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Archive for the ‘Gil Evans’ Category

Three From FiveFour: Jazz Label Offers Gil Evans on Hendrix, Plus Don Ellis and Duke Ellington

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Ellington Jazz PartyCherry Red’s recently-reactivated FiveFour label’s latest trawl into the Sony jazz archives has delivered another three rare titles to CD.  All have been available in the format before, though one is particularly difficult to find, and all three should have great appeal.

The oldest selection of the trio hails from 1959.  Duke Ellington’s Jazz Party welcomed Dizzy Gillespie as well as Jimmy Rushing, Jimmy Jones and Ellington’s longtime sax man, Jimmy Hodges.  Ellington and his frequent collaborator and co-writer Billy Strayhorn brought new tunes to the party, including the four-part, punningly-titled “Toot Suite” featuring Britt Woodman (trombone) on Part One, Jimmy Hamilton (saxophone) and Shorty Baker (trumpet) on Part Two, Russell Procope (saxophone) and Quentin Jackson (trombone) on Part Three, and Paul Gonsalves (saxophone) on Part Four.  The already-legendary Gillespie got his chance to show off his horn on Strayhorn’s “U.M.M.G.” (for Upper Manhattan Medical Group), while pianist Jones and former Count Basie Band vocalist Rushing join the Duke for Ellington’s “Hello, Little Girl.”  Two tracks not on the original 1959 Columbia LP, “Fillie Trillie” and the ubiquitous “Satin Doll,” have been included in the album sequence here.  Jazz Party makes a fine addendum to Ellington’s recently-released Complete Columbia Albums Collection 1951-1958 on the Legacy label, as it was released the following year after that set’s final album, Cosmic Scene.

After the jump: Al Kooper meets Don Ellis, and Gil Evans pays homage to Jimi Hendrix!  Plus: full track listings and order links! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

January 3, 2013 at 08:44

Black Friday 2012: Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Rolling Stones, Frank Zappa Lead Off Packed Slate of RSD Exclusives

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Here in the U. S. of A., Black Friday is almost upon us: that unusual date following the prior day of giving thanks, in which consumers make a mad dash to the local big-box store, mall or shopping center to procure bargains for the holiday season ahead.  Retailers are controversially beginning Black Friday “festivities” even earlier than usual this year, with many sales starting on Thanksgiving Day itself and not even at midnight but in the early part of the evening.  For a number of recent years, music buyers have had our own Black Friday, that day in April known as Record Store Day in which the aisles of our independent retailers are filled with hunters of collectible vinyl and CD releases.  Record Store Day has in the past sponsored a mini-RSD event on Black Friday, but this year, the titles on offer are as enticing and nearly as plentiful as those on the main RSD itself.  For some, this will be a source of frustration, for others, excitement.

This year’s line-up for Record Store Day – Black Friday brings titles from some of the biggest names in rock including The Beach Boys, David Bowie, Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones and Nirvana, plus cult favorites like Leonard Cohen, Lee Hazlewood and Frank Zappa, and country-and-western legends such as Wanda Jackson and Buck Owens.

After the jump and without further ado, we’ll fill you in on the crème of the reissued crop come this Black Friday!  Just click for your full list of the catalogue releases to watch! Read the rest of this entry »

UMe Gets Impulsive with Forthcoming Box Set

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Universal Music Group has an impressive array of jazz titles in their library. Defining labels of the genre like Verve and Mercury are jewels in UMe’s crown, while the catalogues of Concord and Fantasy are distributed domestically by Universal as well.

One of the more arguably underrated vintage labels in Universal’s family, though, is Impulse! Records. The label, founded by Creed Taylor in 1960 as a label in the ABC-Paramount group, may not be as long-running as the others in Universal’s catalogue, but it was incredibly notable in its time, offering a hip, fresh take on jazz in terms of content and packaging. (The orange, black and white logo and label design remains one of the greatest logos in music history.) Early artists on the label included trombonist Kai Winding, Gil Evans, Count Basie and Ray Charles, fresh off his tenure with Atlantic Records. But the most notable would have to be John Coltrane, whose saxophone skills and pioneering work in the hard bop and free jazz styles cemented his legacy far beyond his too-early death in 1967 at the age of 40.

Last year marked the 50th anniversary of Impulse! and this one would have been Coltrane’s 85th year. Thus, a celebration is inevitable, and it will kick off this spring with the release of First Impulse! The Creed Taylor Collection. This four-disc collection looks to represent the first half-dozen or so titles for the label as produced by Taylor, before he was hired away by Verve, ironically enough. Those titles would be J.J. Johnson and Kai Winding’s The Great Kai & J.J., Ray Charles’ Genius + Soul = Jazz (itself reissued last year), Winding’s The Incredible Kai Winding Trombones, Gil Evans’ Out of the Cool and Coltrane’s Africa/Brass.

Though a firm track list is not in place, it appears as though all of those records will be replicated across the discs (marking the domestic CD debut for both albums by Winding). It’s also been revealed that rare and unreleased material will be present. Chief among them is an unreleased Coltrane session with trumpeter Cal Massey in the producer’s chair, featuring three demos sessions leading up to the Africa/Brass LP.

An Amazon pre-order link exists for this set (which lacks a firm release date, although we’ve been told the box is due in April); from the looks of that link, we should expect an order page from Hip-o Select before long. As always, keep it here for news on the set as it happens.

Written by Mike Duquette

February 21, 2011 at 15:16