|2017 CD releases...|
| CDs released (or announced) during 2017
........................CDs released during 2016.......during 2015 during 2014
||ARTCD||"Art Themen's New Directions" |
Art Themen is a veteran of the British jazz scene working initally with Michael Garrick in the late 1960's to the early 1970s. From 1975 through to 1993 he had a long association with Stan Tracey featuring in Stan's groups of all sizes from quartet to big band.
Art formed this new band to showcase some of the more challenging gems from established comosers such as Dexter Gordon, Charlie Mingus, Thelonius Monk and Horace Silver bringing musicality to material that you wouldn't normally hear. It reflects his desire for a fresh though accessible examination of this music, and the additional firepower of Gareth Williams, Arnie Somogyi and Steve Fishwick adds further variety to the repertoire.
The title of the album is a catchphrase adopted by the band as a wry reflection on the difficulties encountered in putting together a string of consecutive dates. The recording was made in 2016.
|Acrobat||"Dick Morrissey - Live at the Bell 1972" |
The early 1970s have long been regarded as the “dark ages” for acoustic modern jazz in the UK: jazz-rock and fusion were everywhere, monopolising whatever recording opportunities were available for British jazzmen, captivating the imagination of the music press and forcing some of the country's finest improvisers into an inglorious twilight. However, it wasn't all doom and gloom. A few players managed to straddle both camps, pleasing both purists and progressives alike, principle among them saxophonist Dick Morrissey, then riding high with jazz-rock icons 'If' but otherwise known as one of Britain's greatest straight-ahead jazz soloists. A musician who'd established an almost cult-like following on the grass roots circuit of provincial pubs that comprised much of the British jazz scene of the time, Morrissey hadn't recorded a pure jazz album since the mid-1960s (and wouldn't make an all-out return to his first love until the 1980s) but live on gigs it was a very different story, with his consistently swinging, blues-infused playing lighting the touch paper every time he took to the stand. This 1972 session – only recently rediscovered and never before issued - captures one such night, featuring Morrissey in positively overflowing form in the company of vibraphonist Lennie Best's quartet, and serves not only as a souvenir from an evening which those present can still recall, but as a fitting memorial to Morrissey's no-holds-barred commitment to his bop roots. Packaged with an extensive booklet by award-winning saxophonist Simon Spillett, including rare press clippings and the recollections of some of the musicians and fans on the gig, this release is an indispensable, candid document of an era all too often glossed over in the histories of British modern jazz. Track list...
|Acrobat||"Helter Skelter Joe Harriott & Co. - Live, Rare and Previously Unreleased recordings 1955-1963" |
The legend of saxophonist Joe Harriott is full of stories of isolation and disenfranchisement, received wisdom being that both his music and personality were simply a shade too incendiary to ever fit comfortably within the conventions of the day. While there is no doubt that Harriott's 1960s experiments with free-form improvisation and his ground-breaking fusions with Indian music did set him apart from his colleagues, his was not a talent easily pigeon-holed. Nor was he always as far from the establishment of British Jazz as some histories maintain. Featuring several rare sessions, this new Acrobat CD finds the great altoist in a variety of settings, including a quartet set highlighting his ballad playing in the company of future doyen of British TV and film scores, pianist Max Harris, hitherto only available on a much sought after EP; a session combining a stellar line-up of Melody Maker poll winners – again long out of print; a previously unissued guest appearance with the German Kurt Edelhagen big band and, finally, another truly all-star session under the direction of John Dankworth, which finds Harriott alongside a dazzling list of other notable British jazz leaders including Kenny Ball, Chris Barber, Sandy Brown, Tubby Hayes and Humphrey Lyttelton. Complete with period photographs – several of them never before published - and an extensive booklet essay by award winning saxophonist and author Simon Spillett, this collection is a mandatory listening for all fans of the Golden Age of British Modern Jazz. Track list...
|RnB Records||"The Songbook Harry South (4 CD set)" |
Harry South may not be a household name in the UK, but among it's jazz world of the 50s to the late 60s, it was held in very high esteem. Even when jazz fell into a sharp decline in the UK mainstream in the late 1960s, you couldn't hold a man like Harry South back. By then, mainly writing for film, theatre and TV, he composed perhaps one of the most iconic television themes of all time The Sweeney. This set contains over 60 tracks all written by Harry, the majority of them from the decade 1956-1966 when British jazz was at its peak and ranges through soul jazz, bebop, Latin stylings and funky 60s big band sounds. Also included is a 36 page booklet giving recording dates and personnels where known. The Harry South family have kindly allowed us to access their archives and most of the tracks are receiving their first release. Sure, you can learn a lot listening to other people on record , Tubby Hayes said in 1957, but Harry taught me more than I ever got from records. Tracks by The Harry South Big Band unless stated.
Disc One: 1. Bandbox - Basil Kirchin 2 Orient Line -Tubby Hayes Orchestra 3. Dance Of The Aerophragytes - Tubby Hayes Quartet 4. Message To The Messengers - Tubby Hayes Quintet 5. Ode To Ernie - Tubby Hayes Quintet 6. Hall Hears The Blues - Tubby Hayes Quintet 7. Slidin' - Ronnie Ross Quintet 8. Jumpin' With Joe - Joe Harriot Quintet 9. South Winds - Humphrey Lyttelton Band 10. Finger Snapper - Humphrey Lyttelton Band 11. Southern Horizons - Joe Harriot Sextet 12. Liggin' - Joe Harriot Sextet 13. Cooling Off 14. Jazz at the Paris 15 The Goblin.
Disc Two : 1. Minor Incident - Dick Morrissey Quartet 2. Poncho 3. Raga 4. Tribal Dance - Humphrey Lyttelton Band 5. Reunion - Humphrey Lyttelton Band 6. Opening Time - Humphrey Lyttelton Band 7. Closing Time 8. The Sound of Seventeen 9. There And Back 10. Costa Fortuna 11. Afterthought 12. North Of The Soho Border 13. Last Orders 14. Birth of the Budd - Roy Budd 15. El Schtuck - Dick Morrissey Quartet.
. Disc Three: 1. Storm Warning 2. Newtyme Waltz 3. Six To One Bar 4. Limited Freedom 5. Requiem for JB 6. Strollin' South - Joe Harriot Quintet 7. Harry's Theme - Terry Smith 8. Themeology 9. Irresistible Force 10. The Rainy Season 11. Down the Line 12. The Limeys 13. Unidentified Track 1 14. Unidentified Track 2 15 Unidentified Track 3 16. Blues In 17. Sound Of Seventeen - Alan Grahame Big Band.
Disc Four: 1. Pedals and Clusters 2. One For The Woodwards 3. The Scandinavian 4. Black Eyed Peas 5. Full House 6. Parade Of The Paranoics 7. Royal Flush 8 The Sweeney 9 Return Trip - NYJO 10 Four Dimensions Of Greta - Harry South Orchestra 11 Unidentified Track 4 12 Unidentified Track 5 13 Unidentified Track 6 14. Charlie's Blues - Jimmy Witherspoon 15 Southern Horizons - NYJO 16. Come On The Blues - NYJO 17. Signing Out - Harry South.
Track list details...
|Real Gone Jazz||"Real Gone Jazz compilations..." |
Three 2016 CD collections from Real Gone Jazz. As is usual with this label there was no publicity and there is scant detail as to recording dates or personnel. The Jimmy Deuchar collection does have interest as it contains a number of tracks that have never before been re-issued. Track listing Jimmy Deuchar...
The Joe Harriott three classic albums, (Southern Horizons, Free Form and Abstract), double CD set contains nothing that is not already available elsewhere and is probably of limited interest to Harriott collectors. Track listing Joe Harriott...
Kenny Graham was an original musician and arranger and the early recordings with his Afro Cubist band are included on this CD set for the first time ever. Kenny only recorded for six years between 1951 and 1956 and most of his recordings are included here, apart from some tracks with Dizzy Reece, Joe Harriott and Dave Goldberg from 1954. Sadly, the CDs come without any details as to personnel, and there are missing recording dates as well. Kenny's work deserved better presentation than this but at least these valuable early records are available again after sixty plus years in limbo. An added bonus on many tracks is the lyrical trumpet playing of Jo Hunter.
Track listing Kenny Graham...
|R&B Records||"Soho '62 Jazz goes Mod (2 CD set)" |
In 1962, the London jazz scene was thriving but divided into two very different playing styles. The trad jazz scene was holed up at the 100 Club whereas across the road at The Marquee, modernist aspirations were fulfilled on Sunday evenings. If you wanted all night action, then you would head to The Flamingo Club in Wardour Street, where on dark and moody Saturdays, Soho's underworld figures converged for sessions that ran from midnight to 6am. Dance crazes such as The Twist and The Madison were taking off at various sophisticated venues in the West End. Modernists wouldn't be seen here though; their clubs were unlicensed premises in dark smoky basements serving a wholesome menu of Coca-Cola and hamburgers. Collected on Disc 1 is the cream of British jazz from 1962, whereas disc two showcases influential American sounds from labels such as Impulse, Blue Note and Prestige. This album captures the period just before rhythm and blues began to emerge as the dominant club sound, forcing clubs like the Flamingo to change in order to survive. Disc 1 : 1. Manumission - Don Rendell Quintet 2. Sack O' Woe - Tony Coe Quintet 3. Lady E - Tubby Hayes & The All Stars 4. Desperation - Ronnie Scott/Jimmy Deuchar 5. Give Seven - Bill McGuffie Quintet 6. Shepherd s Serenade - Joe Harriott Quintet 7. Good Morning Judge - Ronnie Ross/Jazz Workshop 8. Charlie Is My Darling - The British Jazz Trio 9. Quarterin - Al Fairweather & His Band 10. Yeah! Tubby Hayes Quintet 11. Ritual - Victor Feldman All Stars 12. Home Brew - Eddie Thompson Trio 13. Cannon Ball - Johnny Dankworth Orchestra 14. Study for Jazz Quintet 1 - Johnny Scott Quintet 15. Bossa Negra - Shake Keane Quintet 16. Not So Blue - Tony Coe Quintet 17. Wednesday Night Prayer Meeting - Al Fairweather & His Band 18. Tonal - Joe Harriott Quintet 19. Back To The Barn - Galt MacDermot 20. Screwball - Alan Clare 21. Ruanda - Shake Keane Fivetet.
|Acrobat||"Tubby Hayes Quartet - Invitation, Live at The Top Alex"|
The United Kingdom, March 1973: Pink Floyd release ‘Dark Side of The Moon’: the provisional IRA detonate bombs at Whitehall and The Old Bailey; and saxophonist Tubby Hayes and his quartet perform one of their final engagements outside of London, taking to the stage of the Top Alex, Southend-on-Sea, as part of the pub's regular jazz presentations. To Hayes and his band, who'd been together as a unit for over three years, it was hardly a gig to raise eyebrows; a typical, jazz club blow in a suburban pub backroom, the very thing that the saxophonist had begun his career doing twenty-three years earlier. But now, Hayes was no longer a star ascendant, or operating like the jazz dynamo he'd been in his mid-1960s heyday. He was, quite literally, running out of time. Three months after the Top Alex appearance, he was dead, aged just 38, finally halted by the heart problems that had plagued his final years. While the press obituaries rightly accorded Hayes his deserved position as one of Britain's greatest ever jazz talents, they also noted the cruel irony that he and his band hadn't entered a recording studio since 1969. Indeed, how the Tubby Hayes Quartet - a group which one obituarist compared to the identical line-up led by John Coltrane – sounded in its final years became something of a mystery. The discovery of privately recorded tapes of the Top Alex performance, issued for the first time on this Acrobat release, provides not only a valedictory souvenir of the quartet in its final phase, but also a lesson in its leader’s still deepening musical maturity; close to the end, Hayes draws on everything he'd learned, experienced and pioneered to date, as well as revealing clues as to where his music might have headed next. Packaged with rare photographs and memorabilia from the night itself, featuring reminiscences by band member Spike Wells, and others who witnessed the gig, and including an in-depth booklet note by Hayes' biographer, saxophonist Simon Spillett, this album is a final, melancholy reminder of a truly gigantic musical legend. Track listing Tubby Hayes...