In the four previous volumes of their Spiritual Jazz series, Jazzman Records have mostly, focused on European jazz. For Spiritual Jazz 5: The World, Jazzman Records have travelled far and wide. They’ve been on what can be best described as a worldwide crate digging expedition.

Hidden gems and rarities have been unearthed during this crate digging expedition. There’s tracks from artists as far afield as Argentina, Australia, India, Japan, South Africa and Turkey on Spiritual Jazz 5: The World.  This includes the Charlie Munro Quartet, Jazz Work Shop, Jazz Semail, Ahmadu Jarr, Paul Winter Sextet and Aquilla. Many of the tracks on Spiritual Jazz 5: The World have never featured on CD before. That’s no surprise.  

Some of the tracks on Spiritual Jazz 5: The World are incredibly rare. Copies of the albums they’re taken from are few and far between. Finding copies of these albums could take a lifetime and more than a little luck. That’s how rare some of these albums are. Even if you could find copies of the albums the seventeen tracks are taken from, buying them would another matter. They would be beyond most people’s pockets. Thankfully, not any more. Jazzman Records have put the seventeen tracks on Spiritual Jazz 5: The World. This must make Spiritual Jazz 5: The World one of the biggest bargains of the summer months? I’ll tell you if that’s the case after I’ve picked some of the highlights of Spiritual Jazz 5: The World.

Opening Spiritual Jazz 5: The World is an edit of the Charlie Munro Quartet’s Islamic Suite. This is a track from the 1967 album Eastern Horizon. It was released in Australia by Phillips. Islamic Suite is a twelve minute epic that’s a tantalising taste of what’s a hidden gem of an album. Sadly, copies are incredible rare and if you can find one, most likely, it’ll be beyond the pockets of most record collectors.

Versatile describes Louis Banks. He’s a composer, pianist and keyboard player. Louis’s music ranges from acoustic, improvisational, electronic, fusion and info jazz. Song For My Lady is a track from Louis’ Explorations’ album. It features saxophonist Brad Gonzales and Pam Crain. Explorations was released in India on The Record Company of India. One of Explorations’ highlights is the compelling and beautiful Song For My Lady.

Erol Pekcan, Tuna Ötenel and Kudret Öztoprak collaborated on the 1978 album Jazz Semai. It was released in Turkey on EMI and since then, has become a real rarity. Copies of Jazz Semai change hands for £330. One of the best tracks on Jazz Semai is Köy Yolu. Written by Tuna Ötenel, it showcases an talented and innovative band as they cut loose during an uplifting slice of jazz.

Horacio “Chivo” Borraro released his album El Nuevo Sonido Del Chivo Borraro in 2002 on Whatmusic. It was hailed as a modal jazzmini-masterpiece. This was Chivo’s first album since his 1975 debut album Blues Para Un Cosmonauta. He was back with a bang. Proof of this is Half and Half, which features a blistering, joyous saxophone solo from Horacio. 

London Experimental Jazz Quartet only ever released one album, Invisible Roots. That was forty years ago in 1974 on Scratch Records.  Destroy The Nihilist Picnic is a celebration of innovation and experimentation. Avant garde, experimental, jazz and post bop melt into one on this groundbreaking track.

In 2009, Fitz Gore and The Talismen released their eponymous debut album on the Norwegian label, Jazzaggression Records. Sadly, since 2009, Fitz Gore and The Talismen haven’t released any further albums. That’s a great shame given the uplifting, joyous sound of Gisela (Lion Rock). 

In 1979, South African pianist Tete Mbambisa, was a member of Did You Tell Your Mother. That year, they released their eponymous debut album. Did You Tell Your Mother opened with Trane Ride. It’s an eleven minute mesmeric musical journey that you’ll want to take many times.

Forty years ago, in 1974, Aquilla released their album Del Aquila. It was released on the Chilean label Alba. Aquilla were a jazz fusion band lead  by Pablo Garrido. He was a classically trained musician. He trained as a percussionist and was a member of the Symphony Orchestra of Chile. Later, he moved from classical to jazz music. Pablo became part of Chile’s small but thriving jazz scene. With Aquilla, he become of the Chilean jazz’s scene’s leading lights. No wonder. Un Allah, a track from Del Aquila is a reminder of how good a band Aquilla were. Playing an important part in Um Allah’s success is Pablo’s percussion. Quite simply, Jazzman Records have kept the best until last.

Although I’ve only mentioned eight of the tracks on Spiritual Jazz 5: The World, I could’ve just as easily mentioned just about every track. This includes Jazz Work Shop’s Mezare Israel, Hideo Shiraki’s Fiesta, Ahmadu Jarr’s Kathung Gbeng and the Paul Winter Sextet’s Winters Song all ooze quality. Sadly, these tracks have never been heard by a wider audience. No. Instead, the tracks on Spiritual Jazz 5: The World fall into the categories of hidden gems and rarities. That’s a result of Jazzman Records’ latest crate-digging expedition.

For Spiritual Jazz 5: The World, Jazzman Records have travelled far and wide. They’ve been on what can be best described as a worldwide crate digging expedition. Argentina, Australia, India, Japan, Norway, South Africa and Turkey have all been stops on this crate digging expedition. This has been time well spent. Spiritual Jazz 5: The World features a glittering array of jazz gems.

This includes contributions from the Charlie Munro Quartet, Louis Banks, Jazz Work Shop, Jazz Semail, London Experimental Jazz Quartet and  Horacio “Chivo” Borraro and Aquilla. These tracks are just a tantalising taste of the music on Spiritual Jazz 5: The World. There’s much more. In total, there are seventeen tracks to discover on Spiritual Jazz 5: The World. Each one has something different to offer. With a a mixture of hidden gems, rarities and underground classics,  Spiritual Jazz 5: The World is a worthy and welcome addition to Jazzman Records Spiritual Jazz series.



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