Friday, June 8, 2012
SHM-CD of the Month
Milt Jackson: "Sunflower" (CTI) 1973
Rating: ***** (musical performance, sonic quality & remastering)
Produced by Creed Taylor
Recorded (December 12 & 13, 1972), Mixed & Digitally Remastered by Rudy Van Gelder @ Van Gelder Studios (Englewood Cliffs, NJ)
Cover photo: Pete Turner
Liner photo: K. Abe
Album design: Bob Ciano
Featuring: Milt Jackson, Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, Billy Cobham, Ralph MacDonald, Jay Berliner, Freddie Hubbard, Phil Bodner, George Marge, Romeo Penque, Max Ellen, Paul Gershman, Emanuel Green, Charles Libove, Joe Malin, David Nadien, Gene Orloff, Elliot Rosoff, Irving Spice, Charles McCracken, George Ricci, Alan Shulman, Margaret Ross
"Sunflower" is the most revered solo album by Milt Jackson, one of the greatest of jazz vibraphone players, and one of the most acclaimed improvisational blues instrumentalists of all time. He was a founding member of the legendary Modern Jazz Quartet, voted by Downbeat’s readers into its Jazz Hall of Fame in 1999. Thanks to Creed Taylor's impeccable production and Don Sebesky's sumptuous scores, "Sunflower" became an instant classic, and Milt's better and most commercially successful album ever.
Jackson's own ballad "For Someone I Love" (featuring the famous Spanish-tinged acoustic guitar intro performed by Jay Berliner), the Thom Bell/Linda Creed's r&b classy classic "People Make The World Go Round" and Freddie Hubbard's lovely title track are the highlights, featuring such players as Hubbard himself, Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, Billy Cobham and Ralph MacDonald. Although "Sunflower" had been previously reissued on CD in the U.S., in remixed versions that changed the concept of both Creed Taylor & Rudy Van Gelder's works, this SHM-CD reissue produced by Taylor for the Asian market is the first one remastered by the legendary engineer himself.
Some weeks ago, the renowned French jazz historian Alain Manuel asked me to provide some comments about "Sunflower" from a more personal point of view. And that's what he posted on his famous CTI FANBLOG:
jeudi 31 mai 2012 MILT JACKSON: Sunflower - CTI 6024
A la recherche d'un succès commercial mérité, le vibraphoniste Milt Jackson confia son étoile au producteur Creed Taylor. Le résultat est cet album de jazz orchestral teinté de romantisme. Parmi les invités prestigieux, on note la présence d'Herbie Hancock au piano, Freddie Hubbard à la trompette, Ron Carter à la contrebasse et Billy Cobham à la batterie. Ce quatuor de stars se met au diapason du vibraphone de Milt Jackson et permet un échange des plus courtois sans véritable leader. L'accompagnement est délicat, les solos comme murmurés. Dans cette ambiance tamisée, les superbes arrangements de cordes du directeur musical Don Sebesky font mouche.
Enfin, signalons "Necking", une des plus belles photos de Pete Turner choisie pour illustrer la pochette. Elle a été prise en Afrique du sud en 1970. Un disque pour les amoureux... du violon et du jazz.
♫ ♫ ♫ ♫ ♫
Arnaldo DeSouteiro, le journaliste américain d'origine brésilienne, m'a fait le grand honneur de me donner ses impressions sur cet album. C'est un immense plaisir pour moi de vous les faire partager:
... Je considère vraiment que "Sunflower" est l'un des 10 meilleurs, des 10 plus branchés et plus parfaits albums jamais parus au catalogue CTI, et aussi l'un des 10 meilleurs projets de Sebesky comme arrangeur, l'une des 10 meilleures sessions de Billy Cobham, et le meilleur album solo de Milt Jackson en tant que leader. "Sunflower" est véritablement parfait en tous points – le fabuleux répertoire, les arrangements sublimes de Don Sebesky, les performances musicales (magnifiques solos de Bags, Hancock et Hubbard, superbe performance de Cobham), le travail d'ingénieur du son (Van Gelder, comme toujours) et les magnifiques photographies de la pochette (K. Abe) et de la couverture (Pete Turner) "conditionnées" avec une extrême sophistication par le directeur artistique de CTI, Bob Ciano. Le tout produit à la perfection par Creed Taylor, bien sûr, qui a conçu l'esthétique de l'album.
Pour l'anecdote personnelle, j'ai eu mon premier exemplaire de "Sunflower" à sa sortie au Brésil début 1973, sous le label Top Tape, basé à Rio de Janeiro (aujourd'hui je possède 3 exemplaires vinyles et 5 ré-éditions CD). À l'époque, c'est-à-dire en 1973, j'avais 9 ans et je commençais à découvrir le catalogue CTI, après avoir passé mon enfance à écouter les albums de straight-ahead et mainstream jazz de la collection des mes parents – d'Art Tatum, Hazel Scott et Teddy Wilson à George Shearing, Art Van Damme et Ella Fitzgerald.
Mes parents m'obligeaient à aller au lit à 22 heures, mais quand j'étais sûr qu'ils dormaient, j'allumais toujours la radio, je la prenais dans mon lit et je l'écoutais tout doucement, tout contre mon oreille. Ma station de radio préférée à cette époque était JB AM qui diffusait deux émissions fabuleuses la nuit : "Noturno" (Nocturne) de 22 heures à minuit, suivie de "TAP Pelos Caminhos do Mundo" (TAP par les Chemins du Monde" – TAP était le sigle d'une compagnie aérienne appelée Transportes Aereos Portugueses, qui parrainait cette émission de radio, diffusée de minuit à 2 heures du matin).
Pendant des années, le générique de "Noturno" a été la version de Quincy Jones de "Jive Samba" par Nat Adderley, à partir de la création de l'émission par le DJ radio Simon Khoury, qui était aussi le directeur musical de la radio JB AM pendant son âge d'or – c'est grâce à leur programmation "normale" que j'ai entendu pour la première fois et découvert de nombreux grands albums par des artistes tels que Airto, Gaya, Tamba Trio, João Donato, Milton Nascimento, Walter Wanderley, Maria Toledo, Sivuca, Milton Banana etc.
Quelques années plus tard, la version de Airto de "Bebê" par Hermeto Pascoal (une piste de l'album "Natural Feelings" de Airto), est devenue le générique de "Noturno", quand un autre grand artiste de la radio, Luiz Carlos Saroldi, a pris les commandes de l'émission. À cette époque j'étais déjà adolescent, et j'ai commencé à participer à l'émission, non seulement en prêtant des disques, mais aussi en y amenant des artistes tels que Luiz Bonfá, Eumir Deodato, Mark Murphy, Steve Swallow, Tania Maria et bien d'autres pour des interviews.
Le dimanche, "Noturno" avait une édition spéciale, appelée "Noturno Jazz & Blues", programmée et présentée par Celio Alzer. Leur générique était "Fables of Faubus" par Charlie Mingus, et j'ai fini par participer aussi à ces soirées du dimanche. Le soir où j'ai présenté "Tempest In the Colosseum" par VSOP (ce fabuleux double album était sorti seulement au Japon et je l'avais reçu en cadeau de Flora Purim) a été un événement !
Et le générique de "TAP Pelos Caminhos do Mundo" était la magnifique ballade "For Someone I Loved" par Milt Jackson, la première piste de "Sunflower". Bien sûr ils n'utilisaient que l'intro, le solo de guitare acoustique de Jay Berliner, en terminant par un fondu après les premières notes de la mélodie par Freddie Hubbard. C'est ainsi que j'ai créé un lien très personnel et émotionnel avec cet air, qui reste l'un des mes préférés entre tous.
Du point de vue de l'historien du jazz et du collectionneur de CTI, je dois dire que, outre l'album vinyle original, les ré-éditions CD "indispensables" de "Sunflower" sont celles sorties en 1997 par Sony Legacy (ZK 65131) et en 2009 par King Records (KICJ 98519).
L'édition digipack ZK 65131 a été produite par un de mes amis, le producteur Didier Deutsch, basé à New York, et entièrement remixée par Danny Kadar qui, à la demande de Didier, a reconstruit les titres originaux / complets, allongeant la durée de certaines pistes auxquelles Van Gelder avait appliqué un "fondu", à la demande de Creed Taylor, sur l'album d'origine. Ce faisant, Deutsch & Kadar ont restitué les orchestrations de Sebesky telles qu'il les avait conçues à l'origine. La piste titre, "Sunflower", par exemple, atteint 10 min. 01 sec. alors que la version mixée par Van Gelder pour l'album original se terminait à 08 min. 49 sec. Il est encore plus intéressant d'écouter la performance de Jay Berliner tout au long de "For Someone I Love", car Creed Taylor – dans le mixage de l'album d'origine – avait décidé d'utiliser la nuance espagnole apportée par la guitare acoustique de Berliner seulement dans l'intro, demandant à Van Gelder d'atténuer la piste de la guitare au moment où le reste du groupe se met à jouer. Il y a également une piste bonus enregistrée par Milt avec seulement la section rythme, "SKJ", un blues que Taylor avait mis de côté pour le second album de Milt chez CTI, "Goodbye".
La ré-édition SHM-CD KICJ 98519, sortie uniquement au Japon, a été produite par Taylor lui-même et brillamment remasterisée par Van Gelder avec seulement les bandes de son mixage original, mais en élargissant l'étendue sonore pour rendre le son plus éclatant et plus fort, et faire ressortir TOUT le talent des musiciens présents, ce qui permet à l'auditeur de remarquer de nombreux détails "cachés" dans les albums gravés en 1973, 1979, et 1981 ainsi que dans toutes les autres éditions CD précédentes. Le son pur des cordes, des bois et de la batterie de Cobham (parfois musclé, parfois très subtil) devient particulièrement brillant et envoûtant dans les quatre pistes (pas de "SKJ" cette fois-ci). J'espère que ces commentaires ont pu vous être utiles.
*Arnaldo DeSouteiro (Lettre du 21 mai 2012) Jazz Station - Arnaldo DeSouteiro's Blog
* Merci à Sylvie du forum international: help.berberber.com pour sa traduction
My original text to Alain Manuel follows:
Maybe I made that comment in a previous private message to you. I have written so many times about "Sunflower" (some articles in English, others in Portuguese) that I can't find all of those reviews. Anyway, I really consider "Sunflower" as one of the 10 best, hippest and most perfect albums ever in the CTI catalog, as well as one of Sebesky's best 10 projects as an arranger, one of Billy Cobham's top 10 sessions, and Milt Jackson's best solo album ever as a leader.
"Sunflower" is truly perfect in everything - great repertoire, Don Sebesky's lush arrangements, musical performances (great solos by Bags, Hancock and Hubbard, superb Cobham performance), engineering (Van Gelder, as always) and great liner (K. Abe) and front (Pete Turner) cover pics "packaged" with ultra-sophistication by CTI's art director Bob Ciano. Everything perfectly produced by Creed Taylor, of course, who conceived the album aesthetic.
In a personal note: I got my first copy of "Sunflower" when it was released in Brazil in early 1973 by the Rio de Janeiro-based Top Tape label. (By now, I own 3 vinyl issues and 5 CD reissues) At that time, i.e. back in 1973, I was 9 years old and had just discovered the CTI catalog after having spent most of my childhood listening to straight-ahead and mainstream jazz albums from my parents collection - from Art Tatum, Hazel Scott and Teddy Wilson to George Shearing, Art Van Damme and Ella Fitzgerald.
My parents used to force me to go to bed around 10pm, but, after I was sure they were sleeping, I always turned on the radio and took it to my bed, listening it very low, as closer as possible to my ears. My favorite radio station at that time was JB-AM and they had two fabulous nightly programs: "Noturno" (Nocturne) from 11pm to midnight, and then "TAP Pelos Caminhos do Mundo" (TAP Throught The Ways of the World" - TAP was the sigla of an air-flight company called Transportes Aereos Portugueses, which was the sponsor of that radio show, broadcasted from midnight to 2am.)
For many years, the opening theme of "Noturno" was Quincy Jones' version of Nat Adderley's "Jive Samba," when the program was created by radio DJ Simon Khoury, who also worked as the musical director of the JB-AM radio on is heyday - on their "normal" programming I first heard and became aware of many great albums by such artists as Airto, Gaya, Tamba Trio, João Donato, Milton Nascimento, Walter Wanderley, Maria Toledo, Sivuca, Milton Banana etc.
Some years later, Airto's version of Hermeto Pascoal's "Bebê" (a track from Airto's "Natural Feelings" LP) became the opening theme of the "Noturno," when another great radio entertainner, Luiz Carlos Saroldi, took command of the show. At that time, I was already in my teens, and started to contribute to the radio show, not only by lending records as also by taking such artists as Luiz Bonfá, Eumir Deodato, Mark Murphy, Steve Swallow, Tania Maria and many others to be interviewed there.
On Sundays, "Noturno" had a special edition, called "Noturno Jazz & Blues," programmed & presented by Celio Alzer. Their opening theme was Charles Mingus' "Fables of Faubus," and I eventually also contributed to those Sundays nights. The night I presented VSOP's "Tempest In the Colosseum" (that fabulous 2-LP set had been released only in Japan and I had received hit as a gift from Flora Purim) caused a commotion!
And the opening theme of "TAP Pelos Caminhos do Mundo" was Milt Jackson's gorgeous ballad "For Someone I Loved," the opening track from "Sunflower." Of course they used only Jay Berliner's acoustic guitar solo intro, doing a fade-out after Freddie Hubbard's first statement of the melody. So, I developed an "intimate" and emotional association with that tune, which remains one of my all-time favorites.
In a perspective as a jazz historian and a CTI collector, I must say that, besides the original vinyl LP issue, the "essential" CD reissues of "Sunflower" are the ones released in 1997 by Sony Legacy (ZK 65131) and in 2009 by King Records (KICJ 98519).
The ZK 65131 digipak edition was produced by a dear friend of mine, NY-based producer Didier Deutsch, and entirely remixed by Danny Kadar who, at Didier's request, re-constructed the original/complete charts, expanding the lenght of some tracks that, on the original LP, had been "faded-out" by Van Gelder at Creed Taylor's request. By doing that, Deutsch & Kadar restored Sebesky's orchestrations as they had been originally conceived. The title track, "Sunflower", for example, reaches 10m01s while Van Gelder's mix for the original LP ended on 8m49s. Even more interesting is to listen to Jay Berliner's performing throughout "For Someone I Love," since Creed Taylor - on the original LP mix - had decided to use Berliner's Spanish-tinged acoustic guitar only in the intro, asking Van Gelder to mute the guitar channel when the rest of the band comes in. There's also a bonus track recorded by Milt only with the rhythm section, "SKJ," a blues that Taylor had saved for Milt's second CTI LP, "Goodbye."
The SHM-CD KICJ 98519 reissue, released only in Japan, was produced by Taylor himself and brilliantly remastered by Van Gelder using his original mix tapes, but expanding the sonic range to the point that makes the sound much brighter and louder, and brings out ALL the great musicianship contained within, allowing the listener to notice many details that were "hidden" in the 1973/1979/1981 LP pressings as well as in all other previous CD issues. The clean sound of the strings, woodwinds and of Billy Cobham's drumset (sometimes muscular, sometimes very subtle) becomes specially bright and bewitching in all four tracks (no "SKJ" this time). Hope these comments could be helpful to you.
Thursday, June 7, 2012
DVD of the Month
Chick Corea & Friedrich Gulda: "The Meeting" (Arthaus Musik) 2012
***** (musical performance & sonic quality)
***** (audio & video remastering)
** (DVD art design, because the impact of the front cover pic, on which Corea & Gulda appeared holding hands, was destroyed since they modified it, maybe thinking it was "a gay thing"...Jesus!)
* (data info, since the names of original producers, engineers -- who did a wonderful job -- and photographers are omitted)
Originally released by the Philips label on vinyl LP in 1984 and some years later on LaserDisc (only in Japan) in 1988 -- with 4 tracks and around 55m of music on both formats --, "The Meeting" is finally reissued on DVD with its fabulous content expanded to 150 minutes (that's right, 2 hours and 30 minutes). This happens because, besides the stunning two-piano performances by Chick Corea & Friedrich Gulda, we now have available, for the very first time, the previously unreleased "solo parts" performed separately by the two geniuses on their Steinways during that blessed concert filmed at the Congress Room of the German Museum as part of the Münchner Klaviersommer (Munich Piano Summer Festival) on June 27, 1982.
The 16-page booklet, designed by Arndt WaBnann, includes rare b&w pics (by the uncredited photographer Roland Fischer) and insightful new liner notes by Marcus A. Woelfe printed in English, French and German. Oddly, however, the names of the original producers (Karl-Heinz Hein & Manfred Frei) as well as of the sound engineers (Gottfreid Düren, Peter Kramper, Wilhelm Meister) are also omitted on the DVD. Strange, very strange, and very regrettable too.
[Btw, the same uncredited producers were also responsible for having documented, during that same 1982 Klaviersommer, a few days earlier, on June 24, another memorable meeting, "Chick Corea & Nicolas Economou," released on LP by the Deutsche Grammophon label with classical works by Corea and Béla Barók, and recently reissued on CD, but never available in an official video release, although taped for broadcast on German television.]
Directed by Janos Darvas for Loft Production, the video starts with the late Gulda -- the iconoclastic Austrian virtuoso -- playing several brilliant originals (among them "Aria" and "General Dance," also included on another superb Gulda DVD, "Mozart No End," a compilation of concerts filmed in 1990) plus a highly personal rendition of Mozart's "Sonata For Piano K 330."
Corea's solo set, more cerebral but no less fascinating, consists of three improvisations and a 18-minute long variation on Thelonious Monk's "'Round Midnight" that cannot be compared to any other "version" of that famous jazz standard. But the highlight is really "The Meeting" of Corea & Gulda during 55 minutes of pure magic, when their improvised musical dialogues flow to Frank Churchill/Larry Morey's "Someday My Prince Will Come," Larry Spier's "Put Your Little Foot Right Out" (credited on both the LP and the LD to Miles Davis who, actually, developed a new tune based on it, "Fran-Dance," dedicated in 1958 to his then-wife dancer Francis Taylor Davis), "Poem No. 3" by Austrian pianist Fritz Pauer (a long-time associate of my late friend Art Farmer), and Johannes Brahms' dreamy "Wiegenlied." Pure art; essential and magnificent.
Cover: David S. WARE / Planetary Unknown
Norman GRANZ / Jammin’ the jazz
Tad HERSHORN / Norman et moi
Sergio VESCHI / Red Records
COOPER-MOORE / Musique de (ma) chambre
Darius JONES / Une affaire d’art
Le siècle de Hugues PANASSIÉ (1ère partie)
Ray Anderson Pocket Brass Band, Sweet Chicago Suite, Intuition-Challenge Records 71306 (Intégral Distribution)
Peter Appleyard, The Lost Sessions 1974, Linus 270135 (http://www.linusinternainment.com/)
Dmitry Baevsky, The Composers, Sharp Nine Records 1047-2 (http://www.sharpnine.com/)
Stefano Bollani, Big Band !, Verve 0602527720820 (Universal)
Stefano Bollani / Riccardo Chailly & Gewandhausorchester, Gershwin-Rhapsody in Blue/Piano Concerto in F, Decca 4782739 (Universal)
Brian Carpenter’s Ghost Train Orchestra, Hothouse Stromp, Accurate 5062 (www.accuraterecords.com) François Chassagnite, Chat-ssagnite, Frémeaux & Associés 564 (Socadisc)
Claudio Fasoli / Luca Garlaschelli, Duology, RadioRecords SNJ-BF-025 (http://www.radiosnj.com/)
Etta James, The Dreamer, Verve Forecast 0602527831893 (Universal)
Sal La Rocca, It Could Be the End, Igloo Records 230 (Socadisc)
Keith Loftis, Simply, Loftis, Longtone Music (http://www.keithloftis.com/)
Charles Loos, Secret Laughs, Igloo Records 234 (Socadisc)
Nathalie Loriers New Trio, Les 3 petits singes, De Werf 103 (http://www.dewerf.be/)
Thelonious Monk, The Quintessence - 1947-1959, Frémeaux & Associés 284 (Socadisc)
Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers, The Quintessence - 1947-1959, Frémeaux & Associés 286 (Socadisc)
Horace Silver, The Quintessence - 1952-1959, Frémeaux & Associés 287 (Socadisc)
Jimmy Owens, The Monk Project, IPO 1022 (http://www.iporecordings.com/)
Xavier Richardeau, Back to the Present, Safety Records 201201 (Intégral Distribution)
Gary Smulyan, Smul’s Paradise, Capri 74113-2 (http://www.caprirecords.com/)
Les Jazz Hot d'Or du mois:
Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Live in France 1959, Reelin’ in the Years/Jazz Icons-Mosaic/Ina 2003 (http://www.mosaicrecords.com/)
John Coltrane, Live in France 1965, Reelin’ in the Years/Mosaic/Ina 2001 (http://www.mosaicrecords.com/)
Thelonious Monk, Live in France ’69, Reelin’ in the Years/Jazz Icons-Mosaic/Ina 2002 (http://www.mosaicrecords.com/)
Johnny Griffin, Live in France 1971, Reelin’ in the Years/Jazz Icons-Mosaic/Ina 2004 (http://www.mosaicrecords.com/)
Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Live in France 1972, Reelin’ in the Years/Mosaic/Ina 2006 (http://www.mosaicrecords.com/)
Freddie Hubbard, Live in France 1973, Reelin’ in the Years/Jazz Icons-Mosaic/Ina 2005 (http://www.mosaicrecords.com/)
DVD Compilation of the Month
"Acoustic Africa" (MELT 2000)
Rare unreleased live footage of great African artists. A surprising journey to exotic sonic landscapes.
Directed & Edited by Lianne Cox
Executive Producer: Robert Trunz
Recorded, Mixed & Mastered by Chris Lewis
Assistant Engineer: Kholofelo Sewale
Projection & Lights: Vernon Pendlebury
Packaging: Nicholas P. Hauser
Liner Notes by Robert Trunz, Greg Georgiades & Dinga Sikwebu
Featuring: Madala Kunene, Greg Georgiades, Ashish Joshi, LAP (Live African Percussion), Bernard Mindaweni, Mabi Thobejane, Carlo Mombelli & The Prisoners of Strange, Ernest Mothle, Thongo & His African Band et al.
An excerpt from Trunz' liner notes:
South Africa has too few festivals and musical events dedicated to showcasing the vast variety of traditional, world and jazz music the country has to offer. As a label, we at MELT 2000 strongly supported and promoted different facets of music and artist collaborations since the birth of the new democratic South Africa in 1994. It was back in 1997 when Pascal Letellier on behalf of the French city of Nantes showcased the most elaborate representation of South African culture - an event so beautiful that participating artists themselves were surprised to experience the rich variety of their own Rainbow nation's heritage. With the help of Pascal we recorded and filmed many of the participating acts. Material from Amampondo, Moses Taiwa Molelekwa, Busi Mhlongo and Madala Kunene that has now found its way onto DVD releases.
Exactly seven years later my friend Ananda introduced me to another Frenchman, Jean Bourdin (then director of the Alliance Francaise in Pretoria) who told me of his plans for a small, intimate festival sponsored by the Alliance and the IFAS (Institut Français d'Afrique du Sud). I immediately asked him if I could make some additional programme suggestions and expressed my wish to record and film the event.
Jean's musical program found form in the 2004 Fort West Village Heritage & Cultural Festival which was built around four musicians born or raised in Tshwane (Pretoria). These are Ernest Mothle, Carlo Mombelli and the two artists to whom this DVD is dedicated, Greg Hadjiyorki Georgiades and Madala Kunene. And yet despite their common roots, the diversity of their musical influences and inspirations is awesome. The team gathered with cameras and stacks of recording gear, some of which was flown in from London by Chris Lewis - a man whose expertise with acoustic music I certainly did not want to miss. Another journey and a new era of collaborations had begun. Watch this space.
CD Compilation of the Month
"Sanscapes V.2" (MELT 2000)
Compiled by Phil Meadley
Executive Producer: Robert Trunz
Liner Notes by Pops Mohamed & Phil Meadley
Photos: Lianne Cox
Mastered by Chris Lewis @ Heathside Nautillus Room
The proceeds from the publishing royalties of this CD go to the participating San families from the various corridors in Gobabis (Namibia) who contributed to the original recordings used for the remixes included on this album, and to the head organisation WIMSA and the Omaheka San Trust that operated locally to improve their education, health, and creating jobs and shelter. Contact: email@example.com
A collection of remixes from songs originally released on the album "Bushmen of the Kalahari."
Featuring Anna Goute, Dave Harrow, Ben Atmo, Gabi Le Roux, U-Cef, Jung Collective, Allan Gubby, Mario Cee, Greg Hunter, Kamel Nitrate, Tony Marrisson, Nelson Dilation, System 7, Silk T, Mandragora, Mat Buggins, Thembelani Pinana, Jacques "Judah" Herman, Simon Williams, Geir Jenssan et al.
Tonight, Kitchen 305 Presents "Thursdays For Jazz" @ Newport Beachside Resort (16701 Collins Ave, North Miami Beach, FL)! Live Performance by Maria Rivas & her band with a unique blend of American jazz and latin music. From 7:30pm to 10pm.
Reward your good taste & prepare for the weekend with great jazz, wine, food & cocktails. Many thanks to my dear friends Hannah Becker & Saul Rodriguez for the invitation. And you may attend every Thursday because Maria's show is never the same! U go, girl! RSVP: (305) 749-2110
Wednesday, June 6, 2012
CD Reissue of the Month
Quincy Jones: "Originals - Songs for Pussycats / Quincy in Rio" (Mercury) 2012
Original sessions produced & conducted by Quincy Jones
Arranged by Bobby Scott (uncredited) & Quincy Jones
Compilation produced by Matthias Künnecke
Featuring: Bobby Scott, Luiz Bonfá, Ray Brown, Grady Tate, Jim Hall, Phil Woods, Zoot Sims, Clark Terry, Rudy Collins, José Paulo, Chris White, Cancho Gomez, Jack del Rio et al.
Vocal CD of the Month
Sandy Patton & Thomas Dürst: "Painting Jazz Vol. II" (Unit) 2012
Rating: ***** (musical performance & sonic quality)
Produced by Sandy Patton & Thomas Dürst
Executive Producer: Peter Bürli (DRS 2)
Recorded May 15 & 16, 2011 @ Hardstudios, Switzerland
Engineered (recording, mixing & mastering) by Ron Kurz
Photos: Doris Kuert (Fotozone)
Graphic Design: Stefanie Nguyen
Certainly the best North American jazz singer currently based in Europe. And arguably the best female jazz singer in the world, in the tradition of Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Betty Carter and other performers forged in the bebop area of phenomenal scat-singing skills. A tradition that Sandy Patton updates throughout this brilliant album, the second in a duo setting with Switzerland's top jazz bassist, Thomas Dürst, who also happens to be a member of trumpeter Peter Schärli's group.
She puts her personal stamp, gorgeous warm voice and astonishing phrasing in service of such incredible tunes like Rahsaan Roland Kirk's "Serenade To A Cuckoo" (she added lyrics to a tune I love since my childhood, when I heard Kirk's live version on the "Kirkatron" LP partly recorded at the Montreux Jazz Festival for Warner), Hank Mobley's "No Room For Squares," and even Erik Satie's "Gymnopedie No.1." There are also two medleys -- James Moody/Eddie Jefferson's "Moody's Mood" connected with the song that inspired it, Jimmy McHugh's "I'm in the Mood For Love," and Hugo Friedhofer's "Boy on a Dolphin" attached to Herbie Hancock's "Dolphin Dance" --, a surprising take on Astor Piazzolla's nuevo-tango classic "Libertango," and 5 originals by Patton and 3 by Dürst. I'll consider a miracle if a better vocal jazz album comes out in 2012.
Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Dan Cray: "Meridies" (Origin) 2012
Rating: ***** (musical performance & sonic quality)
Freddie Hubbard - 54 Years in 54 Minutes (fantastic! including reminiscences from his CTI years)
ESU Welcomes the Zoot Sims Collection
Remembering Zoot, Al Cohn and the NYC Loft Scene
To Russia, Without Love
Reflections on "If I'm Lucky" by Zoot Sims
Phil in the Gap (by Phil Woods)
A Note from the Collection Coordinator (by Bob Bush)
From the Academy (by Patrick Dorian)
Insights from the Jazz Life, Part 3 (by David Liebman)
Kenny Garrett -- Saxophonist Kenny Garrett is back with Seeds From The Underground, a studio album of acoustic jazz. It's his first studio album in six years, and it contains 10 original compositions.
The Fringe -- The trio - consisting of saxophonist George Garzone, bassist John Lockwood and drummer Bob Gullotti - is celebrating its 40th anniversary. The Fringe is an institution in the Boston area, released several recordings, and they've toured Portugal. Over the course of his long career as an educator, Garzone has mentored many artists who are now famous, including Branford Marsalis, Donny McCaslin, Antonio Sanchez, Marcus Strickland and Luciana Souza.
Ralph Peterson -- DownBeat catches up with the drummer, trumpeter and composer, who has an album coming out in May. Peterson plays in several groups, including the Unity Project, the Fo'tet, a sextet, a trio, and an electric band called Direct Current.
Grégoire Maret -- The harmonica player, who was a member of the Pat Metheny Group, will release his long-awaited, self-titled debut on March 13. His guests include harmonica virtuoso Toots Thielemans (90 years of musical excellence), bassist Marcus Miller and vocalist Cassandra Wilson.
Special Section: 35th Annual Student Music Awards -- DownBeat's annual celebration of music education will include profiles of student musicians, as well as features on these exemplary educators:
* Hall of Fame: Steve Zegree of Western Michigan University
* Jazz Education Achievement Award: Mary Jo Papich and Lou Fischer of JEN
* Jazz Education Achievement Award: Christopher Dorsey of Dillard High School Center of the Arts
Special Section: Indie Life -- DownBeat profiles independent artists and labels who are creating great music and figuring out creative ways to get their music out to fans:
* Saxophonist Hailey Niswanger
* Saxophonist and oboist Evan Cobb
* Smalls Records, the NYC label run by Luke Kaven
Scott Tixier (violin)
Mike LeDonne (piano/organ)
Kresten Osgood (drums)
Tom Kennedy (bass)
BLINDFOLD TEST- Mats Gustafsson
* The Jazz Bakery's permanent home
* AUM Fidelity's 15th Anniversary
* Guitarist Julian Lage
* Caught: Bass Fest, Jazz en Rafale, Quebec; Vossa Jazz in Norway; Darcy James Argue's Secret Society
Master Class: saxophonist Dan Wilensky: "Style Hopping"
Transcription: Seamus Blake tenor saxophone solo
* Avid Pro Tools X
* Zildjian K Constantinople cymbals
* P. Mauriat 655 and 700 series trumpets
* Ted Klum saxophone mouthpieces
* Cooperstands guitar stands GEAR BOX
* Toca Traditional series congas/bongos
* Hamilton (DANSR) System X horn stands
* Pro-Mark Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez signature stick
* The Realist Docking Station bass pickup volume attenuator by David Gage/NS Design
* Alfred Publishing's Jazz Real Book: Essential Jazz Standards
* Gator Cases Tablet/Mix bag
JAZZ ON CAMPUS
University of Louisville Jazz Festival with Eddie Gomez workshops
REVIEWS - Hot Box:
Ahmad Jamal, Blue Moon (Jazz Village)
Marlene Rosenberg Quartet, Bassprint (Origin)
Ted Nash, The Creep (Plastic Sax)
Jeff Hamilton Trio, Red Sparkle (Capri)
Floratone, Floratone II (Savoy)
Brian Charette, Music For Organ Sextette (SteepleChase)
Steve Lehman Trio, Dialect Fluorescent (Pi)
Mary Halvorson, Bending Bridges (Firehouse 12)
Mary Stallings, Don't Look Back (HighNote)
Jon Gold, Bossa Of Possibility (BluJazz)
Linda Oh, Initial Here (Greenleaf)
Chicago Underground Trio, Age Of Energy (Northern Spy)
Darius Jones Quartet, Book Of Mae'bul (Another Kind Of Sunrise) (AUM Fidelity)
John Benitez, Purpose (Seed)
Joel Harrison, Search (Sunnyside) combined w/ Joel Harrison, Holy Abyss (Cuneiform)
Erik Charlston JazzBrasil, Essentially Hermeto (Sunnyside)
Jerome Sabbagh, Plugged In (Bee Jazz)
Fredrik Kronkvist, New York Elements (Connective)
Eric Alexander & Vincent Herring, Friendly Fire (HighNote)
Josh Ginsburg, Zembla Variations (Brooklyn Jazz Underground)
Jakob Bro, Time (Loveland)
Kat Edmonson, Way Down Low (Spinnerette) w/Melissa Stylianou, Silent Movie (Anzic)
Carmen Lundy, Changes (Afrasia)
Ehud Asherie, Upper West Side (Posi-Tone)
Michael Veal & Aqua Ife, Volume 1 (NKCD), combined w/Michael Veal, Anyscape (NKCD)
Eri Yamamoto Trio, The Next Page (AUM Fidelity)
Sidi Touré, Koima (Thrill Jockey)
Charles Gayle Trio, Streets (Northern Spy)
Jeff Parker Trio, Bright Light In Winter (Delmark)
Michael Gibbs and the NDR BigBand, Back In The Days (Cuneiform)
Pete Christlieb & Linda Small, Tall & Small (Bosco)
Barry Guy London Jazz Composers Orchestra, Harmos: Live At Schaffhausen (Inakt)
Fred Ho & Quincy Saul, Present The Music Of Cal Massey: A Tribute (Mutable)
Michael Treni Big Band, Boy's Night Out (Bell Production)
Sammy Nestico Orchestra, On The Sammy Side Of The Street (SN Publishing)
Bob Lark And His Alumni Big Band, Reunion (Jazzed Media)
Luca Giordano, My Kind Of Blues (Audacia)
Lisa Mills, Tempered In Fire (Really 'n' Truly)
Layla Zoe, Sleep Little Girl (Cable Car)
Ramon Goose, Uptown Blues (Blues Boulevard)
Tiny Legs Tim, One Man Blues (TLT Productions)
The Blues Band, Few Short Lines (Repertoire)
Chris Brown, Iconicities (New World)
Anna Clyne, Blue Moth (Tzadik)
Galina Ustvolskaya, Composition No. 2 "Dies Irae" et. al (Wergo)
Claire Chase, Terrestre (New Focus)
Toshio Hosokawa, Landscapes (ECM)
George Duke, The Complete 1970s Epic Albums Collection (Legacy)
Robin Kelley, Africa Speaks, America Answers: Modern Jazz In Revolutionary Times (Harvard University Press), combined w/Steven Feld, Jazz Cosmopolitanism In Accra: Five Musical Years in Ghana (Duke University Press)