Category Archives: Jazz

NIMBUS SEXTET-FORWARD THINKER.

Nimbus Sextet-Forward Thinker. Label: Acid Jazz Records. Format: CD. It was just over three years ago when Nimbus Sextet signed to Acid Jazz Records in the spring of 2019. A lot has happened since then.  The group recently released their sophomore album Forward Thinker, and are now regarded as one of the leading lights of the …

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WE ARE THE CHILDREN OF THE SUN.

We Are The Children Of The Sun. Label: BBE Music. Format: CD. Recently, BBE  released the compilation We Are The Children Of The Sun, which was compiled by DJ and renowned crate digger Paul Hillery, who is one of leading lights of folk-funk scene. This new compilation offers a tantalising taste of a genre that …

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LUKE UNA PRESENTS E SOUL CULTURA.

Luke Una Presents E Soul Cultura. Label: Mr. Bongo. Format: CD. Each week, countless new compilations are released into what’s become an increasingly competitive marketplace. These compilations are released by indies and major labels in the hope that this is the start of a lucrative and long-running series. However, the reality is that most will …

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SOUL DROPS.

Soul Drops. Label: Acid Jazz Records and Miles Away Records. Format: CD. In April 2019, Acid Jazz Records and Miles Away Records decided to reissue some of their favourite 45s. This included many soul sides released from 1969 onwards. Many of them were long out of print and nowadays, are real rarities coveted by crate …

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YOU SHOWED ME-THE SONGS OF GENE CLARK.

You Showed Me-The Songs Of Gene Clark. Label: Ace Records. Format: CD. Like so many of his generation, Gene Clark developed an interest in folk music after hearing the Kingston Trio. It was no surprise that after graduating from Bonner Springs High School, in Bonner Springs, Kansas, in 1962, that the seventeen year old formed …

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THE MORE THINGS CHANGE-FILM, TV AND STUDIO WORK 1968-1973 BY JOHN BARRY.

The More Things Change-Film, TV and Studio Work 1968-1973 By John Barry. Label: Ace Records. Format: CD. By 1968, composer and conductor John Barry was enjoying a golden era in a career that began in 1957. He had come a long way in a short space of time and already written the soundtrack to four …

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ALL TURNED ON! MOTOWN INSTRUMENTALS 1960-1972.

All Turned On! Motown Instrumentals 1960-1972. Label: Ace Records. Format: CD. Previously, Ace Records have dug deep into the Motown vaults and released two successful and critically acclaimed compilation series. Motown Girls was the first and this was followed by Motown Guys. However, now two becomes three with All Turned On! Motown Instrumentals 1960-1972, which …

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LONNIE LISTON SMITH-LIVE!

Lonnie Liston Smith-Live! Label: BGP. Format: CD. Innovative, influential and way ahead of the musical curve describes the music of Lonnie Liston Smith. Especially the music he recorded with The Cosmic Echoes for Bob Thiele’s Flying Dutchman Productions. A total of five groundbreaking albums were released by the label starting with 1973s Astral Travelling. This continued  right through to …

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LONNIE LISTON SMITH AND THE COSMIC ECHOES-RENAISSANCE.

Lonnie Liston Smith and The Cosmic Echoes-Renaissance. Label: BGP. Format: CD. Innovative, influential and way ahead of the musical curve, describes the music of Lonnie Liston Smith, and specially the five albums he recorded with The Cosmic Echoes for Bob Thiele’s Flying Dutchman Productions between 1973 and 1976  This began with Astral Travelling in 1973 with  …

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CULT CLASSIC: HENRY FRANKLIN-THE SKIPPER.

Cult Classic: Henry Franklin-The Skipper. When pianist Gene Russell and percussionist Dick Schory founded Black Jazz Records in Oakland, California, in 1969, the nascent label’s raison d’être was “to promote the talents of young African American jazz musicians and singers.” This was only part of their vision for their new label. They were determined that …

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CULT CLASSIC: CHESTER THOMPSON-POWERHOUSE.

Cult Classic: Chester Thompson-Powerhouse. During the late-sixties and early seventies, many small independent jazz labels were founded in towns and cities across America. Sadly,  many were short-lived affairs with some releasing just one album and others closing their doors having released just a couple of albums. However, Black Jazz Records released twenty albums 1971 and …

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CULT CLASSIC: RYO FUKUI-SCENERY.

Cult Classic: Ryo Fukui-Scenery. Ryo Fukui, who was born in Biratori, Hokkaido, in Japan, on the ‘1st’ of June 1948, was a late starter when it came to the piano and unlike most of the musicians he encountered during a career that spanned five decades, had never learnt to play the instrument as a child. …

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CULT CLASSIC: DOUG CARN-INFANT EYES.

Cult Classic: Doug Carn-Infant Eyes. Although Gene Russell and Dick Schory founded Black Jazz Records in 1969, two years passed before the nascent label released its first album. This was Gene Russell’s sophomore album New Direction which was released in 1971. It was the first of twenty albums by a label that was very different …

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HARD BOP CLASSIC: ART BLAKEY AND THE JAZZ MESSENGERS-THE WITCH DOCTOR.

Hard Bop Classic: Art Blakey and The Jazz Messengers-The Witch Doctor. When The Jazz Messengers were formed in 1954, the collective was led by Horace Silver and Art Blakey when they played live. However, it wasn’t until November the ‘23rd’ 1955 when they recorded At the Cafe Bohemia, Volumes 1 and 2. That night, the …

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CULT CLASSIC: KOHSUKE MINE-FIRST.

Cult Classic: Kohsuke Mine-First. Nowadays, the most important period in the development of  J-Jazz is between late-sixties through to the early eighties. That’s regarded as a crucial period in the development of modern jazz in Japan. During that period, many Japanese composers and musicians and bands released ambitious and innovative music that astounded those who …

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CULT CLASSIC: IAN CARR-BELLADONNA.

Cult Classic: Ian Carr-Belladonna. In 1969, thirty-six year old Ian Carr who was born Dumfries, in the South West Scotland, formed Nucleus who would become one of the top British fusion groups. By then, the Scottish trumpeter was a familiar face on the London jazz scene. He had been member of the Emcee Five, co-led …

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CULT CLASSIC: KEITH MANSFIELD-VIVID UNDERSCORES.

Cult Classic: Keith Mansfield-Vivid Underscores. Composer, arranger and musician Keith Mansfield nowadays is recognised and regarded as one the doyens of library music and original copies of his albums are now highly collectable. This includes Vivid Underscores which was released in 1977, a year after his other genre classic Contempo. Both albums are now rarities …

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CULT CLASSIC: GEORGE OHTSUKA QUINTET-LOVING YOU GEORGE.

Cult Classic: George Ohtsuka Quintet-Loving You George. When the George Otsuka Quintet took to the stage at the Nemu Jazz Inn on the ‘19th’ of July 1975 the Japanese bandleader, composer and drummer was thirty-seven and about to record a live album. He was following in the footsteps of Norman Connors, Eddie Henderson and Gary …

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CULT CLASSIC: GENE RUSSELL-NEW DIRECTION.

Cult Classic: Gene Russell-New Direction. In 1969, pianist Gene Russell and percussionist Dick Schory founded Black Jazz Records in Oakland, California. The nascent label’s raison d’être was “to promote the talents of young African American jazz musicians and singers.” This was only part of their vision for their new label. They were determined that Black …

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CULT CLASSIC: HANK MOBLEY-SOUL STATION.

Cult Classic: Hank Mobley-Soul Station. It was Leonard Feather, the British-born jazz pianist, composer, producer and music writer who described Hank Mobley as the: “middleweight champion of the tenor saxophone.” This metaphor made sense to critics and connoisseurs of jazz.  His tone was neither as aggressive as John Coltrane nor as melodic as Stan Getz. …

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