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CJ Shearn

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Everything posted by CJ Shearn

  1. I was listening to some of it last night (I bought the Mastersound edition a while back since it has the complete album unlike the domestic) and I think that compared to the other WR albums I have (Black Market, Live in Tokyo, Live and Unreleased, and Heavy Weather) it's the weakest of the bunch, the live portions are excellent, but the studio half is a little dissapointing, "Sightseeing" cooks, but "Brown Street" despite having some cool grooves and patterns (Zawinul's walking bass with a little "hump") but it doesn't go anywhere on the whole. "Live in Tokyo" is IMO the ultimate WR live album, they just take amazing chances on that. "8:30", as I understand it was a "greatest hits" sort of tour, so the risks they took may not have been as great during that time. Anyone care to weigh in their perspectives on "8:30"?
  2. thanks Ed. wow that is odd looking. BN must be revisiting theb trend of CD's with unusual color schemes: some of the recent RVG's have the white/pale blue, which seems to be mimicing the original LP label schemes instead of the white/dark blue that has been on many BN's.
  3. I struggle with this issue all the time. There are some people I know who I'll turn on a serious grooving piece and they'll start talking. Iremember last year when I played Jaco's "Come on Come Over" a tried to draw attention to Herbie's solo entrance, nobody pained attention. Mostly because many people aren't able to critically analyze, noticing when a tune is modal as opposed to changes, recognizing a players fav. licks, etc. One of the things in the jazz class I TA'ed this semester that we did was try to get people listening to jazz critically, it was an intro course surveying jazz history, getting people familar with key names and styles, and also showing that styles that had their heyday several decades ago are still alive and well, hopefully some of the people gained an interest and will pursye the artform. One of the things I got people interested was when I taught a section on hard bop and showed the students "Moanin" off the One Night With Blue Note DVD, and also when doing a short presentation on Pat Metheny when we were doing the Jazz Today category, I showed "Are You Going With Me?" from the More Travels video and I noticed many had their eyes glued on the screen which was a good sign.
  4. Al Dimeola leaves me cold. His playing is just empty, although I think he is a very good acoustic player. His Metheny esque stuff in the 80's was an ego trip, after Pat came out with "First Circle", Al decided to do the Synclavier thing, and go for a similar sort of sound. Even the pseudo Roland GR300 trumpet sound on that tune "Traces of a Tear", the lone tune I really heard from "Soaring Through a Dream" really sucked. Al is such an arrogant ass too, saw this webcast interview with him where someone sent in a question about making a live album and he just replied "no. because historically, live albums don't sell" or something to that effect.
  5. cool, it's good to see that he'll be back playing. Those "Master" discs are very valuable because he's playing in a trio, which IMO shows his absolutely command of the instrument, and especially when backed by a favorite player like Burrell, shows his sensitivity to the musicians. Those records were recorded for Somethin' Else, BN's sister company. Does anyone know if Jimmy recorded more sessions in Japan at that time that have gone unreleased? I remember in a 1992 Stanley Turrentine article in Downbeat that it said he was involved in an engagement in Tokyo with Jimmy, Kenny and Grady Tate. Was this recorded? Another excellent example of late period live Jimmy are the two "Fourmost"" and "Fourmost Return" discs on Milestone.
  6. thanks Matthew. The Wersi ::cringe:: sounds thin as hell. I was saying to myself earlier that the company probably needed a famous organ player to endorse their crappy sounding organ and thought: HEEEEEEEEEY! why not get Jimmy Smith? We'll wow him out of that antiquated Hammond, hell it's not even produced anymore, so let's sell him on the benefits of our organ's great new sound Wersi: sounds just like a Hammond, after a testicular removal ok, I had my late night fun, really tired, it's tough the last week of classes before I have my finals.
  7. the Wersi was a digital organ or something, right Jim? was it sort of like the Synclavier/ Fairlight of sampled organ at the time?
  8. somebody get the picture with him using the Wersi outta here "The Cat Strikes Again" was an awful album, absolutely horrid. When he recorded that, just how long did he abandon the B-3? I can't think that it was for too long b/c he was back on the big B for "Off the Top" in '82
  9. Jimmy still blows my mind even tho my appreciate of other organists has branched out. What not many people know is that his early playing, around 56-58 nwas very Coltrane influenced, and I've known cats who when I mention that it's like blasphemy to say. but it's true, Jimmy was doing sheets of sound on the organ. And then of course Larry Young took the freer elements of Trane's playing and ran with them later on. Jimmy will always remain one of my favs, and "The Sermon" w/o question probably my favorite record, period. I grew up on that, it was in my posession as soon as I could handle records when I was little.
  10. Kari, the info I found about the Trio reissue was from the "administrator" on Herbie's site. copied directly from the message board, apparently someone was asking if there are plans for a Complete Columbia Recordings box set. Here is what they said: "We have no info on a Sony boxed set. However, Sony Legacy is working on releasing the following in 2004 VSOP - Live Under The Sky The Piano Trio - with Ron Carter & Tony Williams Flood" It's great that "Flood" is being released, I have a burn, but I want to go for an existing Japanese copy just b/c I love those black label Mastersound CD's, with the "MASTERSOUND" in gold/bronze :-d Flood IMO smacks both HH's and Thrust, and the pre Manchild "Hang Up Your Hangups" is great!
  11. Kari, since you are a HH completist, how is the "VSOP" live double album with Mwandishi, Freddie/Wayne/Ron/Tony, and his then post Headhunters funk group? I saw it on CD at Virgin on 14th st in NYC a few years back, made the mistake of *not* picking it up. Went back last month to that same location while visiting some friends and it could not be located. Since then I have collected all the other live VSOP albums (including the inferior sounding domestic CD of "The Quintet") on CD, and would like to track that initial endeavor down. As for Sony/Legacy releasing VSOP stuf here, don't you find it dissapointing that they are reissuing "Live Under the Sky"? they should really reissue "Tempest in the Colosseum" instead, which is a far hotter date. "Live Under the Sky" has it's moments, but the fact that everyone's instruments got wet due to a rainstorm going on during the concert really dampens their flow of ideas and ways they wish to communicate them at times. e.g Wayne's soprano on "One of a Kind" and Herbie's long pauses in his solo and uncertainty of phrasing probably due to the wet keys of his piano. I also saw on Herbie's site that they are reissuing "Herbie Hancock Trio" at some point next year. Will this be the Trio '77 date or the '81 album? the Herbie Hancock Trio album from '81 is excellent, I imported it last year. Also, weren't half of the same sessions from the '77 trio date under Ron Carter's name on "Third Plane" for Milestone? kind of odd that half a date would be done for Sony in Japan, then the other half for a U.S. Ron Carter date.
  12. I noticed the similarity to "Hornets" on tracks two and three, did Herbie reassemble Mwandishi just for the recording of the soundtrack? The clips left me a little cold, too much dialogue and movie sound effects drowning out the music.
  13. CJ Shearn

    Brian Blade

    Blade is quite imaginative with his phrasing, especially with mallets. An album where I enjoy his playing quite a bit is Josh Redman's "Spirit of the Moment: Live at the Village Vanguard"
  14. let me add another grunter: Herbie Hancock...... I hear his grunting pretty much any acoustic recording I've heard that he's on
  15. very interesting comments on Workman vs. Merritt. I haven't heard enough of Workman's playing on a consistent basis to judge, but I feel that Jymie, compared with his days in the JM's, when he was playing with Lee on the Lighthouse date, there was a definite growth in his laying from time keeper, to a looser sort of style, but the solid time keeping has to be considered with the JM's heavily groove based approach when he was in the band. On "Live at the Lighthouse", Merritt's playing IMO is stylistically in the same zone as Carter, Garrisson or LaFaro in that he was freeing up the more conventional 1-2-3-4 method of playing in favor of picking out notes in the mode, and playing against the momentum, with a drummer like DeJohnette on "Speedball" pushing the hell out of the rhythm section with his broken swinging and constant dialogue with the soloists, I don't think a typical walking pattern would have worked as well, although, the way the tune was being played calls for these sort of techniques. Still, both Reggie and Jymie were great for the roles they served with Art and each contribution is valuable in their own ways.
  16. interesting comment about Workman. To me on "Indestructible" the way he goes about using pedal points, double stops, and general other abstractions, reminds me of Ron Carter, but with those techniques filtered through a very individual thing. Just the general climate of bass playing around then I guess
  17. I've found that most of the RVG's I own, sound pretty good, there are a few dissapointments in titles like "A Blowin Session" and "Speak No Evil", but I think that most of the ones I have (around 30 or so) sound good. Also most of my RVG's are my first time owning the music contained on those CD's. I generally think that sometimes remasterings are perceived to be better these days b/c they are louder, usually caused by the compression, but some, I think like most of the recent Miles Columbia reissues sound fantastic, older Columbia discs just sound bad in comparison, very "digital", harsh in the high end and cold. Though I think the current '92 issue of "My Funny Valentine/Four and More" sounds pretty good. I remember getting the CTI reissue last year of Stanley Turrentine's "Sugar", huge difference compared to the original CD reissue. The original was tinny, they added fake reverb, etc...... Stanley sounded like he was hooked up to a MIDI device, it was pretty bad. There are examples too, of recent remasterings that add to the recording rather than hinder it, for example "Lyle Mays", from 1986, the recent '98 remastering just adds a little warmth to an already excellently engineered (and produced) album, no unnecessary treble, bass, etc, kind of reminded me of a Japanese remaster in some ways. Like a few others have said , I'm in the camp of those that wait for a title to appear remastered if one is scheduled on the map.
  18. Soundmixes from guys who aren't jazz savvy bother me too. Last week I was at a Harpur Jazz Ensemble concert on campus with special guests John McNeil and Ron Vincent on drums, and the mixes at any jazz gigs at Binghamton University are horrible,at times way too trebly, at other times you cannot hear brass in the mix, reeds or guitar. When I saw the PMG last year at SUNY Purchase, the mix was amazing, with David Oakes at the controls. He really had a balanced mix, even for songs that get ear bleeding loud like "Scrap Metal", not once did the levels reach to the point of being uncomfortable. Another good mix was Jimmy Smith and Jack McDuff live at the Blue Note in January '98.
  19. Danny, randissimo, interesting about the hearing loss. I'm 22 but b/c of the amount of music I listen to loud, and in headphones, I should cut it back b/c I'm finding sometimes in convos I'm talking to people like "what?" sometimes, but I know if I was a drummer I'd prolly use ear protection. I meanmost of the time in my dorm or at home mostly you'll hear booming through thre speakers: Miles, Metheny, Tony, Blakey, Joshua Reman, etc....... I should cut the levels a bit, in my dorm,I have the aforementioned in another thread Coby CD/DVD player hooked up to the crappy surround speakers and sub that came with it. with the computer fan running it's hard to hear the thing at low levels.
  20. For any drummers in here In the 70's from right about the time of his death, even though Tony Williams used K's, I never liked the sound of them compared to his old K ride sound with Miles, the nice stick tones and beautiful dark ring, Tony's K's from this period (as heard on all the VSOP Quintet albums for example) were way too bright and splashy. Was this a consequence of his overall sound becoming more rockish at that point, the size of the sticks, or the fact that he often used the fat end of the stick to hit the cymbals? (as seen in the One Night With Blue Note DVD) Weren't K's being produced in America around the 70's as opposed to being produced in Turkey? Never really cared for Tony's dot heads either although I still love the playing. Those dot heads seem to just make the sound so damp and devoid of any snap and resonance, I think the dot heads of his sounded a tad better on live records as opposed to studio stuff. I recently read a Downbeat article last month with Jack DeJohnette where he was talking about thedryness of his Sabians (they remind me of trashcans sort of) and he said he lost about 25% of the hearing in his left ear from playing really bright sounding crash cymbals, that with a horn player in front on top of everything else it really has a huge effect on hearing. Of course that man just plays the hell out of his kit engaging in a constant, rolling dialogue with a soloist, also he's been one of the best at briging out really unique colors out of his kit. But do you think the choice of such a dry cymbal sound (specifically ride) is a result of something that isn't as taxing on the ears, once hearing has deteriorated from playing in a certain way or context?
  21. wow, the interesting info coming from this thread, this is great! thanks everyone. I remember the "Bouquet" bit from the liners when I had vol. 1 on cassette. Was there any other reason given for not including "Mode for Joe" on the CD/DVD/VHS releases? it's a great tune. I could understand MC's feeling of "Maiden Voyage" being tired and overlong, the tunes the Hancock/Hubbard/Henderson et. al group did were quite long, makes up about 40 minutes of the DVD. Still, I'm grateful to have this document on DVD for the great music contained within. So, was the Mt Fuji Jazz Festival a direct outgrowth of the "One Night With Blue Note" event?
  22. a modest system compare to most here but it sounds good to me: amp: Technics SU-G95 EQ: Technics SH 8017 Speakers: Technics SB A-36 radio tuner Technics ST-K55 CD/DVD player (currently at my dorm) Coby DVD 505. yeah it's cheap but it replaces my Technics SL-PD665 5 disc changer here at home which quit. I'll be bringing the Coby player home for the X-mas break. currently I'm listening to CD's on the computer. Technics RS TR 270 dual casette tape deck additional CD/DVD gear: Playstation 2 speaker cables: Monster cable
  23. Connoiseur, I was thinking the same about Wayne, considering he has been quite forward thinking, and when he does revisit old stuff it is radically reworked. I still question the choice for Cecil Taylor to end that DVD though, was he really that big a part of the BN legacy, or was it more so that he brought an interesting concept that added a new wrinkle to BN. I've noticed when I've bought some RVG's from the mid 60's that the period of 1964-66 was some of the most adenturous in the BN catalog.. with titles like "Lifetime", "Mode For Joe", "Speak No Evil", "Maiden Voyage", "Search For the New Land", etc.....
  24. wow, I was not aware that Horace was invited and declined. Perhaps he felt those days were firmly behind him? Another curious omission as Wayne Shorter. Wayne was signed to Columbia at the time I know. I also have been wondering why Donald Bailey was not asked to participate considering with Smith/Burrell/Turrentine, he was the drummer on "Midnight Special", where "The Jumpin Blues" was culled from in addition other classic Smith dates at the time. Grady Tate was Jimmy's drummer of choice from the mid 60's on pretty much, with the exception of Billy Hart being in his trio around then, maybe Grady was the easiest to get for that gig maybe? As for other stories surrounding that concert, I remember reading the Volume 3 liners and seeing that Jimmy, Kenny and Grover had about a 45 minute jam session eithe backstage or at a rehearsal(can't remember which) that went unrecorded.
  25. hey Jim, I listen to Walter Wanderley. that cat could get as greasy as Smith, McDuff, Patton................. seriously tho........
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