In Memoriam. Horace Parlan RIP. We’ve lost another great jazzman. Horace Parlan died on Thursday evening peacefully in his sleep in Denmark where he lived since 1973. By adding guitarist Grant Green and tenor saxophonist Booker Ervin to his standard rhythm section of bassist George Tucker and drummer Al Harewood, pianist Horace Parlan opens up his sound and brings it closer to soul-jazz on Up and Down. Green's clean, graceful style meshes well with Parlan's relaxed technique, while Ervin's robust tone and virile attack provides a good contrast to the laid-back groove the rhythm section lays down.
In 1980, Brazil still held some semblance of a military government. Public life was, in some ways free, although one could be sure that the eyes and ears of Big Brother were always near. Strong notions of machismo prevented women from assuming positions of societal power or influence. And the carioca singer, Joyce Silveira Palhano de Jesus released Feminina. The album’s creation was no act of innocence. Joyce’s music had been censored amid Brazil’s tense political situation through out the 1970’s; forcing her to record offshore in Italy and New York.
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.
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.
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.
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".
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".
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.