Sarah Vaughan – Sophisticated Lady: The Duke Ellington Songbook Collection (1980; 2013 reissue)

Featuring some of Sarah Vaughan’s last truly transcendent moments, this pair of 1980 Pablo releases devoted to the work of Duke Ellington reminds us in reissue form what wonders her voice and this material still hold.

John Coltrane – Afro Blue Impressions (1977; 2013 reissue)

John Coltrane – Afro Blue Impressions (1977; 2013 reissue)

I’d argue that these 1963 concerts with McCoy Tyner, Jimmy Garrison and and Elvin Jones are the first thing every emerging John Coltrane fan should experience, after buying all of the tried-and-true essentials.

Pedro Martins – Dreaming High (2013)

It’s been a lot of fun to dig back into Pat Metheny’s early catalog as SER’s Mark Saleski recently commenced his weekly song-by-song PM retrospective, (Cross the) Heartland.

Lorraine Feather – Attachments (2013)

It stands to reason that jazz singer Lorraine Feather’s latest record would make hay out of the idea of connectivity. She is, after all, one of the most candidly original vocalists going

Peter J Martin, Hamish Stuart and Brendan Clarke – Martin Stuart Clarke (2013)

When guitarist Peter J Martin got together with a pair of old buddies, they constructed something that was anything but a nostalgia exercise.

One Track Mind: Dan White Sextet, “Camptown Races” (2013)

Last year a sextet led by saxophonist Dan White made a cool record New York Sessions where the covers were just as interesting as the originals, especially their imaginative take on “Man Out Of You” from the Disney animated film Mulan.

Paul Bley Trio – Closer (1966; 2013 Remaster)

It’s damned near impossible to pick and choose only a handful of Paul Bley records as being the essential few, he’s been so prolific and readily moves from one idea to the next, constantly evolving along the way.

photo: wikipedia.org

Gimme Five: 1980s fusion albums that don’t, you know, suck (Part 1)

Recently I issued Part Two of list of five pretty good fusion jazz records from the underrated 80s.

Chick Corea – The Vigil (2013)

With song titles like “Galaxy 32 Star 4,” “Portals To Forever” and “Outside Of Space” and a CD cover of Chick Corea striking a Romantic Warrior pose, The Vigil looks to be a Return To Forever kind of Corea album.

Something Else! Interview: Ben Jaffe of Preservation Hall Jazz Band

Something Else! Interview: Ben Jaffe of Preservation Hall Jazz Band

For all of its storied five-decade history, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band — at least before issuing That’s It! this summer on Legacy — had never released an album of all-new recordings.