Posts by: "Jose Reyes"

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Hello Jazz Con Class Listeners! The stream is up and running better than ever! As of this moment you can listen to the station on the big box the “LISTEN LIVE” one like in the image above.  For the iTunes internet radio listeners, this will take about 2-3 days. The submission process at iTunes is a bit sluggish and time consuming but sometimes they make the changes faster than normal. The official Jazz Con Class Radio iOS and Android Apps will be up and streaming in about 2 days. There are others and they will catch up on there own. Again and as I have mentioned before, this is a 24 hour/7day broadcast and it is inevitable that something will break down.  I’m sorry about this mishap but I could not do anything about it. I made the changes as quick as I could, so please have a little patience. I know you all will be back much sooner than later because Jazz Con Class Radio is here to serve you with the best that Jazz can offer. I want to thank you all for tuning and making it happen, I really appreciate it! ENJOY!

CompleteRegentSessionsCover

The multiple techniques that Pepper Adams possessed when playing the baritone sax is what made him different than the others and why he is considered to be the best for jazz fans. From Wikipedia under “Style”:

Pepper Adams was in many ways the antithesis of contemporary baritone players Gerry Mulligan and Serge Chaloff, who favored melodic cool jazz. In contrast, Adams managed to bring the cumbersome baritone into the blisteringly fast speeds of hard bop like no others had before.[13] Gary Carner, Adams’s biographer, described his style as having “very long, tumbling, double-time melodic lines. And that raw, piercing, bark-like timbre.”[7] Adams “succeeded in elevating [the baritone saxophone] to the level of all other solo instruments [with] blinding speed, penetrating timbre, distinctive sound, harmonic ingenuity, precise articulation, confident time-feel, and use of melodic paraphrase”.[14] Throughout his career, Adams consistently chose musical expression over large paychecks, as “[he] repeatedly recalled with great satisfaction his decision to play [in groups focused on musical expression] rather than to change his style to secure better paying jobs with now little-known white musicians”.[6] A large part of Adams’ appeal was that “[he] had the remarkable ability to blow low with enormous power and swing, becoming a hefty addition to big band reed sections. He also was an equally dominant voice in small groups, adding ferocious excitement and stamina”.[15]

The Complete Regent Sessions” is an amazing album that all jazz enthusiasts should own. To learn more about Pepper Adams, go to this website created and maintained by Gary Carner, author of  “Pepper Adams’ Joy Road” :

PepperAdamsJoyRoad

Pepper Adams’ Joy Road is more than a compendium of sessions and gigs done by the greatest baritone saxophone soloist in history. It’s a fascinating overview of Adams’ life and times, thanks to colorful interview vignettes, drawn from the author’s unpublished conversations with Adams and other musicians. These candid observations from jazz greats about Adams and his colleagues reveal previously unknown, behind-the-scenes drama about legendary recordings made by John Coltrane, Charles Mingus, Thelonious Monk, Dizzy Gillespie, Duke Pearson, Thad Jones, David Amram, Elvin Jones, and many others.

All types of sound material—studio recordings, private tapes and broadcasts, film scores, audience tapes, and even jingles—are listed, and Adams’ oeuvre is pushed back from 1956 to 1947, when Adams was 16 years old, before he played baritone saxophone. Because of Carner’s access to Adams’ estate, just prior to its disposition in 1987, much new discographical material is included, now verified by Adams’ date books and correspondence……..Read More

About the album:

A self-styled pre-bop era player, Pepper Adams, a product of the Motor City scene, was keenly aware of the importance of having musical roots in the past. He confessed to the influence of Harry Carney, “in the way I wanted to play the horn. See, no baritone player should be afraid of the noise it makes. Carney isn’t. He gets right down into it, inside it”. Adams made these recordings in 1957, the year Down Beat jazz critics chose him……Read More

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Here’s a big band album by the very innovative Don Ellis, which introduced an array of electric instruments. The result was a funky avant-garde styled masterpiece. “Electric Bath” was recorded in 1967 and when Jazz musicians were developing new sounds that would interest the new demanding generation of the late 60′s. This album is very unique in so many ways because it has so many cultural influences associated with it. If you happened to be in your late teens in the late 60′s, then this album will be very well appreciated, as it reflects everything that was occurring around the world at the moment. If you are not from that generation, it doesn’t matter at all, because it is super charged with that certain optimistic effect of “discovery.” Another words, this album never gets old! ENJOY!

About the album:

The 1998 reissue of ELECTRIC BATH contains two bonus tracks that did not appear on the original release. All tracks have been digitally remastered using 20-bit technology. Years before the advent of jazz-rock, when BITCHES BREW was just a gleam in Miles Davis’s eye, young trumpet sensation Don Ellis was combining jazz with electric, rock-identified elements in an amalgam that somehow managed to be both adventurous and popular. Listening to ELECTRIC BATH today, some of the ’60s go-go-dance beats Ellis added to his forward-looking big band compositions sound a bit dated……Read More

DonEllisBiography

Don Ellis biography:

Born. 25 July 1934, Los Angeles, California, USA, d. 17 December 1978, Hollywood, California, USA. Appreciation of Ellis’ work has increased since his death and he is now regarded by many as an important figure in jazz. From childhood he was fascinated with brass instruments and received a trumpet at the age of two. At junior high school he had his own quartet and at Boston university he was a member of the band. His first professional work was as a member of Ray McKinley’s Glenn Miller Orchestra. After his national service, Ellis formed a small group, playing coffee-houses in New York’s Greenwich Village. By the late 50s he was playing with many name bands including those of Woody Herman, Lionel Hampton, Charles Mingus and Maynard Ferguson. Ellis also worked in small groups, enjoying the greater freedom of expression this allowed. In 1961/2 he was a member of George Russell’s sextet.

In Atlantic City, Ellis took up a teaching fellowship and it was there that he developed and explored his interest in the complexities of Indian rhythm patterns. Ellis made a triumphant appearance at the 1966 Monterey Jazz festival with his 23-piece band. His completely original themes were scored using unbelievably complex notation. Customarily, most big band music was played at four beats to the bar but Ellis confidently and successfully experimented with 5-beat bars, then 9-, 11-, 14-, 17-, 19- and even 27-beat bars. Mixing metres created difficulties for his rhythm sections so he taught himself to play drums in order that he might properly instruct his drummers. He also experimented with brass instruments, introducing the four-valve flügelhorn and superbone.

During the late 60s the Don Ellis Orchestra was promoted as part of the great CBS Records progressive music campaign and he found himself performing at rock festivals and concerts. His music found favour with the Woodstock generation, who could also recognize him as an exciting pioneer. His CBS albums were all successful, his work being produced by both John Hammond and Al Kooper. Dubbed the ‘Father of the Time Revolution’ in jazz, Ellis’ music was much more than complex. It was also undeniably joyous. Tunes like the 7/4 romp ‘Pussy Wiggle Stomp’, ‘Barnum’s Revenge’ (a reworking of ‘Bill Bailey’) and ‘Scratt And Fluggs’ (a passing nod to country music’s Flatt And Scruggs), are played with zesty enthusiasm, extraordinary skill and enormous good humour. Ellis’ trumpet playing was remarkable, combining dazzling…….Read More

Check Wikipedia also, right HERE

New Music Podcasts with Classic Jazz Talk on BlogTalkRadio

This was the 4th talk show on Classic Jazz Talk and it featured jazz historian and author Cary Ginell. It was an interview that almost didn’t take place. I was basically hampered without a co-host to assist in the questioning process and fill in the gaps that naturally take place when interviewing someone live. I was prepared with a list of questions but that doesn’t cut it, the interview takes unexpected turns and the interviewer has to make adjustments. It takes plenty of experience and many hours interviewing guests to master this. I have done interviews before but nothing at all close to conducting one by my lonesome self. I mentioned this to Cary ahead of time in case he would choose to cancel and he reassured me that everything would be alright, the show must go on! He could have simply told me that he wasn’t comfortable doing an interview in this manner but he instead offered his TOTAL support. Another words, he offered to be the guest and help me conduct the interview like he was a co-host also. Well thanks to Mr. Ginell and the great job of being my “wing man,” this interview was a great success. Cary has done so much for Jazz Music with all the projects he has lead and been part of. I’m so honored to have the opportunity to interview him, this experience was truly an educational one for me and you will fully understand after listening to it, enjoy!

OriginJazzLibrary

Origin Jazz Library was founded in 1960 by Bill Givens (photo at left) and Pete Whelan, two friends who had gone to boarding school together at Soleburh School in New Hope, Pennsylvania. Their idea was to reissue classic blues recordings of the 1920s and 1930s, which at that time were generally not considered to be of interest, even to those whose primary interest was roots music of that period. The first issue was “The Immortal Charlie Patton,” which was received with considerable interest by the emerging “folk revival” community.

The label soon established itself as the vanguard of a host of independent labels which helped bring about the traditional blues revival of the 1960s, and added immensely to the body of influences which helped shape rock music. In 1967, Whelan turned over his share of the company to Bill Givens, who continued to put out new releases through the late 1960s, and well into the 1970s, by which time many other labels, such as Yazoo, had reissued the bulk of the worthwhile pre-WWII blues material, so the flow of new OJL issues slowed to a trickle. By the mid-90s, despite most of the tracks Bill issued being available…..Learn More

Shop for restored Classic Jazz albums here

All books by Cary Ginell are located here

KeepSwinginCover

This album was recorded in 1960 and is jazz trombonist Julian Priester’s debut album as a leader. It is a straight mellow hard bop album with a plenty of character. There aren’t many long solos and that explains why the whole album is only 36 minutes long. But by no means, does it reflect to be a short lived recording. “Keep Swingin‘” is straight to the point but with plenty of feeling behind it and with great cast supporting him, as you will read in the short description below. Julian Priester was a real master and has an incredible resume, you can will find that below in his biography. Finally, there’s an interesting profile article below also, concerning his retirement from Cornish College, where he taught music, learn more, enjoy!

About the album:

Trombonist Julian Priester sounds very much under the influence of J.J. Johnson during his debut as a leader, a Riverside date reissued on CD in the Original Jazz Classics series. The repertoire is comprised of four Priester originals, one apiece by Jimmy Heath (whose tenor makes the group a quintet on five of the eight songs) and baritonist Charles Davis, and two standards.…..Read More

JulianPriesterProfile

Photo of Julian Priester by Daniel Sheehan

Great profile article by Steve Griggs (Earshot.org):

Outside room 209, on the second floor of Kerry Hall at Cornish College, flattened cardboard boxes and a hand cart lean against the wall. They await Julian Priester, professor of trombone and jazz history. He retired on May 14 this year with an honorary doctorate of fine arts after thirty-two years of service. With the help of a student, the boxes will transport Priester’s teaching materials from his studio back to his south Seattle home.

Inside the studio, nine boxes full of scores, books, recordings, and trombone mutes clump in the far corner. Sun filters through two tall south facing windows that gaze over the corner of Roy and Boylston streets. Cracked and chipped white paint ornament the stark walls, high ceiling, and radiator. A crisp black Kawai baby grand piano rests atop utilitarian grey industrial carpet.

Silence hangs in the air. On a small chalk board, neatly written scales and rhythms hint at the sounds that filled this studio. Here, and in nearby rehearsal rooms, Priester shared his skills, stories, and studies. A quiet end to this chapter in his career belies the length of experience, depth of artistry, and breadth of creativity Priester carries forward into every situation.

Humility gained from Captain Walter Dyett at Chicago’s DuSable High School, the pit orchestra of New York’s Schubert Theater, and work as an on-call studio musician sets a positive model for students. Practical experience gleaned from Priester’s world travels with Sun Ra, Lionel Hampton, Dinah Washington, Max Roach, Thad Jones, Art Blakey, Duke Ellington, Herbie Hancock, and Dave Holland adds depth to his lessons. Recordings of his compositions by Ray Charles, Maria Muldaur, Patrice Rushen, Abbey Lincoln, Eddie Henderson, Philly Joe Jones, Sam Rivers, Reggie Workman, Stanley Turrentine, Bobby Timmons, Clifford Jordan, and Lee Morgan testify to the significance of studying his written music. An extensive discography……Read More

JulianPriesterProfile

Julian Priester’s biography (AllMusic.com):

Julian Priester was a versatile and highly advanced trombonist capable of playing hard bop, post-bop, R&B, fusion, or full-on avant-garde jazz; however, he remains under-appreciated due to the paucity of sessions he recorded under his own name. Priester was born in Chicago on June 29, 1935, and started out on the city’s thriving blues and R&B scene, playing with artists like Muddy Waters, Dinah Washington, and Bo Diddley; he also worked with Sun Ra’s early progressive big band outfits during the mid-’50s. In 1958, Priester moved to New York and joined Max Roach’s band, appearing on classics like Freedom Now Suite. In 1960, Priester also recorded two hard bop sessions as a leader, Keep Swingin’ and Spiritsville. After leaving Roach in 1961, Priester appeared often as a sideman on Blue Note dates, recording with the likes of……Learn More

QuietAsItsKeptCover

Here’s a great 1959 recording of Max Roach with the Turrentine brothers and as mentioned below in the description, without a piano player to be found. Very interesting approach and in a time where there were so many great jazz pianist available to fill in. Nevertheless, it worked just great as Julian Priester (Trombone) and Bob Boswell (Bass) made up for the missing intricate sounds. Max Roach was in the middle of a tremendous album recording streak at the time, with 9 recordings in 1958, 5 including this one in 1959 and 3 more in 1960. One must note, these recordings are as a band leader, he participated and was part of several other recordings in this three year period, incredible! Max was a very hard working passionate man and never failed to deliver! “Quiet As It’s Kept” is a highly innovative album with quite a bit of “coolness” behind it. I real gem that everyone should own, great stuff!!

About the album:

This is an interesting 1959 date with Max Roach leading a piano-less quintet. The airy voicings for the horns, which include the Turrentine brothers (Tommy on trumpet and Stanley, of course, on tenor saxophone) and Julian Priester on trombone, approach a West Coast cool jazz-like texture, the kind of jazz abstractions which have worn very well over the years.….Read More

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Cecil Payne is outstanding here in this straight forward early hard bop recording. He leads throughout and gives Kenny Dorham long breaks as he joins in occasionally with sweet little solos. Tommy Potter plays a loud sounding bass as Art Taylor follows along with short low quick spurts of his own. Duke Jordan is generally on the background end but successfully helps the music flow in a graceful manner. “Patterns of Jazz” is a great album to sit back and relax, not to mention, its a collectible!

About the album:

This 1956 set partners baritone saxophonist Cecil Payne with the superb rhythm section of pianist Duke Jordan, drummer Art Taylor, and bassist Tommy Potter. Their performances of originals, standards, and a pair of Randy Weston compositions are unpretentious bop artistry of a high caliber. Jordan and Potter played together in Charlie Parker’s quintet of the late ’40s and are well-equipped to meet the demands of bebop. The pianist’s economical, swinging style falls somewhere between Count Basie’s and Thelonious Monk’s. Like them, Jordan is supremely skilled at saying a lot with a little. His open approach leaves plenty of space for the unassuming virtuosity of Potter and Taylor….. Read more

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Cecil Payne Biography (Wikipedia):

Acclaimed by peers and critics among the finest baritone saxophonists of the bebop era, Cecil Payne remains best remembered for his three-year stint with Dizzy Gillespie’s seminal postwar big band. Born in Brooklyn, NY, on December 14, 1922, Payne began playing saxophone at age 13, gravitating to the instrument after hearing Lester Young’s work on Count Basie’s “Honeysuckle Rose.” Young’s supple, lilting tone remained a profound influence throughout Payne’s career. After learning to play under the tutelage of local altoist Pete Brown, Payne gigged in a series of local groups before receiving his draft papers in 1942. He spent the four years playing with a U.S. Army band, and upon returning to civilian life made his recorded debut for Savoy in support of J.J. Johnson. During a brief stint with Roy Eldridge, Payne put down his alto and first adopted the baritone. Later that year he joined the Gillespie orchestra, earning renown for his unusually graceful approach to a historically unwieldy instrument. Payne appears on most of Gillespie’s key recordings from this period, including “Cubano-Be/Cubano-Bop,” and solos on cuts like “Ow!” and “Stay on It,” but despite near-universal respect among the jazz cognoscenti, he remained a little-known and even neglected figure throughout his career.

After exiting the Gillespie ranks in 1949, Payne headlined a session for Decca backed by pianist Duke Jordan and trumpeter Kenny Dorham. Following tenures with Tadd Dameron and Coleman Hawkins, in 1952 Payne launched a two-year stint with Illinois Jacquet, and in 1956, he toured Sweden alongside childhood friend Randy Weston. That same year, Payne also headlined the Savoy LP Patterns of Jazz. In 1957, he and fellow baritonist Pepper Adams backed the legendary John Coltrane on Dakar…….Read More

New Music Podcasts with Classic Jazz Talk on BlogTalkRadio

Alan (Giants of Jazz Radio) and Jose (Jazz Con Class Radio) are very honored to have with us jazz historian, jazz journalist and author Scott Yanow. We will cover his biography in detail and then concentrate on “West Coast Jazz.” We will decipher this sub-genre of “Cool Jazz” by discussing its roots and its history. We will also touch on the 60′s Jazz scene in both the Los Angeles and San Francisco areas. Join us, listen and/or call in!

ScottYanowInterviewBlogtalkradio

Scott Yanow (Bio):

…..Jazz Journalist and historian. Since then, I have been involved in many projects. Being the Senior Editor for the 3rd edition of the All Music Guide For Jazz resulted in a countless number of my CD reviews and biographies being utilized throughout the internet including Pandora Radio. In addition to having written ten books so far (most recently The Jazz Singers) and writing for the Jazz Heritage Club, I have written several episodes for the popular jazz radio series Jim Cullum’s Riverwalk – Live At The Landing.

I have written over 750 liner notes, hundreds of press biographies and press releases, and it has been said that I have reviewed more jazz recordings than anyone in history.  I have contributed to virtually all of the major jazz magazines including Downbeat, Jazz Times, Jazziz, Cadence, Coda, The Mississippi Rag, Jazz Forum, Jazz News, The Jazz Report, Planet Jazz, Jazz Now and Jazz
Improv. These days I write regularly for Jazz Inside, Downbeat, Jazziz, Los Angeles Jazz Scene and The Jazz Rag…..Learn More

OnTheTrailCover

Jimmy Heath is not spoken of and even compared to the artists of his time. He was overlooked and this album shows it as he was a great part of the great 60′s jazz  movement that only helped solidify its presence and its importance to society. Jazz was more inventive and more responsive to reflect the hardships the country was going through. This album “On the trail” was recorded in 1964 and once again as most albums in those days, was supported by an all-star band. There’s Wynton Kelly on piano, Kenny Burrell on guitar, Paul Chambers on bass and brother Albert on drums. Outstanding albumthat every jazz fan should own.

About the album:

Digitally remastered by Phil De Lancie (1994, Fantasy Studios, Berkeley, California). Unlike some of his other Riverside recordings, the accent on this Jimmy Heath CD reissue is very much on his tenor playing (rather than his arrangements). Heath is in excellent form with a quintet that also includes pianist Wynton Kelly, guitarist Kenny Burrell, bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Albert “Tootie” Heath. …..Read More

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Jimmy Heath biography:

Jimmy Heath has long been recognized as a brilliant instrumentalist and a magnificent composer and arranger.  Jimmy is the middle brother of the legendary Heath Brothers (Percy Heath/bass and Tootie Heath/drums), and is the father of Mtume.   He has performed with nearly all the jazz greats of the last 50 years, from Howard McGhee, Dizzy Gillespie, and Miles Davis to Wynton Marsalis.  In 1948 at the age of 21, he performed in the First International Jazz Festival in Paris with McGhee, sharing the stage with Coleman Hawkins, Slam Stewart, and Erroll Garner.  One of Heath’s earliest big bands (1947-1948) in Philadelphia included John Coltrane, Benny Golson, Specs Wright, Cal Massey, Johnny Coles, Ray Bryant, and Nelson Boyd.  Charlie Parker and Max Roach sat in on one occasion.

During his career, Jimmy Heath has performed on more than 100 record albums including seven with The Heath Brothers and twelve as a leader.  Jimmy has also written more than 125 compositions, many of which have become jazz standards and have been recorded by other artists including Art Farmer, Cannonball Adderley, Clark Terry, Chet Baker, Miles Davis, James Moody, Milt Jackson, Ahmad Jamal, Ray Charles, Dizzy Gillespie J.J Johnson and Dexter Gordon.  Jimmy has also composed extended works – seven suites and two string quartets – and he premiered his first symphonic work, “Three Ears,” in 1988 at Queens College (CUNY) with Maurice Peress conducting….Read More

MilesSmilesJeremyYudkinBookCover

Alan Bramwell (Giants of Jazz Radio) and I we be conducting a LIVE interviewing with Jeremy Yudkin, author of “Miles Smiles, and the Invention of Post Bop.” The co-hosts will mostly concentrate on the book but there will be much more covered with Jeremy, he is very qualified in the field of music.The listeners will have a golden opportunity to ask Jeremy specific questions about jazz and music in general. Listen in and/or call in with your questions. The official name is “Classic Jazz Talk” and the link to our main page is here. Here’s a description to this particular show:

Checkout the official show’s page here listen-in and/or call-in

More on the book:

Focusing on one of the legendary musicians in jazz, this book examines Miles Davis’s often overlooked music of the mid-1960s with a close examination of the evolution of a new style: post bop. Jeremy Yudkin traces Davis’s life and work during a period when the trumpeter was struggling with personal and musical challenges only to emerge once again as the artistic leader of his generation…..Learn More

 

TheBookCooks

There’s almost no information about this particular recording and its a crying shame! In fact, “The Book Cooks” is Booker Ervin’s debut album and most debut recordings are celebrated with much fanfare. Typical treatment and very upsetting for one of the best jazz tenor saxophonist ever. Booker Ervin had a very distinctive sound and no other great tenor in his time sounded like him. The closest to sounding like him would be Jackie McLean and he played the alto. Teaming “The Book” up with Zoot Simms surely worked, as they played off each other and spontaneously without a hitch. Tommy Turrentine, older brother of tenor saxophonist Stanley Turrentine,and another unappreciated jazz trumpeter (biography below) is outstanding in this recording also. Completing the sextet, you have Tommy Flanagan on piano, Dannie Richmond on drums and George Tucker on bass. A classic hard bop album that includes some of the best played ballads.

TommyTurrentineBio

Biography of Tommy Turrentine (Curt’s Jazz Cafe):

As a trumpet soloist Turrentine had all the qualities necessary for greatness. He had a full, warm tone throughout the range of the instrument and possessed the ability to create solos using long unbroken lines. His flair for melodic improvisation using long climaxes often contrasted sharply with the more disjointed creations of younger men who seemed anxious to brush aside convention. – Alun Morgan

He was the older brother of one of the most famous jazz musicians of the ‘60’s and ‘70’s. His kid brother recorded dozens of albums, including a few that are fondly remembered as classics. He was every bit the musician that baby brother was. Yet Stanley Turrentine is a bona fide jazz legend, while Tommy Turrentine, who recorded only one album as a leader in his entire career, is unknown to all but ardent jazz fans and the many musicians who still marvel at his gifts, both as a trumpet player and as a composer…….Read More

 

MingusSpeaksBookInterview

The Jazz Con Class Radio listeners should be very happy to know that I, along with Alan Bramwell, who also has a classic jazz radio station (Giants of Jazz Radio) will be conducting our debut show on Blogtalkradio.com. The official name is “Classic Jazz Talk” and the link to our main page is here. Here’s a description to this particular show:

MINGUS SPEAKS is a book of extended interviews which allowed the man to explain himself. He was assisted by me, the interviewer, and by a number of close associates who commented on aspects of his life, behavior and music.

We did the interviews in 1972 and 1974, five years before Mingus died. It was a contentious and wonderful period in his life and for his music….Learn More

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Duke Pearson was quite an innovator and this recording is a great example, as mentioned below in the description, he wrote and composed all but the last song on this album. This album “Wahoo!” was recorded in 1964 and released the year after on the Blue Note label. The personnel and fellow musicians that accompany Duke Pearson in this recording is why it was awarded 5 stars by many so-called “jazz critics.” An all star cast with Donald Byrd (Trumpet), James Spaulding on alto, Joe Henderson on tenor, Bob Cranshaw on bass and Mickey Roker on drums. This album is considered by Allmusic reviewer, Stephen Thomas Erlewine, as an “advance hard bop” album, someone please tell me what that means? Its different and has its own style but cannot really be categorize as hard bop. It seems to me that some jazz recording are a sort of daring experiments that end out helping a new style to develop and to the point where it could stand on its own. I feel this album helped aid Post Bop into existence but of course, would never be possible without the hard bop style before it. The evolution of jazz and how it slowly developed on its own. Great album, get it!!

About the album:

A truly wonderful advanced hard bop date, Wahoo captures pianist Duke Pearson at his most adventurous and creative. With the exception of Donald Byrd’s closing “Fly Little Bird Fly,” Pearson wrote all of the material on this six-song album, and his compositions are clever, melodic, and unpredictable without being cloying or inaccessible. He has assembled a first-rate sextet to perform the material, enlisting trumpeter Byrd, tenor saxophonist Joe Henderson, bassist Bob Cranshaw, alto saxophonist/flautist James Spaulding, and drummer Mickey Roker. Even the subdued “Wahoo” and “ESP” search out new territory with their subtle themes and exploratory solo sections. ……Read More

DukePearsonCover

Biography of Duke Pearson:

Duke Pearson (August 17, 1932 – August 4, 1980) was an American jazz pianist and composer. All Music Guide notes him as being a “big part in shaping the Blue Note label’s hard bop direction in the 1960s as a producer.

Born Columbus Calvin Pearson, Jr. in Atlanta, Georgia, Pearson first studied brass instruments at the early age of five, but dental issues forced him to pursue another instrument and he started to learn the piano. His budding talent moved his uncle to give him the nickname Duke, a reference to jazz legend Duke Ellington. He attended Clack College while also playing trumpet in groups in the Atlanta area before joining the United States Army in the early 1950s. Pearson continued to perform with different ensembles in Georgia and Florida, including with Tab Smith and Little Willie John, before he moved to New York, New York in January of 1959. After moving to New York, Pearson gained the attention of Donald Byrd who saw Pearson performing with the the Art Farmer/Benny Golson Sextet (also known as Jazztet). Shortly afterwards, Byrd asked him to join his newly formed band, the Donald Byrd-Pepper Adams Quintet. Pearson was also the accompanist for Nancy Wilson on tour in 1961. During that same year, Pearson became ill before a Byrd-Adams show when and a newcomer named Herbie Hancock took over for him. This eventually led to Hancock taking over the position permanently……..Read More

IntroducingCover

This is Johnny Griffin’s unofficial debut album and was recorded at Rudy Van Gelder’s Hackensack studio on April 17 of the year 1956. This reissued CD album has two extra tracks that did not appear in the original vinyl version. “J.G” actually was actually recorded beforehand and earlier in the same year and was issued with the Argo label but was released in 1958. This album “Introducing” is as good and like “all” Hard Bop records from the late 50′s, its another classic. There’s not much of a description for this album but I can tell you from listening to it numerous times, it really jams! You can hear the musicians who accompany him in the recording (Wynton Kelly on piano, Curly Russell on bass and Max Roach on the drums) talking in the background, urging on Johnny Griffin who is wailing and challenging his usual bluesy spontaneous pace. Nice and straight forward Hard Bop from one of the best, “Little Giant.” Enjoy!

 

SuperTuesdayLogoPost

This “Super Tuesday jazz presentation” will go to your head as it will feature SEVEN versions of the the song “You go to my head” and will play back to back. I do this every now and then to show the versatility of jazz musicians and the uniqueness of jazz music in general. Five of these versions will be featured with pianists leading their respected bands, they are Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, Dave Brubeck, Lenny Tristano and Bud Powell. The rest of the this ever changing playlist will feature my hand pick combination of songs that will hopefully keep you tuned in completely for the three hours. More on the “Super Tuesday Jazz Presentation” and the play times it is featured every week go here. Check the “Schedule Link” for play times of all the special playlists that are featured here on Jazz Con Class Radio, enjoy!.

SomethingNewSomethingBlueCover

Four young composer/arrangers and musicians, working and creating a classic jazz. All were innovators and key components of the modern jazz movement in the late 50′s. Here they are with the support of other greats like Phil Woods, Donald Byrd, Eddie Costa Al Cohn and more. “Something New, Something Blue” was recorded in 1959, here’s more on the main four characters of this exceptionally unique piece of work:

Teo Macero: Teo Macero (October 30, 1925 – February 19, 2008), born Attilio Joseph Macero, was an Americanjazzsaxophonist, composer, and record producer. He was a producer at Columbia Records for twenty years, and most notably produced Kind of Blue, the Miles Davis album which at No. 12 is the highest-ranked jazz album on Rolling Stone’s500 Greatest Albums of All Time, and according to the RIAA, is the best-selling jazz album of all time. Macero also produced Davis’ Bitches Brew, and…Read More

Bill Russo: A former student of the jazz pianist Lennie Tristano, Russo wrote ground-breaking orchestral scores for the Stan Kenton Orchestra in the 1950s, including 23 Degrees N 82 Degrees W, Frank Speaking, and Portrait of a Count. One of the more famous works he wrote for the Kenton Orchestra is Halls Of Brass, specially composed for the brass section, without woodwinds or percussion. The section recording this piece, featured such jazz artists as Buddy Childers, Maynard Ferguson and Milt Bernhart, was much-respected by symphony brass musicians…..Read More

Manny Albam: The son of Lithuanian immigrants, who was born in the Dominican Republic when his mother went into labour en route to the United States, Albam grew up in New York City.[2] He became interested in jazz on hearing Bix Beiderbecke and at sixteen dropped out of school to play for Dixieland trumpeter-leader Muggsy Spanier, but it was his membership in a group led by Georgie Auld that turned Albam’s career around…..Read More

Teddy Charles: Born Theodore Charles Cohen in Chicopee Falls, Massachusetts, he studied at the Juilliard School of Music as a percussionist. Later he began to record and made personal appearances as Teddy Cohen with bands[2] as a vibraphonist, writing, arranging and producing records, in 1951 changing his last name to Charles.

Charles was one of many jazz musicians who hung out at an apartment building at 821 Sixth Avenue in New York City known as the Jazz Loft rented by photographer and artist David X. Young, who in turn sublet two apartments to Hall Overton (Charles’s mentor) and Dick Cary. Known as an innovator…..Read More

About the album:

Teo Macero was the A&R who conceived the two albums on this CD. SOMETHING NEW, SOMETHING BLUE was designed to demonstrate the talents of four young composer-arrangers—Manny Albam, Teddy Charles, Bill Russo, and Macero himself—working in that still undefined area of modern music in which jazz meets the more traditional “concert” forms.

Each one was commissioned to write an original composition and a new arrangement of a blues or a blues-oriented standard, and to make both blue in feeling. The blues provides an effective bridge from the most primitive………Read More

BullsEyeCover

Here’s another great example of a “solid” Hard Bop recording that was done in the late 60′s. “Bull’s Eye” was recorded in 1968 and reflects Barry Harris’ originality and wittiness to follow and also create, with his fellow band members (read description below). There is another factor which involves my favorite jazz drummer, Billy Higgins and arguably the reason why Harris is able to achieve all his goals in this album. If one listens well to this album, they could hear Harris and Higgins playing together in harmony as they create all the mood changes together. Of course, one cannot ignore a great bass (Paul Chambers) backing them up in perfect rhythm. Also, it doesn’t hurt either to have a trio of legends on the horns, Kenny Dorham (trumpet), Pepper Adams (baritone sax) and Charles McPhearson on tenor, LOL!! A real killer, top-notch, true classic jazz recording! This really never ends, what a treasure of jazz, stemming from the mid 50′s to the late 60′s. All these outstanding jazz musicians, existing and recording together at the same time period. Enjoy!

About the album:

In the liner notes that he wrote for Bull’s Eye in 1968, Mark Gardner quotes pianist Walter Bishop as calling Barry Harris “one of the very last of the bebop purists that we have on the piano.” Bishop knew what he was talking about; back in 1968, many acoustic pianists were choosing modal post-bop or avant-garde jazz over bop — and some were taking up electric keyboards and starting to explore a fascinating new jazz-rock-funk amalgam that came to be called fusion. But Harris, who was 38 when he recorded Bull’s Eye, was still a hardcore bebopper along the lines of Bud Powell and Thelonious Monk. On this 1968 session, the Detroit native offers no acknowledgment of ’60s trends in jazz piano — he doesn’t acknowledge McCoy Tyner’s modal post-bop any more than he acknowledges Cecil Taylor’s free jazz. And that’s just as well, because Harris is great at what he does. Unlike Tyner, Taylor, Bill Evans, Chick Corea, or Andrew Hill, Harris was always a follower rather than a leader. But again, he’s great at what he does, and on Bull’s Eye, Harris excels whether he is embracing Monk’s “Off Minor” or providing original tunes that range…..Learn More

SMakeItCover

If any jazz fans were curious about the level of impact Art Blakey and his Jazz Messengers had during 1965, then they should listen to this album. “‘S Make It” which stands for “Let’s make it” was recorded in 1964 and released in 1965. The messenger band members that were with him from 1961 to 1964 (Wayne Shorter, Freddie Hubbard and Cedar Walton) had left. Art picked up some familiar musicians that worked with him in the past and added a legend tenor saxophonist and recorded this beauty. Who were they? Well, on trumpet it was Lee Morgan, on trombone it was Curtis Fuller, the Pianist was John Hicks, Victor Sproles on bass and the new addition on tenor was the one and only John Gilmore! Another classic from Blakey and with that soulful modern mid-60′s sound, sweet stuff!

About the album:

Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers: John Gilmore (tenor saxophone); Lee Morgan (trumpet); Curtis Fuller (trombone); John Hicks (piano); Victor Sproles (bass instrument); Art Blakey (drums). Drummer and bandleader Art Blakey was a leading practitioner of hard bop, a sub-genre of bebop that emphasized the blues and hard-swinging, usually mid-tempo, grooves. This 1964 session presents classic performances by one of Blakey’s most accomplished Jazz Messengers line-ups. (The personnel changed often over the years.) Inspired solos are heard here by legends in their own right, including trumpeter Lee Morgan, trombonist Curtis Fuller, and pianist John Hicks.…….Read More

ScheduleJazzConClassRadio

The new and official “Schedule Link” is back in order to keep all the Jazz Con Class Radio listeners informed concerning the programing. It is a monthly based schedule that lists all the playlists and the times they start. It’s more of a general view of the programing but it gives me the opportunity to add special events and there will be many of them in the future. Although I will announce it beforehand, the listeners should take a look at the schedule every day in case they miss any changes. The Jazz Con Class Radio library is hugely impressive, the daily regular’s wouldn’t tune in every day if they were hearing the same songs over and over. All the jazz on this internet radio station is high quality and there are more classic/traditional jazz tunes being added everyday. The schedule link, according to the licensing agreement, cannot announce the songs names or artists names that will be playing ahead of time and that’s why it is so general. The schedule link greatly benefit those who are interested in a certain type of playlist and helps them coordinate both the Jazz Con Class radio schedule with their own. Take a look at it here.

BebopRevisitedCover

This 1964 recording was Charles McPhearson’s debut album as a leader. It was a memorable showing by this practically unknown alto saxophonist who managed to bring back bebop to life when hard bop and avant-garde was in full swing. A small reminder from McPhearson, in case somebody had forgotten the strong foundation that bebop had provided. “Bebop Revisited” is a very nostalgic type of album that serves as a rectifiable example to prove how immensely talented Charles McPhearson is. Using Bebop as the thematic approach for his debut, only helps the listener compare and easily confirm his extraordinary abilities, as he brings Charlie Parker back to life (There’s more, read biography below). Great album, get it!

About the album:

Bebop is the thing on this excellent outing as altoist Charles McPherson and pianist Barry Harris do their interpretations of Charlie Parker and Bud Powell. With trumpeter Carmell Jones, bassist Nelson Boyd and drummer Al “Tootie” Heath completing the quintet, the band romps through such bop classics as…….Read More

CharlesMcPhearsonBio

Biography of Charles McPhearson:

Charles McPherson was born in Joplin, Missouri and moved to Detroit at age nine. After growing up in Detroit, he studied with the renowned pianist Barry Harris and started playing jazz professionally at age 19. He moved from Detroit to New York in 1959 and
performed with Charles Mingus from 1960 to 1972. While performing with Mingus, he collaborated frequently with Harris, Lonnie Hillyer (trumpet), and George Coleman (tenorsax).

McPherson has performed at concerts and festivals with his own orchestra.

McPherson was recently featured at Lincoln Center showcasing his original compositions and arrangements with a seven piece ensemble. He has toured the US, Europe, Japan, Africa and South America with his own group, as well as with jazz greats Billy Eckstine, Lionel Hampton, Nat Adderly, Jay McShann and others. McPherson has recorded as guest artist with Charlie Mingus, Barry Harris, Art Farmer, Kenny Drew, Toshiko Akiyoshi, the Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra, and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis. He has recorded as leader on Prestige, Fantasy, Mainstream, Discovery, Xanadu, and most recently Arabesque. His most recent recording is the highly acclaimed “Manhattan Nocturne”.

Charles was also the featured alto saxophonist in the Clint Eastwood film “Bird,” a biography about Charlie Parker.

McPherson remains a strong, viable force on the jazz scene today. He is at the height of his powers. His playing combines passionate feeling with intricate patterns of improvisation. Throughout his four decade s of being an integral performer of the music, Charles has not merely remained true to his BOP origins, but has expanded on them. Stanley Crouch says in his New York Times article on Charles. “He is a singular voice who has never sacrificed the fluidity of his melody making, and is held in high esteem by musicians both long seasoned and young.”…..Learn More

HaroldLandInNewYorkCover

Harold Land was not known too much on the east coast, so to make his presence known he came over to New York in 1960 and recorded this album at the Plaza Sound Studio. There was no better way to express his value than to team up with the great Kenny Dorham and they made the best out of it. “Eastward Ho!” was their end product and it was a total success. Harald Land has a very distinctive sound on the tenor, a very clear and strong sound but with a soft bluesy/intimate touch to it. He could successfully matched up with the very best of them (read biography below). Great album that can rank with many other classics.

About the album:

Tenor saxophonist Harold Land and trumpeter Kenny Dorham make for a potent front line on this CD reissue, a superior hard bop set. With an obscure and quietly boppish rhythm section (pianist Amos Trice, bassist Clarence Jones, and drummer Joe Peters) giving suitable backup, Land and Dorham stretch out ……..Read More

HaroldLandBioImage

Harold Land Biography:

Harold de Vance Land (tenor saxophonist) was born on December 18, 1928 in Houston, Texas and passed away on July 27, 2001 in California.

Land was born in Houston and grew up in San Diego. He started playing the saxophone at the age of 16, and by age 21, had made his first recording as the leader of the Harold Land All-Stars for Savoy Records in 1949. In 1954 he moved to Los Angeles where trumpeter Clifford Brown spotted him, and invited him to join the Brown-Roach band.

Land toured with the Brown-Roach Band extensively, and moved to Philadelphia to live with the groups pianist Richie Powell and his brother Bud Powell, but he got homesick, and moved back to Los Angeles a year before the car crash that killed both Brown and Richie Powell. He then became a regular member of another gracefully swinging west coast band, led by bassist Curtis Counce between 1956 and 1958, and with trumpeter Shorty Rogers Giants in 1961.

In 1961-62, he regularly worked with Red Mitchell, the bassist who did much to advance the early career of Ornette Coleman, and was a successful studio musician……Learn More

 

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