The recording of this concert, not released until 1973 and only in Japan, took place on April 10, 1970 at the Carousel Ballroom, where Bill Graham, the legendary west coast impresario of psychedelic rock, had moved his Fillmore Auditorium in 1968. Steve Grossman, who replaced Wayne Shorter, used only the soprano saxophone, an instrument more capable than the tenor of penetrating the wall of sound produced by the decidedly free and powerful rhythm section, which was pervaded by the electronic effects created by Chick Corea’s electric piano. On its first release, the four sides were simply titled “Black Beauty Part 1,” “Part 2,” etc.
A striking little set from vibesman Freddie McCoy – not just for the cool superhero image on the front cover, but also for the tight grooves underneath! The album's one of McCoy's most unified for Prestige – as all tracks feature a core quartet with Freddie on vibes, Charlie Wilson on piano, Steve Davis on bass, and Rudy Lawless on drums – not your usual Prestige players, and all musicians who really make the album sparkle! There's a bold soul jazz vibe running through the set – similar to some of Freddie's other work, but a bit more open too – and titles include a groovy take on "Girl From Ipanema", plus the soul jazz classics "Speak Out, Deagan!" and "Hav' Mercy" – as well as the cuts "Yesterdays" and "Spider Man".
Shortly after leaving Count Basie's Orchestra, tenor saxophonist Frank Foster led this quintet set for Prestige. Foster shows off the influence of John Coltrane (as opposed to his earlier cool-toned style) and matches well with the occasionally fiery trumpet of Virgil Jones, pianist Albert Dailey, bassist Bob Cunningham and drummer Alan Dawson. In addition to Fats Waller's "Jitterbug Waltz," Foster performs five originals, some of which (like "Raunchy Rita") fall into the area of funky hard bop. Spirited music.
Five of the six selections on this CD reissue feature drummer Art Taylor in an all-star sextet of mostly young players comprised of trumpeter Donald Byrd, altoist Jackie McLean, Charlie Rouse on tenor, pianist Ray Bryant, and bassist Wendell Marshall. Among the highpoints of the 1957 hard bop date are the original version of Bryant's popular "Cubano Chant" and strong renditions of two Thelonious Monk tunes ("Off Minor" and "Well, You Needn't") cut just prior to the pianist/composer's discovery by the jazz public. Bryant is the most mature of the soloists, but the three horn players were already starting to develop their own highly individual sounds. The remaining track (a version of Jimmy Heath's "C.T.A.") is played by the quartet of Taylor, tenor saxophonist John Coltrane, pianist Red Garland, and bassist Paul Chambers and is a leftover (although a good one) from another session.
Big Ones serves up the hits and nothing but the hits; Aerosmith's excellent debut for Geffen, Done with Mirrors, is conveniently overlooked. So what's left is some of the finest mainstream hard rock of the late '80s and early '90s – the fruits of one of the most remarkable comebacks in rock & roll history. Unfortunately, there's precious little of the classic Aerosmith raunch; in fact, the two new tracks are the hardest, slinkiest tracks here.
The Hot Dogs were a Memphis group who recorded for Stax offshoot Ardent Records in the early- to mid-'70s. Ardent was also Big Star's label and studio during this time period, and the Hot Dogs were a similar band in many respects, drawing on the same mix of Beatlesque guitars and harmonies, although without the skewed, edgy deconstructive feel that made Big Star so distinctive and posthumously revered.
Lionel Hampton was the first jazz vibraphonist and was one of the jazz giants beginning in the mid-'30s. He has achieved the difficult feat of being musically open-minded (even recording "Giant Steps") without changing his basic swing style. Hamp started out as a drummer, playing with the Chicago Defender Newsboys' Band as a youth. His original idol was Jimmy Bertrand, a '20s drummer who occasionally played xylophone. Hampton played on the West Coast with such groups as Curtis Mosby's Blue Blowers, Reb Spikes, and Paul Howard's Quality Serenaders (with whom he made his recording debut in 1929) before joining Les Hite's band, which for a period accompanied Louis Armstrong.
Features the latest remastering and an original cover artwork. Includes a description written in Japanese and bonus track(s). The Brecker Brothers (tenor saxophonist Mike and trumpeter Randy) join pianist Hal Galper, bassist Wayne Dockery, and drummer Bob Moses for a set of high-quality modern hard bebop. The Breckers spent much of the 1970s in the studios, so this LP (not yet reissued on CD) gave one a rare opportunity to hear them during the era playing in a noncommercial setting.
Features 2013 digital remastering. Comes with lyrics and a description. Very nice early work by Keith Jarrett – and very different than his later albums for ECM! This set is pretty loose and spiritual at times – and has Keith playing a variety of instruments, from piano, to guitar, to soprano sax, organ, and percussion – as well as singing, which he does in kind of a hip, bluesy, jazz-based style. The songs have actual lyrics, not scatting bits, and the feel here is almost folk rock inflected with jazz – which makes for a very interesting mix, and some really great songs that would appeal to those who like the left end of the folk/rock/jazz continuum of the late 60s. Includes the funky "All Right", plus "Restoration Ruin", "Have A Real Time", "Wonders", "You're Fortunate", and "Where Are You Going".