Jazz for aficionados

Jazz for aficionados

I'm going to review records in my collection, and you'll be able to decide if they're worthy of your collection. These records are what I consider "must haves" for any jazz aficionado, and would be found in their collections. I wont review any record that's not on CD, nor will I review any record if the CD is markedly inferior. Fortunately, I only found 1 case where the CD was markedly inferior to the record.

Our first album is "Moanin" by Art Blakey and The Jazz Messengers. We have Lee Morgan , trumpet; Benney Golson, tenor sax; Bobby Timmons, piano; Jymie merrit, bass; Art Blakey, drums.

The title tune "Moanin" is by Bobby Timmons, it conveys the emotion of the title like no other tune I've ever heard, even better than any words could ever convey. This music pictures a person whose down to his last nickel, and all he can do is "moan".

"Along Came Betty" is a tune by Benny Golson, it reminds me of a Betty I once knew. She was gorgeous with a jazzy personality, and she moved smooth and easy, just like this tune. Somebody find me a time machine! Maybe you knew a Betty.

While the rest of the music is just fine, those are my favorite tunes. Why don't you share your, "must have" jazz albums with us.

Enjoy the music.

Showing 50 responses by nsp

Everyone---PBS tonight at 9 p.m. on the career of Miles Davis
prysoWas that Herbie Mann album where he played bass clarinet called sultry Serenade? I have that album on a four album 2 Disc cd set  where he plays some bass clarinet.. I think there's another person on that  album who plays bass clarinet.
 if there if there is another disc where he played bass clarinet I'd like to buy it if it's available. Let me know.

 I missed the I missed the first 20 minutes of miles PBS special last night but saw the rest.Although I don't care for his recorded output after 1980 I have to say that I saw his band the year before he died and the performance he put on was terrific and he was in fine shape. The lighting, found, song selection, pacing, and overall performance were top-notch.  quite honestly nothing really too new in this documentary that I didn't already know. This special showed all sides of miles, warts and all. I could understand if some people would be turned off. He
beat his wife / girlfriends and was a drug abuser for a large part of his life.
  but for me it's the musical Legacy that he left behind that counts.  is he the greatest Jazz Trumpeter? I don't think so. But I came away with a better understanding or his ability to convey emotion in his music.And this to me is the most important thing an artist can do.

Enjoyed  the Herbie Mann Latin video you posted thanks. With regards to Jimmy Heath I have a double album live art farmer session where Jimmy Heath is the only other horn player. It was recorded in 1967 and released on CBS records . Don't know if it's available on CD .here is a cut on YouTube I found:

prysoThanks for the posting of the Herbie Mann bass clarinet album . enjoyed listening. I also liked the trumpeter on the session, Jack Sheldon. I think he was primarily a West Coast player, having done sessions with Harold land , art pepper and Shelly manne, among others.
  the seven Cuts listed on your seven song version are the ones on my first LP. in the liner notes it states that those seven Cuts were the original ones issued when the album first came out a time and a place.
 on the 8th song version you listed the cut Far away lands is not included anywhere on my double album.

My second album includes three additional live cuts blue bossa is that so and Dailey Bread. It also includes two more Studio cuts satin doll and Misty

  my album is listed as being recorded at the Museum of Modern Art. I believe Columbia screwed up on the recording date and the personnel
pjwInformation on the art farmer "the time and the place  "is somewhat convoluted.I disregarded the comment made by the poster on the cut I posted. He Is probably getting his information from the Wikipedia link you posted which May be some what suspect. 
The disc you posted listed on discogs has a different piano player Albert Dailey , from the listing on my  album which is Cedar Walton. 
 I went to the all music link on your posting from Wikipedia and I think their information is better first of all Jimmy Heath did the Arrangements on the date.
All music lists the same session for my album as the Mosaic listing. All of the song times on mosaic disc are the same as the cuts on my double LP. But as all music list it my double LP has five additional cuts three live cuts and 2  Studio cuts of a later date.  I think these two Studio cuts have Cedar Walton as The Pianist not the live earlier cuts.   in any case I believe my double LP which was issued around 1982 has three additional live cuts and 2  Studio cuts which the mosaic reissue doesn't have.The Wikipedia info where they say that a studio album had added Applause to it  and was issued as a live album I don't believe. Wikipedia is not the best source
Thanks for the bass clarinet Bill Bruford you tub e post. Bass clarinet is a favorite of mine in jazz music. I have a lot of bass cl arinet music
I kind of overlooked Bill Bruford . Was familiar with his contribution to Yes and King Crimson and purchased 2 solo albums but lost track of him. I am going to purchase this album after listening to several other cuts.
I have also been listening to Soft Machine anoth er jazz rock group again.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xQZ1c3ixoa4 rok2id
2 Nice cuts from Dolphy. I don't think I have this album. Yes it was a pick up date but it's pretty much all about Eric. Great musician gone way too soon. Played and recorded with both Mingus and Coltrane and a few solo dates. I recommend Dolphy's The Illinois Concert w/Hancock . I have to disagree with your assessment of bass clarinet in jazz- it has a great tonality and goes deeper than a clarinet. Probably just a matter of taste. You are right about his flute playing. I don't always like flute playing in jazz but Dolphy is great.

Here is Bob Mintzer playing bass clarinet on a chesky cd release "the Body Acoustic". Nice cd which is drummerless allowing all players to be heard clearly. It defies categorization not jazz not rock . It sets up a groove and is mellow. Mintzer plays bass clarinet on all cuts.I tried to play clarinet as a youth with no success it's tough to get a sound out of that instrument. I play piano now. More to follow.

Also check out Marcus Miller live concert

Another Bob Mintzer bass clarinet live cut:
Liked Herbie Mann link you posted. Thanks. Did not know h e played bass clarinet. Most of his albums are him playing flute. I may get a copy of the cd.
I agree bass clarinet has rich tonalities as does the bari sax both di fferent than the alto or tenor saxes.
Dolphy has several cds on the ojc label titled Live at the five spot, a group he had with trumpeter Booker Little. The songs are long with plenty of solo space and Dolphy plays bass clarinet on several songs.
The Illinois Concert is another good solo effort by Dolphy with Herbie Hancock on piano.

Sorry maybe i copied the live Mintzer video incorrectly. Yes Soft Machine titles3-7 are my favorites although I have some of their later output and live recordings.
I'll check out If Summer Had It's Ghosts. I like all 3 musicians, especially Gomez with Bill Evans.
Here's a clip of Courtney Pine playing bass clarinet in duo. The album is Song the Ballad Book and he only plays bass clarinet.

Thanks for posting that Courtney Pine video. 
It seems my attempt to post it yesterday was not successful.

frogman is correct Dolphy's Out To Lunch title on blue note is probably his best solo work.leans towards the avant garde a bit a real classic.

Agree with you on David Murray. No t crazy about his tenor playing but always enjoy his bassclarinet. I have the album you posted highly recommend.
How could I have forgotten about Bennie Maupin? Vein Melter is my favorite cut from Headhunters.
Another favorite Maupin on Neophilia from Live At The Lighthouse:

From Early Reflections:

Short clip showcasing tonality bs clar:

Do you h ave info on when the blue notes you bought were pressed ?When were they purchased? I h ave been collecting blue note vinyl for decades and worse pressings had a completely blue label . But not all of them are bad. 
Nice clip.David S. Ware R.I.P. . Such a powerful original player .
He took the lineage of Coltrane and took it to the next level.Shipp,Parker&Brown His best group IMO.
Wow bagpipes in jazz? It is unusual. The only other guy who plays bagpipes in jazz that I know of is british saxophonist Paul Dunmall who has some bagpipe playing on his recordings.
You are refering to a scorpio stamp in the rideout groove of the record, right? I can check a few and get back to you.

Glad you liked it. Are you familiar with B Maupin playing on Hancock's Mwandishi album which was a little bit earlier than Headhunters ?

Check out Hancock's Fat Albert Rotunda if you don't have it. Same time period,similar lineup.
I enjoyed Eddie Daniels clips. I am just getting into his music waiting for 2 cds of his I ordered from AmazoN. Excellent tone,technique and good improviser. Was not aware he played flute. Really nice rendition of Emily. I don't usually like flute playing in jazz context but he's fine.

I could never forget about Joe Henderson one of my favorite tenor players. A great composer and improviser. And Woody Shaw also great player who may be a little underrated. Tragic life and end.


You are right .Liner notes and booklets can history and perspective to a musical performance and are important. $100 for Monk's London Collection? I own thst box set can't believe it's gone up in price that much.


You can go to Discogs.com, a major internet site for buying and selling lps and cds to get an idea of items value you are looking to sell.
I looked at about 15 blue notes in my collection purchased at different times and NONE had a scorpio stamp. 
My copy of "the Congregation" is a french pressing and sounds fine. My copy of "Out To Lunch" is a Music Masters 2 lp 45rpm . I have 2 copies of "Newk's Time" the 1st is a completely blue label pressed when United Artists owned Blue Note and sounds like crap. The other reissue is in stereo w ith wide s oundstage, precisely located instruments, clear sound. 
I would be interested in what you a re looking to sell, although my collection is pretty full already.

Liked the "Walkin"clip you posted. How did I miss this Miles album. I have most of his other prestige output. I also overlooked Lucky Thompson. Knew his name but not his music. Thanks for bringing him to my attention.I like this song from Lucky Strikes:


Thanks I was trying to post cut "Invitation" from "Lucky Strikes". Need to work on my computer skills.Lol. Another Lucky Thompson 2 cd live performance I like i s New York City 1964-1965:

New York City 1964-1965:

You nailed it Thompson had a "sweet and relaxed" softer sound on soprano which I like.  Obviously he did not get much credit for being first on soprano. But Coltrane doing "My Favorite Things" , a very popular song from "The Sound of Music" garnered him more attention &exposure for playing soprano.
Yes I agree Thompson does sound like Hawkins, especially on ballads. Which is not a bad thing as I really dig Hawkins and have been rediscovering his music in the last year or so. I do feel Thompson has more of a modern bebop style. I plan to get a couple of Thompson cd's to add to my collection.
Goodbye Porkpie Hat w/ Larry & Murali Coryell at Iridium


Your blue note lp's I say go for it !  Break them open,clean them, 
Spin t hem and enjoy them. Let me know how tgey sound if you do. A la te entrybbto your game:
Like K Allyson's bluesy "Moanin"  and the "Misterioso" cut. Dug J Griffin's tenor solo and K Kirkland's Monkesque piano solo.

Wow those two versions of "Cherokee" side by side really show the difference between Hawkins and Thompson. Hawkins falls back on his swing rhythms for the most part although he tries to break out of it several times. It*s not a knock on him as he came up in the swing style and probably felt most comfortable playing that way( as did many players of the swing era).  He may have adopted some bebop harmonics in his later career but as we know the rhythm changes bought to the music by the beboppers was very important in revolutionizing jazz. Cherokee is pretty much known as a song bebop players would take at a very fast pace which showed  those who could play the new bebop style.
Thompsons solo is smokin. Right after the melody and through his entire solo. This guy could play.  I state for the record that Lucky Thompson was a musician with a unique style and a sound all his own. And  I think that those two things are the best compliment any jazzman could be given. I too feel he is underappreciated but you*ve kept his name alive.  i need to get several of his cds I*m thinking of the New York City 1964-1965 sessions and the Paris 1956-1959 complete sessions. Any suggestions?

Those deletes were just me with failed attempts at posting/copying videos. I think I need a tutorial.http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fGFV2id6QqA Try to post one last time

Jeff Beck !! It*s been so long I forgot about this version. I was a HUGE Jeff Beck fan back in the day . He did not do much jazz as he is not a strict jazz player. I read an interview where he stated he really like Charles Mingus. I loved his playing because he plays with so much emotion and NOBODY gets the sound out of a guitar like him. Great choice.
after thinking about it I was going to say Cannonball but rok2id beat me to it. What he conveys feels different than the other musicians. You are right to refer to the  mood of this album-I think that is part of what makes it timeless. And of course isn`t great jazz about mood? Also I think the ability for the musicians to stretch out their solos without having to worry so much about frequent chord changes gave the music a freshness that still stands today. Different than hard bop , which is a style recognized as associated with late 50's thru the  60's. 
Yes George Russell deserves credit for being involved with modal jazz and influencing Miles. This is why Miles bought Bill Evans back into the band-Evans had studied with George Russell and was familiar with the modal concepts. I had read somewhere that Bill Evans helped Miles write "Blue in Green" but the writing credit was solely given to Miles. Have you ever heard/read anything about that?
"Blue In Green" is my favorite cut from the album. Have not listened to KOB too much as my original lp is worn out , I need a later version lp or sacd.

Mariano may have been a good choice not sure he would have been better than

On the what ifs;

Mariano had the sound AND the chops.

Also agree with alexatpos on Desmond and Getz. Both players could really set a mood and had sounds that were clearly identifiable to them within a few notes:


Getz  :
Thanks for that lovely solo rendition by Bill. What a consumate artist, such delicate touch and use of dynamics. Creates a mood within the first few notes. Of the many piano players I admire Evans is at the top of the list by himself. I had to include this next clip. When Bill solos he takes me to places I didn't think existed. read the comments a lot of people gave Bill credit for writing this song:
I was thinking of a word to describe Desmond's playing and came up with terse which is listed in the dictionary as " Smoothly elegant, polished ,refined".
Yes Stan Getz seemed to never rush anything and plays a little softer than others and has a lot to say. I've neglected him lately need to get back to his music.

liked that medley with Trane  &Getz. Seems like a rare clip. I play the 1st & 3rd songs on piano occasionally 2 of my favorites. Who is the piano player who did "Autumn leaves"? Did not recognize him. Tranes solo is a perfect example where he plays melodically and doesn't get too far out there. On "Hackensack" he cuts loose and is great also.
Which brings me back to the discussion you and pryso were having about  Coltrane. pryso mentioned the "sheets of sound " style and you mentioned some people having a cutoff point to where they would listen to Tranes music but nothing after.That's probably true.  I used to think  like that but I have changed my opinion over the years . I agree with pryso who observed some product done in the 60's like "Ballads " ,"And Johnny Hartman" "Duke Ellington & John Coltrane" goes back to his more melodic style. These are all just observations. Coltrane is difficult to pigeonhole. But one thing is for sure-he was a consumate musician who knew his horn and music forwards and backwards.  In fact I believe he traveled further musically in his short lifetime than most musicians do for their whole careers. I am sure there are those who don't wish to listen to anything Trane did after his prestige years. I too tend to cherry pick when I listen to him.  As I have aged I am more apt to listen to music which is less intense and jarring. Although I do still have an ear for the "avant garde" music just not as often. Just my 2 cents.
BTW his solo on KOB'S "Blue In Green" is beautiful.

Another possible alto substitute in KOB sessions?:


Thanks for posting Bobo Stenson cut. I did not know he had a new cd out. I miss P Motian also. This drummer sounds a little like Paul. Who is it? I like Stenson he is never overpowering, always interesting,and yes introspective.

alexatpos & frogman
Thanks I should have recognized Wynton Kelly.

alexatpos -nice cuts by C Fuller. I was only familiar with his sideman work on Blue Note dates so this is new to me. What a strong full tone he has on this album. Another Fuller blues I like:

wondering who the sax player is?

I feel the same on Coltrane it's all good depending on my mood. I have been listening to Stellar Regions lately and find it very powerful and lyrical

Thanks I never noticed the lineup until you brought it to my attention. I like Lateef especially on this album:

Curtis Fuller on a pretty ballad:


I like Zoot Sims also he reminds me of Hawkins or Webster somewhat. Here's 2 ballads:


Another solo piano piece by B Evans:


I had that Jones-Lewis lp but foolishly sold it some time ago. One of a few groups who kept big band music alive back then.

Wasn't Sta n Getz one of Herman's "Four Brothers" ?  And who else ?

Anybody out there into Charles Lloyd ?  He just turned 80 this month and is stiill going strong:


"Gypsy  66"

"Rabo de Nube"

Something spiritual from Sunny Sumter. I love her voice:
Listened to the 2  versions of H Steward cuts. Yes the second is faster and sounds better. But I think it's probably remastered. What say you?
Looked up Serge Chaloff's bio. Gone way too soon.

Another bari player I like Hamiet Bluiett:

Nice clip G Burton "A Genuine Tong Funeral" . An album I overlooked but not anymore.

Thanks for J Carter post I was not aware he played bari. I have not been able to find any recordings of his I want for my collection but I'm still trying.

Nice post Hodges is so smooth. Same to you.
I need to get into Serge Chaloff more.

Gerry Mulligan you can't go wrong with him. Enjoyed all the cuts, especially the Getz cut (I own a copy of that lp). I have to agree with frogman on the Mulligan/Monk collaboration. Mulligan adapts to Monk's style not the other way around. I don't think he quite fits but I enjoy seeing someone go out of their element and be pushed to create something different.

In keeping with the bari theme here are some others:
The first I believe to receive widespread recognition Harry Carney


Pepper Adams:

Gary Smulyan:


George Haslam a guy not well known records on Slam records:


You are right on both counts: Monk stayed in his style no matter who he played with but your choice of  "Bags Groove" is a good one as he does adapt :

Tubby Hayes-unknown to me as he was british and died quite young. He could really play.  Thanks.He has to be up there at the top of british jazz musicians from that era.