Yusef Lateef Eastern Sounds (1961) Moodsville

Track 1: SNAFU (original Moodsville)

Track 1 reprise: SNAFU ( UK release Transatlantic 1967)

Its only MP3 so you wouldn’t necessarily expect to hear a world of difference. To my ears the UK transfer compares quite favourably with the Moodsville RVG master.

Track 2: Chinq Miau ( Moodsville)

Yusef in more mainstream mode but with a hint of spice

Track3 : The Plum Blossom (Moodsville)

Haunting tune squeezed out of a chinese globular flute, the xun, an instrument related to the ocarina shaped like a large easter egg with a bow-hole at the top and finger holes around the body.. Difficult tune to get out of your head once it gets in there, I come back to this track in preference to our mate Spartacus.

Ernie switches bass for a rabat or rubab, an instrument traditionally  made from the trunk of a mullbery tree with strings made from the intestines of young goats. I’ve reported it to PETA and Compassion in World Farming. Good music though, shame about the goats.


Yusef Lateef (ts, fl, bamboo fl, ob) Barry Harris (p) Ernie Farrow (b, rabat) Lex Humphries (d) Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, September 5, 1961


Eastern Sounds seems to be the Lateef album of choice, if prices are anything to go by, and the new gauge of sentiment, the number of You tubes uploaded. This Sixties flirtation with world-influenced music anticipated the big World Music genre to come in the Eighties, which mutated into ethnic flavoured dance music and finally the chill out lounge music of Buddha Bar – drink your way around the world without leaving the comfort of your sofa.

Vinyl: Upgrade! RVG mastered! Original! Deep Groove! Shriek marks!

The Matrix mystery lurking in the deepest part of the disk:

Green/silver mono, all important RVG mastered, unlike the UK first issue which will have been mastered from a copy tape by the house engineer on duty.

Collectors corner

Source: London record shop with closing down sale –  25% off

This one caused some agonising, as I had just bought the UK first release on Transatlantic, then this original Moodsville bobs up in your face, buy or regret, you do not see an original every day. Popsike reckons up to $800 for mint condition, though this copy falls some way short of that, with some light ticks in places.   Despite The Transatlantic costing less than half as much as I paid for the Moodsville, I think the UK press is pretty near the audio equal of original, and in slightly better condition, though in no way as collectible.

Very often as a collector, you are trying to balance two conflicting emotions: you can regret buying something or regret not buying something. Looking back, I have many more regrets at having passed up something at the time than from seizing the moment. Nowadays I think, if in doubt, what the hell, just do it.

Art Selection: Henri Matisse, The Plum Blossoms

3 thoughts on “Yusef Lateef Eastern Sounds (1961) Moodsville

  1. Pingback: Yusef Lateef – Eastern Sounds (1961) | Open Door

  2. the last epitaph of this particular record shop and after collecting for over 30 years general consensus of the jazz community it will not be missed at all
    so with honest jons being deep in scorpio city! no need to venture there for toons but for some rice cakes organic ones that is!

    • Farewell Intoxica, never knowingly underpriced, but at least they had some interesting items in the shelves. I have to thank them for my original first pressing of BN1599 Bennie Green Soul Stirring. Grateful to them for that.

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