Coleman Hawkins – In a Mellow Tone {Prestige}[OJC]


Review from “cduniverse.com”
Few jazz giants have been as important and as relevant for as long as the Bean, a revealing nickname; it’s apparently a contraction of “the best and only.” Hawkins received this appellation during his tenure with the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra. The saxophonist’s gruff yet mellifluous, smoky yet coarse tone influenced generations of musicians.

This compilation features music from Hawkins’ years with Prestige Records. Filled with many exciting and tranquil moments, IN A MELLOW TONE captures a great period in the saxophonist’s forty-plus year career. The album’s opener, “You Blew Out the Flame In My Heart” displays Hawkins’ ability to swing with a light buoyant feel, while ballads such as “I Want to Be Loved,” “Greensleeves,” “Then I’ll be Tired of You,” and “Until the Real Thing Comes Along” show the degree of delicacy and intimacy of which Hawkins was capable. Finally, the album’s title track brims with energy and verve, due in large part to Gus Johnson’s crisp drumming.

Tracklist:
01 – You Blew Out the Flame in My Heart
02 – I Want to Be Loved
03 – In a Mellow Tone
04 – Greensleeves
05 – Through for the Night
06 – Until the Real Thing Comes Along
07 – The Sweetest Sounds
08 – Then I’ll Be Tired of You
09 – Jammin’ in Swingville

Personnel:
Coleman Hawkins, Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis – tenor sax
Hilton Jefferson – alto sax
Jimmy Hamilton – clarinet
Vic Dickenson, J.C. Higginbotham – trombone
Joe Thomas, Charlie Shavers, Joe Newman – trumpet
Tommy Flanagan, Red Garland, Ray Bryant – piano
Kenny Burrell, Tiny Grimes – guitar
Wendell Marshall, Doug Watkins, Ron Carter, George Duvivier, Major Jolley – bass
Osie Johnson, Charles “Specs” Wright, Gus Johnson, Eddie Locke, Bill English – drums

Recorded between November 7, 1958 – March 30, 1962;
at Hackensack, NJ (#2, 4, 5 and 6); and Englewood Cliffs, NJ (#1, 3, 7, 8 and 9)

Label: Prestige – OJC
Year: 1987
Genre: Jazz
Style: Mainstream Jazz, Saxophone

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Ben Webster – See You at The Fair {impulse!} “Analogue Productions”


Review by Scott Yanow (allmusic.com)

Ben Webster’s final American recording was one of his greatest. At 55, the tenor saxophonist was still very much in his prime but considered out of style in the U.S. He would soon permanently move to Europe where he was better appreciated. This CD has the nine selections originally included on the LP of the same name, a quartet set with either Hank Jones or Roger Kellaway on piano, bassist Richard Davis, and drummer Osie Johnson. Webster’s tone has rarely sounded more beautiful than on “Someone to Watch Over Me” and “Our Love Is Here to Stay.” In addition, one song from the same session (but originally released on a sampler) and two tunes featuring Webster on an Oliver Nelson date (More Blues and the Abstract Truth) wrap up this definitive CD.

Tracks:
01 – See You at The Fair
02 – Over the Rainbow
03 – Our Love ‘s Here to Stay
04 – In a Mellow Tone
05 – Lullaby of Jazzland
06 – Stardust
07 – Fall of Love
08 – While We’re Dancing
09 – Someone to Watch Over Me

Personnel:
Ben Webster – tenor sax
Hank Jones – piano
Roger Kellaway – piano and harpsichord
Richard Davis – bass
Osie Johnson – drums

Recorded March 11 and 25, 1964.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork

Paul Desmond with Strings – Desmond Blue {Bluebird}


Review by Shawn M. Haney (allmusic.com)

As intended, this album presents alto sax specialist Paul Desmond as never featured before, with the backing of a string orchestra. The record, filled with such beautiful jazz standards as “My Funny Valentine,” “I’ve Got You Under My Skin,” and “Body and Soul,” is very rich in texture, yet subtle and mellow overall in mood. It’s unyielding purpose: to soothe the souls of its listeners. Desmond’s style and tone shine with an alluring quality, and the record is filled with melodies that don’t fail to stimulate the sophisticated jazz listener. Desmond’s melodies are eloquently detailed and charmingly spun in the midst of the string orchestra arranged and conducted by Bob Prince. The legendary Jim Hall is featured as guest guitarist, playing yet another scintillating role and using his classic comping style. Hall is perhaps the most highly respected of all jazz guitarists for his good taste and witty inventiveness. Desmond has always been most familiar to the jazz public for his sweeping scale passages and his seemingly effortless spontaneity during periods of improvisation, although here he is often featured in a more lyrical ballad style on such romantic tunes as “My Funny Valentine,” “Late Lament,” and “Then I’ll Be Tired of You.” This album is a highly innovative and meticulously crafted work, reflecting the ongoing success of both Desmond and Hall within the 1960s and the cool jazz period. Both of these musicians spent time working with Dave Brubeck and later lent themselves to many of Antonio Carlos Jobim’s bossa nova projects. The arrangements are extraordinary throughout this collection, including the charming “Valentine,” which begins with a fantastic Elizabethan flavor. The intro sets up the mood to carry Desmond into the first chorus, which then glides into a 20th century style. The tune “I Should Care” is “a shimmering debt to Ibert and one of the most imaginative blendings you will ever hear of strings, reeds, French horn and harp,” according to the liner notes. The tone of the album: lush, reflective, thought-provoking, and soul-stirring. This work is quite a plus for any listener and especially those who consider themselves avid fans of Paul Desmond.

Tracks:
01 – My Funny Valentine
02 – Desmond Blue
03 – Then I’ll Be Tired of You
04 – I’ve Got You Under My Skin
05 – Late Lament
06 – I Should Care
07 – Like Someone in Love
08 – Ill Wind (You’re Blowin’ Me No Good)
09 – Body and Soul
10 – Autumn Leaves
11 – Imagination
12 – Advise and Consent
13 – Autumn Leaves (take 1) – previously unreleased
14 – Autumn Leaves (take 3) – previously unreleased
15 – Imagination (take 4) – previously unreleased
16 – Advise and Consent (take 4) – previously unreleased

Personnel:
Paul Desmond – alto saxophone, featuring:

Jim Hall – guitar
Gene Cherico, Milt Hinton, George Duvivier – bass
Connie Kay, Bobby Thomas, Osie Johnson – drums

and string section; arranged and conducted by Bob Prince

All selections were recorded at Webster Hall, New York City.

Recorded September 14, 1961; October 2, 1961; June 19, 1961,
September 28, 1961 and March 15, 1962.

Quality: eac, flac, cue, log, artwork