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Lovely Day: Aretha, Sly, Andy, Marvin and Billie Headline “The Brazil Connection”

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Brazil ConnectionWell, summer is officially upon us! Already there’s talk about which songs will be anointed the perfect summer jams for 2014 – songs by artists like Ariana Grande, Iggy Azalea and the ubiquitous Pharrell Williams. If those names don’t set your pulse racing, however, Legacy Recordings has an alternative that’s bound to conjure up images of tropical sunsets, refreshing drinks and summer breeze. Studio Rio Presents The Brazil Connection makes over 12 pop classics from the Sony vaults by melding the original vocals with new bossa nova and samba arrangements written and/or played by some of Brazil’s top musicians including Torcuato Mariano, Paulo Braga, and bossa legends Marcos Valle and Roberto Menescal. The artists represent a cross-section of genres such as R&B (Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye) to jazz (Billie Holiday, Dave Brubeck and Carmen McRae), and traditional pop (Andy Williams, Mel Torme). The Brazil Connection arrives in stores today, just in time to coincide with the 2014 World Cup being held in Brazil.

Producers Frank and Christian Berman’s Studio Rio aggregation is successful in retaining an organic sound for most of these familiar recordings in their new, chill Brazilian settings. One can fairly question the practice of grafting new productions around vintage tracks – especially from deceased artists, whether Williams, Holiday, Gaye or Brubeck, just to name a few – but these Rio de Janeiro-made recordings are fun, tasteful and faithful to the spirit, if not the style, of the originals.

Most radical – and one of the album’s undisputed highlights – is the transformation of Sly and the Family Stone’s 1971 chart-topper “Family Affair” from lean, dark funk to soft and sensual tropicalia. Gone are the electric piano, bass and early drum machine; in their place is a lush and mellow complement of guitar, piano, bass, drums, flugelhorn, tenor and alto saxophones and trombone. The Isley Brothers’ “It’s Your Thing” and Marvin Gaye’s “Sexual Healing” both get rousing, lively reinventions from co-arrangers Mariano and The Berman Brothers. (“It’s Your Thing” is also featured on Sony’s official World Cup 2014 album, One Love, One Rhythm.) Another R&B great, Bill Withers, sees his 1977 “Lovely Day” shorn of its sleek R&B rhythm and replaced with a brassy yet contemporary Brazilian groove. One misses the iconic original backing of Johnny Nash’s 1972 No. 1 hit “I Can See Clearly Now,” though the new, cheerful backing is a perfect match for the song’s lyrical sentiments.

Unsurprisingly, Aretha Franklin’s 1964 recording of Burt Bacharach and Hal David’s “Walk on By” lends itself well to the treatment here. One of the Queen of Soul’s Columbia tracks that most anticipates her soulful direction at the Atlantic label, “Walk on By” thrives in Roberto Menescal’s alluring arrangement, as Latin rhythms are in the DNA of a Bacharach melody. Similarly, Mel Torme’s 1965 rendition of Cole Porter’s “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” is a natural for Studio Rio, with arranger Mario Adnet seemingly channeling Claus Ogerman’s work on the seminal Sinatra/Jobim collaboration between another great American singer and Brazil’s answer to George Gershwin. Marcos Valle turns in a fun chart (and also plays Fender Rhodes) on Andy Williams’ hard-swinging “Music to Watch Girls By.” Williams was no stranger to Valle’s music, making this a particularly inspired choice. Roberto Menescal joins Valle on guitar for this upbeat samba.

We have more after the jump – including the complete track listing and order links!   Read the rest of this entry »

Cherry Red’s él Heads to the Sixties for Pop Art, Bossa Nova, and Singing Celebs

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Pop Goes the Easel

What made the swinging sixties swing?  Cherry Red’s él label continues to explore the various corners of early 1960s pop music with a trio of releases that, in large part, offer answers to that very question.  Pop Goes the Easel: The Start of the Swinging Sixties takes its name from maverick director Ken Russell’s 1962 documentary film, and over two eclectic CDs, boasts 65 tracks from thirteen different films and television programs.  Artists range from Buddy Holly to Anthony Newley.  A fine companion disc is Bowler Hats and Leather Boots: Personalities Go Pop Art.  If Pop Goes the Easel shows how music infiltrated cinema, Bowler Hats shows how silver-screen personalities infiltrated music.  Hence, you’ll hear songs from such offbeat singing stars as Oliver Reed, Anthony Perkins and even Orson Welles.  Lastly, Modernism and Bossa Nova offers a heaping helping of songs with lyrics by the poet Vinicius de Moraes, frequent collaborator of Antonio Carlos Jobim and the co-writer of “The Girl from Ipanema.”  The 29 tracks on this anthology laid the foundation of bossa nova, which set the musical tone for countless swinging bachelor pads!

Ken Russell’s BBC documentary Pop Goes the Easel introduced the British public to four “pop artists” –Peter Philips, Pauline Boty, Derek Boshier and future Sgt. Pepper cover artist Peter Blake.  Pop Goes the Easel: The Start of the Swinging Sixties looks at the musical soundtracks to many of the films and television shows that bade farewell to the 1950s and ushered in the 1960s.  James Darren, Buddy Holly and Clay Cole tunes populated Russell’s film.  For 1959’s Elvis-inspired Idle on Parade (also known as Idol on Parade), Anthony Newley played the titular idol and supplied songs with titles like “Sat’day Night Rock-a-Boogie” and “Idle Rock-a-Boogie.”  1962’s drama All Night Long was a hip jazz take on Shakespeare’s Othello, and its soundtrack (included here in full) featured performances from Dave Brubeck, Charles Mingus and John Dankworth.  The same year, Play It Cool starred real-life pop idol Billy Fury; five songs are heard here from its soundtrack including Fury’s hit “Once Upon a Dream.”

Future A Hard Day’s Night director Richard Lester helmed It’s Trad, Dad! from that pivotal year of 1962, a youth-oriented comedy about two teens fighting the local establishment over their right to enjoy the new jazz!  Stars Helen Shapiro and Craig Douglas are heard on the soundtrack here, performing their own songs from the film.  Chubby Checker, Gene McDaniels, Del Shannon and The Paris Sisters are also featured.  On the television side, Pop Goes the Easel features songs heard in The Avengers and The Prisoner.  This slipcased anthology also features early works from composers John Barry (“The Lolly Theme,” from The Amorous Prawn) and Lionel Bart (“Sparrows Can’t Sing,” from Joan Littlewood’s movie of the same name).

After the jump, we’ll dive into Bowler Hat and Leather Boots: Personalities Go Pop Art and Modernism and Bossa Nova.  Plus: full track listings and order links for all three titles! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

March 13, 2014 at 13:17

Review: Tony Bennett and Dave Brubeck, “Bennett/Brubeck: The White House Sessions, Live 1962”

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Bennett Brubeck - LiveIt was a Tuesday afternoon in Camelot when giants met.

These giants weren’t the types who resided in the clouds atop beanstalks, of course.  These were giants of a decidedly more earthy variety.  It was at the behest of John F. Kennedy’s White House that Tony Bennett and Dave Brubeck came together.  On August 28, 1962, they shared a bill at the base of the Washington Monument as a parting gift to an audience of college-age interns who had served that summer in the nation’s capital.  Following two individual sets – Brubeck’s as a member of his storied Quartet, and Bennett’s fronting Ralph Sharon’s trio – the singer and the pianist teamed up for the first time.  (Their second and final performance together didn’t arrive until 47 years later, in 2009.) Though the concert was recorded by a prescient Columbia Records, only one song – Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer’s “That Old Black Magic” – had ever been released.  The tapes were thought lost.  And then, late in 2012, they surfaced.  And now, Columbia, Legacy and RPM Records have released this titanic summit as Bennett/Brubeck: The White House Sessions, Live 1962 (88883 71804 2).  It doesn’t disappoint.

The pairing might have sounded odd on paper.  Brubeck, who hailed from California, studied with Darius Milhaud, who also counted Burt Bacharach among his students, and established himself as one of the most original voices in jazz.  The avuncular Brubeck could make the most experimental time signatures seem accessible, and his Quartet – with Joe Morello on drums, Eugene Wright on bass and Paul Desmond on alto saxophone – wedded commercial and artistic success.  Bennett, on the other hand, was an Astoria boy who, as he’s fond of joking, was one of the original American idols.  An amateur contest winner and onetime singing waiter, Bennett worked his way up the ladder of showbiz to secure a contract with Columbia Records.  There, he scored pop smashes with tunes from Broadway’s Richard Adler and Jerry Ross (“Rags to Riches”) and Hank Williams (“Cold, Cold Heart”) Bennett’s hit singles seemed far removed from Brubeck’s jazz world.  Bennett was keeping a secret, though.  He was a jazz singer at heart.  “[Columbia honcho] Mitch [Miller] really didn’t like jazz,” the 86 years young crooner wrote in his 2012 memoir Life is a Gift: The Zen of Bennett.  “He didn’t care for Duke or Count Basie – and when I came to the label, I was a jazz singer.”  That identification served Bennett well when sharing the stage with Dave Brubeck and in the studio with the likes of Count Basie, Bill Evans, Stan Getz and Herbie Hancock.  Yet their ties to each other ran even deeper.  Both men were veterans of World War II and passionate Civil Rights supporters, and at Columbia Records, both evinced a gift of making art commercial.

We’re giving Bennett/Brubeck a spin after the jump! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

May 29, 2013 at 09:57

Posted in Dave Brubeck, News, Reviews, Tony Bennett

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Release Round-Up: Week of May 28

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Wings Over America BoxWings, Wings Over America: The Paul McCartney Archive Collection (MPL/Hear Music/Concord)

Paul McCartney’s first great U.S. tour was chronicled brilliantly on this 1977 live album, and it’s been greatly expanded herein for McCartney’s ongoing reissue campaign.

2CD: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
3LP: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
3CD (Best Buy exclusive)
4CD/1DVD box: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

Bennett Brubeck - LiveTony Bennett & Dave Brubeck, The White House Sessions: Live 1962 (Columbia/RPM/Legacy)

A once-in-a-lifetime collaboration between the legendary singer and the acclaimed jazz pianist bows in full on CD for the first time. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Burt - Anyone Who Had a HeartBurt Bacharach, Anyone Who Had a Heart: The Art of the Songwriter – The Best of Burt Bacharach (U.S. Edition) (Hip-O/UMe)

What was a six-disc box or two-disc set internationally is a different two-disc anthology of the acclaimed songwriter’s greatest works, as performed by Barbra Streisand, Tom Jones, Dionne Warwick, Aretha Franklin and more. (Amazon U.S.)

Monkees - JustusThe Monkees, Justus: The Deluxe Edition (Friday Music)

The Monkees’ final album, expanded to include an original behind-the-scenes promo film on DVD.  (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Basia Time and TideBasia, Time and Tide: Deluxe Edition (Cherry Pop)

The solo debut of the Polish singer/songwriter expanded with a heap of bonus material – all produced by TSD pal Vinny Vero! (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Finding the Sacred HeartDio, Finding the Sacred Heart: Live in Philly 1986 (Eagle Rock)

A long sought-after Dio live video is remastered and reissued across several different formats!

2CD: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
2LP: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
DVD: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Blu-Ray: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

MFSBEnchantment, Utopia: Expanded Edition / Kleeer, Winners: Expanded Edition / Gwen McCrae, Melody of Life: Expanded Edition / MFSB, MFSB: Expanded Edition / The O’Jays, Live in Philadelphia (Big Break Records)

The BBR slate for this week includes some rare early records from The O’Jays and MFSB and much more! Watch this space for a full breakdown of every title plus Amazon pre-order links!

Now 30 YearsVarious Artists, NOW That’s What I Call 30 Years (Universal U.K.)

Three discs celebrating three decades of the long-running U.K. compilation. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Written by Mike Duquette

May 28, 2013 at 10:13

That Old Black Magic: Tony Bennett and Dave Brubeck Cast a Spell on “Live 1962”

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Bennett Brubeck

What happens when two legends collide?

Columbia Records and Legacy Recordings will have the answer for you with the May 28 premiere release of Bennett and Brubeck – The White House Sessions: Live 1962 from Tony Bennett and Dave Brubeck.  In the true spirit of jazz, the performance by these two titans on August 28, 1962 was largely unplanned.  Both men – Brubeck with his Quartet and Bennett with his Ralph Sharon-led ensemble – were appearing at the behest of President John F. Kennedy’s White House.  The occasion was an end-of-summer concert at Washington DC’s Sylvan Theatre to thank college-age interns who had served that summer in the nation’s capital.  Following solo sets, they agreed to a once-in-a-lifetime summit, included in full on this historic new release.

Disc jockey William B. Williams, of radio’s Make Believe Ballroom fame, first introduced Brubeck, Eugene Wright, Joe Morello and Paul Desmond for a four-song set that kicked off with “Take Five” from 1959’s seminal Time Out.  Brubeck was still riding the crest of the album’s success at the time of the Washington performance.  Tony Bennett could also be said to have been on top of the world.  Bennett’s now-signature song “I Left My Heart in San Francisco” was capturing hearts here, there and everywhere as it first appeared on the Billboard charts a scant seventeen days prior to the performance.  Williams returned to introduce Bennett, accompanied by Ralph Sharon on piano, Hal Gaylord on bass and Billy Exner on drums.  “San Francisco” had already earned the coveted closing spot in Bennett’s six-song set, and many of the standards surveyed by Bennett are still songs he performs today.  The singer opened with three Jule Styne compositions from Broadway – “Just in Time” from Bells Are Ringing, “Small World” from Gypsy and “Make Someone Happy” from Do Re Mi, and also surveyed songs by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross (“Rags to Riches”) and Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer (“One for My Baby”).

After the jump: details on the Bennett/Brubeck summit including the full track listing! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

April 1, 2013 at 15:27

Cast Your Fate to the Wind with New “Very Best of Jazz” Collections From Brubeck, Evans, Guaraldi, More

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What makes a legend most?

When it comes to the legends of jazz, Concord Music Group has that answer for you.  Earlier this year, Concord launched The Very Best Of, a new series of “Jazz 101” collections designed at an affordable price point.  These compact sets might introduce new fans to daunting catalogues, or offer longtime fans a compact sampler of a favorite artist.  The first wave of titles arrived for Miles Davis (trumpet), John Coltrane (tenor saxophone), Sonny Rollins (tenor saxophone), Chet Baker (trumpet) and Wes Montgomery (guitar), but the second group of artists is equally illustrious.  Four are pianists that would make any jazz buff’s all-star team, and one is an alto saxophone great:  Vince Guaraldi (piano), Dave Brubeck (piano), Thelonious Monk (piano), Cannonball Adderley (alto saxophone) and Bill Evans (piano), with his first Trio (Evans, Paul Motian on drums and Scott LaFaro on bass).  The rich family of labels under the Concord umbrella – including Fantasy, Milestone, Riverside and Prestige – captured many of these titanic talents before they were snapped up by larger labels, and so these compilations offer a window into their formative years, including a selection of their signature tunes.

Good grief!  Composer and pianist Vince Guaraldi (1928-1976) isn’t always spoken of in the same breath as contemporaries like Brubeck, Evans or Monk (all represented in this piano-heavy quintet of releases!), most likely due to the overwhelming “crossover” success he experienced as the writer of some very famous songs: namely “Cast Your Fate to the Wind” and the Peanuts-inspired tracks “Linus and Lucy” and “Christmas Time is Here.”  Though “Cast Your Fate” netted Guaraldi a Billboard hit and a Grammy Award, its popularity was arguably eclipsed by his series of Peanuts soundtracks on which he gave jazzy life to Charles M. Schulz’s comic-strip characters.  And “Cast Your Fate” was the tune that persuaded producer Lee Mendelson to make the call to Guaraldi that led to the Peanuts jobs.  It leads off this 14-track assemblage, and remains one of the most beguiling songs ever.  Whether you think of it as jazz (its majestic piano solo certainly qualifies!) or pop, its Latin groove, shifting mood and changing tempo all still captivate.  The Very Best of Vince Guaraldi also includes the Bay Area legend’s renditions of standards from Burton Lane and Frank Loesser, and Sigmund Romberg and Oscar Hammerstein II, as well as his famed renditions of songs from Antonio Carlos Jobim and Luis Bonfa’s Black Orpheus soundtrack.  (Another bossa nova from the pen of Jobim, “Outra Vez,” also appears, and the Brazilian legend’s influence on Guaraldi the composer and arranger is apparent.)

Needless to say, the Peanuts songs (“Linus and Lucy,” “Christmas is Coming,” “Charlie Brown Theme” and the instrumental-only “Christmas Time is Here”) occupy significant space on the collection.  How many children had their first introduction to jazz via Vince Guaraldi?  His dexterity and breezy style are recognizable on lesser-known songs like “Ginza,” with the pianist joined by Bola Sete on guitar, Monty Budwig on bass and Nick Martinez on drums.  Budwig would also play bass on “Linus and Lucy.”  A more reserved, slinky side of Guaraldi is brought out on John Lewis’ “Django,” on which he employs his trademark deceptive simplicity with another sympathetic group (Eddie Duran on guitar and Dean Reilly on bass).  All told, ten albums are excerpted from the 1956-1966 period, adding up to a primer on the man once known as “Dr. Funk” but forever immortalized as the musical voice of a boy named Charlie Brown.  (A more comprehensive career overview is also offered from Concord: 2009’s 2-CD, 31-track Definitive Vince Guaraldi.)

We’ve written often here about Bill Evans (1929-1980), one of the most-anthologized pianists ever, and a pioneer in the area of modal jazz (in which the solos build from the key, not – as is traditional – from chord changes only.)  Even while fighting considerable demons, Evans was capable of creating music both heartbreaking and beautiful, and he arguably found his most sympathetic partners when he formed his first Trio.  The music on The Very Best of the Bill Evans Trio shows how closely attuned Evans, bassist Scott LaFaro and drummer Paul Motian were, for the brief but incandescent period between 1959 and 1961.  LaFaro and Motian weren’t so much supporting Evans as all three gentlemen were playing as one voice, tearing down the walls in a free, post-bop environment.  Yet this groundbreaking team only recorded three dates together, resulting in two live albums and two studio albums: Portrait in Jazz, Explorations (the two studio sets), Waltz for Debby and Sunday at the Village Vanguard (the two live sets).  Any further explorations of this Bill Evans Trio were curtailed when LaFaro perished in a car accident, aged just 25, in 1961.  Evans’ grief was so great that he didn’t perform in a public setting for nearly one year after LaFaro’s death.  But oh, what music LaFaro, with Evans and Motian, left behind.

Six of the eleven tracks here are standards, sensitively reinterpreted by the Trio, including Johnny Mercer’s “Autumn Leaves,” Irving Berlin’s “How Deep is the Ocean,” and George and Ira Gershwin and DuBose Heyward’s “My Man’s Gone Now” from Porgy and Bess.  The remaining tracks are compositions by Evans (his own oft-recorded “Waltz for Debby”), LaFaro (“Gloria’s Step”), Miles Davis (“Solar” and “Nardis”).  Shortly before forming the Trio, Evans had performed with Davis on one of the most influential and successful jazz albums of all time, Kind of Blue.  “Blue in Green” was jointly credited to Davis and Evans on that album, though many (including liner notes scribe Neil Tesser) doubt Davis had much to do with it.  Evans revisited the piece sans Davis’ horn less than one year after Kind of Blue on this subtle recording from Portrait in Jazz.  All eleven tracks show the many sides of Evans: moody and intense, yes, but also deeply lyrical, highly romantic and passionately swinging.  Of course, you might just want to go out and buy all four of the Trio’s seminal recordings, but if not, this is a solid place to dip your toes into the water.

After the jump: we explore two more iconic pianists, plus the great alto saxophonist Cannonball Adderley! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

September 11, 2012 at 10:10

Release Round-Up: Week of September 11

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Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Emerson, Lake & Palmer Tarkus: Deluxe Editions (Razor & Tie)

Full review coming soon, but you should know that these are 2-CD/1-DVD sets featuring unreleased alternate takes and 5.1 surround mixes for these two classic prog-rock LPs.

Dio, Singles Box Set (UMC)

A U.K.-made collectible box replicating all of Dio’s Vertigo 12″ singles, plus the Intermission live EP and a DVD of music videos.

The English Beat, Live at The US Festival ’82 & ’83 (Shout! Factory)

Initially available as a pre-order bonus with Shout! Factory’s Complete Beat box, this CD/DVD set (featuring audio highlights from the group’s two US Festival sets and the complete shows on video) is the last piece of what’s been a great year for The Beat’s catalogue.

The Knack, Rock and Roll is Good for You: The Fieger/Averre Demos (Omnivore)

Sixteen demos spotlighting the songwriting partnership between Doug Fieger and Berton Averre (including an early version of “Good Girls Don’t”) are unleashed on disc.

Various Artists, Broadway in a Box: The Essential Broadway Musicals Collection (Masterworks Broadway)

Need a major musical fix? How about 25 of the best original cast albums ever, including My Fair LadySouth PacificWest Side Story and A Chorus Line, in one box?

The Desert Song: Studio Cast Recording (RCA/Masterworks Broadway)

The premiere CD release of this 1959 studio revival of a classic operetta.

Dave Brubeck Quartet, Time Out (Hybrid SACD) (Analogue)

This immortal jazz album, newly reissued by Analogue Productions, includes a brand-new stereo SACD remaster, plus the long out-of-print original Sony multi-channel mix and standard CD stereo layer. Not bad at all!

Duran Duran, The Biggest and The Best! / Yazoo, The Collection (Music Club Deluxe)

A pair of U.K. budget compilations from Demon combine hits, B-sides and album cuts from these two great ’80s bands.

David Guetta, Nothing But the Beat 2.0 (AstralWerks)

The French DJ/producer’s guest-heavy 2011 pop album gets reorganized and expanded.

Written by Mike Duquette

September 11, 2012 at 08:24

Bowie, McCartney, Joplin, Springsteen, Clash, Davis, Small Faces, More Lead Record Store Day Pack

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We’re just three weeks away from Record Store Day on April 21, and following individual announcements from fantastic labels like Omnivore Recordings, Concord Records, Sundazed Music and Rhino/Warner Bros., we can finally reveal the full line-up of RSD-related goodies!

These limited editions, available at independent music retailers across the U.S. and even internationally, are primarily vinyl releases in various formats (7-inch, 10-inch, 12-inch, etc.) and range from replicas of classic albums to EPs and singles premiering exclusive content.  Some of our favorite artists here at TSD HQ are represented, including David Bowie, James Brown, Dave Brubeck, Miles Davis, Lee Hazlewood, Janis Joplin, Buck Owens, Paul Revere and the Raiders, Bruce Springsteen, and even the “odd couple” pairing of Neil Young and Rick James as members of Motown’s The Mynah Birds!  All told, there’s plenty for fans of rock, pop and jazz on offer this year!

Without further ado, hit the jump for our exhaustive list of RSD releases related to the catalogue artists we celebrate each and every day here at The Second Disc.  For those in need of a checklist, you can find a downloadable PDF here of the complete list, and this official Record Store Day list also includes all of the releases of a more recent vintage.  Sound off below on which title you are most eagerly awaiting, and thanks for supporting your local independent record retailer! Read the rest of this entry »

Paul McCartney, Little Richard, Dave Brubeck Due From Concord on Record Store Day

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What do Paul McCartney, Dave Brubeck and Little Richard have in common?  All three will be recipients of exclusive, limited edition Record Store Day releases from our friends at Concord Records.  Since its founding in 2007, Record Store Day has become an institution at many independent shops, and has even gone global with the participation of international retailers.

As previously reported, a 7-inch vinyl single from Paul McCartney will prove a highlight of Concord’s roster and kick off the reissue program for the Archive Collection release of 1971’s Ram.  “Another Day” b/w “Oh Woman, Oh Why” was recorded in 1970 during the Ram sessions. It was the first single of McCartney’s solo career, and kicked it off in high style, selling over a million copies worldwide. It was a No. 1 hit in France and Australia, in the U.K. it reached No. 2, and in the U.S., it peaked at a none-too-shabby No. 5.

Tying in with another expanded reissue from Concord is a special RSD-exclusive 12-inch red vinyl LP of Little Richard’s 1957 Specialty album Here’s Little Richard.  This special pressing of the original album classic includes familiar hits from the piano-pounding rocker including “Tutti Frutti,” “Rip It Up,” “Slipin’ & Slidin’,” and “Jenny Jenny.”  It has been remastered from the original analog tapes.

Rounding out Concord’s reissue trio for Record Store Day is a 1952 recording from The Dave Brubeck Octet.  Originally released on the Fantasy label, Distinctive Rhythm Instrumentals offers eight tracks from personnel including Brubeck (piano), Bill Smith (clarinet/baritone saxophone), Paul Desmond (alto saxophone), David Van Kriedt (tenor saxophone), Dick Collins (trumpet), Bob Collins (trombone), Ron Crotty (bass), and Cal Tjader (drums).  These highly experimental jazz recordings can be yours on 10-inch red vinyl.

Hit the jump for more, including the details of Concord’s more modern-skewing releases, plus track listings for each of the reissued titles! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

March 28, 2012 at 10:06

All In Good Time: Final Brubeck Quartet Concert Arrives From Legacy

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Time has been very good to Dave Brubeck.  The legendary jazz pianist and composer, 90 years young,  has both a Kennedy Center Honor and Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award under his belt, and his 1959 Time Out remains one of the biggest-selling albums jazz of all time, not to mention the genre’s first million seller. Alto saxophonist Paul Desmond’s sinuous, sophisticated “Take Five” became a signature song for the Dave Brubeck Quartet and one of the most recognizable pieces of music, anywhere.  The Quartet followed Time Out with a number of “sequels” including Countdown: Time in Outer Space, Time Further Out, Time Changes and Time In.  But all good things must come to an end.  On December 26, 1967, Brubeck, Desmond, Joe Morello (drums) and Eugene Wright (bass) formally disbanded The Dave Brubeck Quartet with a performance in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  Though commercially unreleased for all of the years that ensued, Columbia and Legacy are finally making that crucial turning point in jazz available.  On November 1, The Last Time Out – December 26, 1967 arrived in stores, celebrating that one moment in time.

Speaking of time, was there ever a watershed year in jazz like 1959?  Brubeck’s Time Out was joined by Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue, Charles Mingus’ Mingus Ah Um, John Coltrane’s Giant Steps and Ornette Coleman’s The Shape of Jazz to Come!  Remarkably, the classic Brubeck Quartet lineup had solidified just a year or so prior to the release of the seminal LP, after a number of drummers and bassists had entered and exited.  Though Brubeck continues to lead a Quartet to this day, no unit has scaled quite the same heights as those four gentlemen did between 1958 and 1967.

Hit the jump for more on this exciting new addition to the Quartet catalogue! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

November 3, 2011 at 14:08

Posted in Dave Brubeck, News, Reissues