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That old feeling



“An Evening with Anita O’Day” Columbia Records (England)  This album started in 1954 (in the US on Norman Granz’ Norgran Records) and was completed by 1955, but not issued until 1956.   An Evening With Anita O’Day began its life as Songs By Anita O’Day, a ten-inch record released in 1954 for Norman Granz’ Norgran label and later expanded to its present form. The music is comprised of three small group sessions that took place in Los Angeles in the spring of 1954 and the summer of 1955. These are studio recordings, leaving the listener to assume that the titular “evening” refers to the time of day in which the listener will want to experience these songs, which feel like they must have been recorded by candlelight.  Stellar guitar work by Tal Farlow and Barney Kessel

I had an evening with Anita O’Day.  She’s been one of my favorite singers for as long as I can remember.  It was in the Winter of 1984.  I had just moved to New York City after college.  I saw that she was appearing at a club in Teaneck, NJ – just over the George Washington Bridge.   Easy.  Or so I thought.  Having no money and no car, I tried to walk it from my room on the Upper West Side.  It was a snowy night and I ended up willing myself there with a combination of hiking, hitching, bus and subway.  Finally inside that warm, intimate  jazz room, with Anita sitting on a stool in the spotlight and singing on a low, small stage, the world outside melted away.  It was magical.  After the first set, I had the gumption to offer her a drink and she took a seat and we talked about her music, her band, her schedule.  Meeting your idols can go either way, but she was very nice – sensing, I’m sure, my excitement and appreciation.  I stayed for the late show before trudging out through the snow in the early morning feeling that the world was a little smaller and the future filled with wonders.



1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (33 votes, average: 4.42 out of 5)
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Knight moves


STABLE MATES.  Savoy Records   (1960)   One side of the album includes Yusef Lateef’s first recordings as a leader doing three of his exotic/hardbop compositions recorded with Curtis Fuller, Louis Hayes, and Hugh Lawson.   The other side features arrangements of original tunes by AK Salim – featuring an octet that includes Kenny Burrell, Tommy Flanagan, Johnny Coles, and Johnny Griffin.  Oddly, the record doesn’t refer to the most excellent Jazz standard “Stablemates” by Benny Golson (recorded just a couple years earlier), but just to the fact that Lateef and Salim were both in the Savoy “stable” of artists.

(On a personal note, I recently started playing chess again as an adult for the first time since I was a teenager captivated with the televised Bobby Fisher – Boris Spassky world championships.  Now I’m playing multiple games a day on line with a friend in London.  I never stopped listening to Jazz however.)

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (20 votes, average: 3.50 out of 5)
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“Play this one!”


I picked this up in London a few weeks ago.  A nice little EP with a photo I’d never seen.  Here’s Coleman Hawkins in 1955 on Vogue Records (UK).    (A1) It’s Only A Paper Moon;  (A2) I Surrender Dear;  (B1) Bah-U-Bah  (B2) Sophisticated Lady

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (30 votes, average: 3.33 out of 5)
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Ornette was the answer


R.I.P. Ornette

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (32 votes, average: 3.66 out of 5)
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RIP designer Paul Bacon


The Other Side of Benny Golson  Riverside Records  Design by Paul Bacon.

Paul Bacon OBIT.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (36 votes, average: 3.92 out of 5)
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For a few dollars more


I picked this up at the WFMU Record Fair last weekend – for only $4,000!   “Jazz Music for People Who Don’t Care About Money”  A wealth of great jazz by Bethlehem Records artists (who probably made pennies for all of their genius), Charlie Mingus, Howard McGhee, Conte Condoli, Sal Salvador, etc.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (24 votes, average: 3.71 out of 5)
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Joe Newman  “I Feel Like a Newman”  Storyville Records (1956)  Featuring Joe Newman (trumpet, leader) with two jazz combos (octet on side one / quintet on side two). Among accompanying musicians a few jazz greats, as follows: John Lewis, Gene Quill, Freddie Green, Milt Hinton.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (27 votes, average: 4.04 out of 5)
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Blues in the night (RIP)

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Clark Terry in the P.M.  EmArcy Records EP  with the songs “Double Play”, “Chuckles”, and “Slow Boat”  Taken from Clark Terry’s first sessions as a leader in 1955 withClark Terry (tp), Jimmy Cleveland (tb), Cecil Payne (bs), Horace Silver (p), Oscar Pettiford (b, cello), Wendel Marshall (b), Art Blakey (ds).

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (41 votes, average: 3.93 out of 5)
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Mad men of jazz



Compendium of Jazz #1  Verve Records  (1957)  A compilation of Verve jazz artists including Count Basie, Stan Getz, Charlie Parker and others.  (This guy is Freddy Morgan!)

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (35 votes, average: 4.06 out of 5)
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Happy New Year 2015!


“I Love Listening to Buddy Bregman”   (1957)  RCA Records (UK)  Verve Series (issued in the States as “Swinging Kicks”) Music composed by Bregman for the “B” movie “Wild Party,”  (Anthony Quinn as an over-the-hill football star that holds a thrill-seeking couple captive in a sleazy nightspot for a night of terror ),  A great example of West Coast Cool Jazz with an all-star session featuring the Buddy Bregman All-Star Big Band: Buddy Bregman (conductor, arranger); Herb Geller, Bud Shank (alto saxophone); Georgie Auld, Bob Cooper, Stan Getz, Ben Webster (tenor saxophone); Jimmy Giuffre (baritone saxophone); Conte Candoli, Pete Candoli, Maynard Ferguson, Conrad Gozzo, Ray Linn (trumpet); Milt Berhnart, Frank Rosolino, George Roberts, Lloyd Ulyate (trombone); Andre Previn, Paul Smith (piano); Al Hendrickson (guitar); Joe Mondragon (bass); Stan Levey, Alvin Stoller (drums).

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (37 votes, average: 4.16 out of 5)
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