Here's everything that fleet-fingered Buddy Guy waxed for Chess from 1960 to 1966, including numerous unissued-at-the-time masters, offering the most in-depth peek at his formative years imaginable. Stone Chicago blues classics ("Ten Years Ago," "My Time After Awhile," "Let Me Love You Baby," "Stone Crazy"), rockin' oddities ("American Bandstand," "$100 Bill," "Slop Around"), even a cut that features guitarist Lacy Gibson's vocal rather than Guy's ("My Love Is Real") – some 47 sizzling songs in all.
Some of Count Basie's finest recordings were cut for the Roulette label during 1957-1962, and all of his studio performances are included on this massive Mosaic ten-CD boxed set. Among the classic former LPs that are reissued here are The Atomic Mr. Basie, Basie Plays Hefti, Chairman of the Board, Everyday I Have the Blues, and Kansas City Suite. With such soloists as trumpeters Thad Jones and Joe Newman, the tenors of Frank Foster and Eddie Lockjaw Davis, Frank Wess on alto and flute, vocals by Joe Williams, and the timeless arrangements of Neal Hefti, Thad Jones, Frank Foster, Ernie Wilkins, and Frank Wess among others, this essential (but unfortunately limited-edition) set features the second Count Basie Orchestra at its very best.
This set of Annie Fischer’s complete EMI recordings represent her during a particular decade, when she had made her European reputation. These recordings helped spread that reputation and increased her prominence among pianists. As studio recordings, they form an unusual part of Fischer’s legacy – during most of her time as a performer, she avoided recording studios as she did not believe in playing in a studio without the presence of an audience. She shared this view with her eminent colleague Sviatoslav Richter, who said of her, ‘Annie Fischer is a great artist, imbued with a spirit of greatness and genuine profundity.
It's good to have this four-CD box set of everything Ian & Sylvia did in the studio for Vanguard, as their valuable contributions to folk and folk-rock are (several decades later, anyway) underrated. There are a few things that could have been added to the package to make it more definitive, though…
Motown’s legendary songwriting/production team, Holland-Dozier-Holland, left the fold in 1967, to establish their own Invictus/Hot Wax group of labels. They had worldwide hits with their flagship act, Chairmen Of The Board, debuted the first album by Parliament, as well as scoring a UK #1 with Freda Payne’s ‘Band of Gold…
This attractive limited-edition six-CD set features all of the studio small-group sides done by Armstrong in the 1950s for Decca. The first disc in particular is quite rewarding for it contains a full program by his 1950 sextet with trombonist Jack Teagarden, clarinetist Barney Bigard, and pianist Earl Hines. While the second disc has a variety of odds and ends (including the first version of "A Kiss to Build a Dream On" and two vocal duets with Gary Crosby), most of the final four CDs are from an ambitious project (originally titled "A Musical Autobiography") in which the great trumpeter/vocalist revisited many of the songs that he had recorded in the 1920s and '30s; some of the newer versions are actually better than the earlier ones.
That sound. One group conceived it. Defined it. Perfected it. The Modern Jazz Quartet was certainly one of the most distinctive voices in the history of jazz, thanks to the unique qualities of personal expression and collective vision of its members Milt Jackson, John Lewis, Percy Heath and Connie Kay (who had replaced original drummer Kenny Clarke by the time the band started recording this music). They were also exceptionally prolific during their tenure at Atlantic Records, producing 14 albums in eight years. And now, that MJQ sound gets the complete respect it deserves, thanks to our new box, The Complete 1956-1964 Modern Jazz Quartet Atlantic Studio Recordings.
Documenting Stan Kenton's always controversial but never sleepy music, the seven-CD Complete Capitol Studio Recordings of Stan Kenton 1943-47 features the orchestra at a time when it was reaching its greatest popularity, evolving from using the artist's charts into the Pete Rugolo era. In addition to some unreleased tracks, there are also several rare sessions included that were recorded at the time strictly for radio airplay. Most of Kenton's biggest hits ("Artistry in Rhythm," "Eager Beaver," "And Her Tears Flowed Like Wine," "Tampico," "Southern Scandal," "Artistry Jumps," "Intermission Riff," "Across the Alley From the Alamo," and "The Peanut Vendor") are here, as are many concert works. A classic reissue.
The bulk of Shaw's great sessions were recorded for independent labels (Muse & Contemporary,) ensuring them widespread critical evaluation but little audience except with the hardcore faithful. Things seemed about to change in the late '70s when Miles Davis suggested to Columbia that they record Shaw's group. They actually took his suggestion and signed Shaw. He issued a string of remarkable but low-selling records, and Columbia cut him loose after four years and four albums. They compounded the crime by deleting the records shortly after Shaw departed. Mosaic has corrected that slight with another of their marvelously produced and comprehensively notated and packaged box sets. This three-disc collection covers Shaw's Columbia sessions. While it is sad that Shaw's stay at Columbia was not more personally beneficial, it was quite musically productive.