21 June 2009


Sonny Stitt for Prestige from 1964.
Ronnie Mathews, Piano ; Leonard Gaskin, Bass; Herbie Lovelle, Drums; Osvaldo Martinez,Bongos ; Marcelino Valdez, Conga.

Inexplicably this has never been reissued which is a shame as it's a great jazz lp with an authentic latin feel."Slave Maidens" and "Barefoot Ball" do it for me every time but the rest of the album is cracking.

AMG review:Excellent soul jazz and blues numbers by alto and tenor saxophonist Sonny Stitt, who plays with almost unrelenting energy and drive throughout this session. This was a typical date, but Stitt's earthy playing moved it beyond cliche and convention.

20 June 2009


Naoya Matsuoka and Wesing for Discomate Japan from 1979.
"Pao De Acucar" is a 100mph brazilian flavoured fusion banger;"Take 645" keeps the latin feel but slows it down - big in jazz funk circles back in the day.
The rest of the lp is pretty much run of the mill Jap jazz funk apart from the nauseating "Fiesta Fiesta" with its cod reggae sound and girlie vocals-truly hideous stuff.


Jack Wilson for Blue Note from 1967.
Jack Wilson-Piano;Lee Morgan-Trumpet;Garnett Brown-Trombone;Jackie McLean-Alto;Bob Cranshaw-Bass;Billy Higgins-Drums

This is now oop and seems to have slipped thru the net in blogland. I've ripped the 97 Toshiba EMI cd reissue for this post.
Tough set of tunes best known for the rug cutter "On Children" .You just can't fail with a line up like that!
AMG Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Easterly Winds provides an excellent contrast to Jack Wilson's first Blue Note album, Somethin' Personal. Where his label debut was cool and romantic, Easterly Winds is a brassy, funky collection of soul-jazz and hard bop with instant appealing. Wilson keeps the tone fairly diverse, both in his originals and covers. After hitting hard with the funky opening pair "Do It" and "On Children" (both of which illustrate that he was familiar with contemporary soul), he quiets the mood with a nice version of Johnny Mandel's "A Time for Love." On the second half, he turns in soul-jazz ("Easterly Winds"), straight hard bop ("Frank's Tune") and the charmingly lyrical "Nirvanna." Throughout it all, Wilson is subtle and tasteful, allowing trumpeter Lee Morgan and alto saxophonist Jackie McLean their time in the spotlight; trombonist Garnett Brown has a couple of nice moments as well, while bassist Bob Cranshaw and Billy Higgins lend solid rhythmic support. It's another impressive, enjoyable effort from one of the most underrated pianists on Blue Note's '60s roster.

16 June 2009


The mighty Mark Weinstein ,the man behind the heaviest afro cuban lp ever made - "Cuban Roots" - is back with a new release featuring the talents of none other than Omar Soso.
Check out his excellent blog here to read all about Mark's latest album "Tales From The Earth" and then go to Mark's MySpace page to hear an exclusive preview of some of the wonderful music he has recorded.
Check it out. It is magic music!

14 June 2009


Tom Harrell for Adamo from 1976.
Tom Harrell -Trumpet,Flugelhorn;Bob Berg-Tenor;Barry Finnerty-Guitar;Mike Wolff-Piano;Mike Richmond-Bass;Lenny White-Drums;Muhammed Abdullah-Congas

Harrell's first solo lp and what a stormer.Check out "While There's Time" for a slamming neo hard bop destroyer.
All Killer No Filler.

6 June 2009


Lazaro Pla aka Manteca for Sound Triangle from 197?
Super heavyweight percussion/descarga session from Pla plus Patato Valdes and Nelson "Flaco"Padron(Cachao on Bass???).
If you liked Puente in Percussion this will blow you away.Just check out the ridiculous breaks on "Afro Funky" and "Cosas De Manteca" to get a flavour of how good this is.
Percussionists who were lucky enough to witness Manteca play the bongos with this group, relate tales of an enormous man who could ignite a near riot by simply coming forward from the rhythm section to the front of the stage playing wild rhythms that became more and more complex as the audience cheered him on.
Lazaro Pla, known as Manteca, was a master "bongosero" who first rose to fame in 1940s Cuba when he was a featured attraction with the great pianist and composer Ernesto Lecouna and the renowned Cuban Boys, a leading exponent of the Cuban musical wave who gained international recognition and subsequently toured the globe.
Although Manteca is found on many recordings originating from Cuba, only a very small amount of material exists of him as a featured soloist or as the leader of a small combo.
These famed sessions took place in the United States - Miami to be exact, sometime in the early 1970s. This was a very unique session indeed as two other Cuban expatriates join Manteca in the studio - two of his early admirers who grew up listening to his rhythms: master percussionists Carlos "Patato" Valdes and the amazing Nelson "Flaco" Padron producing these two of the finest examples of incendiary Cuban percussion ever recorded.The remainder of this session's musicians are unquoted. (I've heard it suggested that the legendary Cachao could be on bass but this remains unconfirmed).

5 June 2009


70 cuts in 70 minutes for the 70th anniversary of the mighty Blue Note label.
That was the original premise behind the latest mix from Blackclassical and Monohub and to quote the guys themselves :
"When we set out to do this comp, we wanted to do 70 tracks over 70 mins which looking back was a tad ambitious to say the least and am afraid we failed miserably on both budgets. 35 Tracks listed, 42 Used and some other little incidental bits… Plus it wouldn’t be a BC mix without a lil’bit of spoken word."
What IS so great about this mix is they've managed to avoid all the usual old hackneyed numbers that get rolled out for every fucking Blue Note mix under the sun plus they haven't succumbed to the segued beats formulae and blending of similar styles approach.
So get your sorry ass over to Blackclassical and download this motherfucker of a mix!

1 June 2009


Malo for Warners from 1972.
Hadley Caliman (Saxes), Jorge Santana (Guitar), John L. Watson (Vocals), Francisco Aguabella (Percussion Vocals), Bill Atwood (Trumpet), Jorge Bermudez (Conductor), Forrest Buchtel (Trumpet), Arcello Garcia (Percussion), Arcello Garcia (Vocals), Mike Heathman (Trombone), Richard Kermode (Keyboards), Tom Poole (Trumpet), Rick Quintanal (Drums), Raul Rekow (Percussion), Alex Rodriguez (Trumpet), Leo Rosales (Percussion), Jose Santana (Violin), Richard Spremich (Drums), Pablo Tellez (Bass), Pablo Tellez (Percussion)

Super heavy all killer no filler latin session which blows the shit out the amg review here:
Malo's second album was cut with a lineup that had been reorganized following their debut. It's a little slicker than their first LP and the material isn't as strong. It's nonetheless a strong and invigorating rock/Latin jazz fusion, boasting some really hot playing, both in the ensemble work and improvisation. The six cuts, save one, all run more than five minutes, the closing "Latin Boogaloo" approaching ten minutes in length. Often this is closer to rockified salsa music than it is to the salsified rock music of lead guitarist Jorge Santana's brother, Carlos Santana. Occasional dives into sentimentality, as on the opening part of "I'm for Real," with its floating violin and percussive tinkles, are more than compensated for by some smoking Santana leads, particularly on the hyperactive "Held." "I'm for Real" was the cut most likely to follow up on the success of their "Suavecito" single, both because it was sung in English and because it had traces of the same kind of smoochy soul. Again, it wasn't too typical of the album as a whole, which combined several tributaries of pop with imagination and high levels of musicianship. Sometimes this was stretched out with jamming much more intelligent and fully thought-out than most lengthy, instrumental-oriented rock cuts, particularly on "Latin Boogaloo." . ~ Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide