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Thursday, August 16, 2018

Colors - The Brass Company

Alias Buster Henry
The Brass Company
Arrangements by Bill Lee
Musical Directors: Bill Hardman, Bill Lee, Billy Higgins
Producer: The Brass Company
Engineers: Ron Carron and Randy Alter
Cover: Sandra Williams
Photos: Curtis A. Brown
Background Mexica Blanket courtesy of Betty Dillard
Recording dates: June 4 and 3, 1974
Studio: Minot; While Plains, New York
Strata-East Records SES-19752

Trumpets: Bill Hardman, Eddie Preston, Harry Hall and Lonnie Hillyer
Fluegehorns: Clif Lee and Kamal Abdul-Aim
Trombone: Charles Stephens
Tuba: Bob Stewart
Bass: Bill Lee
Drums: Billy Higgins and Sonny Brown

Guest Artists
Tenor Sax: Clifford Jordan
Piano: Stanley Cowell
Trumpet: Charles Tolliver

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Instrumental Version Of Bob Dylan Favorites - The Metropolitan Pops Orchestra

Positively 4th Street
The Metropolitan Pops Orchestra Plays
Instrumental Versions Of Bob Dylan Favorites
Produced and Arranged by Alan Lober
Director of Engineering: Val Valentine
Cover Art: Peter Max
Cover Design: Michael Malatak
Metro Records MS-597

From the back cover: It may seem a strange, mixed bag at first; "What's the work of a fiery, wild-haired composer, high-priest of the beatniks and teeny-boppers doing – being played by, for heaven's sake, the Metropolitan Pops Orchestra?" The fascinating answer is right here in the grooves of this record. A sampling will make you feel that Mr. Dylan and the Metropolitan Pops were practically made for each other.

Like A Rolling Stone
It Ain't Me Babe
It's All Over Now Baby Blue
She Belongs To Me
Don't Think Twice, It's All Right
One Too Many Mornings
Positively 4th Street
All I Really Want To Do
Mr. Tambourine Man
The Times They Are A-Changin'

Legwork - Jeremy Steig

Jeremy Steig
Produced by Sonny Lester
Art Direction: Frank Gauna
Cover and Liner Art: Jeremy Steig
Solid State Records SS 18068

From the inside cover: The depth as well as breadth of Jeremy's accomplishments in this set requires, I think, some background about the Steig odyssey in order to indicate the range of musical experience he's been into. Born in New York's Greenwich Village on September 23, 1942, Jeremy is of a family that has impressive creative credentials. His father, William Steig, is a cartoonist of antic universals for The New Yorker and the author-illustrator of uniquely evocative children's books. Elizabeth Mead Steig, Jeremy's mother, is an artist and heads the art department at Lesley College. An aunt is Margaret Mead, the persistently probing anthropologist who keeps showing ways in which divergent cultures and generations can make connections.

After schooling in New York at the Little Red School House, City and County, and the Music and Art High School, along with three years of private study of the flute with Paige Brook, Jeremy began a wide-ranging journey into music. In addition to groups of his own, Jeremy has played in the past decade with, among others, Jim Hall, Feddie Redd, Paul Winter, Paul Bley, Tony Scott, David Amram and Bill Evans. He's also worked with bluesmen Junior Wells and Big Joe Williams, and has appeared in jazz clubs, rock rooms and in concerts that have encompassed Fillmore East and Fillmore West along with halls in Copenhagen, Munich, Frankfurt, Milan, Paris and London.

Although immediately and unmistakably identifiable by sound and style, Jeremy is so open to all kinds of music that he can fit into an unusually heterogenous variety of musical situations with zestful attentiveness. From 1966 to the present, for example, among the players and units Jeremy has sat in with are Jimi Hendrix, the Jefferson Airplane, Blood, Sweat & Tears, Paul Butterfield, Elvin Bishop, Earth Opera, Buddy Miles, the Flying Burrito Brothers and James Cotton. I mention the to underline his refusal to be limited by traditional categories. As I noted, Jeremy is a motif directly from Howlin' Wolf. – Nat Hentoff

From Billboard - May 30, 1970: Flute player Steig has been moving, of late, in very mixed company. He appears on one date with jazz pianist Bill Evans and next sits in with the Flying Burrito Brothers or Jimi Hendrix. He reflects this wide open taste in his playing which sprinkles Miles Davis, Roland Kirk and Howlin' Wolf (as in "Howling for Judy") in one chorus. Small group backs him here but it is made large by some tricky overdubbing. Rock and jazz appeal here.

Howlin' For Judy
Alias (a li'as)
Piece Of Freedom

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Miracles - Yma Sumac

Yma Sumac
Produced by Les Baxter
For Bob Kreppel, Jim Branciforti and Bob Covais
Cover Design: Marcellino
London SHU 8431
The Decca Record Company Limited

Chuck Cowan - Guitar
Richard Person - Organ
Roger Cowan - Bass
Skippy Switzer - Drums

From the back cover: Miracles re-unites the extraordinary five-octave voice of Peru's Yma Sumac with Les Baxter, the producer of her first album, "The Voice Of Xtabay" (released in 1950). Acclaimed for her powerful and unique artistry, Miss Sumac achieved world fame during the Fifties with the use of Mr. Baxter's productions. He has chosen to record Yma in a contemporary setting with a four-piece rock band and modern recording techniques. The results are a stunning showcase for an unparalleled performer.

From Billboard - March 11, 1972: Last time Les Baxter and Yma Sumac teamed, they came up with the phenomenal classic "Voice Of Xtabay." They now reunite for a totally 'today' sound with original rock material penned by Baxter and delivered in an exceptional sound by the incredible voice of Miss Sumac. Four-piece rock band lends support to the vocal work. Already getting much FM and MOR attention, LP could prove a smash.

Medicine Man
Let Me Hear You
Tree Of Life
Flame Tree
Azure Sands
Look Around
Magenta Mountain
El Condor Pasa

Hermann Scherchen - Westminster

Tchaikovsky - Capriccio Italien - London Symphony Orchestra
Rimsky-Korsakoff - Capriccio Espagnol, Op. 54 - London Symphony Orchestra
Rossini - William Tell - Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra of London
Rossini - Thieving Magpie Overture - Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra of London
Conducted by Herman Scherchen
FPG Photo by Tom Kelly
West Minster XWN 18598

From then back cover: Hermann Scherchen is acknowledged as one of the world's great conductors and is renowned for the wide range of his repertoire. He has been acclaimed as great an interpreter of Beethoven, Handel and Bach as he has of many modern composers. His Westminster recordings of all nine Beetoven symphonies and the twelve "London" symphonies of Haydn are considered milestone in the history of recorded music.

Hermann Scherchen's early reputation was earned as conductor in Rigo, Berlin, Frankfurt Winterthur, and Konigsberg. An outspoken anti-fascist, he left Germany in 1932, and settled in Switzerland. Since the end of World War II he has conducted in all the leading European cities most recently in Rome, London, Paris, and Vienna, and in South America. In addition to his activities as a conductor Scherchen is well known as an author, having written authoritative books on music, including The Nature of Music and Handbook of Conducting.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Persuasive Percussion - Terry Synder And The All Stars

Persuasive Percussion
Terry Synder And The All Stars
Originated and Produced by Enoch Light
Photography: Anthony Lloyd-Parker
Licensed by Grand Award Record Company Inc.
EMI Records
Made and Printed in Great Britain
Command SCOM 113

Featuring Willie Rodriquez, Jack Lesberg, Tony Mottola, Dick Hyman, Teddy Sommer, Artie Marotti, Stanley Webb and Dominic Cortese

I'm In The Mood For Love
Whatever Lola Wants (Lola Gets)
I Surrender Dear
Orchids In The Moonlight
I Love Paris
My Heart Belongs To Daddy
The Breeze And I
Aloha Oe
Japanese Sandman
Love Is A Many Splendoured Thing

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Hootenanny And American Ballads

Don't Think Twice, It's Alright
Hootenanny & American Ballads
Producer: Bill Beasley
Assistant Producer: Ted Jarrett
Recorder: Sam Phillips Studio, Nashville
Engineer: Billy Sherrill
Compatible Mastering: Columbia Recording Studio, Nashville
Cover Design: McPherson Studio, Nashville, Tennessee
Modern Sound MS 510

Don't Think Twice, It's All Right
Washing Square
If I Had A Hammer
Blowin' In The Wind
The Reverend Mr. Black
Walk Right In
Devil Woman
PT 109
Wolverton Mountain

Rock And Roll And Girls, Girls, Girls

Little Diane
Rock And Roll And Girls, Girls, Girls
Producer: Bill Beasley
Assistant Producer: Ted Jarrett
Recorder: Sam Phillips Studio, Nashville
Engineer: Billy Sherrill
Compatible Mastering: Columbia Recording Studio, Nashville
Cover Design: McPherson Studio, Nashville, Tennessee
Modern Sound MS 515

Little Diane
I Saw Linda Yesterday
Ruby Baby
What Will My Mary Say
Judy's Turn To Cry
Sally, Go Round The Roses
Donna The Prima Donna
Rambling Rose

Eight Days A Week

Eight Days A Week
For Me
Modern Sound MS 1005
Producer: William Beasley
Recorder and Compatible Mastering: Columbia Recording Studio, Nashville, Tenn.
Cover Design: McPherson Studio, Nashville, Tenn.

Eight Days A Week
Sha La La La La
You Were Gone
Midnight Special
For Me
She's Come Of Age
You Make The Decisions
Ferry Cross The Mersey
Hearts Are Funny Things

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

After The Lights Go Down Low - Al Hibbler

After The Lights Go Down Low
The Voice Of Al Hibbler
Cover: Bill Hughes
Atlantic 1251

Available from online vendors so I will not be posting a sample. Presented here to share the original cover art and jacket notes excerpts.

From the back cover: Al Hibbler, one of the most important of today's male vocalists, hardly needs introduction. Nor do the splendidly chosen songs he sings. He, Al Hibbler – the vocal pantomimist – first attracted professional attention singing with local aggregations in the middle-west and the south. He so impressed Duke Ellington that he was invited to join that legendary organization and remained on as male vocalist with Duke for eight highly successful years.

He was born in Arkansas and attended the school for the blind in Little Rock. When he was about fourteen or fifteen years old, the urge to sing took hold. He had been exposed to the good jazz sounds of that day and although he can't recall when it started, he remembers that he began to sing along with records and bands for his own amusement. Al Hibbler and he thought to create a style of singing that was as much instrumental as vocal.

He recalls his early exposure to "swing" and "jazz". And it was quite an exposure. In Hibbler's formative years in the Rabbit Foot Minstrel included Little Rock in its itinerary and the yearly street parade heralding the Minstrel's coming was annually followed by little Al Hibbler hungrily drinking in the blaring sounds of brass and drums. He cultivated friendships too, with the ticket takers at the Skating Rink, the Dreamland, and the Mosaic Temple... for at these three halls, every name band in Swing made a stop at some time or other. Al Hibbler heard them all.

He worked for a lot of small bands after that. Then Duke Ellington, on one of his swings through the Southland, heard Al Hibbler. Duke put his stamp of approval on the lad and Hibbler's really big career was formally launched.

He's been a "single" now for the past several years. – Jack Walker

After The Lights Go Down Low
You Will Be Mine
Dedicated To You
Song Of The Wanderer
Tell Me
I'm Traveling Light
Autumn Winds
This Is Always
Now I Lay Me Down To Dream
If I Knew You Were There
I Won't Tell A Soul I Love You
The Blues Came Falling Down