from Gato Barberi and alto from Eddie Vinson – both featured on the title – the set also features Charles Tolliver and Harry Beckett on trumpets, Bosko Petrovic on vibes, Na Na on barimbau, Bernard Purdie on drums, and Stanley Cowell on piano. Side one features the soaring "Swiss Suite" – an extended number done for the set – and side two has a bit more Nelson touches coming into play with the progressive lineup – on titles that include "Stolen Moments", "Black Brown & Beautiful", and "Blues & The Abstract Truth". CD

Possible matches61
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✨✧ Nostalgia 77 OctetWeapons Of Jazz Destruction ... CD
Tru Thoughts (UK), 2007. Used ... $8.99
One of the hippest jazz groups going – and they're not even on a standard jazz label! Nostalgia 77 Octet is a live combo that spun out of the previous Nostalgia 77 funk efforts for Tru Thoughts – and while the previous outfit worked more in the electronic, assembled style of other TT artists, this group's all-acoustic, with a soaring, spiritual jazz sound all the way through! The group's actually got a 10 piece lineup this time around – trumpet, tenor, trombone, alto, piano, guitar, and percussion – plus some great vocals from Sophie Smith on a few tracks – really fleshing out the sound with wonderfully soulful qualities! The overall feel is just like some lost soul jazz indie album from the 70s – a set that might have been on the Strata East or Black Jazz label – and in a way, Nostalgia 77 Octet are to the UK scene what Build An Ark are to the current American one. Titles include "Chola", "Stars", "The District", "Journey Home", "Medusa", "When Love Is Strange", "One Step Out", "Musical Slit", and "Solstice". CD

Possible matches62
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Hannibal Marvin PetersonChildren Of The Fire ... LP
Sunrise, 1974. New Copy (reissue)... $9.99
One of the most beautiful, most sophisticated, and most fully-realized sessions from trumpeter Hannibal Marvin Peterson – and a record that features some incredible larger backings from David Amram! The set's a haunting suite dedicated to the children of Vietnam – one that starts out in a darkly brooding mode, but which opens up with some extremely redemptive moments as the set moves on – done in a very spiritual approach to soul jazz that's strongly in the Alice Coltrane tradition! Instrumentation includes a small string group, plus added percussion – and musicians on the set include Art Webb on flute, Richard Davis on bass, Billy Hart on drums, Michael Cochran on piano, and Hannibal himself on both trumpet and koto. The lovely Alpha Johnson sings on a few of the album's tracks, and the whole thing is very warm and deep, and has a lot of variance in tempo and mood, with a strong spiritual feel similar to that of some of the more ambitious Strata East recordings from the time! Titles include "Forest Sunrise", "The Bombing", "Prayer", "Aftermath", and "Finale". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches63
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QuasimodeLand Of Freedom (Japanese pressing) ... CD
Geneon (Japan), 2007. Used ... $11.99
An amazing second full length set from Quasimode – easily one of the most soulful combos working in the current club jazz underground! Quasimode cover some of the same territory as their Japanese contemporaries Sleepwalker – an older style of soul jazz – played live, mostly with acoustic instrumentation – in ways the hearken back to the best older work on labels like Impulse, Strata East, and Black Jazz. They've got a great sense of focus and drive – really pushing their tunes with a sense of energy that most regular jazzmen these days can hardly touch – yet also doing so in a way that always swings strongly, with the kind of jazz dance rhythms that first sent international collectors digging for soul jazz sides a few decades back! This time around, they've got some wonderful help from Carmen Lundy on two tracks – bringing in vocals that recall the best work on her own albums from a decade or two ago – and other guests on the album include Mika Arisaka on vocals and Masato Nakamura from Sleepwalker on tenor sax. Titles include "Raw Cotton Field", "Over The Horizon", "Dark Beauty", "Percussion Revolver", "Last Nine Days", "For Self Defense", "Time Is Love", "The Man From Nagpur", and "Object In The Mirror". CD
(Out of print, includes obi.)

Possible matches64
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✨✧ Patrice RushenPrelusion ... LP
Prestige, 1974. New Copy (reissue)... $12.99
A great set from Patrice Rushen – very different than her later R&B work from the 80s! The record's her first, and at the time, Patrice was much more of a jazz artist – working here with a cool west coast set of players (Joe Henderson on tenor, Hadley Caliman on alto and soprano, and Oscar Brashear on trumpet), playing a range of keyboards, from acoustic and electric piano, to ARP, and clavinet. The tracks are long, and have a wonderfully composed soul jazz vibe – feeling a heck of a lot like work on labels like Strata East, deeply dipping into a soulful bag that's solid and real, with no fakery or tricks to make the mood happen. Includes the nice moogy groover "Puttered Bopcorn", plus "Shortie's Portion", "7/73", and "Haw Right Now". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches65
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David SchnitterGoliath ... LP
Muse, 1978. Near Mint- ... $11.99
An overlooked soul jazz treasure from tenorist David Schnitter – recorded with lots of warm tones, and buoyant kind of a Strata East sensibility! Schnitter stretches out in long, well-crafted solos – sounding a bit like Ricky Ford or Clifford Jordan at the time – situated well in a group that includes Hubert Eaves on acoustic and electric keys, Cecil McBee on bass, Eddie Moore on drums, and Claudio Roditi on trumpet on 2 of the album's tracks! There's a really solid vibe to the record – one that makes it one of Schnitter's best as a leader – and titles include "Swing Thing", "Goliath", "Memories Part 2", and "Night & Day". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches66
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Jesse Sharps Quintet/Pan Afrikan Peoples ArkestraSharps & Flats ... CD
Nimbus, 1979/1985. New Copy ... $9.99
Soaring spiritual soul jazz from the LA scene – a CD that features a beautiful performance by the Jesse Sharps Quintet, plus a longer extended track from Horace Tapscott's Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra! We'll be honest in saying that we'd never heard of Sharps before this CD – but he's a heck of a great saxophonist, with a sound that recalls the glory days of the Strata East scene, and the beautiful post-Coltrane Muse sessions by Earl & Carl Grubbs. His group for the session features some excellent work by the great Nate Morgan on piano – driving away in long, rhythmic passages that are very much in the mode of Morgan's own Nimbus recordings – and carried through with an equal amount of soul. Horace Tapscott joins the group on two numbers as well – before stepping over to lead his expanded Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra on the CD's extra cut – a composition by Sharps that's entitled "McKowsky's First Fifth" – played by a great Nimbus-esque group that includes Adele Sebastian on flute, Sabia Mateen on tenor, Billie Harris on soprano, and Horace Tapscott on piano. Other titles on the CD include "The Goat & The Ramjam", "As A Child", "Mike's Tune", "Macrame", and "Carnival" – and the whole set of tracks is easily one of the greatest recordings on the legendary Nimbus label! CD

Possible matches67
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Woody ShawLast Of The Line (Cassandranite/Love Dance) ... CD
Muse/32 Jazz, 1965/1975. Used 2 CDs ... $29.99
2 of Woody Shaw's greatest albums – recorded 10 years apart, and forming a fantastic CD collection! Cassandranite features fantastic early work by Woody Shaw – an album originally recorded in 1965, when Shaw was part of a core soul jazz underground that was slowly forming an answer to the "new thing" movement of the mid 60s. The session was self-produced – and not only features some killer playing by Shaw, but contains a number of other wonderful touches. Larry Young plays piano (not organ) on two tracks; Herbie Hancock is on another 3; George Cables plays electric on the last track, which also includes Harold Vick; Joe Henderson plays tenor throughout; and the great Joe Chambers is on drums. The set is filled with fantastic modal originals, all along the lines of Shaw's "Moontrane" composition – and titles include "Baloo Baloo", "Three Muses", "Tetragon", and "Cassandranite". Love Dance is equally great – spiritual, soulful, and filled with some nice modal grooving! The group's one of the best he ever worked with on Muse – with Billy Harper on tenor, plus Rene McLean, Steve Turre, Joe Bonner, and Cecil McBee – and the approach reminds us of some of the work on Strata East from the same time. The highlight of the record is the cut "Sunbath", which was done in a more famous jazz dance version by singer Joyce Hurley – but Shaw's version has a very similar groove. Harper makes many of the other tracks shine brilliantly, and titles include "Love Dance", "Obsequious", and Harper's own beautiful composition "Soulfully I Love You". CD
(Out of print, includes slipcase.)

Possible matches68
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Sons & Daughters Of LiteLet The Sun Shine In (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Luv N' Haight/P-Vine (Japan), Early 70s. New Copy ... $24.99
Beautiful material from this legendary Bay Area soul jazz combo! The Sons & Daughters of Lite have an incredibly spiritual sound – one that sounds sort of like the best groups on the Strata East label, with touches of Roy Ayers or James Mason-esque soulfulness, but with a little less polish. Many of the cuts have sweet female vocals in the lead – with backing that includes vibe, electric piano, tenor, alto, and percussion by Babatunde. The record's a great one if you dig spiritual jazz funk – along the lines of Gary Bartz, The Pharoahs, or Oneness Of Juju – the sort of spiritual, soulful combo that still really sends us to the heavens! Titles include the classic mellow groover "Let The Sun Shine In", plus "Fly Away", "Operation Feed Yourself", "Darkuman Junktion", and "Ju Ju's Door". CD
(Nice Japanese paper sleeve pressing!)

Possible matches69
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Jimi Tenor & Kabu KabuMystery Of Aether ... CD
Kindred Spirits (Netherlands), 2012. Used ... $6.99
We've always loved the music of Jimi Tenor – but recently, he seems to get better and better with each new record – hitting a spiritual, soulful depth we never would have expected years ago! This album's one of his best efforts ever – and feels more like some lost 70s Euro/African rarity – as you might expect from the compelling cover! All the jazz elements of previous Tenor projects are in place – but there's also more of a pan-global influence going on – especially in the complicated percussion that graces most tracks, and which provides a wonderful counterpart to instrumentation that includes tenor, flutes, and piano from Jimi – plus trumpet from Julla Eskola and Tero Lindberg, trombone from Jay Kortehisto and Heikki Tuhkanen, and guitar from Kalle Kalima. Tracks are long, and have a feel that's somewhere between Strata East and Parisian Afro jazz experiments of the 70s – and titles include "Universal Love", "Afroeuropean", "Eternal Mystery", "Africa Kingdom", "Dance Of The Planets", "Curtain Of Steel", and "Starstuff". CD
(Out of print.)

Possible matches70
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Charles TolliverCompassion (aka New Tolliver) (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1977. New Copy (reissue)... About November 30, 2020
An overlooked gem from trumpeter Charles Tolliver – not as well known as his Strata East sessions with Music Inc, but equally great! The sound here is a bit different than some of Tolliver's other albums of the 70s – as the group features the guitar of Nathan Page in place of the usual piano – working with an incredible rhythm duo of Steve Novosel on bass and Alvin Queen on drums, both players who gel together beautifully here, making the album a rhythmic delight throughout! Page's guitar often has these weird little edgey moments, which seems to bring out the same in Tolliver – adding in a new complexity to his well-known style of far-reaching lines on trumpet. The album's got 4 long tracks, nicely hung together with a sound that's searching, but never too loose to swing – and titles include "Earl's World", "Impact", "Truth", and "Compassion". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches71
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Charles TolliverConnect ... CD
Gearbox (UK), 2020. New Copy ... $13.99 14.99
A stunner of a set from legendary trumpeter Charles Tolliver – and a record that shows that he's lost none of his brilliance since the years of his 70s recordings for the Strata East label! The format here is a bit like those – long tracks by a small group, with an outward appearance of familiarity – but a clearly resonant sense of individuality right from the very first note! All tracks are originals by Charles, and have that soaring quality that's always made him one of the most righteous talents in jazz – working with a group here that features Jesse Davis on alto, Keith Brown on piano, Buster Williams on bass, and Lenny White on drums. The group's also joined by the great Binker Moses on tenor on two tracks – and titles include "Suspicion", "Copasetic", "Emperor March", and "Blue Soul". CD
Also available Connect ... LP 24.99

Possible matches72
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Charles TolliverConnect ... LP
Gearbox (UK), 2020. New Copy ... $24.99 28.99
A stunner of a set from legendary trumpeter Charles Tolliver – and a record that shows that he's lost none of his brilliance since the years of his 70s recordings for the Strata East label! The format here is a bit like those – long tracks by a small group, with an outward appearance of familiarity – but a clearly resonant sense of individuality right from the very first note! All tracks are originals by Charles, and have that soaring quality that's always made him one of the most righteous talents in jazz – working with a group here that features Jesse Davis on alto, Keith Brown on piano, Buster Williams on bass, and Lenny White on drums. The group's also joined by the great Binker Moses on tenor on two tracks – and titles include "Suspicion", "Copasetic", "Emperor March", and "Blue Soul". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Connect ... CD 13.99

Possible matches73
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✨✧ McCoy TynerTender Moments (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Blue Note, 1967. New Copy (reissue)... On November 20, 2020
An incredibly strong set by McCoy Tyner – one of his best late 60s sides for Blue Note! The album features McCoy working with a larger group that includes Lee Morgan, Julian Priester, James Spaulding, and Bennie Maupin – using the spiritual ensemble mode that would become his greatest contribution to jazz in the immediate post-Coltrane years. Tyner's writing is out front here, and he's laid out some great charts for the group to groove upon – hitting a spiritual vibe that's very much in the mode of music to come on labels like Strata East or Black Jazz in the 70s! The set includes Tyner's classic "Man From Tanganyika", plus "Mode To John" and "The High Priest". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches74
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Prince Billy Mahdi WrightYou Got Dat Wright (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Raenii/P-Vine (Japan), 1982. New Copy ... $24.99
A wonderful bit of lost spiritual soul jazz from Chicago – recorded in the early 80s, but with a progressive and righteous feel that's very much in the 70s Strata East vein! The group's led by Billy Mahdi on tenor, soprano, and flute – and features Corky McClerkin on piano, Eldee Young on bass, and Dave Baldwin on sax. But the real treat on the set is a trio of female singers that augment some of the best tracks – singing in a slightly off-beat style that is somewhere between Oneness Of Juju and Ramp. And in fact, Oneness of Juju are a good comparison here – as the album's got a lot of tracks that are kind of like that group's tighter jazz dance, less Afro-inspired numbers. Includes the spiritual classics "Tune Weaver" and "Summer Love" – plus "Love Dream", "79th Street Blues", and "Excuse Me". CD
(Prat of the excellent Groove Diggers series!)

Possible matches75
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VariousKev Beadle Presents Private Collection 3 – More Independent Jazz Sounds From The 70s & 80s ... CD
BBE (UK), 1970s/Early 80s. New Copy ... $8.99 19.98
The title says "jazz", but there's a lot more going on here – a range of groundbreaking sounds and styles from the 70s, with some sweet electric modes, occasional Latin rhythms, currents of soul, and even a bit of Brazilian too! The package really takes us back to the kind of rare tracks we first started digging decades ago – when collectors from London and Tokyo were really helping us appreciate the kinds of records we might have passed by in the racks – the lesser names, the smaller labels, and even the more globally expansive range of releases that could sometimes be missed if you were only digging for American jazz! That range of music is really represented here in a great way – with tunes that soar strongly and bristle with energy throughout – sometimes in modes that might echo a label like MPS or Strata East, but often in very unique styles of their own. Titles include "Maryke" by John Thomas & Lifeforce, "La Em Guayaquil" by Banda Metalurgia, "Samba For A Cold Warrior" by Belair, "Samba De Amor" by Francisco Mora Catlett, "Little Sunflower" by Louis Hayes with Leon Thomas, "The World Is A Ghetto" by Lee Willhite, "No Other Love But You" by Clarice Labbe & Charlie Hampton, "Misturada" by Finn Savery Trio, "Kingdom Within You" by Ira Sullivan, and "Latinetta" by Ronald Snijders. CD

Possible matches76
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✨✧ Kenny BarronInnocence ... LP
Wolf, 1978. Near Mint- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Sweet electric keys from Kenny Barron – one of those few excellent 70s albums that have the pianist hitting some Fender Rhodes! The record has Kenny playing electric on most of the set – in a mode that's as open, and spiritual as his best work for the Muse label – maybe even better, as the tracks have a freer style, and really open up with a beautiful sense of energy! The other players here really make the record special, too – and include Sonny Fortune on alto sax, Jimmy Owens on trumpet, Buster Williams on bass, Ben Riley on drums, and Billy Hart on percussion – a lineup that really gives the whole thing a level that's right up there with classics on the Black Jazz or Strata East label. As always with the electric piano, Kenny hits some wonderful notes, colors, and tones that make us wish he used the instrument all the time – on titles that include "Sunshower", "Innocence", "Bacchanal", and "Nothing To Fear". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches77
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✨✧ Roy BrooksFree Slave ... LP
Muse, 1970. New Copy (reissue)... Temporarily Out Of Stock
An amazing album – and one of the underground soul jazz classics of the 70s! The album's also one of the few ever cut as a leader by drummer Roy Brooks – one of the hippest players on the Detroit scene back in the day, working here with a great lineup that includes Woody Shaw, George Coleman, and Cecil McBee. The album has a very different feel than most other work on Muse at the time – much more like an album on Strata East – majestically spiraling out with a spiritual soul jazz groove, on four extended tracks that include "The Free Slave", "Understanding", and "Will Pan's Walk". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches78
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✨✧ Michael CarvinCamel ... CD
Steeplechase (Netherlands), 1975. Used ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A real gem of an album – the kind of spiritual 70s soul jazzer that we never tire of putting on the turntable! Drummer Michael Carvin heads a great group that features Cecil Bridgewater on trumpet, Sonny Fortune on alto and soprano, and Ron Burton on piano – and the ensemble grooves in a way that reminds us a lot more of recordings on Strata East from the time, than some of the snoozier sides on Steeplechase. The record fits nicely in with some of the few recordings of this nature on the label – work by Billy Gault and Rene McLean – and the album's worth it alone for Fortune's incredible post-Coltrane solos. Tracks include "The Camel", "MC Blues", "Kwebena's Blues", and "Osun". CD features a few bonus alternate takes, too. CD

Possible matches79
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✨✧ Richie Cole & Eric KlossBattle Of The Saxes Vol 1 ... LP
Muse, 1976. Very Good ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Way more than just a traditional "battle of the saxes" sort of set – hardly the bop frenzy you might expect, and instead a great little record that's right up there with the hippest 70s work of Eric Kloss! Both Cole and Kloss dominate the record – one in the right channel, one in the left – supported by some really great rhythm from Mickey Tucker on electric piano, Rick Laird on bass, and Eddie Gladden on drums – a cool combo who play with an open, spiritual sort of groove on most numbers. The tracks are quite long, and filled with feeling – an almost Strata East-like energy at times, with key evidence of Tucker's force in the record. Titles include "Harold's House Of Jazz", "Ebony Godfather", "Robin", and "DC Farewell". LP, Vinyl record album
(Cover has a strip of tape on the spine, and some light wear.)

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✨✧ Detroit Jazz Composers LtdHastings St. Jazz Experience ... LP
Midnite, 1976. New Copy (reissue)... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Sublime spiritual jazz from the 70s scene in Detroit – and a record that really represents an evolution of the previous sounds that you might have heard on the Motorcity's Tribe Records! The sound here is straightforward and soulful – a bit of electricity at the bottom and some fluidly gliding horn work on the top – plus some key vocals from a group that includes Kim Weston in the lead, supported by other female singers – in a righteous mode that really makes the best tunes sparkle! Other players include Phil Ranelin on trombone, Nasi Hafiz on vibes, Miller Brisker on tenor and piano, and Sylvia Truner on harp – all working together in a largeish group with the best spiritual energy of groups on Strata East! The whole thing's great – a beautiful lost treasure, and the kind of record that's rarely carried off so perfectly – and titles include "Song For M", "A Little Love For You", "Mark I", "Ja-Mil", "Nobody Had To Tell Me", "Arjuna", and "Now You're Gone". LP, Vinyl record album

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✨✧ Matthew HalsallSending My Love (with bonus track) ... LP
Gondwana (UK), 2008. New Copy 2LP ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A really incredible album – a set that's filled with far more soul and feeling than you might guess from the youthful image on the cover! Matthew Halsall's a pretty young player, but his sound here is really amazing – not just on his own trumpet solos, but on the overall feel of the album – which is beautifully composed, and put together with a sense of spirit that takes us back to Strata East at its most sophisticated in the 70s! There's a really beautiful balance here – ambition in the writing that recalls other UK efforts from The Heritage Orchestra or Nostalgia 77 Octet – but an execution that's much leaner overall, deeply personal lines played by a relatively small combo – quintet formation on all numbers, featuring Halsall's trumpet alongside great reedwork on soprano sax, flute, alto, and tenor – supported by soaring rhythms on piano, bass, and drums – all handled with the majesty of an early 70s McCoy Tyner album, or some of the other great modally-inspired work of the American post-Coltrane generation. Tremendous stuff throughout – a record that held us rapt from start to finish – with 5 original compositions that include "On The Other Side Of The World", "Reflections", "Freedom Song", "Sending My Love", and "Sachi". LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Sending My Love (with bonus track) ... CD 16.99

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✨✧ Kuumba-Toudie HeathKawaida ... LP
Obe, 1969. New Copy (reissue)... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A super-hip batch of soul jazz tracks by Albert Toodie Heath of the Heath Brothers – working here on a rare session as a leader, with a sound that's right up there with the Heath Brothers' early work for Strata East!! The lineup is incredible – as Heath is joined by players that include Don Cherry, Buster Williams, Mtume, Herbie Hancock, Jimmy Heath, and Ed Blackwell – all coming together for a session that's nearly lost to the history books, but which is one of the strongest spiritual jazz sessions of the late 60s! Herbie plays all acoustic piano throughout, and the tracks are long, leaping, and loping – with stretched-out spiritual solos from Jimmy Heath and Don Cherry – and a proud and righteous sound that's extremely free-spirited without going too far out! Titles include "Baraka", "Maulana", "Dunia", and "Kamili". LP, Vinyl record album

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✨✧ Dawan Muhammad & Billy HigginsSmoke Signal ... CD
Life Force Jazz, 1993. Used ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A great little set that follows wonderfully in the soulful spirit of Billy Higgins indie soul jazz work of the 80s – and a set that's made all that much better by the presence of reedman Dawan Muhammad! The record's got a really fluid feel that's in keeping with Higgins' masterful approach to the drums – and his later style of playing, which always opens tunes up with a sense of soul and sweetness that's simply incredible – that soaring brilliance which takes energy from the Strata East scene, and brings it into sharper focus in the next decade. Muhammad's playing a variety of saxes and flute on the set – and the rest of the group is pretty darn great, too, with James Smitty Smith on trumpet, Phil Ranelin on trombone, and Greg Kirstin on piano. Tracks are all long, and beautifully arranged by Ranelin and Muhammad – and titles include "Life Force", "Yesterdays", "In The Hood", "Straight From The Heart", and "Smoke Signal". CD
(Out of print.)

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✨✧ Benny BaileySerenade To A Planet ... LP
Ego (Germany), 1976. Near Mint- ... Out Of Stock
One of the greatest jazz records ever! By the time of this 1976 release, trumpeter Benny Bailey had already had quite a history – working with Quincy Jones in his early years, and recording for MPS with the likes of Nathan Davis and the Clark Boland Big Band, as well as some of the best other players in Europe. This set's Benny's masterpiece – a soulful batch of tunes that feels like it was lifted from the catalog of Strata East, but which is played by a quintet that features Europeans Ferdinand Povel on tenor, Joe Haider on piano, and Isla Eckinger on bass – as well as American Kenny Clarke on drums. The vibe is perfect – and the group's harmoniously searching with a strong modal groove on nearly every track. Titles include "Aquarian Moods", "Neptunis", "Little B", and "The Kicker". LP, Vinyl record album

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✨✧ Gary BartzLibra/Another Earth ... CD
Milestone, 1967/1968. Used ... Out Of Stock
Early soul jazz brilliance from a young Gary Bartz – music that pre-dates his Ntu Troup, and his work with Larry Mizell! Libra is fantastic early work from Gary – and probably his rarest record ever! The album was cut at a time when the young Bartz was first coming to prominence in the hip late 60s soul jazz group of Max Roach – and Bartz's playing at the time is a perfect model of mid-Coltrane searching with some of the tighter sides of soul jazz that were being forged at labels like Blue Note by players like Hank Mobley or Lee Morgan. The record's a masterpiece of youthful soulful energy – and the group includes Jimmy Owens on trumpet, Richard Davis on bass, Albert Dailey on piano, and Billy Higgins on drums, all players who are perfectly matched to fit Bartz's stridently creative vision. His solos on alto are impeccable – some of the most meaningful we've ever heard on the instrument from the time – and the album's a great one all the way through! Titles include "Air & Fire", "Eastern Blues", "Libra", "Freedom Of The Day", and "Cabin In The Sky". Another Earth is amazing too – one of the first that Gary Bartz ever cut – done during a time when he'd been working with Max Roach and a super-hip group of younger soul jazz players who would go onto shape the sound of the 70s. Bartz leads a group that includes Stanley Cowell, Freddy Waits, Charles Tolliver, Pharoah Sanders, and Reggie Workman – and the music sounds like it was lifted from one of the best albums on Strata East from the 70s. There's no funk, no vocals, no weird rhythms – just pure spiritual jazz, played to perfection, and filled with a creative vitality that most of the players had lost a few years later. Tracks include the album-side "Another Earth", plus "Dark Nebula", "UFO", and "Perihelion & Aphelion". Note: CD omits the track "Disjunction" from Libra – due to space restrictions. CD
(On demand CDr pressing, artwork has some substantial wear & is priced accordingly.)

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✨✧ Jaki ByardJaki Byard With Strings ... LP
Prestige, 1968. Near Mint- ... Out Of Stock
A totally excellent album by Jaki Byard – and nothing like any other "with strings" album you've ever heard! Sure, the set does have some stringed instruments in the group – but it's a small combo session with bass, violin, guitar, and cello, not a large overly-orchestral affair. Byard's mad vision uses these strings wonderfully to carve out some oddly arranged tunes that mix together soul jazz grooving and a haunting spiritual approach to jazz that points at later work on labels like Strata East. Includes a sublime remake of "Music To Watch Girls By", "Falling Rains Of Life", "Cat's Cradle Conference Rag", and a long version of "How High The Moon". LP, Vinyl record album

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✨✧ Stanley CowellBlues For The Viet Cong ... CD
Freedom/Muzak (Japan), 1969. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
Incredible work from the young Stanley Cowell – one of his first albums ever, but already a step ahead of most of his contemporaries! The set's a trio date, unlike some of Cowell's later albums for Strata East – and it's got a wonderful blend of soaring piano lines and more complicated rhythms – already showing some of the spiritual elements that Cowell would later craft into longer lines with Charles Tolliver – but possibly even more striking here in the looser space of a trio! Rhythms are sometimes quite fluid and free – almost in the vein of some of Steve Kuhn's most inventive late 60s work – but sometimes things echo previous generations as well, almost with a Jaki Byard vibe. In addition to Cowell's great work on acoustic and electric piano, the trio features wonderful drums from Jimmy Hopps and bass from Steve Novosel – both players who are at the top of their game here, and really help set fire to Cowell's music. Titles include an early take on "Travelin Man" – quite different from the later version on Strata East, but equally wonderful – plus "Blues For The Viet Cong", "Wedding March", "Photon In A Paper World", "Departure", "Sweet Song", and "The Shuttle". CD

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✨✧ Frank FosterLoud Minority ... CD
Mainstream/Ultra Vybe (Japan), 1972. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
One of the most amazing albums ever from Frank Foster – a totally righteous set that's light years ahead of his earlier work with the Basie Band! The format here is right up there with the best on Strata East at the time – a large-group session that's filled with some of the hippest players of the early 70s – all coming together with a joyous, spiritual sense of power! Foster's in the lead on tenor and soprano sax, but other players include Cecil Bridgewater and Hannibal Marvin Peterson on trumpets, Harold Mabern on keyboards, Elvin Jones on drums, Dick Griffin on trombone, Stanley Clarke on bass, Airto on percussion, and even Dee Dee Bridgewater on vocals! Tracks are all quite long and flowing – spiritual expressions of jazz that rival the greatness of anything recorded for Impulse – and titles include "The Loud Minority", "Requiem For Dusty", "JP's Thing", and "EW – Beautiful People". CD
(Part of the Mainstream Records Master Collection!)

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✨✧ Jimmy HeathLove & Understanding ... LP
Muse, 1973. Very Good+ ... Out Of Stock
An overlooked session from Jimmy Heath – and a perfect illustration of his mighty powers in the 70s! At some level, the record's an extension of the hip soul jazz Jimmy was cutting back in the 60s – particularly on his later work as a sideman for bigger players – but at another level, the album's also got echoes of the rising Strata East generation, including sounds explored by Jimmy with the larger Heath Brothers group! Players here are all totally hip – and include Stanley Cowell on electric piano, Curtis Fuller on trombone, Bob Cranshaw on electric bass, and Billy Higgins on drums – the last of whom gives the record a really fluid sense of rhythm. Bernard Fennell plays a bit of cello on the date, bringing in some moodier tones – and Jimmy himself is on tenor, soprano, and flute – on titles that include "Smiling Billy", "Far Away Lands", "Hands Up Feet Down", "One For Juan", and "Gemini". LP, Vinyl record album

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✨✧ Weldon IrvineLiberated Brother (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Nodlew/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1972. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
Landmark early work from the legendary Weldon Irvine – recorded way back when he was first coming to fame with Nina Simone, but done as an obscure indie effort for his tiny Nodlew label! The set's a wicked batch of keyboard-heavy funk – at a level that's similar to some of the best titles on Black Jazz or Strata East at the time, but also filled with an even richer array of colors and musical ideas. Weldon's work on electric piano is worth the price of admission alone – often spare, spacious, and perfectly placed – especially on the funky classics "Homey", "Mr Clean", and "Sister Sanctified" – a tune later cut by Stanley Turrentine, but heard here in Weldon's original version! Other cuts include "Gloria", "Juggah Buggah", "Blues Wel-Don", and "Liberated Brother". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)

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✨✧ Dadisi KomolafeHassan's Walk (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Nimbus/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1983. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
A soul jazz treasure from the LA scene of the early 80s – a fantastic record that we'd rank with the best Strata East sides of the time! The group's led by alto saxophonist Dadisi Komolafe, and features vibes by Ricky Kelly, piano by Eric Tillman, bass by Roberto Miranda, and drums by Sunship Theus – all working together in a style that's infused with soulful, post-Coltrane exploratory energy, never going too far outside, and always staying true to the rhythmic pulse at its core. Kelly's vibes are really great – sparkling underneath solos by Komolafe that remind us a lot of Gary Bartz's earliest work – and titles include "Calvary", "Speak No Evil", and "Hassan's Walk". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition!)
Also available Hassan's Walk ... CD 9.99

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✨✧ Teruo NakamuraUnicorn (Japanese paper sleeve edition) ... CD
Three Blind Mice/Think (Japan), 1973. Used ... Out Of Stock
A landmark album from the Japanese fusion scene of the 70s – a killer set of tracks recorded by bassist Teruo Nakamura, with help from a host of American soul jazz luminaries! The album's easily one of Nakamura's most sought-after sets – and for good reason too, as the cuts are long and jamming, but also have a soulful component too – a bit of the post-Coltrane spiritualism of some of Gary Bartz's early albums, and some of the open-ended styles you might hear on a label like Strata East! Nakamura's a bassist from the Japanese scene – but the record was cut in New York with a great lineup of American heavyweights – including Hubert Eaves and George Cables on keyboards, Charles Sullivan on trumpet, and Steve Grossman on tenor – plus Alphonse Mouzon and Lenny White on drums. Singer Sandy Hewitt sings on 2 tracks – including the funky "Umma Be Me", which almost feels like an Andy Bey groover from the same time – and the cut "Understanding". Other instrumental tracks include "Some Other Blues", "Derrick's Dance", "Unicorn Lady", and "New Moon". CD
(Out of print blu-spec CD pressing – with obi!)

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✨✧ Hannibal Marvin PetersonChildren Of The Fire ... CD
Sunrise/Universal Sound (UK), 1974. Used ... Out Of Stock
One of the most beautiful, most sophisticated, and most fully-realized sessions from trumpeter Hannibal Marvin Peterson – and a record that features some incredible larger backings from David Amram! The set's a haunting suite dedicated to the children of Vietnam – one that starts out in a darkly brooding mode, but which opens up with some extremely redemptive moments as the set moves on – done in a very spiritual approach to soul jazz that's strongly in the Alice Coltrane tradition! Instrumentation includes a small string group, plus added percussion – and musicians on the set include Art Webb on flute, Richard Davis on bass, Billy Hart on drums, Michael Cochran on piano, and Hannibal himself on both trumpet and koto. The lovely Alpha Johnson sings on a few of the album's tracks, and the whole thing is very warm and deep, and has a lot of variance in tempo and mood, with a strong spiritual feel similar to that of some of the more ambitious Strata East recordings from the time! Titles include "Forest Sunrise", "The Bombing", "Prayer", "Aftermath", and "Finale". CD
(Out of print.)
Also available Children Of The Fire ... LP 9.99

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✨✧ Horace Tapscott & The Pan Afrikan Peoples ArkestraCall ... CD
Nimbus, 1978. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
Large-group genius from the legendary Horace Tapscott – one of the few recordings of his groundbreaking Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra! The music here is totally righteous right from the start – even more searching and soaring than Tapscott's trio or solo work – thanks to help from some of the hippest, most spiritual players on the LA scene of the late 70s – a lineup you'll recognize from other Nimbus Records sessions, all working together beautifully to realize the unique vision of Horace! Tracks are long, and feature Tapscott on piano, Jesse Sharps on saxes, Adele Sebastian on flute and vocals, Herbert Callies on alto, James Andrews on tenor, Lester Robertson on trombone, Kafi Larry Roberts on soprano, and Linda Hill on additional piano – all working together perfectly as a unified ensemble. There's a strong Strata East vibe to the whole record – and titles include "The Call", "Nakatini Suite", "Quagmire Manor At Five AM", and "Peyote Song III". CD

Possible matches95
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✨✧ VariousSpiritual Jazz Vol 10 – Modal, Esoteric, & Deep Jazz From Prestige Records ... CD
Jazzman (UK), Late 50s/Early 60s. New Copy ... Out Of Stock
A really loving look at a sometimes-forgotten side of the Prestige Records label – a company that's famous for giving the world plenty of hardbop and soul jazz in the 50s and 60s, but which also helped lay the groundwork for American spiritual jazz to come! Long before Impulse, Strata East, MPS, and other labels were working with the music – and even long before Coltrane first started to soar into the cosmos – Prestige was letting its musicians really experiment with unusual rhythms, extended solos, and even some non-Western instrumentation – which resulted in a set of records that were years ahead of their time, and which still sound pretty darn mindblowing all these many years later! The package is a long-overdue entry in this hip series from Jazzman Records, and will also have you looking at your collection of older jazz in a completely new way – thanks to tracks that include "Summertime" by Ahmed Abul-Malik, "Love Theme From Spartacus" by Yusef Lateef, "Dorian" by Roy Haynes, "Rip A Dip" by The Latin Jazz Quintet, "Warm Canto" by Mal Waldron, "Organ Rounds" by Moondog, "Death & Taxes" by Walt Dickerson, "Song Of Delilah" by Ahmed Abul-Malik, and "Modette" by Roy Haynes – plus 70s tracks "I've Known Rivers" by Gary Bartz Ntu Troop and "Peace" by Idris Muhammad. CD

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✨✧ VariousYou Need This – An Introduction To Black Saint & Soul Note Records 1975 to 1985 (3LP set) ... LP
Black Saint/BBE (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy 3LP Gatefold ... Out Of Stock
A tremendous look at one of the coolest jazz labels of all time – and one that has an especially strong focus on the more spiritual side of its music! The paired Black Saint and Soul Note labels came along from the Italian scene right at a time when so many other American companies were shutting their doors – former spiritual jazz powerhouses like Strata East, Impulse, and Black Jazz were moving beyond the music, or disappearing entirely – which made the role of Black Saint/Soul Note such a crucial one! The company came into the game at a time of boundless creativity in American jazz – and really captured a post-Coltrane generation that was brimming over with fire and new ideas, but just needed a place to find expression – which it did at the label, who recorded dozens of albums in the space of less than a decade, nearly all of which have gone onto become classics over the years. And while there's a side of the label that's much more free jazz and avant garde, the cuts here reflect a Black Saint/Soul Note that's just slightly inside – tunes that are still freewheeling, but also have a rhythmic core – and the kinds of open, soaring solos that were first inspired in the 60s generation of Coltrane and Shepp. The choice of cuts is great – similar to the others in the If Music series – and titles include "Mr Seven" by M'Booom, "Joycie Girl" by Don Pullen with Sam Rivers, "Il Giro Del Giorno In 80 Mondi" by Enrico Rava, "Oasis" by Hamiet Bluiett, "Confessin" by John Stubblefield, "Joobubie" by George Adams & Dannie Richmond, "Verde Que Eu Te Quero Ver" by Rava String Band, "Down Home In New York" by Archie Shepp, "BK" by Air, and "The Nagual Julian" by Billy Bang Sextet. LP, Vinyl record album

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✨✧ Brother AhhDivine Music (Sea/Meditation/Searching) (5LP set) ... LP
Manufactured, 1978/1981/1985. New Copy 5LP ... Out Of Stock
Three never-issued albums from Brother Ah – the enigmatic musician who may be known best for his work with Sun Ra, and his rare album on Strata East! Both of those moments date from earlier years, though – and past that time, Brother Ah was still working strongly on some amazing musical ideas of his own – work that includes the three albums presented in this package, which together really mark a shift for both Ah and some of his spiritual jazz contemporaries as the 70s moved on! The set begins with the beautiful set The Sea – recorded in 1978, with a long-flowing sound that's quite hypnotic, and very much in the spiritual territory of post-Coltrane material – including work by Trane's wife Alice. Brother Ah plays flute, in these fantastic lines that spin out slowly and echo strongly – amidst a mix of percussion, violin, mbira, bass, and drums – often used in ways that build beautifully, and which provide a great introduction to both the sung and spoken passages – presented by Abena Walker, Jeanean Gibbs, and Nataska Hassan Youssef. Titles include "Nuba", "Far Away", "The Village Drum", "Visoins", and "Africa We Are Your Children". Meditation is from a few years later, and has a different makeup – a sound that's much more spare overall, and which just features Brother Ah on flute, zither, and "nature sounds" – with help from Cleo Jomo Faulks on mbira and gong! The tunes have an earthier feel than you might guess from the album's title – still somewhat meditative, but also more open to the vibes of nature than the space of the studio – with moments that feel more more like the organic sounds of the young Moondog, or maybe some of Alice Coltrane's more home-made moments. Titles include "Stillness", "Spirit World", "Close Your Eyes & See", and "Song Of The Unseen". Last up is Searching – a record from 1985 that maybe moves the spiritual agenda from the political to the personal – that shift towards more interior solutions that some musicians took in the 80s, especially as funding for some kinds of spiritual jazz albums fell by the wayside, and some artists had to adapt to the new age underground. Yet although that shift might be in place here, Brother Ah is still as righteous as ever – just equipped with a slightly different voice – as he works alongside some electronics and percussion from Richard Ashman, and blows trumpet and a variety of flutes, while also handling percussion and harmonica in very spacious ways. The record is more about extended sound textures than individual instrumentation – and titles include "I Am", "Going Within", "Inner Voice", and "Know Thyself". First time release for all three records – presented in a really great package! LP, Vinyl record album
Also available Divine Music (Sea/Meditation/Searching) (3CD set) ... CD 25.99

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✨✧ Sun RaSleeping Beauty ... LP
Saturn/Art Yard (Germany), 1979. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
One of the most soulful Sun Ra albums ever – very much on the Lanquidity tip, and done with a great mix of electric and acoustic instrumentation! The vibe here is really mellow, spiritual, and warm – and the album actually feels a lot more like a session recorded for the Strata East label than it does for Saturn! Keyboards pervade the session – electric piano and organ drifting around in moody, laidback lines – augmented by occasional vibes, bits of guitar, and some wonderfully well-blown sax solo work by Marshall Allen and John Gilmore! The title track "Sleeping Beauty" runs for all of side two of the album – and it's an amazing little number that mixes instrumental passages with some great mellow Roy Ayers-styled vocals. "Door Of The Cosmos" is a bit of a groover, and even gets a bit funky at times – and the album also features the laidback spacey number "Springtime Again". LP, Vinyl record album

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✨✧ Roy HaynesSenyah ... LP
Mainstream, 1972. Near Mint- Gatefold ... Out Of Stock
A real standout in the career of drummer Roy Haynes – and a sweet set of spiritual jazz from the 70s, unlike most other albums that Haynes ever cut! The lineup here is totally great – with George Adams on tenor, Marvin Peterson on trumpet, and Roland Prince on guitar – and the set has a slightly electric groove that blends beautifully with the soaring acoustic solo work by the main players – in a style that's strongly reminiscent of the best work on Strata East, Black Jazz, or Muse at the time! This album's definitely one of the few times that Mainstream really got things "right" in the studio – and Haynes is superb at the helm of the group, making things come off with a great sense of exploratory creativity! Tracks are long – and titles include "Full Moon", "Senyah", "Brujeira Con Salsa", and "Little Titan". LP, Vinyl record album

Possible matches100
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✨✧ Azar LawrenceBridge Into The New Age (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Prestige, 1974. New Copy (reissue)... Out Of Stock
A wicked set from reedman Azar Lawrence – one of the few albums issued under his own name, and a great example of the waves he was making on the 70s west coast scene! There's a depth here that goes beyond most of the other Fantasy Records sessions of the time – a sound that would be right at home on Strata East, or in some of the more righteous Cobblestone sessions – no surprise, given that the ensemble here is filled with key spiritual jazz players, including Woody Shaw on trumpet, Hadley Caliman on flute, Joe Bonner on piano, Billy Hart on drums, Mtume on congas, and even Jean Carn on a bit of guest vocals! Most tracks are longish, and a perfect setting for Azar's exploratory reed work on soprano sax and tenor – and titles include "Warriors Of Peace", "Forces Of Nature", and "The Beautiful & Omnipresent Love". LP, Vinyl record album
 
 
 



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