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Saturday, February 27, 2016

Softly Softly Jazz - Eddie Barnes

Lost Love
Softly Softly Jazz
Eddie Barnes And His Hi-Fidels

From Billboard - January 19, 1957: The Hi-Fidels consist of Barnes on bass, Bay Perry, drums and Joe Knight, piano. The trio works over a number of torch, lazy mood ballads in almost a cocktail lounge style. Individual flights are few with the spotlight largely falling on Barnes' rather throaty, deep down bass vocalizing. Jazz, in the strict sense at least, is almost a misnomer here. Nevertheless, tunes are agreeable and some may find them okay for background purposes. Market, however, would have to be called limited here.

From the back cover: Eddie Barnes: The bassist and vocalist with The Hi-Fidels, was born in Beaumont, Texas, March 22, 1924. He started singing while attending school and sang regularly with both the school choir and band. After leaving school he vocalized professionally in the club circuits on the west coast. He served three years with the U.S. Army and upon being discharged (1946) headed for New York.

Eddie has recorded with many of the major companies here in the east, and has two Town Hall Concerts to his credit: – one with Theolonius Monk at Piano and Oscar Pettiford, Bass. He played with many good jazz groups, outstanding of which was Tiny Grimes.

Bay Perry (Drums): A Bostonian who comes from a musical family. Many jazz fans will remember the late Ray Perry (alto saxophone and violin with Lionel Hampton's orchestra). There is another brother, Joe, who is keeping things musically moving up in bean town. Bay has travelled extensively and has, during lapses in touring, squared away to study serious percussion.

The jazz groups he has played with attest to the fact that he has plenty of jazz experience – Howard McGhee, Theolonius Monk, Mary Lou Williams.

Joe Knight (Piano): A 34 year old Brooklynite, who until 1945 did not know he was destined to be a professional musician. In 1947, he joined the Hot Lips Page band as a pianist and from then on came a whirlwind of unexpectancies – in 1948. Don Redman, Pete Brown. In 1952 he joined Earl Bostic and really put in some mileage. In 1953 he joined Lucky Thompson at the Savoy Ballroom. Since 1953, Joe resumed serious piano studies in the approach to jazz, has given the trip a real subtle sound.

Isn't That Romance?
Day By Day
But Not For Me
Lost Heart
The Night That We Met
Fallen Out Of Love
Smooth Sea
Lost Love
Somebody Loves Me
Now That I Found You

The Love Generation

A Generation Of Love
The Love Generation
Producer: Tommy Oliver
Arrangers: Tommy Oliver, John Bahler (Fluffy Rain and W. C. Fields)
Art Direction: Woody Woodward
Design: Andrew C. Rodriguez
Photography: Ivan Naggy
IR Imperial Records

From Billboard - January 27, 1968: Although there is some question about the current popularity of flower youth, a quality album like this always is welcome. In there second album, the Love Generation drives with "You" and hits a gentler beat with "Epitaph" (A World Without Love)." Included in the 10 other selections are new dimensions for such recent songs as "Workin' My Way Back To You" and "Stop! In The Name Of Love."

Hey Girl
Consciousness Expansion
Leaves Grow Grey
A Groovy Kind Of Love
The Bummer (Guide Me Home)
Working' My Way Back To You
Epitaph (A World Without Love)
Maman (Mama)
Stop! In The Name Of Love
Fluffy Rain
W. C. Fields

Adventures In Flamenco! - Carlos Montoya

Ritmos Gitanos
Adventures In Flamenco
Carlos Montoya
Produced by Sid Feller
Composed and Published by Carlos Montoya
Cover photo & design: ARW Productions, Inc.
Recorded: December 1964 - Bell Sound Studios, N.Y.C.

From Billboard - March 30, 1965: The master of the classical guitar is in his metier with flamenco standards. He's equally impressive with the improvised material in this album. It's the sound that packs concert halls.

Ritmos Gitanos
Caribe Aflamencao
Toque Murciano
Recuerdos De La Sierra
Albaicin Flamenco
Compas Trianero
Aires De Santa Maria

Music To Soothe That Tiger - Herbert Rehbein

When I Fall In Love
Music To Soothe That Tiger
Herbert Rehbein And His Orchestra
Featuring Emil Wurster, Tenor Saxophone
Produced by Milt Gabler
Decca DL 74584

From the back cover: Rehbein, a newcomer to America audiences, but known and respected in musical circles here and aboard as a gifted musician (he is an arranger for Bert Kaemphert and a musical director of Swiss radio), brings us a rich, full-bodied treatment of these beloved songs. The smooth sound of his romantic strings and the haunting, melodic interpretations of tenor saxophonist Emil Wurster, add up to listening perfection that sets you tingling.

From Billboard - February 6, 1965: This album title understates the contents. The tunes and arrangements could sooth the most savage of beasts. Lush, smooth strings and brass envelop the listener into relaxation.

When I Fall In Love
Don't Talk To Me
East Of The Sun
Chances Are
The Lady Smiles
Prisoner Of Love
I Love You So
Love Is Here To Stay
If I Had You
Moon Maid
Speak Low
Dry Eyes

Friday, February 26, 2016

English Muffins - The Mystic Moods Orchestra

English Muffins
The Mystic Mood Orchestra
Produced and Directed by Brad Miller
Arranged and Conducted by Richard Clements
A&R Director: Robert H. Sarenpa
Cover Photography: Stan Malinowski
Line Photography: Chris Hopper
Album Design: Marvin Glick
Recorded at Olympic & Trident Studios, London, England
Re-recorded at Mercury Sound Studios West, San Francisco, California
Philips PHS 600-349

From Billboard - October 31, 1970: Britain is the spotlight attraction in this latest entry by the Mystic Moods Orchestra, and it should follow in the same successful footsteps of their previous albums. Featured are "England Swings," "Words," "Early In The Morning" and "Ticket To Ride," and the smooth and lush orchestrations are enhanced by the intriguing sound effects accompanying each selection.

Another creative entry in The Mystic Moods catalog.

England Swings
Early In The Morning
Ticket To Ride
Color Of My Love
Here, There And Everywhere
Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)
First Of May
Golden Slumber/Carry That Weight

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Arthur Murray's Dance Course

Bossa Nova
Arthur Murray's Dance Course
Music by the Arthur Murray Orchestra
Under the direction of Ray Carter
Recorded at RCA Victor's Studio A New York For Jayme Prods., Inc.

From Billboard - February 20, 1960: An extremely marketable group of sets, which can acquire more salability due to the opportunity of consistently plugging Murray's TV show. The group of four cover just about every popular dance step, and the back cover of each gives instructions and footwork diagrams for the dance covered in that particular album. The music is nicely performed by Ray Carter and the Murray Ork. Each cover shows the famous couple on the dance floor. These have solid merchandising value singly, or as a group.

The Best Of Everything - Laurindo Almeida

I Was Born To Love You
The Best Of Everything
Laurindo Almeida
Produced by Sonny Burke
Arranged and Conducted by Oscar Castro Neves
Recorded at RCA Studios in Hollywood - March 1972
Manufactured and Distributed by RCA Records
Cover art by Peter Lloyd Thur Art Expo
Art Direction, Ken Kim
Daybreak Records, Inc.

From the back cover: Laurindo Almeida was strumming guitar in the Stan Kenton orchestra in the early 1950s, an immigrant from Brazil, where he was born in Sao Paulo on Sept. 2, 1917. His mother, a concert pianist, started him young, but soon he switched from the piano to his sister's guitar and by the time he was 19, Almedia had played concerts in Sao Paulo and Rio and sailed on the liner Cuba, as a musician, as far as Europe. It was in Paris, in 1936, that he first heard the legendary Django Reinhardt with the Quintet of the Hot Club of France. Django excepted a marked influence on Almeida.

He returned to Brazil for ten years, learned arranging and composing and, in 1947, undertook the big leap north to Hollywood. Laurindo was hardly an overnight sensation. He scuffled. 

"I had a strong interest in jazz," Almedia recalls, "and so I went to Stan Kenton. He gave me the big break, even commissioned Peter Rugolo to write some special original charts built around my guitar. I'll forever be grateful. 

Eventually, as it must to all gifted men, the collaboration ended and Almedia went out on his own. He concentrated on recording, mainly for Capitol, and his renown as a concert soloist spread throughout   the post-war world. Almeida composed and arranged and played, and he traveled extensively as well. Two epochal recordings by Brazilian composers were made: the Villa-Lobos Guitar Concerto and Radomes Cnatalli's Concerto do Copacabana, discs which are still regarded as definitive.

Laurindo Almeida today lives in the Los Angeles suburb of Sherman Oaks, a naturalized American for many years, a teacher of guitar, a gardener, a collector of stringed instruments and fine wines and a health nut – he swims every day of the year just as he did as a boy in Sao Paulo. A Virgo, he takes things as they come, with grace and tolerance.

He has won 10 Grammy awards since 1958.

He has toured and recorded with the Modern Jazz Quartet in recent years simply because he still loves jazz. "But then," he shrugs, "I like concert work and pop music, too. There is beauty in all music."

The supporting sessions guitar player gives the 70s effects pedal a workout on this set. Almeida manages to take that over-used effect in stride and effortlessly blends his clean, classic sound into the mix. As always, Almeida understands how to make his "style" or "sound" work inside of any project concept handed to him. Good stuff!

Love Theme From The Godfather
Aranjuez, Mon Amour
Sleepy Shores
Theme From Nicholas And Alexandra
Without You
I Was born In Love With You
Summer Of '42
Hello Forever
Brian's Song

Salute To The Band Leaders

Cherry Pink & Apple Blossom White
Salute To The Band Leaders
Diplomat 2119

Graphically bold art on the jacket. The set consists of lukewarm arrangements/studio covers.

American Patrol
I Talk To The Trees
How High The Moon
La Paloma
Cherry Pink And Apple Blossom White

Suddenly There's A Valley - The Four Latinos

Suddenly There's A Valley
The Four Latinos
Tanner "N" Texas, Inc. - San Antonio, Texas

From the back cover: This, and every sacred song in this album, will thrill your soul as The Four Latinos, former Rock and Roll entertainers, "sing" you up the mountain top with their love and devotion to their new found Savior.

Great Big Wonderful God
Give Me Faith, Grace, Love
The Choice Is Mine
He Is The Answer
Get Right Church
Great Morning
Just Look At Him
He Was There
Suddenly There's A Valley
I Am Looking For A Home
Faith Unlocks The Door

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Here's To My Lady - The Ray Charles Singers

The Touch Of Your Lips
Here's To My Lady
The Ray Charles Singers
M-G-M Records

From Billboard - September 2, 1957: Top-notch vocal group provides pleasant listening on several standards and tunes from movies and shows. Set is a fine mood album for jocks and can appeal to those who prefer the conventional group harmonies.

Here's To My Lady
You Must Have Been A Beautiful Baby
The Very Thought Of You
You're Getting To Be A Habit With Me
The Touch Of Your Lips
Too Marvelous For Words
My Darling, My Darling
If You Were The Only Girl In The World
Stay As Sweet As You Are
We Will Always Be Sweethearts
You're My Girl
All Of You

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Braff!! - Ruby Braff

'S Wonderful
Ruby Braff
LN 3377
(Recorded June 26, 28 and July 10, 1956)

From Billboard - August 19, 1957: Excellent small band session with traditional overtones fired by trumpeter Braff, who has never sounded better. Great degree of set's impact is due to emotional quality of the blowing and strong yet tasty rhythmic support all the way. Such names as C. Hawkins, D. Elliot, L. Brown should arouse interest of jazz browser. If shown, both traditional and more modern fans could be sold

From the back cover: This is basically jazz. Not basic jazz or traditional jazz or Dixieland or any other fashion or past or present held in a rhythmic suspension based on four beats to the bar. It is just what Ruby says it is, a matching up of three informal sessions. In a repertoire consisting largely of jazz standards, ballads and tunes in bright tempos like candy in a window or dancers on a floor, the listener is introduced to new work by old masters (Hawkins, Brown) and to an exuberant diversity of those fresh, unaffected sounds that seem to be increasingly appealing to the jazz public. The instrumental groups and the tunes chosen are thus not haphazard, but planned. Reminded that he had a reputation for handling the trumpet with dexterity and ease, Ruby said, "Facility doesn't impress me – what people want is something to hear" – which, in a way, is a clue to what this album is all about.

Here's Freddie
Indian Summer
Blue Turning Grey Over Your
Just One More Chance
When My Dreamboat Comes Home
You're Lucky To Me
Moon glow
It's Been So Long
Too Marvelous For Words
How Long Has This Been Going On
'S Wonderful

Monday, February 22, 2016

Take It From Me - Terry Gibbs

Take It From Me
Terry Gibbs
Cover Design: Robert Flynn / Viceroy
Cover Photograph: Frank Guana
A Product of ABC-Paramount Records, Inc.

Book-fold jacket featuring the inside photo layout as seen above.

From Billboard - September 12, 1964: Swinging', ring-a-ding-dinging' jazz excitingly served up by Vibist Terry Gibbs in collaboration with Kenny Burrel on guitar; Sam Jones on bass; and Louis Hayes on drums. The sound and temp are bright and creative and a listening delight. The name of Gibbs and Burrell are enough to carry this LP salewise. The songs included will also do much along this line.

From the jacket notes: Terry Gibbs, a composer as well as a vibist, has constantly been involved with musically progressive ideas in the small group field and in his work with his own large workshop-type band on the West Coast. He has been a vital performer with an inborn beat from the time he managed, as a twelve-year old Brooklyn boy, to drum through The Flight Of The Bumble Bee in forty-five seconds, to win a Major Bowes Amateur Hour. His solo work on the vibes has been heard with the bands of Benny Goodman, Woody Herman, Buddy Rich, Tommy Dorsey, and with innumerable small combinations under his own name. His activities for the past four years have been devoted to his all star big band in Hollywood.

Honey Suckle Rose
El Fatso
Take It From Me
Gee Dad, It's A Deagan
Pauline's Place
8 lbs. 10 ozs.
All Things You Are

Mack The Knife - Richard Wes

Magic Of Your Kiss
Mack The Knife
Richard Wes
Produced, Arranged and Conducted by Richard Wess
United Artist Records
UAL 3202

Sol Gubin - drums
Mundell Lowe - guitar
Milt Hinton - bass
Bernie Leighton - piano
Irvin Markowitz, Carl "Doc" Severinsen, Joseph Wilder, Bernie Glow - trumpet
Urban Green, Morton Hullman, Chauncey Welsch, Robert Alexander - Trombone
Sol Schlinger, Joseph Lopes, Phil Woods, William Slapin, Shelly Russell - Saxophone

From the back cover: Richard Wess is an accomplished arranger, conductor, composer and pianist who, while still in his very early thirties, has already earned the respect of the top performers in show business for his multi-talents. He arranged and conducted the million-plus seller of Mack The Knife by Bobby Darin, and has also served in similar capacities for such recording stars as Connie-Francis, George Gibbs, Nat King Cole, Frankie Avalon, Eddie Fisher and others.

Now Wess has put together an album that is his own, from the initial idea, through the arrangements, and the building of an all-star aggregator of musicians. The Big Band Sound which predominates is one of quality, with the title song, plus ten other favorites, presented in a musically brilliant performance.

West has chalked up many notable credits since his initial appearance as a pianist, at the age of 12, in Town Hall, New York. None, however, can speak more loudly or eloquently than this album. For it is truly a showcase of the many facets that comprise Richard Wes. – Norman Weiser

Mack The Knife
Goody Goody
Mountain Greenery
Autumn Leaves
Battle Hymn Of The Republic
Theme From Doctor Kildare
Magic Of Your Kiss
Time After Time
No Moon At All

Top Pop Country - The Billy Sherrill Singers

Mr. Tambourine Man
Top Pop Country
The Billy Sherrill Group
Produced by Betsy Cohen
Columbia Musical Treasures

I Love How You Love Me
Gentle On My Mind
Michael Row Your Boat Ashore
Almost Persuaded
Rambling' Rose
These Boots Were Made For Walking
Wichita Lineman
By The Time I Get To Phoenix
Little Green Apples
Mr. Tambourine Man

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Perfect For Dance Tempos For Latin Lovers - Emilio Reyes

Cha Cha Cha Gaujiro
Perfect Dance Tempos For Latin Lovers
Emilio Reyes And His Orchestra
Decca Records DL 74021

From Billboard - November 7, 1960: Listenable and danceable Latin effort by Emilio Reyes and his orchestra make this a good disk for dance fans. The tunes range from cha cha to mambos and meringues, played in authentic style by the band.

From the back cover: Born in a small Cuban village of Corral Falso (paid tribute to in the chorus of Cha Cha Cha Guajiro), Emilio Reyes almost deprived the world of his music by becoming a dentist, his father's profession. However, through the urgings of one brother, and the aid of another (the latter relieving Emilio of a moral obligation by becoming a dentist himself), he became a musician. After spending two years with his brother's band, the Casino De La Playa, as trumpet soloist and vocalist, he began playing for all the leading bands in Havana. Ultimately, he organized his own group, playing at such popular Havana night spots as the Zombi Club.

A theatrical agent, vacationing in Havana, heard Emilio and convinced him to bring his orchestra to the United States. Due to various immigration complications, Emilio lost his entire group enroute, and arrived in the States alone. Undaunted, he organized a new orchestra in time to accept an engagement at Bill Miller's celebrated Riviera, and has since become one of the most important names in the night club and resort circuits throughout the country. He has also appeared on television, and his recordings rank among the most popular with dancers ranging from beginners who have yet to discover there are right and left feet, to the most expert professionals.

Mi Guantanamera
Cha Cha Cha Guajiro
Loma De La Cruz
Mama Son De La Loma
Quirino Con Su Tres
Que Te Parece Cholito
Anything Goes
Besame Aqui Nena
Amor De Mis Amores
Havana To Madrid

The Mexicali Singers - Anita Kerr

The Unique Vocals Instrumentalizations Of
The Mexicali Singers
Produced By Anita Kerr
Engineer: Dick Bogart
Art Direction: Ed Thrasher
Warner Bros. WS 1641

From Billboard - April 9, 1966: Three girls and three guys from South of the Border have formed one of the most exciting vocal groups to hit the record scene in some time. They sing in the Anita Kerr manner - no words, just sounds. And what sounds. Selections are standards.

Interesting light pop project that appears to be marketed, from the cover art and back cover copy, as some sort of "folk/pop" album that might appeal to buyers that were looking for "Mexicali or Tijuana Brass" styled albums. However, the set is light on the "Mexicali and heavy on Anita Kerr Singers light pop vocal treatments.

Mexicali group member "bios" included on the back cover are humorous concoctions which seem to have fooled the Billboard reviewer. This is all Anita Kerr and her group of vocalists.

Great set that features a cover of The Beatles tune Michelle as the standout track.

This is the first of three albums that Kerr produced as a part of this project

Spanish Flea
Bye Bye Blue
Zorba The Greek
Flowers On The Wall
Yakety Sax
Tijuana Taxi
Red Roses For A Blue Lady
Cotton Candy
A Taste Of Honey