QUINCY JONES/Complete Recordings 1955-59: Jones now finds out what Beatles, Sinatra, Elvis, Hank Williams and others already know. When it comes to falling into public domain in England, it doesn't matter who you are. Here we get a generous helping of early Quincy when he was still a jazzbo from Seattle hustling to make it in a pop world. Big band, world beat, oldies---you name it, Jones could play or lead it all. This collection even has an album that was a Japan only release. There's a reason why a lot of this stuff was reissued under the Master Series brand a few years back and it's great to have it all wrapped up in a neat bow under a value pack where pretty good attention was paid to mastering conversions. Unassailable stuff that was the cornerstone of a building legend.
QUINCY JONES/Complete Recordings 1960-62: Even if those cats recorded an awful lot back in the day, this second contemporaneous fatty collection of Quincy had to be filled out with sets he produced for Sarah Vaughan, a soundtrack, duets with Billy Eckstine and stuff that might not be all pure Q but isn't chopped liver either. With some world beat, some bossa and some stuff for dancers, Q was showing early on that he could do it all. And this doesn't even hint at the pop stuff he was doing as a&r director of Mercury at the time. Instead it dips into his stuff for Impulse. Who knew digging in the crates would ever become so easy? Well done.
ESSENTIAL JAZZ CLASSICS
WES MONTGOMERY/Full House The Complete Session: So, what is there to say about a 2 cd set that gives you the complete "Full House" session where Wes is in solid jazzbo mode with the classic Miles crew and Johnny Griffin backing him up other than ‘good taste is timeless'? With alternate takes and a live set that found him in the company of his brothers in St. Louis, this is a guitar lovers paradise of a set. Transitioning from Riverside to Verve and at the height of his powers, Montgomery showed why he should be mentioned in the same breath as Charlie Christian. Hot stuff,
WYNTON KELLY TRIO/Complete Vee Jay Recordings: The amazing thing about this collection is that part of it was recorded during some free time in Chicago while touring to promote Miles' "Kind of Blue" album with the rest of the album‘s band on board, and this sounds nothing like that. Kelly and his various Davis pals are kicking it out in a mainstream, straight ahead way with almost a speak easy lite vibe running throughout. Despite being in the right place at the right time for a lot of dates, because he was a leader off the clock, Kelly is not as well remembered today as he should be. These sides put his piano front and center most of the time and show that his mighty left hand saved a lot of sessions that might have otherwise faltered. Classic albums from his canon, these fairly essential dates are well worth the time and effort for discovery or rediscovery. Hot stuff from a time when the heat was always on.
JOHN COLTRANE/Complete Mainstream 1958 Sessions: And here come some of the bigger anomalies in the Coltrane canon. These dates were recorded for Savoy, not Mainstream, with the enigmatic Wilbur Harden as the leader and were among Coltrane's last sessions as a sideman. Harden soon disappeared from the scene after these 1958 sessions were recorded and the most interesting thing about these dates is that they give great satisfaction to the Coltrane complete freak. Time would show Harden not to be more than footnote, but these dates have often been reissued under Coltrane's name as leader. In any case, the three albums presented in their entirely here are quite pleasant sides that show Coltrane and bunch of the usual suspects off nicely. And why pick bones over a date that has Coltrane and Art Taylor earning their money? More than a nice puzzle piece for daddio jazzbos to locate. Now, "Tanganyika Strut" anyone?
Volume 38/Number 127
March 7, 2014
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2014 Midwest Record
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