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The Cats (Pre-Order)In 1957, the greatest year for recorded music including modern jazz, Detroit was a hot spot, a centerpiece to many hometown heroes as well as short-term residents like John Coltrane and Miles Davis. It was here that Trane connected with pianist Tommy Flanagan, subsequently headed for the East Coast, and recorded this seminal hard bop album. In tow were fellow Detroiters -- drummer Louis Hayes, bassist Doug Watkins, and guitarist Kenny Burrell, with the fine trumpeter from modern big bands Idrees Sulieman as the sixth wheel.
From the opening number, the classic Minor Mishap, you realize something special is happening. Flanagan is energized, playing bright and joyous melody lines, comping and soloing like the blossoming artist he was. Coltrane is effervescent and inspired, hot off the presses from the Miles Davis Quintet and searching for more expressionism. The other hard bop originals, Eclypso and Solacium, easily burn with a cool flame not readily associated with East Coast jazz. Flanagan himself is the catalyst more than the horns -- dig his soaring, animated solo on Eclypso as he quotes Jeepers Creepers. The near 12-minute blues Tommy's Tune is the perfect vehicle for Burrell, a prelude for his classics of the same period All Day Long and All Night Long. The lone trio session, on the standard How Long Has This Been Going On?, is regarded as quintessential Flanagan, and quite indicative of the Midwestern Motor City flavor Flanagan and his many peers brought into the mainstream jazz of the day and beyond. One yearns for alternate takes of this session.
The Cats is a prelude to much more music from all of these masters that would come within a very short time period thereafter, and cannot come more highly recommended. It's a must-buy for the ages.
-Michael G. Nasto (All Music Guide)1. Minor Mishap
2. How Long Has This Been Going On?
5. Tommy's Time$21.99Vinyl LP - Sealed PRE-ORDER Buy Now
Blue Rose (Pure Pleasure)One of Rosemary Clooney's best records, and one of Duke's more accessible offerings, combined on one LP. The recorded output of the 1950's didn't get much more satisfying than this. Duke's music was always very sophisticated and this time it's even more obvious with a presence of such a talented singer as Rosemary Clooney. The songs are marvelous and she sounds young, fresh and sexy (ladylike sexy). In Blue Rose, not only are Clooney's vocals outstanding, but the arrangements are some of the prettiest of jazz.
The band swings simply and sweetly, though still thoroughly in the Duke style. As if to make the point that the band is the 'other' star of this recording, there's one instrumental here - Passion Flower (Johnny Hodges on sax never sounded more sure of himself). Its inclusion in the program, without a vocal from Clooney, is at first bizarre - but seems to make sense within the context of the album.
The fascinating album notes explain why and how separate tracks for Rosemary Clooney and Duke Ellington's orchestra had to be laid down. One would never realize that singer and orchestra were not together. They are totally in sync. This is not big, belting jazz; this is sophisticated, late night, intimate singing and playing. This is one of the most memorable pairings of a 'popular' singer with a jazz giant; ranking with the first Sinatra-Basie album and the Coltrane-Hartman session.
- Rosemary Clooney (vocal)
- Duke Ellington (piano, arranger)
- Billy Strayhorn (arranger)
- Johnny Hodges, Russell Procope (alto saxophone)
- Clark Terry, Cat Anderson (trumpet)
- Gordon Jackson (trombone)
- Jimmy Woode (bass)
- Sam Woodyard (drums)
Recording: January and February 1956
About Pure Pleasure
At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Pure Pleasure all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.
During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existent tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.
A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.
We should like to emphasize that Pure Pleasure Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle.
We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.
To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.1. Hey Baby
2. Sophisticated Lady
3. Me and You
4. Passion Flower
5. I Let A Song Go Out Of My Heart
7. Blue Rose
8. Im Checkin OutGoombye
9. I Got It Bad
10. Mood Indigo$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now