Thursday, April 30, 2009

Mongo Santamaria - "El Bravo!" (1964)

There's quite a lot going on under the hood at this blog, with frequent donations to some of the growing discographies. The Mongo Santamaria discography has just reached 52 albums!

Latest donation by reader Xerxes is this great 1964 latin album that you should check out. Grab it in the comments here, and be sure to click the link above to see the rest. Thanks again Xerxes!

Jason Ankeny, AMG :
" Although Mongo Santamaria's move to Columbia later signified his transition to crossover fare, his label debut, El Bravo!, makes no concessions or overtures to the pop charts. Armed with a batch of original compositions spanning from boleros to mortunos and backed by a crack session band including trumpeter Marty Sheller and flutist Hubert Laws, Santamaria delivers one of the finest traditional Latin jazz records of the mid-'60s. The virtues of the set are many: Santamaria's conga rhythms are fiery yet tasteful, Sheller's luminous arrangements boast an authentic Cuban flavor, and all of the musicians receive ample opportunity to shine, in particular Laws (whose charanga-inspired flute galvanizes the superb 'Monica'. "

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Ahmad Jamal - "One" (1978)

 The Electric Jamal history that accompanied the "Stepping Out With A Dream" post some months back prompted me first to search out Ahmad Jamal's "Intervals", and also to ask around for this 1978 album.

Hanimex 3000 (check his blog) has come forward with his own vinyl rip and kindly dropped it into the "Intervals" comments for the ongoing Jamal discography. Merci bien Hanimex! Please see the text file in the download for more info about his blog, radio show and other things.

Well, this one should send some Jamal purists screaming for the hills. Scott Yanow from AMG seemingly collapsed in a fit of indignation after his paragraph review of "Intervals" and didn't bother with this one. Yanow probably would have had a heart attack if he'd listened to my favourite track here, a version of Steely Dan's "Black Cow" on which Jamal only plays (gasp) clavinet. It's cute, soulful and has a girl vocal chorus (including Eloise Laws).

Like "Intervals" which followed it the next year, "One" is an eclectic mix of styles and personnel that did not bode well for sales. Nevertheless, some great tracks here, and worth checking out. I'm a bit worried that this is the second album in a month on this blog with a version of Billy Joel's "Just the Way You Are", but I'll get over it and so will you. But is E-Mile up to the challenge of a compilation??

There are no less than three producers here : Richard Evans, who helmed Jamal's initial 20th Century 'electric' releases, such as "Ahmad Jamal '73" and "Jamalca"; 'Partridge Family' arranger/keyboardist Mike Melvoin; and finally Sigidi, a Mizell Brothers compatriot/conductor on albums like Donald Byrd's "Stepping Into Tomorrow", Bobbi Humphrey's "Fancy Dancer" and Johnny Hammond's "Gears" ... but best known later for his production of the S.O.S. Band.

These people are all big production arrangers, and so big productions you get. Melvoin is on synths, and there's another rhodes player on "Black Cow". Half the tracks feature string and horn arrangements, and there's percussionists galore, including the ubiquitous Paulinho Da Costa, Rufus drummer Andre Fisher, fellow Partridge Family session-star Hal Blaine, and even Bill Summers from the Headhunters (who featured on the Hancock bootleg I posted on the weekend).

On these busier tracks - "One", "Black Cow", "Jet" - Jamal seems sometimes content to sit back and pound away on the acoustic almost as part of the percussion section, as if in training for an arm wrestle with McCoy Tyner - breaking out with his trademark flourishes, but remaining part of a rhythmic interface even in his solo spots. Check the way he integrates his piano into the flute-driven track "One" in the preview at the top of the post.

He gets more harmonic space in the 'band' numbers like "Dynamo" and "Festival", built around his then-core live group of Calvin Keys, John Heard and Kenneth Nash, though there's still at least two percussionists per track. Jamal's own composition "Sumayah" is the only solo piano spot here.

So anyway, take your big black cow and get out of here, and thank Hanimex 3000 in the comments puh-leez.


1. 'One (Ahmad)' - (Sigidi - Welton Gite)
2. 'Just The Way You Are' - (Joel)
3. 'Jet' - (Benjamin, Revel, Weiss)
4. 'Black Cow' - (Becker-Fagen)
5. 'Dynamo' - (Jamal)
6. 'Sumayah'
- (Jamal)
7. 'Festival' - (Jamal)


One (Ahad)
David Crawford (flute & alto flute), Mike Melvoin (polymoog & minimoog), Ahmad Jamal (piano), John Rowin (guitar), Chuck Rainey (bass), Roger Barthelemy (drums), Bill Summers (bongos & percussion)
Conducted and arranged by Sigidi

Just the Way You Are
Mike Melvoin (polymoog synthesizer), Ahmad Jamal (piano), John Rowin & Mario Henderson (guitar), John Heard (bass), Scotty Edwards (electric bass), Andre Fisher (drums), Shondo Rondo Akeim (congas), Geoff Howe (percussion).

Ahmad Jamal (piano), John Rowin & Mario Henderson (electric guitar), Scotty Edwards (bass), Andre Fisher (drums), Shondo Rondo Akeim (congas), Paulinho DaCosta (percussion)
Horn section arranged and conducted by Mike Melvoin Rhythm section arranged by Richard Evans and directed by Sigidi.

Black Cow
Ahmad Jamal (clavinet), John Rowin (guitar), Scotty Edwards (bass), Steve Bowling (Fender Rhodes), Roger Barthelemy (drums), Bill Summers (conga), Hal Blaine (percussion), Eloise Laws, Stephanie Spruill, Virginia Ayers (vocals)
Conducted and arranged by SigidiHorns arranged and conducted by Mike Melvoin.

Ahmad Jamal (piano), Calvin Keys (guitar), John Heard (bass), Eddie Marshall (drums), Kenny Nash (congas), Hal Blaine (percussion).

Ahmad Jamal (solo piano)

Ahmad Jamal (piano), Calvin Keys (guitar), John Heard (bass), Eddie Marshall (drums), Kenny Nash (congas), Paulino DaCosta (percussion).

20th Century Fox Records
catalogue # M 555
Recorded at : Hollywood, Filmways / Heider Recordings
Recording dates : May, June & July 1978

is here

Vinyl rip by Hanimex 3000.
Some credits from Jean Princes' Ahmad Jamal discography.

Other blogs linked in this post are : Hanimex 3000, Orgy In Rhythm, E-Mile Says Songs Do the Matter, My Jazz World, Cosmic Music, Oufar Khan and Blak's Lair.
Please thank these fine folks if you visit their blogs and download their albums.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Herbie Hancock / Headhunters - "Live in Bremen" (1974)

'Chameleon' excerpt

'Butterfly' excerpt

'Spank-A-Lee' excerpt

To take us up to 44 live bootlegs in the Herbie Hancock collection, here's a November 1974 show from Bremen in Germany, originally broadcast on Radio Sendesaal. Hancock's keyboards (mostly rhodes, some synth n' clav) are great on this one, and the Headhunters really stretch out, with Summers and Clark punching through the mix. Maupin's sax solo is on fire in "Spank-A-Lee"

Only 192kbps, but a reasonably clear and well-mixed original broadcast recording. Hope you enjoy it!


01. 'Butterfly' (15:30)
02. 'Spank-A-Lee' (6:48)
03. 'Chameleon' (16:46)


Herbie Hancock - keyboards
Bennie Maupin - reeds
Paul Jackson - bass
Mike Clark - drums
Bill Summers - percussion


Soulseek find, seemingly not on any blogs, forums or webpages. I've converted the single wma file to 192kbps mp3; and separated the tracks with a lossless editor.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Birthright - "Breath Of Life" (1976)

As promised, the second and final album by the Buffalo, NY band Birthright from 1976, once again a private press release on Freelance Records, and apparently I'm not the only one who wants this. This time we've got Greg from Blackclassical to thank for the rip - thanks also to Reza for some details and again to KG from Killergroove for alerting me to this in the first place.

Quite a different album two years on from the previously-posted "Free Spirits" - with not so many free excursions, this is more of a band, with Greg Millar's guitar adding a new layer. Although we're still floating on the spiritual cloud, there's a greater concentration on song structures and overall textures this time around, with vocals from Beverly Simms on some tracks.

Highlight for me is the track "Love", Strata-East-goes-samba with Kenny Barron-ish rhodes from Tom Schuman, with Simms sounding like she's on her first E with her lyrical celebration of nature and happiness. Many other great tracks here too - the communication between saxophonists Joe Ford and Paul Gresham's saxaphones is as strong as ever.

Where are they now ? I talked about Paul Gresham, Joe Ford and Nasar Abadey in the "Free Spirits" post. Of the new people here, keyboardist Tom Schuman and guitarist Greg Millar both sadly moved on to smooth-jazz "pioneers" Spyro Gyra; and vocalist Beverly Simms seemingly vanished into thin air.

Bassist Gerry Eastman released his first solo album "Songbook" in 1996, which featured Birthright members Joe Ford and Nasar Abadey alongside Andy Bey on vocals - Bey fans : check the "Blackaphobia" preview there. Eastman is also a member of Abadey and Ford's "Supernova" band, and Ford appeared on his second solo album "Brown Skin Gal" last year. Hope you enjoy this one!


01. ‘Travis’ (5;57)
02. ‘Love’ (4:42)
03. ‘Breath of life’ (5:08)
04. ‘Hope’ (3:59)
05. ‘India’ (6:19)
06. ‘So To Speak’ (7:30)
07. ‘Left foot rag’ (7:39)


Nasar Abadey – drums
Paul Gresham - tenor saxaphone
Joe Ford- alto and soprano saxaphone
Beverly Simms - vocals & percussion
Greg Millar – guitar
Tom Schuman - piano & fender rhodes
Gerry Eastman – bass


Freelance FLS-2


Vinyl rip by Greg

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Boy Katindig - 'Midnight Lady' (1981)

Some great keyboard work on this 1981 instrumental album from Boy Katindig (real name Roland Katindig) from the Philippines, who's on rhodes, mini-moog, string ensemble and wide lapels here. Jazz-funk-fusion with some touches of late-70s Brazil samba, the last of which serves as a link to Bong Peñera, the only other Philippino jazz artist I know. Anyway, this album's more of an electric affair than the Peñera ones, with jazz-fusion at the forefront.

This is a donation by reader Ken, who was sent a vinyl rip by a friend in New York, and then passed it on to me - so a first for the blogosphere. Many thanks Ken!

Here's an excerpted bio from allaboutjazz :

"Jazz Pianist and International Recording Artist Boy Katindig, comes from a well-known clan of musicians who pioneered Latin jazz in Manila. His father is Philippines' jazz legend, Romy Katindig. After playing with a host of successful bands in Manila like “Bits & Pieces” & “Circus”, Boy formed the “Boy Katindig Band” in 1978. In 1978, Boy signed up with A&W Records International and recorded several albums under the Horizon label. "Midnight Lady”, his first album was awarded “Best Instrumental Composition” by the Himig Awards and Gold for the single which preceded it “Don’t Ask My Neighbor”. The album was released in the U.S. by PAUSA, who had fusion jazz pioneers Tom Grant & Alphonse Mouzon in its artist roster. The “Boy Katindig Band”, which spawned out of the ‘Midnight Lady” release, was also voted Best Jazz Group by the Aliw Awards Foundation consecutively for three years."

Best tracks for me are a cover of Rhythm Heritage's "Language Of Love" and Katindig's own title track "Midnight Lady", both uptempo tracks pushed along by the congas. There are a couple of duds - there's really no excuse for Billy Joel, you know - next wave, new wave etc ... it's still Billy Joel to me ...

Skip Scarborough's oft-recorded "Don't Ask My Neighbours" is probably best known as an Emotions song but here more references the Eddie Russ and Raul De Souza versions.

Anyway, check it out!

Katindig released several albums after this one and seems to be still touring around, visit him at MySpace.


01. 'Midnight Lady' (Roland Katindig) - 5:06
02. 'Don't Ask My Neighbours' (Skip Scarborough) - 10:25
03. 'Whatever Happened To the Love?' (Roland Katindig) - 7:43
04. 'Just the Way You Are' (Billy Joel) - 5:49
05. 'Agua de Beber' (Jobim, Demoraes) - 3:46
06. 'Language Of Love' (M.Price / D.Walsh) - 11:20


Boy Katindig - rhodes, clavinet, mini-moog, string ensemble
Teddy Vano - guitar
Jerry "Paco" Gamboa - bass
Cesar "Bachu" Yumping - drums
Jun Viray - drums
Panting Katindig - percussion
Danny Boogie - percussion


Pausa 7137


- Vinyl rip supplied by Ken.
- Covers photoshopped into shape from some angled ebay shots by Simon
- Other album links in this post go to My Jazz World, Quimsy's Mumbo Jumbo, My Favourite Sound, Blog-o-blog, Digs and The Eternal Dance 2. Please drop them some thanks if you visit.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Ana Mazzotti - 'Ninguém vai me segurar' (1974)

Great 1974 Brazilian album from Ana Mazzotti, featuring Azymuth as backup band with nice keys from José Roberto Bertrami.

Originally ripped for a blog that's disappeared. so here it is in WAV or- MP3 . Enjoy!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Birthright - "Free Spirits" (1974)

'Nano' excerpt

'Tangerine (For Muhammed)' excerpt

'Free Spirits' excerpt

An amazing share for this blog from REZA. I fell in love with a single track at the ever-wonderful Killer Groove Music Library, and started asking around for the album, thinking that the going price on this thing made such a request a bit of a stab in the dark. Immediately, Reza stepped forward with a 320kbps rip for this blog - and their second album, which will soon follow. I think I owe you about ten now sir - beers, albums, whatever it takes :)

This is a fantastic private-press spiritual jazz album coming from Buffalo, New York in 1974 on the Freelance Records imprint. Having absorbed electric Miles, Coltrane and Sanders; saxaphonists Joe Ford (alto, soprano) and Paul Gresham (tenor) came up with an organic interplay between their instruments that makes for a great album. I'll let the clips "speak" today.

Joe Ford had aleady played with Ken McIntyre and the Mingus band, and went on after Birthright to play on McCoy Tyner albums like "Focal Point" and "The Greeting". Both Paul Gresham and drummer/percussionist Nasara Abadey had played with the Buffalo Philharmonic and Bl*ck J*zz's Doug Carn. After the two Birthright albums on Freelance Records, Gresham went on to release a solo album called "Every Sound We Make" as the label's third and seemingly final release, then seemed to disappear off the map. Adabey went to to a wide variety of session and live work, and has more recently formed a band called Supernova with Joe Ford, who has also established a solo career.

Keyboardist Onaje Allan Gumbs is already well known at this blog, click his name for another five great albums as a starter. Bassist Jim Kurzdorfer went off to more commercial pop-jazz pastures with Spyro Gyra; and pianist Jimmy Manuel is also difficult to track down after this, though he may have passed away last year.

I hope you enjoy this one as much as I have, and please thank Reza in the comments.


01. 'Nano' (11:44)
02. 'Do You Know Where Your Children Are?' (1:30)
03. 'Tangerine (For Muhammed)' (7:29)
04. 'Jowcol (To The Life, Memory And Spirit Of John Coltrane)' (11:02)
05. 'Free Spirits' (10:33)

All tracks written by Joe Ford and Paul Gresham 


Joe Ford - alto and soprano saxophone; electric piano on Tr. 5.
Paul Gresham - tenor saxaphone
Nasar Abadey - drums, percussion
Jim Kurzdorfer - electric and acoustic bass
Onaje Allen Gumbs - electric piano; acoustic piano Tr.4
Jimmy Manuel - acoustic piano Tr 1-3


Freelance Records FS-1


Vinyl rip by Reza.
Other links in this post go to : Killer Groove Music Library, Call it Anything, Taringa, and Elemento Musical. Please thank these people if you visit, and respect their work and time.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Ahmad Jamal - "Intervals" (1979)

Long time since the last post, back at university for a new year, and a few weeks of pericarditis which is not fun, but here we are ...

This was another album that I wanted to track down after the Electric Jamal post that accompanied the album "Steppin Out With a Dream" a few months back, so here's a nice clean vinyl rip for blogland.

By the time of this, his final album for 20th Century Records, Ahmad Jamal seemed to want to pull away from the dense orchestrations and electric stylings of earlier albums for the label like "Ahmad Jamal '73" and "Jamalca" - he's on his way back to the acoustic piano and smaller group work. You can see that transition taking place on this sometimes uneven album, his last to include the rhodes as an instrument.


The best rhodes work is on the stepper "Boatride", where he's developed a flowing yet precise electric piano style that's markedly different from the pounding acoustic piano style that he pursues on "The Tube", a frenetic conga-laden piece that I also like.

'The Tube'

On "You're Welcome, Stop On By" he returns to his "Outertimeinnerspace" and "Freeflight" - era voicing method, where he establishes flowing chord textures on the rhodes before turning to acoustic piano for the more dynamic solos and melodic statement.

'You're Welcome, Stop On By'

Elsewhere he's working with smaller groups, on tracks like "Jordie" and a great version of "So In Love", on which he's just accompanied by acoustic bass. The album is called a "compilation" on the cover, which it's actually not (I've checked, you know what I'm like) - but it's certainly a compilation of quite different ideas and sessions. Half the album's produced by Paul Gayten, and the other half by Fifth-Dimension svengali Bones Howe, who's also the subject of one of the lesser tracks, "Bones".

Strangely, there's a faded-in "excerpt" of "My One and Only Love", which in its short duration recalls the fuller version on the Gayten-produced "Steppin Out With a Dream". The sheer clumsiness of the editing suggests, perhaps, some dissatisfaction with the record company and/or the sessions. The only real stinker is the inappropriately-named "Reggae", a confused slight calypso which seems to pass the baton to each musician in turn in search of some sort of inspiration or swing.

In the end it's a 50-50 effort, with a couple of great funky tracks and Jamal relishing his return to the piano, on which he's always superb. Hope you enjoy this one!


01. 'You're Welcome, Stop On By' - (Womack- Thomas) - 5:48
02. 'Jordie' - (Jamal) - 3:49
03. 'So In Love' - (Cole Porter) - 3:39
04. 'Reggae' - (Jamal) - 3:47
05. 'Boatride' - (Jamal) - 5:09
06. 'Excerpt From "My One And Only Love" ' - (Mellin-Wood) - 2:09
07. 'The Tube' - (Jamal) - 4:14
08. 'Bones' - (Jamal) - 6:20


A total mystery ! Not named on the cover, not noted in Jean Prince's otherwise meticulous discography. Ahmad Jamal on keyboards; plus bass, drums, occasional brass section and guitar.


Label - 20th Century Records
Catalogue number - T-622
Producer - Bones Howe (tracks: 1, 2, 7, 8)
Producer -Paul Gayten (tracks: 4, 5, 6)
Producer - Ahmad Jamal (track 3)
Compilation Producer - Michael Stewart
Mastered By - Mike Reese
Mixed By - Barney Perkins
Cover Painting - Joan Swanson
Design - Roland Young
Edited at Sierra Pacific, Los Angeles
Mixed at Golden Sound, LA
Mastered at the Mastering Lab

in this post

Vinyl rip by Simon666
Other albums linked in this post are at My Jazz World. Please say thanks if you go there.