One more for the jazz bohemians: Ornette! (1961)

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Track Selection: “Totem & Taboo” >> Artists Don Cherry (cor) Ornette Coleman (as) Scott LaFaro (b) Ed Blackwell (d)  recorded January 31, 1961, NYC Music Recorded one month after the genre-defining Free Jazz: A Collective Improvisation in 1961, the composition titles … Continue reading

Horace Silver/Blakey/Sabu “Spotlight on drums” – a LINO – Lexington in Name Only

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The Curious Case of the Lexington That Wasn’t. The labels say 767 Lexington Ave on both sides, no “Inc” and no “R”, the cover address says Lexington and has no print on the spine. The vinyl is double deep groove, has the ear, and handwritten RVG … Continue reading

Miles Davis “Cookin’ ” (1956)

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Track Selection: “My Funny Valentine” Artists Miles Davis (tp) John Coltrane (ts) Red Garland (p) Paul Chambers (b) Philly Joe Jones (d) Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, NJ, October 26, 1956 Music I had been Workin’, Diggin’, and Relaxin’ with Miles … Continue reading

Bill Evans “Interplay” (1962)

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Track Selection: “Interplay” Artists Freddie Hubbard (tp) Bill Evans (p) Jim Hall (g) Percy Heath (b) Philly Joe Jones (d)NYC, July 16, 1962 Music If unconfined simultaneous group improvisation – Free Jazz – marks one end of the jazz spectrum, then … Continue reading

Miles Davis “Birth of Cool” a little hotter than expected

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  Having been introduced to the iconic “Ascenseur pour l’échafaud” I finally “got” Miles Davis and the significance of “Cool”. A historically important departure from swing-derived rythmically-driven Bop, to a very different place and temperature. ( Remember, I am still new to … Continue reading

Andrew Hill “Black Fire” (1963)

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Track Selection: “Black Fire” > Artists Joe Henderson (ts) Andrew Hill (p) Richard Davis (b) Roy Haynes (d ) Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, November 9, 1963 Music Andrew Hill could be described as “Cecil Taylor Lite”, probably doing … Continue reading

Cecil Taylor: Danger Ahead!

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Taylor’s 1958 “Looking Ahead!” album gave us a taste of what was to come: a pianist who was rapidly leaving behind familiar jazz tonality, ryhthm and structure. Somewhere between his early beginning in the mid-Fifties and the complex angular compositions of his later Blue Note … Continue reading

Mingus Live in Europe Vol.1 (1964) Enja

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 Track Selection Mingus in Europe soundclip on  YouTube Artists Charles Mingus Quintet, with Eric Dolphy (f,bc), Clifford Jordan (ts), Jaki Byard (p) and Dannie Richmond (d)  live at Wuppertal Townhall, Wuppertal, West Germany, 26th April 1964 Music Recorded towards the end … Continue reading

Freddie Redd: Flying Economy Class? Upgrade to “Blue Note Class”

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Collectors Corner You probably have a list of records which you would most dearly like to own an original of, the best possible copy. Mine is a half dozen titles long, and whenever I see one come up on eBay, it … Continue reading

Hampton Hawes “For Real” (1958)

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Track Selection YouTube Artists Harold Land (ts) Hampton Hawes (p) Scott LaFaro (b) Frank Butler (d) recorded Los Angeles, CA, March 17, 1958 Music After weeks of New York heroin-fuelled expressionist angst, time for a break, and go West, to … Continue reading

Barney Wilen “Wild Dogs of the Ruwenzori” (1988)

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Track Selection: Barney Wilen “Port of Spain Shuffle” (Trad arr. B.Wilen) from “Wild Dogs of the Ruwenzori” (1988) Tenor and soprano saxophonist born in Nice, France in 1937, Wilen first came to prominence at the age of only twenty,  when  chosen by Miles … Continue reading

Jimmy Smith: A Date with Jimmy Smith Vol.1 (1957) Blue Note

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Track Selection:  “Falling in Love with Love” Byrd/Blakey/ Donaldson/Mobley/ McFadden… and Smith (excerpt) Artists Donald Byrd (tp) Lou Donaldson (as) Hank Mobley (ts) Jimmy Smith (org) Eddie McFadden (g) Art Blakey (d) recorded Manhattan Towers, NYC, February 11, 1957 Music … Continue reading

Crime Watch, Vinyl Edition

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 The Record Detectives, Crime Scene Investigation, “We have victim of  assault with a felt-tipped weapon. Blue Note, New Yorker I would guess, around fifty years old, weight about 180 grams,  a nasty case of “Writing On Label” (WOL). Never stood a … Continue reading

Ornette Coleman “On Tenor” (1962)

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Track Selection: “Eos”: Artists Don Cherry (pocket tp) Ornette Coleman (ts) Jimmy Garrison (b) Ed Blackwell (d) recorded NYC, March 22, 1961 Music More structured dissonace from Ornette, this time from 1962’s “On Tenor”, with regular Don Cherry on pocket trumpet, … Continue reading

Ornette Coleman “Shape of Jazz to Come” (1959)

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Track Selection: “Lonely Woman” > Artists Don Cherry (cor) Ornette Coleman (as) Charlie Haden (b) Billy Higgins (d) recorded Los Angeles, CA, May 22, 1959 Music Lonley Woman is possibly one of  Ornette’s most iconic and musically accessible pieces, and … Continue reading

Art Blakey “Buhaina’s Delight” (1961) – updated

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Updated November 2015, new photos, new text, this was first written and photographed four years ago. An update long overdue: Track Selection: YouTube Artists Freddie Hubbard (tp) Curtis Fuller (tb) Wayne Shorter (ts) Cedar Walton (p) Jymie Merritt (b) Art … Continue reading

Archie Shepp “Live in San Francisco”(1966)

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Track Selection: You Tube Music “Live in San Francisco”, 1966, finds Archie Shepp in performance in the capital of “fruits, nuts and flakes”, on an original press for its UK release, on HMV. Reissued many times , I had a 180gm “audiophile” pressing before I … Continue reading

BN1567 Curtis Fuller “The Opener” (1957)

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Curtis Fuller “Oscalypso” One catalogue number below the Blue Note “Holy Grail” 1568 Hank Mobley sits this first record by a twenty three year old almost unknown trombone player from Detroit, Curtis Fuller, 1567 “The Opener”. Blue Note proprietor Alfred Lion was sufficiently impressed … Continue reading

Mingus Five (1963)

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  Track Selection:  “Theme for Lester Young” (Goodbye Pork Pie Hat) tenor solo: Booker Ervin – Artists Eddie Preston, Richard Williams (tp) Britt Woodman (tb) Don Butterfield (tu) Dick Hafer (fl, cl, ts) Jerome Richardson (fl, ss, bars) Eric Dolphy (as, … Continue reading

Sonny, tribute to Bird (UK Esquire,1956)

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Sonny Rollins “I’ve grown accustomed to your face“: Heading up town in search of Cecil Taylor recommendations, a call at a favourite small record store in Central London turned up an unexpected find. Their business is built on Japanese, American and European tourists enquiring after the usual … Continue reading