The second Concord album was recorded the day after the first with the same lineup: guitarists Herb Ellis and Joe Pass, bassist Ray Brown and drummer Jake Hanna. Pass would sign with Pablo but Ellis would be a fixture on the Concord label throughout the 1970s. If anything, the guitarists' rematch was a bit stronger than their first due to material better suited for jamming including "In a Mellotone," a speedy "Seven Come Eleven," "Perdido" and "Concord Blues." Although Pass would soon be recognized as a giant, Ellis battles him to a draw on this frequently exciting bop-oriented date, which has been reissued on CD.
The very first release by the Concord label was a quartet set featuring guitarists Herb Ellis and Joe Pass, bassist Ray Brown, and drummer Jake Hanna. Ellis and Pass (the latter was just beginning to be discovered) always made for a perfectly complementary team, constantly challenging each other. The boppish music (which mixes together standards with "originals" based on the blues and a standard) is quite enjoyable with the more memorable tunes including "Look for the Silver Lining," "Honeysuckle Rose," "Georgia," "Good News Blues," and "Bad News Blues." This was a strong start for what would become the definitive mainstream jazz label.
During 1974-1980, the Great Guitars (Charlie Byrd, Barney Kessel, and Herb Ellis with Byrd's rhythm section) recorded five fine albums. The group became less active in the 1980s, and a stroke ended Kessel's career. In 1996, the Great Guitars regrouped, with guests Mundell Lowe and Larry Coryell helping out. This 1998 sampler has selections from five of the six Concord albums. Strangely enough, it jumps around chronologically (the 1996 date is represented by the second, fourth, and eighth selections). Overall, there are plenty of hot selections here, including an Ellis-Kessel duet on "Down Home Blues" and heated renditions of "Lover" and "Air Mail Special." A good introduction to the band, which lived up to its name, although fans of the players will want the complete sessions (all of which are available on CD) instead.
Features the latest remastering. Includes a Japanese description, lyrics, and bonus track(s). Features original cover artwork. One of the few female pianists in 50s jazz – the great Terry Pollard, a player who's usually associated with the Detroit scene, but who works here in a hip west coast setting for Bethlehem Records! The date's got Terry's strong piano in a quintet – with Don Fagerquist on trumpet and Howard Roberts on guitar – both musicians who bring a strong sense of presence to the group passages on the date, but who are also more than willing to step aside and let Pollard really flourish on her solos during some of the album's trio tracks.
Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. Pianist Debbie Poryes works here with a Dutch trio formed right after her arrival on that scene – a nicely-balanced group that really respects Debbie's sensitive touch on the keys, and seems to make her subtle sounds come out even more than they might in the setting! Poryes has an approach that's on the mellower side of lyrical – kind of a post-Bill Evans approach, but even more subtle overall – yet one that's also very striking in its subtlety – as the lean choices of notes show just how far and free jazz piano had come by this time, but in ways that could still swing and stay inside. The group features Hein Van De Geyn on bass and Hans Eykenaar on drums – and titles include "For Brad", "Sweet Georgie Fame", "Holland", "Foolish Door", and "My Romance".
Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. A killer Dutch duo from the end of the 70s – tenorist Harry Verbeke, who's got a bold, clear sound – and pianist Rob Agerbeek, who's been making soulful sides from the 60s onwards! The pair get great accompaniment here from drummer Billy Higgins and bassist Herbie Lewis – the last of whom may be at his best here – with these well-placed, well-rounded lines that help the record groove right from the start – and which give the record a nice bounce, even in gentler moments – followed up strongly by Agerbeek and his strong sense of chord progressions. Most tunes are familiar, but get nice readings by the group – and titles include "Gibraltar, "Holy Land", "Soul Sister", "No Me Esqueca", and "No Problem".
Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. Jazz sessions with Toots Thielemans are always a treat, and this album's no exception – one that features Toots' guitar and harmonica in the company of some great younger players from the 70s European scene! The set was produced by Chris Hinze, who also plays flute on the record – and other group members include Philip Catherine on guitar, Joachim Kuhn on keyboards, and the mighty rhythm team of John Lee on bass and Gerry Brown on drums – all musicians who lay back beautifully here, and really stick to the spacier side of their talents! Given that Toots is on harmonica on most numbers, the sound is wonderfully gentle – hardly the heavy fusion workout you might expect from the lineup, although there's a few subtle doses of funk that are much appreciated.
Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. One of the most hard-edged albums we've ever heard from pianist Kirk Lightsey – thanks to the presence of Jerry Gonzalez on congas, which really adds a nice extra bite to the record! The whole lineup is great – and includes Santi Debriano on bass and Eddie Gladden on drums – but it really seems to be Jerry's percussion that kicks the whole album into gear – bringing up a bit more bottom than usual in Lightsey's work on the keys, and giving even the mellower moments a Latin current that really keeps things fresh – and which we would have liked to hear more from Kirk over the years. Titles include "Habiba", "For Albert", "One Finger Snap", "Blues On The Corner", and "Eighty One".
Three Blind Mice Blu-spec CD reissue series. Limited paper sleeve edition. Summertime is the seventh album by pianist Tsuyoshi Yamamoto released by the Three Blind Mice label. Virtually unknown when he made his first recording in 1974, he had become one of the most popular jazz pianists by the time of this exciting live recording in 1976.