Mosaic

Mosaic Records

Specialist Jazz reissue venture set up by Michael Cuscuna and Charlie Lourie in 1983. Since 1984, Cuscuna has been a special consultant, producer, and reissue director of Blue Note Records, providing him with “trusted ” status  with access to the vaults and original master tapes. Starting out with Limited Edition vinyl box sets,  Mosaic now releases only CD editions.

Limited Editions: when they are gone, they are gone.

“Mosaic does not own Pacific Jazz, Atlantic, Columbia, RCA, Blue Note, Verve or any other catalog product. With the exception of our Benedetti/Parker set, we lease all of our recordings from other record companies. The leases vary in detail, but in every case there’s a cap on either the number of units we are allowed to manufacture or the number of years we’re allowed to offer the set for sale. Therefore once the set has sold out, it will not be made available again”

Out-of-print limited edition vinyl box-sets are especially sought after. These are “audiophile quality” pressings on slim and near-silent vinyl – not heavy – but very high audio quality within the limitations of the original source. The condition of vinyl in second-hand sets is usually immaculate as played only  by discerning high-end collectors on high quality audio equipment.

Typical Mosaic black and white packaging

Mosaic Label

Typical LP set

Mastering – Ron McMaster

EMI’s audio-engineer Ron McMaster mastering found on many of the box sets ( Mastered by McMaster – does that sound an improbable name and career choice?) McMaster’s engineering  does not always have the bite you hope for.

Mastering – Rudy Van Gelder

Woah! Legendary Rudy van Gelder brought in to master the Mingus tapes from Candid Records – sonically exceptional – the depth and timbre of Mingus’s  bass captured by Van Gelder is quite remarkable.

Limited pressing run

Limited editions – most seem to be a run of 7,500 boxsets.

Information Booklet

Each box set comes with an informative insert with pages of biographical detail based on original high quality research

Prices

Secondhand prices on out-of-print sets range from £50 to £200 according to scarcity and desirability. Ebay purchases carry a significant postal cost due to the weight of these box sets, and in the event of returns, expensive likewise.

The future of Mosaic?

Cuscuna today, the man who holds the keys to the Blue Note vaults,  does not see any musical potential in vinyl: “Now, unfortunately, everything is available digitally, so I don’t know what the future of physical product is going to be with reissues. At this point, physical product is almost completely dead…

Followers-of-the-evil-silver-disk_800_LJCor the relationship between vinyl and The Evil Silver Disk:.

“the people who care most about those albums happen to be the same people who bought them back when they were on vinyl and then rebought those LPs on CD. Now people find themselves looking at newly upgraded CDs or SACDs…”

So apparently we are wasting our time with vinyl, it’s dead. Someone please tell alll the hifi manufacturers. A vast and profitable industry making turntables, tonearms, cartridges, isolation platforms, as evidenced at the recent National Audio Show, yet the availability of VINYL to play on this beautiful equipment is frustratingly absent. You don’t follow markets, you make them. 

Michael is an extremely knowledgeable man on every aspect of Blue Note’s history, but his take on its future is a depressing self-fulfilling prophecy. Japan seems to be made more of the right stuff – Atelier Sawano manufactured this daring collectors reissue, complete with Deep Groove, last year (though no longer selling on their site) –

It looks likely the out of print Mosaic vinyl box sets will continue to remain scarce items, available only through second hand channels:

Out of Print Listing

#101 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Thelonious Monk (4 LPs)

#102 The Complete Pacific Jazz and Capitol Recordings of the Original Gerry Mulligan Quartet and Tentette with Chet Baker (3 CDs or 5 LPs)

#103 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Albert Ammons and Meade Lux Lewis (2 CDs or 3 LPs)

#104 The Complete Blue Note and Pacific Jazz Recordings of Clifford Brown (5 LPs)

#105 The Complete Pacific Jazz Small Group Recordings of Art Pepper (3 LPs)

#106 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of the Tina Brooks Quintet (4 LPs)

#107 The Complete Blue Note Forties Recordings of Ike Quebec and John Hardee (3 CDs or 4 LPs)

#108 The Complete Recordings of The Port of Harlem Jazzmen (1 LP)

#109 The Complete Edmond Hall/James P. Johnson/Sidney De Paris/Vic Dickenson Blue Note Sessions (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#110 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Sidney Bechet (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#111 The Complete Candid Recordings of Charles Mingus (3 CDs or 4 LPs)

#112 The Complete Black Lion Vogue Recordings of Thelonious Monk (3 CDs or 4 LPs)

#113 The Complete Pacific Jazz Live Recordings of the Chet Baker Quartet with Russ Freeman (3 CDs or 4 LPs)

#114 The Complete Art Hodes Blue Note Sessions (4 CDs or 5 LPs)

#115 The Benny Morton/Jimmy Hamilton Blue Note Swingtets (1 LP)

#116 The Complete Bud Powell Blue Note Recordings (1949-1958) (5 LPs)

#117 The Complete Verve Recordings of the Buddy De Franco Quartet/Quintet with Sonny Clark (4 CDs or 5 LPs)

#118 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Herbie Nichols (3 CDs or 5 LPs)

#119 The Pete Johnson/Earl Hines/Teddy Bunn Blue Note Sessions (1 LP)

#120 The Complete Recordings of the Paul Desmond Quartet with Jim Hall (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#121 The Complete Blue Note 45 Sessions of Ike Quebec (2 CDs or 3 LPs)

#122 The Complete Pacific Jazz Studio Recordings of the Chet Baker Quartet with Russ Freeman (3 CDs or 4 LPs)

#123 The Complete Commodore Jazz Recordings, Volume I (23 LPs)

#124 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Freddie Redd (2 CDs or 3 LPs)

#125 The Complete Atlantic and EMI Jazz Recordings of Shorty Rogers (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#126 The Complete Johnny Hodges Recordings 1951-1955 (6 LPs)

#127 The Complete Candid Recordings of Cecil Taylor and Buell Neidlinger (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#128 The Complete Commodore Jazz Recordings, Volume II (23 LPs)

#130 The Complete Recordings of T-Bone Walker 1940-1954 (6 CDs or 9 LPs)

#131 The Complete Recordings of the Stan Getz Quintet with Jimmy Raney (3 CDs or 4 LPs)

#132 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of George Lewis (3 CDs or 5 LPs)

#133 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Grant Green with Sonny Clark (4 CDs or 5 LPs)

#134 The Complete Commodore Jazz Recordings, Volume III (20 LPs)

#135 The Complete Roulette Live Recordings of Count Basie and His Orchestra (1959-1962) (8 CDs or 12 LPs)

#136 Stan Kenton: The Complete Capitol Recordings of the Holman & Russo Charts (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#137 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Larry Young (6 CDs or 9 LPs)

#138 The Complete Capitol Recordings of the Nat King Cole Trio (18 CDs or 27 LPs)

#139 The Complete Candid Otis Spann/Lightnin’ Hopkins Sessions (3 CDs or 5 LPs)

#140 The Complete Master Jazz Piano Series (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#141 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Art Blakey’s 1960 Jazz Messengers (6 CDs or 10 LPs)

#142 The Complete CBS Studio Recordings of Woody Shaw (3 CDs or 4 LPs)

#143 The Complete 1959 CBS Charles Mingus Sessions (4 Q-LPs)

#144 The Complete CBS Buck Clayton Jam Sessions (6 CDs or 8 Q-LPs)

#145 The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Don Cherry (2 CDs or 3 Q-LPs)

#146 The Complete Decca Studio Recordings of Louis Armstrong and the All Stars (6 CDs or 8 Q-LPs)

#147 The Complete Serge Chaloff Sessions (4 CDs or 5 Q-LPs)

#148 The Complete Capitol Small Group Recordings of Benny Goodman 1944-1955 (4 CDs or 6 Q-LPs)

#149 The Complete Roulette Studio Recordings of Count Basie and His Orchestra (10 CDs or 15 Q-LPs)

#150 The Complete Blue Note 1964-66 Jackie McLean Sessions (4 CDs or 6 Q-LPs)

#151 The Complete Solid State Recordings of the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra (5 CDs or 7 Q-LPs)

#152 The Complete CBS Recording of Eddie Condon and His All Stars (5 CDs or 7 Q-LPs)

#153 The Complete Aladdin Recordings of Charles Brown (5 CDs or 7 Q-LPs)

#154 The Complete February 1957 Jimmy Smith Blue Note Sessions (3CDs or 5 Q-LP)

#155 The Complete Aladdin Recordings of Amos Milburn (7 CDs or 10 Q-LPs)

#156 The Complete Roulette Recordings of the Maynard Ferguson Orchestra (10 CDs or 14 Q-LPs)

#157 The Complete Capitol Recordings Of George Shearing (5 CDs or 7 Q-LPs)

#158 MIles Davis: The Complete Plugged Nickel Sessions (10 Q-LPs)

#159 The Phil Woods Quartet/Quintet 20th Anniversary Set (5 CDs or 7 Q-LPs)

#160 The Complete Capitol Recordings Of Duke Ellington (5 CDs or 7 Q-LPs)

#161 – The Complete Blue Note Andrew Hill Sessions (1963-66) (7 CDs or 10 LPs)

#162 The Complete Blue Note Lee Morgan Fifties Sessions (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#163 The Complete Capitol Studio Recordings of Stan Kenton 1943-47 (7 CDs or 10 Q-LPs)

#164 Miles Davis/Gil Evans: The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings (11 LPs)

#165 The Complete Illinois Jacquet Sessions 1945-50 (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#166 The Complete Blue Note/UA Curtis Fuller Sessions (3 CDs or 5 LPs)

#167 The Complete Blue Note Sam Rivers Sessions (3 CDs or 5 LPs)

#168 The Complete Capitol Fifties Jack Teagarden Sessions (4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#169 The Complete Columbia J.J. Johnson Small Group Sessions (7 CDs or 11 LPs)

#170 Classic Capitol Jazz Sessions (12 CDs or 19 LPs)

#171 Bill Evans: The Final Village Vanguard Sessions-June 1980 (10 LPs)

#172 The Complete Blue Note/UA/Roulette Recordings of Thad Jones (3 CDs or 5 Q-LPs)

#173 The Complete Verve Recordings of the Teddy Wilson Trio (5 CDs or 8 Q-LPs)

#174 The Complete Atlantic Recordings of Lennie Tristano, Lee Konitz & Warne Marsh (6 CDs or 10 Q-LPs)

#175 The Complete Pacific Jazz Recordings of the Chico Hamilton Quintet (6 CDs or 9 Q-LPs)

#176 The Complete Capitol & Atlantic Recordings of Jimmy Giuffre (6 CDs or 10 Q-LPs)

#177 The Complete Studio Recordings Of The Miles Davis Quintet 1965 – June 1968 (10 Q-LPs)

#178 The Complete Blue Note Blue Mitchell Sessions (1963-67) (4 CDs or 6 Q-LPs)

#179 The Atlantic New Orleans Jazz Sessions ( 4 CDs or 6 LPs)

#180 The Pacific Jazz Bud Shank Studio Sessions (1956-61) (5 CDs or 7 LPs)

#182 The Complete Verve/Clef Charlie Ventura/Flip Philips Studio Sessions (6 CDs or 9 Q-LPs)

#183 Miles Davis: The Complete Bitches Brew (6 Q-LPs)

#184 The Complete Peggy Lee & June Christy Capitol Transcription Sessions (5 CDs)

#185 Kenton Presents: Bob Cooper, Bill Holman & Frank Rosolino (4 CDs)

#186 The Complete Verve Stuff Smith Sessions (4 CDs)

#187 The Complete H.R.S. Sessions (6 CDs)

#188 The Complete Anita O’Day Verve/Clef Sessions (9 CDs)

#189 The Complete Kid Ory Verve Sessions (8 CDs)

#191 The Complete Columbia Recordings Of Miles Davis With John Coltrane (9 Q-LPs)

#192 The Complete Capitol Recordings of Gene Krupa & Harry James (7 CDs)

#193 Duke Ellington: The Reprise Studio Recordings (5 CDs)

#194 The Complete Blue Note Donald Byrd/Pepper Adams Studio Sessions (4 CDs)

#195 The Complete Blue Note Elvin Jones Sessions (8 CDs)

#196 The Complete Capitol Recordings of Woody Herman (6 CDs)

#197 The Complete Blue Note Horace Parlan Session (5 CDs or 8 Q-LPs)

#198 The Complete Pacific Jazz Recordings of Gerald Wilson and His Orchestra (5 CDs)

#199 The Columbia Jazz Piano Moods Sessions (7 CDs)

#200 The Complete Verve Johnny Hodges Small Group Sessions 1956-61 (6 CDs)

#201 The Complete Mercury Max Roach Plus Four Sessions (7 CDs)

#202 The Complete Vee Jay Lee Morgan & Wayne Shorter Sessions (6 CDs)

#203 The Complete Capitol Four Freshmen Fifties Sessions (9 CDs)

#204 The Complete Columbia Recordings of Mildred Bailey (10 CDs)

#205 The Complete Vee Jay Paul Chambers & Wynton Kelly Sessions 1959-61

#206 Classic Columbia Condon Mob Sessions (8 CDs)

#209 Miles Davis: The Complete In A Silent Way Sessions (5 Q-LPs)

#211 The Complete OKeh & Brunswick Bix Beiderbecke, Frank Trumbauer & Jack Teagarden Sessions 1924-1936 (7 CDs)

#213 Classic Columbia And OKeh Joe Venuti And Eddie Lang Sessions (8 CDs)

#215 The Complete Blue Note Lou Donaldson Sessions 1957-1960 (6 CDs)

#217 The Complete Brunswick & Vocalion Recordings Of Louis Prima And Wingy Manone 1924-1937 (6 CDs)

#219 The Complete Bruswick, Parlophone and Vocalion Bunny Berigan Sessions (7 CDs)

#220 Miles Davis: The Complete Blackhawk Sessions (6 Q-LPs)

#221 The Complete Verve Gerry Mulligan Concert Band Sessions (4 CDs)

#222 The Complete Verve Roy Eldridge Studio Sessions (7 CDs)

#224 The Complete Verve Tal Farlow Sessions (7 CDs)

#225 The Complete Argo/Mercury Art Farmer/Benny Golson/Jazztet Sessions (7 CDs)

#226 Miles Davis: The Complete 1963-1964 Columbia Recordings (10 Q-LPs)

#227 The Complete Roulette Dinah Washington Sessions (5 CDs)

#228 Columbia Small Group Swing Sessions 1953-1962 (8 CDs)

#229 The Complete Clef/Verve Count Basie Fifties Studio Recordings (8 CDs)

#232 The Classic Argo, Emarcy & Verve Small Group Buddy Rich Session (7 CDs)

#239 The Lester Young Count Basie Sessions 1936-1940 (4 CDs)

(Accurate at 1st September 2012)

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “Mosaic

  1. I have, recently, win an auction on ebay: the complete qaurtet on rCA by Paul Desmond and jim Hall. i have also the cd box set selled many years ago. 99 euro for a marvellous 6 lp’s set, it sounds great with a liveness who beats cd set 3-0

  2. I have the Complete Blue Note Recordings of Albert Ammons and Meade Lux Lewis on vinyl. Three superb LPs in a more than informative box with one of those nice LP sized booklets in it. I bought it on eBay for $45, advertised as near mint and so they are. They look and sound absolutely like new, especially after we cleaned them on my neighbor’s VPI.

    I don’t share Cuscuna’s take on the future: the mere fact that we’re looking at 239 (!!) completely sold out and now out of print reissues that still change hands for big money amongst collectors on eBay is the ultimate proof that he can continue with Mosaic without a problem.

  3. I was born and raised not a quarter mile away form the mosaic offices in Stamford, Ct. Well i see his point. How many of us have purchased a newly Reissue blue note record lately? I’m proud to say that I supported Classic records and own most of their reissues and was dissappointed when they shut their doors. If it wasn’t for Classic records, I wouldn’t be collecting blue notes today. I haven’t had the pleaure of purchasing any of the 45 rpm reissue. It a two way street. They need to put out a quality product. 60+ years later and they can’t replicate the quality of those earlier blue note pressings!! Michael…..Why is that?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s