Jazz for aficionados

Jazz for aficionados

I'm going to review records in my collection, and you'll be able to decide if they're worthy of your collection. These records are what I consider "must haves" for any jazz aficionado, and would be found in their collections. I wont review any record that's not on CD, nor will I review any record if the CD is markedly inferior. Fortunately, I only found 1 case where the CD was markedly inferior to the record.

Our first album is "Moanin" by Art Blakey and The Jazz Messengers. We have Lee Morgan , trumpet; Benney Golson, tenor sax; Bobby Timmons, piano; Jymie merrit, bass; Art Blakey, drums.

The title tune "Moanin" is by Bobby Timmons, it conveys the emotion of the title like no other tune I've ever heard, even better than any words could ever convey. This music pictures a person whose down to his last nickel, and all he can do is "moan".

"Along Came Betty" is a tune by Benny Golson, it reminds me of a Betty I once knew. She was gorgeous with a jazzy personality, and she moved smooth and easy, just like this tune. Somebody find me a time machine! Maybe you knew a Betty.

While the rest of the music is just fine, those are my favorite tunes. Why don't you share your, "must have" jazz albums with us.

Enjoy the music.
"If the masses don't get it, it's bad"

Actually, that's not far from the truth. The masses decide most things. They decide what music is available for purchase. What cars we can buy etc....

Lets just pose a theoretical situation. Who is the best Jazz sax player? This is just to make a point, ok. Some would say Cannonball, some would say Coltrane, some might say Sonny Rollins, Charlie Parker,etc........ NO ONE would say, Charlie Mariano. Except, maybe the Frogman.

That's why Coach Parcells statement is applicable. Some questions are decided for us. There really is no room for 'real' argument.

"I would go with "Sonny", the masses would say "Kenny".

Not, the JAZZ Masses!! hahahahahaha


Sonny is a great choice.
Orpheus10, as you point out West Coast Jazz is difficult to define. But, it does have some general defining characteristics. It can be differentiated from East Coast Jazz and other styles by the fact that West Coast players tended to play with a "cooler" approach; generally speaking, with a lighter and softer tone. There was an emphasis on the composition and arrangements as opposed to the improvisation; and sometimes classical music compositional techniques such as fugues were part of the mix. The fact that there was great demand for arrangers in Hollywood surely helped some of these stay employed.

I already mentioned one of my favorite recordings in this style (the Previn/ Shorty Rogers). I mentioned that one because it is lesser known, as well as being a favorite. I am sure you already now some of these, but a few other favorites are:

Miles Davis "Birth Of The Cool". The title says it all. What can be said about this recording that hasn't already be said. Other than to note that this session is really considered a Gil Evans session; which further highlights the clout that the arranger had.

Dave Brubeck "Time Out". Good example of the use of classical techniques.

Paul Demond/ Gerry Mulligan "Two Of A Mind"

Zoot Sims "Quartets"

"Shelly Manne And His Men Play Peter Gunn" Henry Mancini arranger

"Art Pepper + Eleven"

Vince Guaraldi "Charlie Brown Suite" No kidding, one of my favorites which always puts a smile in my face.