Stan Tracey discography...
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Stan Tracey discography...
Stan Tracey c1960

Stan Tracey was born in Tooting, London on December 30th, 1926. He became a professional musician in 1942 and in 1948 gave Vic Ash his first professional job when he took a small group on a tour of British military bases in Germany. Tracey was then playing mostly accordian with his piano playing was heavily influenced by Thelonius Monk. A pianist, vibes player and composer he started jazz work in the 1950s with Kenny Baker, Tony Crombie, Ronnie Scott and Basil Kirchin and for nearly two years, (1957 to 1959) when he was in something of a jazz wilderness, he played piano and vibes with the Ted Heath Band.

He was only slowly accepted as a major jazz player but he achieved wider recognition when became house pianist at Ronnie Scott's from 1960 to 1967 when he accompanied such stars as Zoot Sims and Ben Webster, (with both of whom he recorded), Sonny Rollins and many others although his vigorous and aggressive accompaniment was not enjoyed by all. These seven years were an intense period of musical creativity for the pianist, alternating work and recordings with his own quartet and accompanying a bewildering array of visiting American soloists, an experience he once described as being "like Christmas every night."

While working with Tony Crombie he met tenor saxophonist Bobby Wellins and they worked together in Tracey's quartet from 1964. The pair pioneered free form improvisation (independently of Joe Harriott or Ornette Coleman). Tracey's Under Milk Wood suite, featuring Wellins, was, arguably, the first truly independent British jazz album.
His style is derived from Thelonius Monk and Duke Ellington although he quickly absorbed their influence into a personal and instantly recognisable style of his own. Once he started to lead his own groups he began to play mostly his own compositions and included suites and more formal compositions.

Through the 1970s and '80s his quartet personnel changed - Peter King was replaced in 1974 with Art Themen who worked through to 1988 at least in Tracey's various groups. During the 1970s he dabbled in free jazz with John Surman and others but this proved a bit of a blind alley and he returned to more formal settings.
He continued to record through to the 2000s in varying sized combos with many musicians. Although he was not a major figure on the British bop and post bop scene of the 1950s he recorded with many of the major players of the time, although he never played in a Tubby Hayes group. His style is stark, rhythmically complex and very assertive, harmonically dense and with few technical displays. In 1986 he was awarded a OBE for his services to British jazz and in 2008 he received a CBE. He is one of the giants of British jazz and is now internationally recognized, playing at many European jazz festivals. He is an extremely talented composer although his major work lies outside the post bop period covered by this website. He died from cancer in December, 2013...

Kenny Baker Swing Group - January 2nd, 1952 (Parlophone)
Kenny Baker (tp), Vic Ash (cl,as), Harry Klein (as,bs), Freddy Courtney (ts), Stan Tracey (p), Alan McDonald (b), Johnny Flanagan (d).
Lullaby Of Birdland/Exploitation.

January 4th, 1952 (Parlophone)
Personnel as January 2nd.
Round About Midnight/Afternoon In Paris.

Victor Feldman All Stars - March 6th, 1952 (Melodisc)
Jimmy Deuchar (tp), Ken Wray (tb), Derek Humble (as), Harry Klein (bs), Victor Feldman (vib), Stan Tracey (p), Lennie Bush (b), Martin Ashton (d), plus other rhythm.
Lullaby In Rhythm*/Serenity*/Just Friends*/Euphony*.
(*Jasmine CD - Bop-In' Britain - Vol 2)

Kenny Baker Orchestra - March 3rd, 1952 (Melodisc)
Kenny Baker, Harry Lethman, Alan Franks, Freddy Clayton (tp), Harry Roche, Don Lusher (tb), Douggie Robinson, Bill Jackson, Keith Bird, Harry Klein (reeds), Stan Tracey (p), Alan McDonald (b), Johnny Flanagan (d).
The Very Thought Of You/The Night Is Long.

Kenny Baker Quartet - October 15th, 1953 (Parlophone GEP8658)
Kenny Baker (tp), Stan Tracey (p), Cliff Ball (b), Don Lawson (d).
Hayfoot Strawfoot/That's My Desire/The Continental/Stompin' At the Savoy.

Kenny Baker and his Band - June 4th, 1954 (Parlophone)
Kenny Baker (tp,fl-h), Stan Tracey (p,accordian-1), Cliff Ball (b), Don Lawson (d).
Wanted/I Speak To The Stars(1).

June 9th, 1954 (Parlophone)
Personnel as June 4th.
Peg O'my Heart/The Other Side(1).

Harry Klein Quintet - January 19th, 1955 (Baritone Sax - Columbia SEG7647) (JMC12)
Harry Klein (bs), Vic Ash (cl), Stan Tracey (p), Sammy Stokes (b), Eddie Taylor (d).
Monument*/Euphony*.
(*Vocalion CD - Jazz Today - Buddy Featherstonhaugh, Harry Klein and others)
(*Avid 2 CD set - Stan Tracey: Three Classic Albums Plus)

Ronnie Scott/Tony Crombie Orchestra - February 18th, 1956 (Decca LF1261...10" LP)
Ronnie Scott (ts), Derek Humble (as), Kenny Graham (ts), Jimmy Deuchar (tp), Les Condon (tp), Ken Wray (tb), Benny Green (bs), Stan Tracey (p), Lennie Bush (b), Tony Crombie (d).
Basie Talks*/It Might As Well Be Spring*/Drop Me Off At Harlem*/Ting-A-Ling*/Straight Life*/Flying Home*.
(^Fantastic Voyage 2 CD set - Ember Jazz - The Flamingo Connection)
(*Acrobat 2 CD set - Soho Blues - The Ronnie Scott Anthology 1956-62)
(*Real Gone Jazz CD - Tony Crombie: Seven Classic Albums plus bonus EP)
(*Real Gone Jazz 4 CD set - Ronnie Scott: Six Classic Albums plus Bonus Singles

Jimmy Deuchar Ensemble - April 23rd, 1956 (Tempo TAP4) (JMC32)
Jimmy Deuchar (tp), Derek Humble (as), Ken Wray (tb), Stan Tracey (p), Lennie Bush (b), Tony Crombie (d).
"E"8/Colne Springs*/Four X*/Red Barrel*..
(*Jasmine CD - Opus De Funk)
(*Acrobat CD - Jimmy Deuchar, The Complete Tempo Recordings 1955 - 58)


From the 2nd to 11th July, 1956 MGM recorded an LP(C764) comprising the ''Moondog Suite'' and Kenny Graham's "Suncat Suite". Full details of these works are available from Trunk Records who re-issued the work in CD and vinyl format in February, 2010...
Kenny Graham and his Satellites - July 2nd, 1956 (MGM C764)
Kenny Graham (ts), Danny Moss (b-cl), Jack Ellory (f), Stan Tracey (cel), Sammy Stokes (b), Phil Seamen (d), Don Lawson (perc), Yolanda (voc), + maracas.
Lullaby*.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

Stan Tracey (vib), Sammy Stokes (b), Phil Seamen (d), Don Lawson (perc), Yolanda (voc), + maracas.
Tropical Sun*.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

Kenny Graham (ts), Danny Moss (b-cl), Stan Tracey (acc), Martin Slavin (vib), Sammy Stokes (b), Phil Seamen (d), Don Lawson (perc).
Sunday*.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

July 3rd, 1956 (MGM C764)
Kenny Graham (ts), Stan Tracey (vib), Sammy Stokes (b), Phil Seamen (d), Don Lawson (perc).
One Four*#.
(#SWP Records CD - The Late, Great Phil Seamen)
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

Kenny Graham (ts), Danny Moss (b-cl), Jack Ellory (fl), Stan Tracey (or Martin Slavin) (vib), Sammy Stokes (b), Phil Seamen (d), Don Lawson (perc).
2 West 42nd Street*.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

Kenny Graham (ts), Sammy Stokes (b), Phil Seamen, Don Lawson (perc).
Two Four*/Three Four*/Four Four*/Five Four*.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

July 4th, 1956 (MGM C764)
Kenny Graham (ts), Danny Moss (b-cl), Jack Ellory (fl), Sammy Stokes (b), Don Lawson, Eddie Taylor (perc).
Fog On The Hudson.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

Kenny Graham (ts), Danny Moss (b-cl), Jack Ellory (fl), Stan Tracey (p), Sammy Stokes (b), Don Lawson, Eddie Taylor (perc).
Sunbeam*.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

Kenny Graham (ts), Danny Moss (b-cl), Jack Ellory (fl), Stan Tracey (vib,p), Martin slavin (xyl), Sammy Stokes (b), Phil Seamen, Don Lawson, Eddie Taylor (perc).
Sunstroke*.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

July 11th, 1956 (MGM C764)
Vic Ash (cl), Danny Moss (b-cl), Jack Ellory (fl), Ivor Slaney (oboe), Stan Tracey (vib, cel), Sammy Stokes (b), Phil Seamen, Don Lawson, (perc), Yolanda (voc) + marimba.
Chant*/Utsu*/Sunrise*/Sunset*.
(*Trunk Records CD - Moondog and Suncat Suites)

The Ivor and Basil Kirchin Band - September 5th, 1956 (Parlophone R4222)
Trevor Lanigan, Frank Donlan, Len Moakes, Tony Grant (tp), Brian Hayden (as), Pete Warner, Harry Perry (ts), George Robinson (bs), Stan Tracey (p), Ashley Kozak (b), Basil Kirchin (d), Ivor Kirchin (dir).
The Roller*/St. Louis Blues*.
(*Vocalion CD - The Kirchin Band - Gotta Be This Or That)

The Ivor and Basil Kirchin Band - September 21st, 1956 (Parlophone R4237)
Trevor Lanigan, Dickie Hawdon, Norman Baron, Len Moakes (tp), Brian Hayden (as), Pete Warner, Harry Perry (ts), George Robinson (bs), Stan Tracey (p,perc), Bill Sutcliffe (b), Basil Kirchin (d,perc), Toni Sharpe (vcl), Ivor Kirchin (dir).
Ambush/Rockin' And Rollin' Thru The Darktown Strutters Ball (vcl TS).

The Ivor and Basil Kirchin Band - December 18th, 1956 (Parlophone R4266/R4284*)
Trevor Lanigan, Dickie Hawdon, Norman Baron, Len Moakes (tp), Brian Hayden (as,cl), Don Pashley (ts,cl), Harry Perry (ts), George Robinson (bs), Stan Tracey (p,acc,cel), Bill Sutcliffe (b), Basil Kirchin (d,perc), Shani Wallis (vcl), Ivor Kirchin (dir).
Rock Around The World (side 1)/Rock Around The World (side 2)/Jungle Fire Dance*.
(*Vocalion CD - The Kirchin Band - Gotta Be This Or That)

The Ivor and Basil Kirchin Band - January, 1957 (Parlophone R4284)
Trevor Lanigan, Dickie Hawdon, Pete Horley, Ron Simmonds (tp), Brian Hayden (as), Don Pashley (ts,cl), Harry Perry (ts), George Robinson (bs), Stan Tracey (?perc), Kenny Napper (b), Basil Kirchin (d), Toni Sharpe (vcl), Ivor Kirchin (dir).
Calypso.

The Ivor and Basil Kirchin Band - January, 1957 (Parlophone R4302)
Trevor Lanigan, Les Condon, ?Pete Horley, unknown (tp), Mike Senn (as,cl), Don Pashley (ts,cl), Harry Perry (ts), George Robinson (bs), Stan Tracey (?p,vibes,?perc), Kenny Napper (b), Basil Kirchin (d), Toni Sharpe (vcl), Ivor Kirchin (dir).
The High Life (vcl TS)/Blues And Happy Times (vcl TS).

Ronnie Scott Sextet - January 9th, 1957 (Philips BBL 7153) (JMC34/JM1159)
Ronnie Scott (ts), Derek Humble (as), Jimmy Deuchar (tp), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Phil Seamen (d).
Bass House*/You Leave Me Breathless/Squeeze Me.
(*Ember CD - Ronnie Scott Legacy)
(*Real Gone Jazz 4 CD set - Ronnie Scott: Six Classic Albums plus Bonus Singles)

Kenny Graham's Afro Cubists - January 14th, 1957 (Presenting Kenny Graham - Nixa NJL12) (JM0258)
Jo Hunter (tp), Jackie Armstrong, Laddie Busby, George Chisholm (tb), Kenny Graham (ts), Cliff Townsend (bs), Stan Tracey (p,vib), Sammy Stokes (b), Jack McHardie (cga).
Cuban Fantasy*/Rockin' In Rhythm*/Monkey Business*/I Dreamt I Dwelt In Harlem*.
(*Castle 3CD box set - Too Hot - The Best of British Mainstream Jazz)
(*Vocalion CD - Presenting Kenny Graham)

February 5th, 1957 (Nixa NJL12) (JM0258)
Personnel as January 14th.
Tuxedo Junction*/Swallowin' The Blues*/Don't Get Around Much Anymore*/Times A Wastin'*/Bongo Chant*.
(*Castle 3CD box set - Too Hot - The Best of British Mainstream Jazz)
(*Vocalion CD - Presenting Kenny Graham)

Between 1957 and 1959 Stan Tracey was with the Ted Heath band playing vibes as well as piano. His piano and vibes playing with the band can be heard on a number of records from this period. He is well featured on piano and vibes on CD. (Vocalion CD - Ted Heath swing in Hi-Stereo (June/July 1958) / My Very Good Friends the Bandleaders (Feb/April 1959)

Ted Heath and his Music - End of December, 1957 and early January, 1958 (Our kind of jazz - Decca) - Ted Heath

Stan Tracey - May 1st, 1958 (Vogue VA160130)
Stan Tracey (p,vib), Ike Isaacs (g), Kenny Napper (b), Phil Seamen (d).
Over The Rainbow*/Surrey With The Fringe On Top*/The Best Thing For You*.
(*Jasmine CD - Stan Tracey - Little Klunk and Showcase)
(*Avid 2 CD set - Stan Tracey: Three Classic Albums Plus)

Stan Tracey Quartet - June 17th, 1958 (Vogue VA160130)
Stan Tracey (p,vib), Ray Dempsey (g), Johnny Hawksworth (b), Ronnie Verrell (d).
Almost Like Being In Love*/I Love Paris*/This Nearly Was Mine*/They Can't Take That Away From Me*/I Can't Give You Anything But Love*.
(*Jasmine CD - Stan Tracey - Little Klunk and Showcase)
(*Avid 2 CD set - Stan Tracey: Three Classic Albums Plus)

Stan Tracey Quartet - June 18th, 1958 (Vogue VA160130)
Stan Tracey (p,vib), Ike Isaacs (g), Johnny Hawksworth (b), Ronnie Verrell (d).
I've Got Five Dollars*/But Not For Me*/Love Is*/Mad About The Boy*.
(*Jasmine CD - Stan Tracey - Little Klunk and Showcase)
(*Avid 2 CD set - Stan Tracey: Three Classic Albums Plus)

Ted Heath and his Music - June 26th, and July 3rd and 17th 1958 (Ted Heath swings in Hi-Stereo - Decca) - Ted Heath
Ted Heath and his Music - February to April, 1959 (My very good friends the bandleaders - Decca) - Ted Heath

Stan Tracey Trio - May 22nd, 1959 (Vogue VA160155)
Stan Tracey (p,vib), Kenny Napper (b), Phil Seamen (d).
Li'l Ol' Pottsville*/Dream Of Many Colours*/We'll Call You*/Free*#.
(*Jasmine CD - Stan Tracey - Little Klunk and Showcase)
(*Avid 2 CD set - Stan Tracey: Three Classic Albums Plus)
(#Giant Steps 2CD set - Soho After Dark 'London's '50s Modern Jazz Scene')

Stan Tracey Trio - May 26th, 1959 (Vogue VA160155) (JM0160)
personnel as May 22nd.
A Walk In The Park*/Baby Blue*/Little Klunk*^/Boo-bah*#.
(*Jasmine CD - Stan Tracey - Little Klunk and Showcase)
(#SWP Records CD - The Late, Great Phil Seamen)
(*Avid 2 CD set - Stan Tracey: Three Classic Albums Plus)
(^Giant Steps 2CD set - Soho After Dark 'London's '50s Modern Jazz Scene')

The tracks below come from a BBC Night Ride broadcast. Tubby Hayes played vibes on all the nine tracks played...
Tubby Hayes Quartet - May 27th, 1959 (BBC) ()
Tubby Hayes (vib), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Phil Seamen (possibly Tony Crombie) (d).
We'll Call You*/The Toff*/Festival Junction*/Rapandas*.
(*Avid 2 CD set - Stan Tracey: Three Classic Albums Plus)

Ted Heath and his Music - July, 1959 (Ted Heath in concert - Decca) - Ted Heath

Tony Crombie Orchestra - December 30th, 1959 (BBC Transcription)
Leon Calvert, Les Condon (tp), Al Newman (cl,as), Bobby Wellins (ts), Harry Klein (bs), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Tony Crombie (d).
East Of The Sun*/Baby Blue*/Summertime*/Time's A-Wastin' (theme).
(*Vocalion CD - BBC Rare transcription recordings (1959-60) Volume Two)

Tempo TAP30 was titled "Jazz Inc. - Swinging Music in The Modern Manner". Although acclaimed by musicians, fans and several leading critics, the orchestra on this record performed for just seventeen weeks during 1959. Commercially, the band could be said to have failed, but musically it was a triumph.
Tony Crombie Orchestra - January 6th, 1960 (Tempo TAP30)
Leon Calvert, Les Condon (tp), Al Newman (cl,as), Bobby Wellins (ts), Harry Klein (bs), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Tony Crombie (d).
Caravan*/Boo Bah*/Lullaby*/Reelin*/Li'l O'l Pottsville*^/Jamba* (as Jammin' on #)/I Let A Song Go Out Of My Heart*/Summertime*.
(*Jasmine CD - Tony Crombie - Jazz Inc)
(#Ember CD - Tony Crombie - A Tribute)
(*Avid 2 CD set - Stan Tracey: Three Classic Albums Plus)
(^Giant Steps 2CD set - Soho After Dark 'London's '50s Modern Jazz Scene')

The M.J.6 featuring Stan Tracey - early 1960 (Decca F11212)
Les Condon (tp), Vic Ash (ts), Harry Klein (bs), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Tony Crombie (d).
Private Eye*/Tracey's Theme.
(*Acrobat CD - British Modern Jazz Singles, EP tracks & Rarities 1960 - 62)

Jimmy Deuchar Plus Ten - BBC "Jazz Club" broadcast February 16th, 1961
Jimmy Deuchar, Ian Hamer, Les Condon (tp), Keith Christie (tb), Ken Wray (v-tb), Ronnie Ross (as,bs), Tubby Hayes (ts,f,vib), Ronnie Scott (ts), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Bobby Orr (d).
Heather Mist*/Sumphin'*/Stablemates*/First Eleven*/Stella By Starlight*.
(*Acrobat 2 CD set - Tubby Hayes: New Edition - Rare Radio Recordings 1958-62)

Tubby Hayes Quartet - BBC broadcast May 4th, 1961 (IAJRC50)
Tubby Hayes (ts, fl), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Jackie Dougan (d).
A Moments Notice*.
(*IAJRC CD -Tubby Hayes, England's Late Jazz Great)

On October 30th, 1959, Ronnie Scott had opened his club at 39 Gerrard Street in Soho. Stan Tracey became 'house pianist' at the club eventually playing alongside a steady stream of star American jazzmen. On October 30th, 1959, Ronnie Scott had opened his own club at 39 Gerrard Street in Soho. November 1961 saw the first American jazz soloist to visit the club, Zoot Sims
Ronnie Scott/Jimmy Deuchar Quintet - November 14th, 1961 (Zoot at Ronnie Scott's - Fontana TFL5176)
Zoot Sims (1), Ronnie Scott (ts), Jimmy Deuchar (tp), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Jackie Dougan (d).
The Haunted Jazz Club*/Suddenly Last Tuesday*/Desperation(1)*.
(*Fresh Sound CD -Zoot at Ronnie Scott's)
(*Acrobat CD - Zoot Sims at Ronnie Scott's 1961 - The complete recordings)
(*Real Gone Jazz 4 CD set - Ronnie Scott: Six Classic Albums plus Bonus Singles)

Zoot Sims Quartet - November 14th/15th, 1961 (Live at Ronnie Scott's)
Zoot Sims (ts), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Jackie Dougan (d).
Stompin' At the Savoy*/Love For Sale*#/Somebody Loves Me*/Gone With The Wind*#/Autumn Leaves*/Blues In E Flat+.
(*+Acrobat CD - Zoot Sims at Ronnie Scott's 1961 - The complete recordings)
(*Fresh Sound CD - Zoot Sims Quartet - Live at Ronnie Scott's 1961)
(#Fresh Sound CD -Zoot at Ronnie Scott's)

Nat Gonella and his Jazz Band - February 1st, 1961 (Columbia 33SX1380)
Nat Gonella (tp,vcl), Stan Roderick (tp), Jock Bain (tb), Tony Coe (cl,as), Jimmy Skidmore (ts), Joe Temperley (bs), Stan Tracey (p,vib), Ernie Shear (g), Sammy Stokes (b), Lennie Hastings (d).
Georgia On My Mind/Bessie Couldn't Help It/Oh, Monah/Stompin' At The Savoy/It's A Pair Of Wings For Me.

Nat Gonella and his Jazz Band - February 7th, 1961 (Columbia 33SX1380)
Nat Gonella (tp,vcl), Don Lusher, Wally Smith, Ken Goldie (tb), Tony Coe (cl,as), Joe Temperley (bs), Stan Tracey (p,vib), Roy Plummer (g), Lennie Bush (b), Phil Seamen (d).
Miss Otis Regrets/Five Minutes More/Just A Kid Named Joe/Don't Get Around Much Anymore.

Tubby Hayes Quartet - BBC broadcast May 4th, 1961 (IAJRC50)
Tubby Hayes (ts, fl), Stan Tracey (p), Kenny Napper (b), Jackie Dougan (d).
A Moments Notice*.
(*IAJRC CD -Tubby Hayes: England's Late Jazz Great)
(*Acrobat 2 CD set - Tubby Hayes: New Edition - Rare Radio Recordings 1958-62)

Jazz recording dwindled generally in the early 1960s, a Stan Tracey session recorded in 1964 was never issued, but in the mid 1960s he was recording with the star soloists who played at Ronnie Scott's Club as well as recording with British musicians again often with the tenor sax player Bobby Wellins. Details 1963 and later...

This page was last updated during March, 2015.
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