This long-out-of-print CD has finally been reissued and it's a must-have for Phil Woods fans, or for anyone interested in an excellent example of post-Parker be-bop saxophone. The sound quality is excellent, the rhythm section is very competent and Phil is at the top of his game on a nice mix of standards and originals. It's easy to see why he has been the benchmark for jazz alto for decades. His swing and inventiveness are nicely showcased as he eases his way through the list of tunes. If one were to buy one or two CD's that best show Phil Woods' ability to create meaningful jazz, this one would have to be high on the list for consideration. Don't miss it!
In 1970, when Inner City Records was just getting off the ground, Phil Woods was in Europe enjoying himself, and collaborating with musicians who were definitely feeling the spell of the Miles Davis groundbreaking jazz fusion epic Bitches Brew. While always a staunch straight-ahead bebop player, Woods decided to mix it up a bit and incorporate elements of funk, rock, and free improvisation, much to the likely chagrin of his listeners. In fact, a vitriolic letter printed on the back cover from an unidentified fan residing in Chicopee Falls, MA, rips Woods for abandoning melody, criticizes his titles, and actually threatens him with physical violence should he ever show up in his town.
Verve 60th Anniversary Rare Albums SHM-CD Reissue Series. Reissue with SHM-CD format. Hip and groovy work from Phil – very different than both his earlier bop-heavy sides, and his freer European recordings – recorded with some great backings by Johnny Pate, the excellent Chicago soul arranger who also did some great soundtrack work! Pate's come up with some tight short tracks that have a nice groovy late 60s Verve feel – over which Woods solos angularly on alto, working amidst woodwinds by Jerome Richardson and Jerry Dodgion, piano by Herbie Hancock, trumpet by Thad Jones, and some light strings that trickle in and out from time to time.
Reissue features the latest digital remastering and the high-fidelity SHM-CD format (compatible with standard CD player) and the latest DSD / HR Cutting remastering. Comes with a description. Features the original LP designs. Early work by one of the greatest voices on the alto sax in the 1950s – a player who worked with the deftness of other altoists of his generation, but a depth of soul usually reserved for the tenor! The setting is simple and perfect – as Phil Woods blows at the helm of a quartet that features John Williams on piano, Teddy Kotick on bass, and Nick Stabulas on drums – players who know how to get things moving, but allow plenty of room for the leader to fill space with his solos! Even at this early date, Woods' command of his instrument is amazing – and the record is easily one of the greatest introductions to his work you'll ever find. Titles include "Strollin With Pam", "Be My Love", "Slow Boat To China", "Woodlore", and "Falling In Love All Over Again".
For this 1990 set by Phil Woods' Quintet, the altoist welcomed trombonist Hal Crook to his group, joining several longtime members: pianist Hal Galper, bassist Steve Gilmore and drummer Bill Goodwin. Galper's melancholy ballad "Gotham Serenade" and Crook's modal blues "Ixtlan" on this CD contrast with Woods' three originals: "All Bird's Children," the upbeat "My Man Benny" (for Benny Carter) and an enthusiastic "Ole Dude." The quintet's treatments of three standards (all arranged by Crook) practically disguise the tunes, and a particular highlight is the group's version of Benny Carter's "Just a Mood," which pits Woods' clarinet with Crook's wah-wah trombone. A highly enjoyable outing.
An eight hour DVD featuring Phil Collins' performance from Paris that formed part of the Final Farewell Tour. The 2-DVD set not only includes the live performances, but is also jam-packed with 22 promotional music video clips from the singles played during the concert. In fact-music videos from of his Billboard #1Singles are here: "Against All Odds," "One More Night," "Separate Lives," "Sussudio," "A Groovy Kind of Love," "Another Day in Paradise," and "Two Hearts." And if that isn't enough, the DVD also features backstage and documentary footage plus a photo gallery.
Reissue with the latest remastering. Comes with liner notes. George Benson's first LP for Columbia – a hard, heavy, soul jazz slammer that bears no resemblance to his overproduced work of the 70s! The album's a real cooker – recorded hot on the heels of Benson's classic work on Prestige with the Jack McDuff group, and sounding a lot like McDuff's hard wailing organ jazz of the same time. George is working with a group that features a young Lonnie Smith on organ, plus Blue Mitchell on trumpet, Ronnie Cuber on sax, and Charlie Persip on drums – all tightly coming together, and jamming hard on the album's short cooking tracks. Tracks include "Clockwise", "Jaguar", "Hello Birdie", and "Bullfight". Plus, the CD adds five bonus tracks, including "Sideman", "Minor Chant", and the previously unreleased "J.H. Bossa Nova" and "Clockwise (Alternate Take)".
This was one of the great touring and recording bands of the 1980s, Harrell and Woods inspiring each other and the rhythm section inquiring and swinging. Woods didn't need to change anything about his own style, but it blossoms anew in counterpoint with Harrell's lyrical fire, and each album is handsomely programmed and delivered … Flash, the final album with Harrell (who has since been replaced by Hal Crook as the front-line horn), has the edge of some outstanding composing by the trumpeter – "Weaver" and "Rado" are particularly sound vehicles – and Crook's extra tones on a few tracks.
Reissue with the latest 2015 remastering. Comes with liner notes. Nicely sharp sounds from the great JJ Johnson – a set that has the trombonist really honing his edge on a host of tight, short tracks – with a vibe that almost recalls his initial bop recordings on Blue Note and Prestige! The style here is a bit more sophisticated – definitely with an ear towards the modern directions that JJ was exploring in the 50s – but the sound is also nicely spontaneous, with more focus on improvisation between group members than larger arrangements – quite nice, given that the group features excellent tenor from Bobby Jaspar on tenor – and either Tommy Flanagan or Hank Jones on piano, Percy Heath or Wilbur Little on bass, and Elvin Jones on drums. Tracks are short, and titles include "Overdrive", "Cube Steak", "Chasin The Bird", and "Solar".