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Saturday, March 2, 2019

Bossa Nova Plus - Willis Jackson

What Kind Of Fool Am I
Bossa Nova Plus
Willis Jackson
Supervision: Ozzie Cadena
Recording - Van Gelder
Design: Don Schlitten
Pretige PR-7260


Willis Jackson - Tenor Sax
Kenny Burrell - Guitar
Jose Paulo - Guitar
Tommy Flanagan - Piano
Eddie Calhoun - Bass
Montego Joe - Conga
Juan Amalbert - Conga, Timbales
Roy Hayes - Drums, Cabasa

From the back cover: What can I say about Willis Jackson, he is one of the grooviest sounding tenor saxophonists in the jazz world, his is the big sound, juicy fat notes, and most important he knows exactly where to place them. Yeah, this is the way to play Bossa Nova, Willis get a groove goin' that would shake the Brazilians down to their knuckles and after the hipper Cuban hear Cachita and Mama Inez, they'll know that their tunes haven't had it yet.

Kenny Burrell adds a little more of the easy grits with his presence and his co-guitarist adds a whole lot of the Brazilian flavor, Jose Paulo is one of the finest imports from Brazil since coffee, here he is heard playing mainly rhythm but wait until you get to hear his first album. Tommy Flanagan is as always, tasty, he can really get into something, no matter what the flavor.

The rhythm section has a lot to say here, Calhoun's big fat bottom, Haynes with rocks goin' and Montego Jo and Amalbert get the afro roots out and into the pot where it means something. Well like I always say, don't talk about it, do it, so instead of me describing what I hear, you listen and let me know your views

I Left My Heart In San Francisco
Mama Inez
What Kind Of Fool Am I

Friday, March 1, 2019

Mutiny In The Parlor - Gene Krupa

Mutiny In The Parlor
Gene Krupa And His Orchestra
Designed From Dancing / One Of A Series
RCA Camden CAL-340

Available from online vendors so I will not be posting a sample. Presented here to share the

From Billboard - December 29, 1956: A jazz-lover's delight! Gene Krupa plays 12 of his best sides. Four of them include Benny Goodman, Jess Stacey, Roy Eldridge, Chu Berry. 12" Long Play (CAL-340) $1.98; 4-selection 45 EP (CAE-379) 79¢

Reissued in 1958 as Swingin' With Krupa and featuring different cover art.

Ain't Misbehavin' (I'm Savin' My Love For You)
Handful Of Keys
Honeysuckle Rose
What Did I Do To Be So Black And Blue
Walking With The Blues
Panhandle Rag
Bonaparte's Retreat - Vocals – Bobby Soots
I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles
Swing Is Here
I Hope Gabriel Likes My Music
I'm Gonna Clap My Hands - Vocals – Helen Ward
Mutiny In The Parlor - Vocals – Helen Ward

Music From South America (Carnavalito) - Los Amigos Del Amambay

El Pajaro Chogui
Music From South America
Featuring Los Amigos Del Amambay
Recorded in Europe
Universe Records
Music Of The World ULP-517
Universal Record Co. of California

El Humahuaqueno (Carnavalito Argentino)
A Mis Dos Amores (Polca Paraguaya)
La Flor De La Canela (Vals Peruano)
La Voliviana (Cueca Boliviana)
Lucerito Alba (Polca Paraguaya)
Angela Rosa (Polca Paraguaya)
La Adelita (Canción Popular Mexicana)
El Pajaro Chogui (Canción Guarani)
Ende Que Te Vi (Tonado Chilena)
Isla Saca (Polca Paraguaya)
Mi Juana (Tonada Chilena)
Mi Dicha Lejana (Guarania Paraguaya)
Mariinerto (Polca Paraguaya)

Temptation - Eddie Baxter

The Unique Artistry Of Eddie Baxter
Cover Photography: Phil Howard
Color Jacket Designed and Printed in U.S.A. by Howard Techni-Krome Press
Rendezvous Records RLP 1302

From the back cover: Believing that credit should be given when credit is due, I wish to say that I have managed to surround myself with many enthusiastic, resourceful, creative, and patient people, and this album is the result of their tremendous help and cooperation. Knowing nothing about the technical aspects of instruments, I have been completely dependent upon the talent of other people in that direction, and although I might conceive an idea for sounds or effects I might want to hear, it has taken the resourcefulness and knowledge of others to actually carry out that idea. I believe that we have just touched upon the immense potential and limitless sounds and techniques that will eventually come into being through the realm of electronics.

The "string bass sound" was invented by Fred Krueger, and is known as the "Krueger Percussion Bass." I am indebted to Robert Eby for his "do-it-yourself" set-up, where enthusiasts are able to buy and assemble their own equipment and accessories, and also for finding Douglas Erdman, who assembled percussion instruments such as tambourine, castanets, cymbals, etc., so that they could be played by means of a keyboard. Pat Wade was responsible for being sure that my equipment was in workable and playable order after it was moved into the Capitol Tower.

The seemingly insurmountable task of actually recording this conglomeration fell upon Alan Emig, whose awareness of what I was trying to accomplish was amazing. In addition to his engineering how-how, his musical integrity, ideas and suggestions made this whole effort very interesting and enjoyable. I offer my sincere thanks to those who did the impossible. I hope they never find out that it couldn't be done. – Eddie Baxter

Also from the back cover: Although the Eddie Baxter style may be new to many record buyers, it had been familiar to his listeners for a good many years prior to the release of the Rendezvous albums. His distinctive interpretation of ballads was well-known to television audiences of Renzo Cesana as "The Continental," when the show originated in Hollywood in 1951, and the same Baxter backgrounds were heard on "The Continental's" records. Followers of the Jack McElroy show saw and heard Eddie play his arrangements of "up" tunes daily on NBC-TV for over three years.

The diversified abilities of this talented musician are due in a large measure to his many varied experiences in the music field. Playing for dance classes in Denver at the age of eleven and working with orchestras during high school and while attending UCLA gave him an early start. He gained invaluable experience both as a pianist and arranger during his years on the road with bands such as Glen Gray and Frankie Masters, and then added to his knowledge and skill by working with small groups and as a single.

Also see: This Love Of Mine - Rendezvous RLP 1303

I Only Have Eyes For You
All Of You
When The Wind Was Green
You Are Too Beautiful
Stars Fell On Alabama
It's Easy To Remember
Violets For Your Furs
That's All
Concerto In Blues

Permanently Stated - John Fred

Permanently Stated
John Fred And His Playboys
All songs produced and arranged by John Fred and Andrew Bernard
Recording Engineer: Robin Hood Brians – Tyler, Texas
Cover Photos: Alan Grossman
Back Cover Photo: Ellen King
Album Production: Mar-Ken Advertising Agency
Illustration: Gene Numez
Cover Design: Jerry Griffith
Paula Records LPS 2201
Division of Jewel Records - Shreveport, LA

Available from online vendors so I will not be posting a sample. Presented here to share the cover art and Billboard review.


Joe Miceli - Dummer
Harold Coward - Piano
Jimmy O'Rourche - Guitar
Tommy Lee - Organ
Andrew Bernard - Bari-Sax
Ronnie Goodson - Trumpet
Charley Spinn - Trumpet.

From Billboard - August 10, 1968: John Fred and His Playboy Band show vast musical flexibility in this foldout jacket set; their offerings range from the teeny-bopper-style "Little Dum Dum," their new single, to the progressive rock-flavored "Before The Change." Past singles of "Hey Hey Bunny" and "We Played Games" are also here.

We Played Games
Surprise, Surprise
What Is Happening
Lonely Are The Lonely
Mary Jane
Tissue Paper
Hey, Hey Bunny
Who Could Love You (More Than I)
Little Dum Dum
Before The Change
Permanently Stated

The Chico Hamilton Quintet With Strings Attached


The Chico Hamilton Quintet With Strings Attached
Orchestra under the direction of Fred Katz
Produced by George Avakian
Cover Photo by Gene Kornmann
Warner Bros. Records B 1245

From the back cover: The members of the Chico Hamilton Quintet are a mixture of highly-respected veteran musicians and talented youngsters. Leader Hamilton is one of the best-known percussionists in both the jazz and show-business fields. At 18, he played with the Duke Ellington orchestra. A stint with Count Basie followed, but Chico was not content to be only a jazz drummer; he also went into theatre work in Los Angeles, and then combined the two backgrounds in the first long-term engagement of his career – eight years with the greatest night club performer of them all, Lena Horne. In 1955, he applied everything he had learned to form the Quintet – a masterful combination of jazz, showmanship, and just plain good music to play and to listen to.

Bassist Wyatt Ruther is best known for his tours, with the Dave Brubeck Quartet, the Erroll Garner Trio, and with Lean Horn. Cellist Nat Gershman is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Philadelphia and an alumnus of the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra. Newcomers Eric Dolphy and Dennis Budimir are native Los Angelenos; Eric is a discovery of Chico's and Dennis broke in recently with the Harry James band.

Also from the back cover: There is a TV commercial in which a slightly self-satisfied voice proclaims, "They said it couldn't be done." When Chico Hamilton, three short busy years ago, formed a quintet that consisted of drums, bass, guitar, one man doubling a lot of reed instruments, and – this is where nightclub owners and friends furrowed their brows – a cello, the voices echoed "Couldn't be done, couldn't be done."

Chico Hamilton did it with success on every front, including the necessary one of paying off the mortgage. His is a musical organization of unusual quality, skill, and variety. Each member is a technician of extraordinary quality who can improvise with rare ingenuity; collectively, they blend tastefully in a seemingly endless number of combinations of sound.

The Chico Hamilton Quintet represents both a challenge and an opportunity to arrangers. An unusual number of musicians have paid Chico the ultimate compliment by asking if they may write for the group. This has served as an inspiration to the Quintet, and has helped keep alive the freshness which has always characterized its music.

In this collection, the Quintet appears both in its original form and with a string section which augments its normal sound, often as a supplement to the role of the cello in the ensemble. Appropriately enough, the arranger who wrote the scores in these particular pieces is Fred Katz, the original cellist of the group, who left the group to concentrate on composition and scoring in Hollywood. He not only wrote many of the Quintet's arrangements, but is was his instrument which gave it its unusual color. Fred's writing, which has been heard in motion picture sound tracks as well as on records, is well ahead of the crowd, though not so far out as to lose his audience. Imagination and sensitivity characterize his work in the slower tempos; imagination and happy playfulness mark his up-tempo writing.

Fred also wrote the arrangements for the Quintet alone in his composition, Modes. In the other Quintet selections heard in this set, the composers also wrote the arrangements, except in the case of Pottsville, U.S.A., which was written by Carson Smith, the bassist of the original Quintet. Much of the variety of the Quintet comes from the doubling of reed instruments by young Eric Dolphin. In Fred Katz's string arrangements, Eric's warm flute is the principal color of the Quintet in Billy Strayhorn's Something To Live For; his bass clarinet dominates Kurt Weill's Speak Low; his warm alto is the main feature of Close To You. Chico's drums dominate the exciting Strange, and in the Rodgers and Hart novelty, Ev'rything I've Got, everyone gets into it.

Andante, which features Nat Gershman's cello, is written and arranged by Luther Henderson, who is another musician long associated with Lean Horne. Its serene beauty makes it one of the most effective mood pieces in the Quintet repertoire. Fred Katz's Modes (and he, too, is still another ex-member of Lena Horne's entourage) is a real sound piece which evokes all kinds of images. Pottsville, by Bill Potts, are bouncy, melodic and, like all the other originals in the set, written perfectly for the Quintet. Benny Golson's Fair Weather and Howard McGhee's Don Delight are the brightest and sprightliest of this group. The latter show of Don Hamilton, Chico's brother.

From Billboard - January 26, 1959: Here's a jazz set that could easily turn into one of 1959's top-sellers. It features the fine Chico Hamilton group, augmented with a string section as well as in quintet form. The arrangements with strings are by Fred Katz; the other arranged by member of the group. The tunes include originals, like "Modes," and "Andante," standards such as "Speak Low" and "Ev'rything I've Got," and jazz items like "Pottsville, U.S.A." and "Don's Delight." They are played superbly by the group and the stereo recording is first rate. An outstanding jazz set featuring fine performances and exciting ideas.

Something To Live For
Speak Low
Pottsville, U.S.A.
Don's Delight
Fair Weather
Close Your Eyes
Ev'rything I've Got

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Frances Faye Sings Folk Songs

Frances Faye Sings Folk Songs
Recorded February and March, 1957 in Hollywood, California
Cover Painting of Frances Faye by C. V. Calderwood
Micro Cosmic Sound
Bethlehem Records BCP-6017


Frances Faye - Vocals

Russ Garcia conducting various combinations of the following musicians (and string section):

Trumpet: Don Fagerquist, Maynard Ferguson, Jimmy Salko
Trombone: Herbie Harper, Frank Rosolino, Lloyd Ulyate, Milt Bernhart
Guitar: Robert Howard
Bass: Max Bennett
Drums: Mel Lewis

Available form online vendors so I will not be posting a sample. Presented here to share back jacket notes excerpts.

From the back cover: "Frances Faye singing folk songs?" you will ask; and that question like the appearance of this album is going to stir a big controversy. This is a pioneering and distinctly exciting event in vocal recording. Until this album's appearance, folk songs have always been left to the lyrical folk singer. Miss Faye is, as everyone in the music world knows, a jazz expressionist – a better, a unique artist who leans into songs like a painter who sees the familiar ocean and share but closed his eyes and decides to paint not only what his eyes have seen but what his inner eye feels.

That is exactly what Miss Faye has done here. She and Bethlehem A & R man Red Clyde have taken a selection of the most beloved family songs which have existed through the centuries and Miss Faye has leaned into them with her own passion and pain and loneliness and joy and sadness. There were times, during the days of recording these songs, when the traditional music made Frances pause, push back from the microphone and cry out a note. At these moments everyone involved in the recording date felt the electric current of emotion force its reverberations through the sound-proof studio.

For example, the first recording session was on a wet and rainy California night. Frances was to record the story-telling, dramatic blues favorites, "Frankie And Johnny," "St. James Infirmary" and the steel-driving Negro ballad, "John Henry." Arranged by Russ Garcia (a major factor in Bethlehem's production of "Porgy And Bess"), who also was conducting, had scored the songs for power and story-telling impact, Red Cylde had hired a large group of the best brass, strings and percussion studio musicians he could find in Hollywood. Frances had just stepped off a Florida plane and the thunder of the engines and that extra-sharp sensory feeling that comes from flight was in her ears. The result was an exciting, wailing, story-telling, sad and loud swinging session that was punctuated with wonderful highs and lows in mood and musicianship.

The time was late and the studio was crowded and noisy. But suddenly Garcia was conducting the musicians through "Lonesome Road" and the dramatic sadness of his arrangement startled the room. Suddenly, Frances – eyes closed – bent towards the microphone and started to sing "Look Down, Look Down, Look Down, That Lonesome Road, Before You Travel On." And then her sadness built into a joy and a triumphant shout and she and the band swung joyfully for all they were worth.

The second recording session the next day, included a different group of instruments with the exception of the guitar, which Garcia used through all the songs as an elusive shadow behind and in front of Frances' voice. The guitar – traditional accompanying instrument of folk songs – is featured in the customary manner here. For the mining ballad, popular since the Reconstruction period, "Clementine," for the promenading', foot-stompin' "Skip To My Lou," and the sad and lonesome "Go 'Way From My Window" Garcia used a straight set of four powerful trombones to handle melody lines plus a rhythm section and a lone trumpet (Don Fagerquist).

In the same fresh and thrilling manner, the trombones back Frances as she sang a medley of Negro Spirituals, "Nobody Knows The Trouble I've Seen," "Deep River" and "Goin' Home." In my opinion, Frances Faye put her whole philosophy of living into these ballads; her city living in depression days, the hunger, the loneliness of small towns, the glitter of success and the beauty and strength of her own soul. All this she sang, and listening to this medley is hearing much more than what is in the words. Here is Miss Faye singing with simplicity, sincerity and humility. Here is Miss Faye Goin' Home...

The final session recorded the ballads of sheer beauty which have been handed down from family through generations of time. "Johnny Has Gone For A Soldier," the American Revolutionary ballad about a maiden who sits atop Buttermilk Hill crying for her soldier. The version here recorded from a Hudson Valley family which passed it down from a grandaunt in 1785. "The Three Ravens" is an ancient English song first appearing in 1611 in Ravenscroft's "Melismata." "Greensleeves" first was heard in 1580 in London, England and became the most popular ballad of its time. Shakespeare made mention of it in his plays, and a hundred years later later John Gay used the tune in "The Beggars Opera."

"Oif'n Pripichik," beloved Hebrew folk ballad, is the story of a Hebrew mother telling his young students of the beauty of the Hebrew faith. It is known the world over in Jewish communities. "Oif'n Pripchik" is part of a serene medley which includes the Irish lullaby "Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral" and Miss Faye's own nightclub version of the Italian song "Come Back To Sorrento."

For this last group of ballads, Garcia scored for a string quartet (violas, cello and violin), four voices and Howard Robert's guitar. No bass, drums or piano were needed to enhance the beautiful melodies whose classical backgrounds were emphasized so that Miss Faye's style would have the freedom to express itself in a dramatic contrast.

This album is going to be controversial; Bethlehem Records is sure of that. But of its acceptance and success there is little question. The startling arrangements and the powerful honesty Miss Faye has learned into these ballads is a rich and unusual experience in recorded music. – Robert Ellis

From Billboard - June 3, 1957: A really off-beat item that could create a sensation! The unique Faye voice gives an attractive freshness to the traditional folk material. Highlights are a fabulous interpretation of "Frankie And Johnnie," a medley of Negro spirituals and an unusual "John Henry." Excellent orking from Russ Garcia varies from solo guitar to full ork and chorus. If the word is spread, the set can be a big one. Cover is an intriguing portrait of Miss Faye.

Frankie And Johnny
Skip To My Lou
Lonesome Road
Medley: Nobody Knows The Trouble I've Seen, Deep River, Goin' Home
Johnny Has Gone For A Soldier
St. James Infirmary
Go 'Way From My Window
The Three Ravens
Medley: Oif'n Pripitchik, Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo, Come Back To Sorrento
John Henry