Tuesday, May 30, 2006

I'm on the road for a few days so I don't have easy access to my jazz discs but I'll post another 10 at this point which gets me to the 30 selections mark in this rejuvenating listening exercise.

Horace Silver - Blowin' the Blues Away (1959)
Art Pepper - Meets the Rhythm Section (1957)
Art Farmer - Blame it on My Youth (1988)
John Coltrane - Giant Steps (1959)
Joe Lovano - I'm All for You (2003)
Joe Henderson - Inner Urge (1964)
Miles Davis - Birth of the Cool (1950)
Freddie Hubbard - The Body and the Soul (1963)
Lee Morgan - Cornbread (1965)
Oliver Nelson - The Blues and the Abstract Truth (1961)

Stay cool gents. I'm off to drink some beer and watch some hockey. The Canadian remedy for this sort of insane weather.
50? I really have to come up with 50?

Not sure that in my present jazz noviate phase, that I could do an honest list of 50.

My most recent faves will be pretty obvious to most though I'm slowly working my way to some of the less obvious stuff. For now:

Real Obvious/Greats:
Kind of Blue - Miles Davis
The Sidewinder - Lee Morgan
Time Out - The Dave Brubeck Quartet
A Love Supreme - JC
Mingus Ah Um - Mingus
Juju - Wayne Shorter
Soul Station - Hank Mobley

Contempo notables:
Mood Swings - Russell Gunn
Equilibrium - Matthew Shipp

That's it for now. Off for a much-needed vacay. Will try to post from Italia.

Arrivederci, mio amices!
Only 'cause Derek brought it to cd club but I love it nonetheless:
The New Tristano - Lennie Tristano
Next batch
Steve Colman -Resistence is Futile
Anita oday-Cool heat
Frank Sinatra - The wee small hours
Getz Gilberto- Getz Gilberto
Shepp & Waldron- Left alone revisited
Jim Hall - Concerto de Aranjez (spelling ??)
McCoy Tyner -the real McCoy
Miles Davis's score (Ascenseur pour l’├ęchafaud )

Monday, May 29, 2006

i'm available for a June 22nd get together if that happens to materialize. ...speaking of materializing, I might actually make it around to posting my next ten jazz picks within the next month or so!
Stu, never let it be said that a kick in the ass doesn't work on me. My next nine are:

29) Uri Caine - Ulricht / Primal Light (1997)
28) Cannonball Adderley with Bill Evans - Know What I Mean? (1962)
27) Joe Henderson - In 'n' Out (1965)
26) Coltrane - My Favourite Things (1961)
25) Marion Brown - Three for Shepp (1967)
24) Tina Brooks - Back to the Tracks (1960)
23) Paul Bley - Ramblin' (1966)
22) Booker Ervin - The Space Book (1967)
21) Kenny Dorham - Quiet Kenny (1959)

It's at this point that I'm beginning to see clearly the danger of numbering my picks (.....help!).

Marc - oh creator of this (increasingly impossible) concept, stop stalling and post your next ten.
gosh where are those posts.....gentlemen, gentlemen, (especially you mein comrade kyle)...well I can still write, but I am not available for any events involving alcohol for several weeks....Surprisingly there were some great deals on cds in glasgow, with a lot of jazz 50's and 60s classics for the equivalent of $9 canadian before taxes, as well as some pop like the costello newly remastered reissues for about $11 canadian before taxes...but sadly most of the stores highlight the DVDs over the CDS.....I will send in my next round shortly....

Thursday, May 18, 2006

ok....Brian....$#&* you !!! - thats how we from scarborough deal with that kind of anal retentive commentary.... that said ( and I feel much better) you have a few good points , so I will be a good lad and reference the origial albums when i have vinyl 2fers, ( most of them are only 2 or 3 albums combined), and I will list the albums seperately (ie no cookin and relaxin ...for me), and I will place them in numeracle order at the very end , (but dont be surprised if I happen to have 10 albums tied for 1st, and 10 albums tied for 10th and 10 albums tied for 20th.... See there is still some self respect left in my namby-pamby acquiescense to mein comrade Doyle...
June 22nd chez me sounds pretty good if everyone else is up for it.

With regard to the lists, admittedly I had re-vamped the concept to a Top 51, and if no one is too comfortable with that, well then, I'm out. Forget it. The whole thing's off. OK, leave it with me.

And Mr. Watson....Mr. Watson. Stuart. I've pondered your proposal re "no break down within the groups of ten", really looked at it carefully, and can only conclude that it simply won't cut it. Why? There'll be no good way to apply Marc's scoring system, and the point of the game is to....OK, this is somewhat debatable......publish a Metabaeats Jazz Top 50 that includes all of our inputs. So it seems to me that we will need you to get down to brass tacks, get off the schnide, and do a little work for a change (if you need a role model, look at me). Also, the vinyl 2-fers you listed in your last bunch are in some cases pretty unique compilations limited to vinyl releases...not sure how we will deal with these without references to the original recording (Brilliant Corners was helpful), plus putting two Miles disks as one selection (Cookin and Relaxin etc etc) , well, don't get me started.

In summary, Stu, I think you need to take a really hard look at your contribution to this project, and ask yourself some tough questions. Maybe go to Scotland for a week on a drinking binge to step away from it.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

I might be making this up as I go along but Brian has suggested that he host the next CD club and Stuart has insisted that we follow the seasons so how does June 22 at Brian's place sound? That would be a Thursday night and coincide with the summer solstice. If I am way offside here please feel free to piss all over my proposed time and place.

Monday, May 15, 2006

if you google metabeats, this site is the first listed....makes me wonder if we could make it easier for strangers to access the site somehow,(no one looking for a music debate is likely to type in metabeats at the google bar) but then maybe not a good idea....apologies for getting of topic here...what was I thinking!
I am picking things I know for sure will make the list ...(yet i have not decided on final order), so here is another batch......my final groupings will probably not be exact order but something like 1) my top 10 (but not in any order) , next 10 (again not in any order) , and so on .....all to be decided at the end as I dont have time now and I am relistening to a lot to be sure they are still my favorites....
Wayne Shorter ...Speak no evil
Louis Armstrong meets Oscar Peterson
Miles Davis - Cooking & relaxing (a vinyl 2fer of both albums)
Miles davis- Workin & Steamin (a vinyl 2fer of both albums)
Monk- Pure Monk- ( a vinyl 2fer of solo stuff from riverside years)
Monk - Brilliance ( a vinyl 2fer of riverside quartets but mainly "brilliant corners")
Monk- Theolonius Monk- ( a vinyl 2fer of prestige years)
Oliver nelson- the blues and the abstract truth
Blossum Dearie- Once upon a summertime
Sonny Stitt, Sonny Rollins, Dizzie Gillespie- Sonny Side up

Friday, May 12, 2006

Sooner or later Brian will realize that he won't be able to pick his top 10 as he is 1 disc ahead of the pace having already chosen 21 records. Don't be trying to squeeze in 51 selections there pal. I shall be watching. Can't let the man get to far ahead although I think if you already have your 50 selected go ahead and show your hand. As for myself I'm re-listening and selecting as I go. So here are another 10 as yet in no particular order.

-Cannonball Adderley - Somethin' Else (1958) - Miles is sublime especially on the disc opener
-Jackie McLean - Destination Out (1963)
-Sonny Stitt and Paul Gonsalves - Salt and Pepper (1963)
-Charles Mingus - The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady (1963) - takes yer dad's big band for a scary walk down some rather dark alleys
-Ben Webster & Joe Zawinul - Soulmates (1963) - I'm with Stuart on this one and I do hope at some point to see some crossover on the rest of your lists as well.
-The Red Garland Quintet - All Mornin' Long (1957)
-Kenny Dorham - Quiet Kenny (1959) - 3/5 from Allmusic (idiots!)
-Oscar Pettiford - The New Sextet (1953) - the original jazz cellist (only one as far as I know)
-Wayne Shorter - Adam's Apple (1966)
-Grant Green with Sonny Clark - The Complete Quartets (1961-2)

Thursday, May 11, 2006

OK boys, onward and upward. I'm loving the lists so far, good contributions from everyone, and lots of stuff I am going to investigate further.

I'll refrain from adding much commentary until my final ten (after all, how fucking special are you really if you can only manage the 35th best jazz record in history), but am happy to discuss further if there's any specific interest.

39) Art Pepper - Smack Up (1960)
38) Eric Dolphy - Far Cry (1960)
37) Anita O'Day - Anita Sings the Most (1957)
36) Miles Davis - Someday My Prince Will Come (1961)
35) Max Roach - Freedom Now Suite (1960)
34) Chet Baker - Chet in Paris (vols 1 - 4) (1955)
33) Lee Morgan - The Procrastinator (1967)
32) Joe Henderson - Mode For Joe (1966)
31) John Coltrane - Coltrane Jazz (1960)
30) Charles Mingus - Pithecanthropus Erectus (1957)

Ah, it's starting to heat up.
seems we are of a like mind marc....most of my first batch are vinyl which Ive had for ages...seems with jazz like other forms of music....the stuff you heard when young and in your formative years always seems to get an extra star ....

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Having started this whole thing I guess that it is time that I ante up, and, as an homage to the Nick Hornbie’s immortalized list maker, Rob Gordon, I think I’ll do ‘em autobiographically. (more or less)

It was not until more recently that jazz has come into my life in a bigger way, however two albums have been with me since my childhood and have gotten consistent play throughout the years. I remember loving them when I was a kid, though remarkably, I never got into my brother Peter’s Sun Ra album that he left behind when he headed back to Europe In the early 70’s.

(1) Modern Jazz Quartet – European Concert Volume 2. (1960) Although reissued on cd, the current version does not include the lead off track ‘Pyramid’. There is something about MJQ that to my ears is unique. It rarely whales or screams out at you, but it is lyrical like no other Jazz. Tunes like ‘Skating in Central Park’, ‘The Cylinder’ and Ellington’s ‘It Don’t Mean a Thing’ have grooves that run deep and emotes. I can’t let it go. …love Milt Jackson on the vibes!
(2) Dave Brubeck Quartet. ‘Time Out’ (1959) …and it’s all about the numbers…the complex rhythms and signatures…so structured yet mellifluous… not a note out of place…no collection can be without it…an album like no other?

The next four are cheaters but I’m going to throw them in because frankly, they get a lot of air play around our house. As Brian put it, these are albums that get played. I know I will not be winning the ‘esoteric critics picks’ award on this one…at least not this round!

(3) ‘The Jazz Scene’ – Verve 1994 – I think this one might actually be a legit choice. It is a double cd re-release of a compilation of sides that was put together by Norm Granz in the 50’s that highlights various artist on the label. It includes sides by Ellington, Lester Young, Hawkins, Strayhorn, comes with amazing liner notes that I have never read and nicely designed packaging that evokes old 78 albums….back when an album was actually more than a piece of vinyl that came in a cardboard sleeve!
(4) ‘The Mercury Song Book’ 100 Jazz Vocal Classics – 1995 An action packed 4cd box set …a real deal @ $24.95 !
(5) ‘The Verve Story’ 1944 – 1994 (1994) An action packed 4cd box set …a real deal @ $24.95 !
(6) ‘Body & Soul’ 80 years of RCA Victor Jazz – 1996 An action packed 4cd box set …a real deal @ $24.95 !

(7) Next up is Duke Ellington - ‘S.R.O.’ This is a Japanese import and features great live performances by Cootie Williams, Johnny Hodges, Russell Procope and Cat Anderson. This is what one reviewer has to say about it.

With literally thousands of Duke Ellington CDs flooding the marketplace at any moment, it pays to be careful before purchasing budget CDs with vague packaging. This compilation indicates it was recorded in 1961, though the likely dates of the live selections included on this disc more realistically ranges as late as the summer of 1956. The first nine tracks come from Ellington’s ~1966 Newport performance, and it is plagued by an out-of-tune piano, some sloppy playing here and there, and an awkward splice in “Take the ‘A’ Train.” What’s inexcusable is the islabelling of two songs: “El Gato” is actually “El Viti,” while “Open House” is correctly called “The Opener.” The normally exciting “Ad Lib on Nippon,” which is probably from the ~1965 Monterey Jazz Festival, begins awkwardly and the recording suffers from horrible balance. For a few dollars, this CD may be of interest to completists, but other Duke Ellington fans can safely skip over this disappointing release.

…what the hell do I know! I like it and thought it was actually good!…until now!

(8) Coltrane – Coltrane Time - 1958…a little out there at times with Cecil Taylor hammering away on the piano. It goes in and out of a groove… some times it works sometimes it doesn’t…I like the echoes of modern ‘serious’ music in the keyboard.

(9) Art Tatum – ‘Tea for Two’ a compilation of sides assembled from 1945 on Black Lion. Tatum is a genius from simpler times…which is not to say his music simple…au contrare!

(10) Miles Davis – Bitches Brew – 1969. Not necessarily the place to start with Miles but then what did I know. I’ve grown to like (respect) it over the years. I am of the belief that not all art has to be beautiful… and this often falls into this category. It is not the kind of thing I listen to often but I feel enriched by the experience when I do. I find music like this steps me outside of the box. (my little isolated world)

I’m lovin’ you picks gents....this is going to be a real cooker when it comes down to the count.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

In absolutely no order here is the first bunch for me....all of these I have had for ages and love, but Im not sure what order ....that'l come at the end like derek for me..
Davis-Kind of Blue
Coltrane-Love supreme
Hancock-maiden Voyage
Billy Holiday-Lady sings the blues
Keith jarett-Koln Concert
Bud Powell-Amazing Bud Powell on blue note volumes 1 & 2
Ben Webster and Joe Zawinul-Soulmates
Sonny Rollins-Tenor madness
Sonny Rollins-Saxophone Colossus
Dextor Gorden-Go

Monday, May 08, 2006

Guess it's time I chimed in to keep the ball rolling. I won't try to put these in any sort of order until I reach 50 and even then it will be difficult.

Let's start off with two on which I concur with Senor Doyle. Clark Terry - In Orbit (1958), Gil Evans - Out of the Cool (1960).

For the remaining eight in this list: Eric Dolphy - Live at the Five Spot, Volume 2 (1961) (only two tracks but brilliant nonetheless), Lester Young - The Jazz Giants (1956), Hanky Mobley - Soul Station (1960) (as noted by Joe Goldberg in the liner notes "you simply hear four men swinging lightly, powerfully, and with great assurance and authority"), John Lewis & Sacha Distel - Afternoon in Paris (1956), Donald Byrd & Doug Watkins - The Transition Sessions (2CD - 1955-56), Steve Lacy - Work (2002) (pushing 70 and two years before he would pass on but still showing the youngsters that compromise is always a dirty word), JJ Johnson - Proof Positive (1964), and Lennie Tristano - The New Tristano (1962) (Track #2 - "Requiem" one of my fave piano jazz tracks period).

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Here's my first take at 10 of the top fifty jazz albums, beginning from the bottom. I haven't completely done the math, so it's possible that this will change as I work through the next 40, but I'm not planning on it. My criteria included vocal jazz (though I don't have many), plus a few compilations for the earlier guys. I've done my best not to be pretentious (but will be called on it numerous times no doubt), and focused primarily on music that I've listened to regularly, rather than that which I found important, but could never find a reason to pop in my CD player.
50. Lee Konitz - Another Shade of Blue (1999)
49. Gil Evans - Out of the Cool (1960)
48. Hampton Hawes - For Real (1958)
47. Chick Corea - The Complete "Is" Sessions (1969)
46. Bill Evans - Undercurrent (1963)
45. Art Blakey - Night at Birdland (Vol. 2, but both are great) (1954)
44. Nat Adderley - Work Song (1961)
43. Dusko Goykovich - Soul Connection (1994)
42. Clark Terry (w. Thelonious Monk) - In Orbit (1958)
41. Mal Waldron - The Quest (1961)
40. Teri Thornton - Devil May Care (1961) (vocal)

Friday, May 05, 2006

Enough chit chat, let's see some lists.

I'll try to post my 50 - 40 in the next couple of days.
let me clarify....I agree completely with your sentiments re classic jazz records and thats why I referenced Kind of blue and love supreme...(2 of my top 3 of all time maybe)... do include those, but what I meant was....dont go searching now for what the critics like...(ie I dont know much about sun ra , but rather then do research now.ill pass on him and Ill choose from my own favorites....I mean damn... do what you want.... I was just hoping to avoid everyone bringing stuff that they dont know about but what the critisc say are great...Im more interested in what you have loved over the last 10 years, rather then what you hope to get into in the future....
i didnt mean for this to be so complicated and I sound a little dictatorial so ...in the words of curt cobain....whatever....

Thursday, May 04, 2006

The thing is Stuart that many of the jazz records that I love have been around for 40 or 50 years and the reason that the critics rave about them is that they've stood the test of time and the public is still purchasing them to this day. The jazz section might be the only one in the store where the old classics get the front and centre treatment over the new guys. Suffice to say that there might not be that many hidden gems and to leave out records like "Giant Steps" or "Speak No Evil" just to slot in some Bosnian free jazz outfit might be a little disingenuous and pretentious.

As for Robert Pollard when does the man find time to eat and sleep? I for one wish he would keep some of his musical thoughts to himself. Ryan Adams is another guy who seems to feel his every synaptic pulse has to be recorded for posterity. I'd much rather be left wanting more.
Im sure kind of blue and a love supreme will be at or near the top of most peoples lists. (for good reason)...but for me the thing Id love to hear is your [personal favorites ) especially if they are not critically raved about ....weve all talked about reviewers being a bit like sheep....for the record.(pardon the pun)..Im only choosing from my current (somewhat limited ) collection, and i doubt Ill have 50 that qualify, but Id much rather here what you guys like rather then what reviewers tell us to like...
No real brainwaves around sites to listen to Jazz music, though e-music is pretty good, and allmusic, if you want to do a little sampling, is at least very comprehensive.

Not to discourage you from doing your own homework and thinking on this, but there are a plethora of "Top 50/100/etc" jazz listings on the web (of course), and I though it might fuel discussion to throw a couple of them out there. Ours will be better. These each have different "rules", which I think we could clarify as well (per my last note).

Site - I like this one because it has a real free jazz leaning - lots of music to check out.
Site - this one and the next are more straightforward in their choices.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Of course he is..... Seriously, though, don't you think that, with the help of a good friend who can teach him how to edit, Mr. Pollard could release a fantastic, highly acclaimed masterpiece every 2 years instead of the 'gems among the mediocre' stuff that typifies (in my view) most of his albums? Or is it refreshing to see an artist who consistently puts his creativity out there, unvarnished, for the world to see?

Clearly, I'm in the 'edit' camp...other examples of artists I'd advise to switch from quantity to quality include Stereolab and Woody Allen (though Match Point was quite good). Thoughts?

Still working on the Jazz 50 project. It's gonna take some research and a lot of listening on my part. Other than emusic.com, which has the odd decent jazz find, are there any other online music sources for jazz that you afficionados out there could recommend?