Ella Fitzgerald – Ella for Lovers {Verve} “Russian Print”


Review by Tim Sendra ~allmusic.com
This 16-track collection features Ella Fitzgerald in a variety of musical settings singing romantic songs of love. The disc covers the years 1950 to 1961 with songs taken from the Verve and Decca archives. Four songs are culled from Intimate Ella, which has pianist Paul Smith as her sole accompanist. For the six songs from Pure Ella, she is backed by the wonderful pianist Ellis Larkins. A lovely take from this session on the Gershwin brothers “I’ve Got a Crush on You” is a highlight of the compilation. Two tracks are lifted from the gently swinging Clap Hands, Here Comes Charlie! with backing by a small combo. Three songs are extracted from Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Rodgers and Hart Songbook; two with small-combo backing including Paul Smith on piano, one, the haunting “Wait Till You See Her,” with Barney Kessel providing guitar. The disc closes out with a song taken from Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Irving Berlin Song Book. “Russian Lullaby” is a spare track with Fitzgerald’s majestic vocals supported by viola and harp. Fitzgerald sounds marvelous throughout, she could sing your phone bill and make it sound like a heavenly choir, and the song selection is top notch. There are a lot of Ella Fitzgerald collections available, this is a solid if not essential addition to them and also a nice disc for a romantic evening.

Tracklist:
01. I Got a Guy (3:46)
02. I Hadn’t Anyone Till You (2:51)
03. Please Be Kind (3:36)
04. How Long has This Been Going On? (3:16)
05. With a Song in My Heart (2:47)
06. Baby, What Else can I Do? (3:50)
07. I’ve Got a Crush on You (3:16)
08. My Melancholy Baby (2:59)
09. Wait Till You See Her (1:32)
10. You’re My Thrill (3:39)
11. Misty (2:55)
12. What is There to Say? (3:23)
13. Bewitched (7:05)
14. I’m Getting Sentimental Over You (2:38)
15. Imagination (2:37)
16. Russian Lullaby (1:52)

Personnel:
Ella Fitzgerald – vocals
Herb Ellis, Barney Kessel – guitar
Ellis Larkins, Lou Levy, Paul Smith – piano
Gus Johnson , Stan Levey, Alvin Stoller – drums
Wilfred Middlebrooks, Joe Mondragon – bass

Recorded at: Capitol Studios, Hollywood, CA; New York, NY;
Nola Recording Studio, New York, NY; Radio Recorders, Hollywood, CA;
United Recorders, Hollywood, CA.; between 1950 – 1961.
Compilation producer: Bryan Koniarz.

Genre: Jazz
Style: Vocal Jazz, Standards
Label: Verve (Russian Print)
Year: 2003
Time: 52:01

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Bill Evans – The Tokyo Concert {Fantasy}[OJC]


Review by Ken Dryden ~allmusic.com
The Bill Evans Trio’s 1973 concert in Tokyo was his first recording for Fantasy and it produced yet another Grammy nomination for the presentation. With bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Marty Morell, this straight reissue of the original LP mixes offbeat songs with overlooked gems, familiar standards, and surprisingly, only one Evans composition, the demanding “T.T.T.T. (Twelve Tone Tune Two).” Bobbie Gentry’s “Mornin’ Glory” was an unusual choice to open the performance and seems a bit conservative for Evans. The adrenaline picks up considerably with his mid-tempo waltzing take of Jerome Kern’s “Up With the Lark” and a driving “My Romance.” Evans also revisits the twisting Scott LaFaro tune “Gloria’s Step,” which showcases both Gomez and Morell. The closer, “On Green Dolphin Street,” is given a slight bossa nova flavor and isn’t nearly as aggressive as most of the pianist’s live recordings of this popular standard. Although this CD doesn’t rank among the Top Five live dates recorded by Bill Evans, it should be considered an essential part of his discography. It seems odd that no additional music turned up for this reissue, as the concert is just under an hour long; all nine tracks are included in the boxed set The Complete Fantasy Recordings.

Tracklist:
01. Mornin’ Glory (5:48)
02. Up with the Lark (6:48)
03. Yesterday I Heard the Rain (6:33)
04. My Romance (8:43)
05. When Autumn Comes (6:05)
06. T.T.T.T. (Twelve Tone Tune Two) (6:38)
07. Hullo Bolinas (4:01)
08. Gloria’s Step (7:57)
09. On Green Dolphin Street (6:47)

Personnel:
Bill Evans – piano
Eddie Gomez – bass
Marty Morell – drums

Recorded in performance at Yubin Chokin Hall, Tokyo, Japan; January 20, 1973.
Digital mastering, 1990 – Phil De Lancie; Fantasy Studios, Berkeley.
Produced by Helen Keane.

Genre: Jazz
Style: Mainstream, Post-Bop
Label: Fantasy / OJC
Year: 1990
Time: 59:19

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McCoy Tyner Trio – Inception {impulse!} “Analogue Productions”


Review by Alexander Gelfand ~allmusic.com
Those familiar with the dense, percussive style that pianist McCoy Tyner has cultivated since the 1970s onwards may be surprised by what they hear on Inception. Like Reaching Fourth and Nights of Ballads and Blues, this album gives listeners the chance to hear what a very young Tyner sounded like outside the confines of the classic John Coltrane quartet of the early ’60s; it reveals a lyrical approach to jazz piano that seems a far cry from Tyner’s mature style. The choice of material is fairly evenly split between modal pieces like “Inception” and more harmonically involved tunes like “Speak Low,” and the pianist’s treatment of both demonstrates the extent to which his early work was rooted in bebop. Tyner had yet to develop the massive orchestral sound and highly distinctive vocabulary of modal licks that would mark his later style, and throughout this album he spins dizzyingly long and singing lines with an exquisitely light touch. The irresistible rush of forward momentum that he maintains on tracks like “Effendi” and “Blues for Gwen” is breathtaking, and there is an exuberant, almost athletic quality to much of his solo work. Bassist Art Davis and drummer Elvin Jones provide superb accompaniment throughout, and they lay a solid rhythmic foundation for Tyner’s sparkling melodic flights. The pianist’s penchant for drama, which asserts itself more strongly in his later work, is on brief display in the original ballad “Sunset”; his skills as an arranger, though evident on several tracks, are perhaps best illustrated by the intricate contrapuntal treatment of “There Is No Greater Love.”

Tracklist:
01. Inception (4:28)
02. There is No Greater Love (6:20)
03. Blues for Gwen (4:26)
04. Sunset (4:41)
05. Effendi (6:39)
06. Speak Low (6:22)

Personnel:
McCoy Tyner – piano
Art Davis – bass
Elvin Jones – drums

Recorded January 10, 1962

Genre: Jazz
Style: Post Bop, Piano Trio
Label: impulse! / Analogue Productions
Year: 2011
Time: 32:56

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Cal Tjader’s Modern Mambo Quintet – Mambo with Tjader {Fantasy}[OJC]


Review by Scott Yanow ~allmusic.com
Vibraphonist Cal Tjader was quickly becoming one of the most important forces in Latin jazz when he recorded the infectious music on this CD reissue. Joined by pianist Manuel Duran, bassist Carlos Duran, and a couple of percussionists, Tjader performs Latinized versions of such standards as “Cherry,” “This Can’t Be Love,” “I’ll Remember April,” “Autumn Leaves,” and even “Sonny Boy.” Decades later, this highly rhythmic music (which helped lay the groundwork for Latin jazz in general) still sounds fresh and lively.

Tracklist:
01. Mamblues (mambo) 2:28
02. Midnight Sun (cha cha cha) 3:58
03. Sonny Boy (mambo) 2:37
04. Cherry (cha cha cha) 3:25
05. I’ll Remember April (bolero) 3:22
06. This Can’t Be Love (mambo) 3:05
07. Tenderly (bolero) 3:49
08. Dearly Beloved (cha cha cha) 3:58
09. Chloe (mambo) 2:32
10. Lucero (mambo) 3:17
11. Bye Bye Blues (mambo) 2:59
12. Autumn Leaves (bolero) 2:49

Personnel:
Cal Tjader – vibes
Manuel Duran – piano
Carlos Duran – bass
Bayardo Velarde – timbales, bongos
Edgard Rosales – congas

Recorded Fall 1954.

Genre: Jazz
Style: Latin Jazz
Label: Fantasy / OJC
Year: 1992
Time: 38:19

Quality-1: flac (tracks, eac, cue, log), full artwork
Quality-2: mp3@320, full artwork

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Count Basie – Basie Jam {Pablo} “Analogue Productions”


Review from ~cduniverse.com
This 1973 recording, the first of two Count Basie albums for the Fantasy label highlighting impromptu jam sessions, is something of a musical party. Heard here with longtime pals Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis, Harry “Sweets” Edison, and others, the Count performs a set of bluesy originals. Basie and company alight in a variety of musical dialogs-joyous and heartrending, playful and stalwart. As one might expect, each player rises to the occasion. And then some. There can be little doubt that Basie’s marvelous sensitivity as an accompanist catalyzes the fine soloing on this album. “One-Nighter” hints at least twice at how invigorating it can be to play with Basie. The first instance occurs when tenor-man Zoot Sims takes over from the organ, exacting a phrase of perfect, rounded beauty. A second occurs when Edison spreads a single recurring melodic figure across a full chorus, while Basie’s organ wheezes unobtrusively in the background. A soulful and foot-stomping album, “Basie Jam” accurately represents the late swing icon in his mature years.

Tracklist:
01. Doubling Blues (07:01)
02. Hanging Out (09:34)
03. Red Bank Blues (09:05)
04. One-Nighter (11:45)
05. Freeport Blues (11:44)

Personnel:
Count Basie – piano, organ
Irving Ashby – guitar
J.J. Johnson – trombone
Harry “Sweets” Edison – trumpet
Eddie Davis, Zoot Sims – tenor sax
Ray Brown – bass
Louie Bellson – drums

Recorded December 10, 1973

Label: Pablo – “Analogue Productions” Edition
Year: 1995
Genre: Jazz
Style: Mainstream, Blues
Total Time: 49:09

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, scans (cover+inside+tray+CD)

Oscar Peterson + Harry “Sweets” Edison + Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson {Pablo}


Review by Scott Yanow (allmusic.com)
During Nov. 12-14, 1986, pianist Oscar Peterson recorded three albums worth of material for Norman Granz’s Pablo label. This particular CD features the great pianist with his quartet (bassist Dave Young, drummer Martin Drew and guest guitarist Joe Pass) along with trumpeter Harry “Sweets” Edison and altoist Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson. The strictly instrumental set has many fine solos on appealing tunes such as “Stuffy,” “Broadway” and the lengthy blues “Slooow Drag.” This boppish session gave Vinson a rare chance to really stretch out and he was up for the challenge.

Tracklist:
01. Stuffy (09:14)
02. This One’s for Jaws (04:54)
03. Everything Happens to Me (04:37)
04. Broadway (05:14)
05. Slooow Drag (10:36)
06. What’s New (04:28)
07. Satin Doll (07:29)

Personnel:
Oscar Peterson – piano
Harry “Sweets” Edison – trumpet
Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson – alto saxophone
Joe Pass – guitar
Dave Young – bass
Martin Drew – drums

Recorded in Hollywood, CA; November 12, 1986.

Label: Pablo
Year: 1987
Genre: Jazz
Style: Mainstream, Bop
Total Time: 46:31

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Coleman Hawkins – Good Old Broadway {Fantasy}[xrcd]


Editorial review from “amazon.com”
Coleman Hawkins is frequently identified as the “father” of jazz tenor saxophone playing. With a perfect rhythm section featuring his working band – Tommy Flanagan on piano, Manor Holley, Jr. on bass, and Eddie Locke on drums, Hawkins showcases his illuminating artistry on this collection of love songs from Broadway shows. This “classic” Hawkins album has never before been available on CD.

Tracklist:
01. I Talk to the Trees (04:24)
02. Smoke Gets in Your Eyes (04:40)
03. Wanting You (02:27)
04. Strange Music (06:18)
05. The Man that Got Away (04:08)
06. Get Out of Town (04:14)
07. Here I’ll Stay (04:09)
08. A Fellow Needs a Girl (04:47)

Personnel:
Coleman Hawkins – tenor saxophone
Tommy Flanagan – piano
Major Holly Jr. – bass
Eddie Locke – drums

Recorded January 2nd, 1962 in Englewood Cliffs, N.J.

Label: Fantasy – JVC(xrcd) Edition
Year: 2000
Genre: Jazz
Style: Mainstream, Bop
Total Time: 35:06

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork