The album ASCENSION played a profoundly important role in John Coltrane's final period. Recorded in June 1965, almost exactly two years before his death, this session marks Coltrane's final stepping off point into free jazz. The album also marks a division for Coltrane's fans, as there are some that applaud his final escape from jazz tradition while others simply couldn't follow him into the great unknown.
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. Few musicians have gotten as much continued recognition from one sideman appearance as Curson has from his participation on the stupendous Mingus Presents Mingus record. Even as the weak link in that superhuman quartet, he played some great jazz. His post-Mingus career was on a more mortal level, but the recordings he made in groups featuring tenorman Bill Barron are well worth checking out.
In 1964, trumpeter Chet Baker returned to the United States after five sometimes-traumatic years spent overseas (which included a long stay in an Italian jail for drug abuse). Baker recorded prolifically during his first 14 months back in the States, including a set for Colpix, two records for Limelight, and, in a busy three-day period, five albums for Prestige titled Groovin', Comin' On, Cool Burnin', Smokin', and Boppin' With the Chet Baker Quintet. The Prestige sets have been long overlooked and only partially reissued in the past, but in 1997 they reappeared as three CDs.
Soul/blues singer whose style is characterized by a gritty, impassioned vocal style and precise, textured guitar playing.He may not be a household name, but die-hard blues fans know Little Milton as a superb all-around electric bluesman – a soulful singer, an evocative guitarist, an accomplished songwriter, and a skillful bandleader. He's often compared to the legendary B.B. King – as well as Bobby "Blue" Bland – for the way his signature style combines soul, blues, and R&B, a mixture that helped make him one of the biggest-selling bluesmen of the '60s (even if he's not as well-remembered as King). As time progressed, his music grew more and more orchestrated, with strings and horns galore. He maintained a steadily active recording career all the way from his 1953 debut on Sam Phillips' legendary Sun label, with his stunning longevity including notable stints at Chess (where he found his greatest commercial success), Stax, and Malaco.
In patching together a program of Hugh Masekela's MGM recordings onto a single overstuffed CD, Verve took the original The Americanization of Ooga Booga album, leapfrogged over its successor, Next Album, and coupled it with the third MGM LP, The Lasting Impressions of Hugh Masekela. That made good sense since the two albums originate from the same live date at the Village Gate, recorded when the trumpeter was still in the process of making an impression in the U.S. Masekela is full of wild, sputtering, high-rolling exuberance, developing some of his familiar signature trumpet riffs, freely exploring South African rhythms, harmonic sequences, and chants, and mixing them with soul-jazz at a time when hardly anyone else would bother (the mixture of township jive and jazz works especially well on "U-Dwi").
By the time of the Antibes Jazz Festival in mid-1965, A Love Supreme was years from general recognition as a masteripiece. A French musician and record company executive, Jeff Gilson, had heard an advance copy and asked Coltrane to play the piece. Radio France broadcast the concert and recorded it. this is that performance of all four parts believed to be the only time the quartet played it for a live audience.
Reissue with the latest 24bit remastering. Features original cover artwork. Comes with a descripton in Japanese. It is strange to realize that drummer Pete La Roca only led two albums during the prime years of his career, for this CD reissue of his initial date is a classic. La Roca's three originals ("Basra," which holds one's interest despite staying on one chord throughout, the blues "Candu," and the complex "Tears Come From Heaven") are stimulating but it is the other three songs that really bring out the best playing in the quartet (which is comprised of tenor saxophonist Joe Henderson, pianist Steve Kuhn, and bassist Steve Swallow in addition to La Roca). "Malaguena" is given a great deal of passion, Swallow's "Eiderdown" (heard in its initial recording) receives definitive treatment, and the ballad "Lazy Afternoon" is both haunting and very memorable; Henderson's tone perfectly fits that piece.
Features 24 bit digital remastering. Comes with a description. Other than "Our Love" (a familiar classical theme adapted to American pop music by Larry Clinton), all six selections are originals by the pianist. Utilizing a nonet that includes trumpeter Johnny Coles (who does his best to be soulful on "Honeybuns"), trombonist Garnett Brown, flutist Les Spann, altoist James Spaulding, tenor saxophonist George Coleman, baritonist Pepper Adams, bassist Bob Cranshaw, and drummer Mickey Roker, Pearson performs music in a style that would have fit in quite well on Blue Note. Most memorable among his originals is "Is That So." This is not an essential date, but it is nice to have this rarity back in print again.