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  • Porgy & Bess (Speakers Corner) Porgy & Bess (Speakers Corner) Quick View

    $69.99
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    Porgy & Bess (Speakers Corner)

    The dream of creating an American opera such as Scott Joplin's Treemonisha, written in 1911, inspired George Gershwin a good twenty years later to amazing compositional feats. While Gershwin had brought his musical and musical comedies with great Éclat to Broadway, he wanted his through-composed stage work Porgy And Bess to be regarded as a legitimate opera.



    No matter whether one regards this exceptional work as »American folk opera« (The New York Times) or as a veristic portrayal of African-American life, central to the work is the expressionistic orchestral music that includes (work) songs, spirituals and elements of jazz, and the cast of singers, which, at the insistence of Gershwin, featured African-American singers.



    This stipulation will certainly have suited Verve boss Norman Granz who engaged not only a fresh and lively big band but also a classical string orchestra to support his successful duo of Ella and Louis. Thanks to this superb line-up, the catchy song I Got Plenty O' Nuttin' rolls along sleekly with swing and drive, while Summertime and Bess, You Is My Woman Now wafts away to the sound of heavenly violins. Listening to this music, you couldn't care less about the genre or category, just as long as these two genial musicians perform wonderfully arranged material from the American Song Book. The incomparable nasal twang of Armstrong's solo trumpet seeks out unerringly jazz elements where you would least expect them.



    Musicians:



    • Ella Fitzgerald (vocal)

    • Louis Armstrong (trumpet, vocal)




    Recording: August 1957 in Los Angeles and October 1957 in Chicago

    Production: Norman Granz




    About Speakers Corner



    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, Speakers Corner 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 existant 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 emphasise that Speakers Corner 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 have one digital recording in our catalogue (Alan Parsons / Eye In The Sky"), but even in this particular case we used the analogue tapes for cutting.



    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 - excluding the exception above - and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.


    LP1
    1. Overture

    2. Summertime
    3. I Wants To Stay Here
    4. My Man's Gone Now
    5. I Got Plenty O' Nuttin
    6. Buzzard Song
    7. Bess, You Is My Woman Now


    LP2
    1. It Ain't Necessarily So

    2. What You Want Wid Bess
    3. A Woman Is A Somtime Thing
    4. Oh, Doctor Jesus
    5. Medley: Here Come De Honey Man / Crab Man / Oh, Dey's So Fresh & Fine
    6. There's A Boat Dat's Leavin' Soon For New York
    7. Bess, Oh Where Is My Bess?
    8. Oh Lawd. I, On My Way!

    Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong
    $69.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Great Jazz Standards (Pure Pleasure) Great Jazz Standards (Pure Pleasure) Quick View

    $34.99
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    Great Jazz Standards (Pure Pleasure)

    Great Jazz Standards was recorded when Evans was red-hot from two successes with Miles Davis, Miles Ahead and Porgy And Bess.
    Evans' signature brass choir is in place - creatively voiced, spaciously arranged, a supple, multi-coloured, sonically surprising counterpoint to a succession of superb soloists. The added bonus, for Evans' projects, is the foregrounding of saxophone and clarinet soloists Steve Lacy and Budd Johnson.
    Lacy and the original swing-to-bop missing link, Johnson, are the ones who will make the hair on your neck curl. Lacy's solos on Monk's Straight No Chaser and John Lewis' Django must be some of the finest pre-free improvisations he recorded, already heading from quirky to out-there. Johnson's clarinet solo on Don Redman's spooky, swing-meets-whole tone classic, Chant Of The Weed, and slow-burning, stirring tenor solo on Evans' La Nevada are some of the finest the all-but-forgotten genius ever recorded. Trumpeter Johnny Coles, has the inevitable misfortune of being compared to Miles Davis and being found to be ... different. Sunny, open and extroverted, he may not be a stylist of Davis' proportions, but he's an enjoyable alternative foil for Evans' arrangements.
    A magnificent but neglected album, and still coming up fresh as daisies.




    Musicians:



    • Budd Johnson (tenor saxophone, clarinet)

    • Steve Lacy (soprano saxophone)

    • Al Block (woodwinds)

    • Johnny Coles, Allen Smith (trumpet)

    • Jimmy Cleveland (trombone)

    • Bill Barber (tuba)

    • Gil Evans (piano)

    • Chuck Wayne (guitar)

    • Dick Carter (bass)

    • Elvin Jones (drums)



    Recording: February 1959

    Production: Richard Bock




    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.



    Gil Evans
    $34.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Miles In The Sky Miles In The Sky Quick View

    $49.99
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    Miles In The Sky

    Numbered, Limited Edition


    1968 Record Marks First Time Davis Uses Electric Piano, Bass, and Guitar: Second Half is Acoustic


    Mastered from the Original Master Tapes: Seminal Proto-Fusion Effort Explodes With Color and Vibrancy


    Final Effort With Davis' Classic Second Quintet Finds the Leader Looking to the Past and the Future


    Miles in the Sky reflects the intriguing curiosities and rainbow possibilities suggested by the album cover. Miles Davis' fifth and final album with his classic second quintet is kaleidoscopic in sound, forward-looking in structure, and contextually grounded in approach. As the legendary leader's first venture into what would become fusion, it's historical for containing the premier appearances of electric piano, bass, and guitar on a Davis effort. Laden with rich textures and style-bridging elements, Mobile Fidelity's 45RPM pressing brings the aural magic into focus.


    Mastered from the original master tapes and pressed on 180g vinyl at RTI, this collectable audiophile version of Miles in the Sky joins the ranks of eleven other essential Davis sets given supreme sonic and packaging treatment by Mobile Fidelity. Afforded the benefits provided by the record's wider grooves, Davis' burnished trumpet resounds with utmost clarity, and the soundstage seems to extend for days. Reference-caliber separation and imaging give each musician their own space, allowing every passage to come across without any sonic limitations.


    The album's wide-open soundscapes soar. As do the fluid contributions of Davis' mates. Tony Williams' percussion, central to every composition here, transpires before your eyes. Herbie Hancock's piano hovers and fades with sublime purity. And George Benson, who sits on Paraphernalia, blows the equivalent of smoke rings with his bluesy guitar, which here takes on brilliant tonality and definition. The acoustic material that occupies the second half of the record is equally transparent and full-bodied.


    Granted enhanced production and a greater field of audible information, Miles in the Sky can finally be perceived as belonging to the same upper echelon as Davis' ubiquitously acclaimed Nefertiti and Filles de Kilimanjaro--the albums that precede and follow, respectively, this watershed title. Commonly branded a transitional work, Miles in the Sky showcases Davis already at ease with electric instruments and eager to venture into uncharted territories. Doubling as organized jams and bridges between jazz and rock, both the rhythmically challenging Stuff and frisky Paraphernalia glancing toward the future while keeping solid footing in the past.


    Similarly, so do Country Boy and Black Comedy. In his original review for jazz authority DownBeat, Larry Kart observes: Davis takes material from his earlier days and darkens its emotional tone. His opening phrase on 'Country Boy' recalls a fragment from his Summertime solo on the Porgy and Bess album, but here it is delivered with a vehemence that rejects the poignancy of the earlier performance. Even on 'Black Comedy,' his most straight ahead solo here, the orderly pattern of the past is displaced and fragmented.


    Flavored with humor, bossa nova, country, and even ballroom phrases, the compositions on Miles in the Sky explodes with creativity, purpose, and color.


    This title is not eligible for discount.

    1. Stuff
    2. Paraphernalia
    3. Black Comedy
    4. Country Son
    Miles Davis
    $49.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP 45RPM - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Porgy And Bess Porgy And Bess Quick View

    $24.99
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    Porgy And Bess

    Mono Pressing!


    Limited Edition, Individually Numbered!


    On their second conceptual album together, Miles Davis and arranger Gil Evans offered up a profound reinterpretation of George Gershwin's famed opera Porgy and Bess. A landmark release in orchestral jazz and arguably the best of their many collaborations, Evans' adaptation of Gershwin's score here is a veritable tour de force and although the outing features strong performances from Cannonball Adderley (alto sax), Paul Chambers (bass) and Jimmy Cobb (drums), Davis' poignant trumpet playing is the unequivocal star. Transcendent material like Summertime and I Love You Porgy display the true beauty of Miles Davis and Gil Evans' collective genius, their ability to reach the listener on not only a musical level but an emotional one as well.

    1. The Buzzard Song
    2. Bess, You Is My Woman Now
    3. Gone
    4. Gone, Gone, Gone
    5. Summertime
    6. Oh Bess, Oh Where's My Bess
    7. Prayer (Oh Doctor Jesus)
    8. Fisherman, Strawberry and Devil Crab
    9. My Man's Gone Now
    10. It Ain't Necessarily So
    11. Here Come De Honey Man

    12. I Loves You Porgy
    13. There's A Boat That's Leaving Soon For New York
    Miles Davis
    $24.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP Mono - Sealed Buy Now
  • Getz Au Go Go Getz Au Go Go Quick View

    $37.99
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    Getz Au Go Go

    Import


    Although the name Stan Getz (tenor sax) was initially synonymous with the West Coast cool scene during the mid-to-late 1950s, he likewise became a key component in the Bossa Nova craze of the early 1960s. Getz Au Go Go (1965) is Stan Getz in his prime, recorded with perhaps one of the best quartets of his career, featuring Bossa Nova singer Astrud Gilberto.


    The album was recorded in 1964 during two concerts in the venerable Greenwich Village venue, the CafÉ Au Go Go, two months after Astrud Gilberto's Girl From Ipanema became a Top Five pop single. However, the focus of Getz Au Go Go steers away from the Brazilian flavored fare, bringing Gilberto into the realm of a decidedly more North American style.


    That said, there are a few Antonio Carlos Jobim compositions -- Corcovado (Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars) and One Note Samba -- both of which would be considered as jazz standards in years to follow. The album boasts wonderful versions of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein's It Might as Well Be Spring, and the scintillating instrumental Summertime, from Porgy & Bess.


    The band features a young Gary Burton (vibraphone), Kenny Burrell (guitar), Gene Cherico (bass), and Joe Hunt (drums). There are a few personnel substitutions, with Helcio Milito (drums) and Chuck Israels (bass), respectively, filling in. Getz Au Go Go is highly recommended for all dimensions of jazz enthusiasts.

    1. Corcovado
    2. It Might As Well Be Spring
    3. Eu E Voce
    4. Summertime
    5. 6-nix-pix-flix
    6. Only Trust Your Heart
    7. The Singing Song
    8. The Telephone Song
    9. One Note Samba
    10. Here's That Rainy Day
    Stan Getz Quartet
    $37.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Rhapsody In Blue (Limited Edition) (Out Of Stock) Rhapsody In Blue (Limited Edition) (Out Of Stock) Quick View

    $69.99
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    Rhapsody In Blue (Limited Edition) (Out Of Stock)

    Double LP Stereo Edition, Limited to 496 Copies


    180 Gram Reissue, Heavy Stock Jacket


    The legacy of analysis, discussion and even controversy that for nearly a century has continued to envelop the music of George Gershwin, with its eclecticism and its amphibious nature, its mixture of classical and jazz, highbrow and lowbrow, is now re-presented and perhaps cleared up here once and for all before our eyes. An orchestra that's not merely classical, but crowned with classical glory, the Leipzig Gewandhaus, one of the oldest orchestras in the world, has made this recording of Gershwin played by Stefano Bollani, a pianist with a superb jazz background, and conducted by Riccardo Chailly - a champion of 20th Century composers.


    The performance of the Concerto is the finest I have ever heard. Gershwin may have doffed his hat to Rachmaninov, Puccini and Ravel at various junctures in the score but this, as Chailly and jazz pianist Stefano Bollani are intent on reminding us, is an American Jazz Age concerto. Inhibitions are left backstage and, while all parties are alive to the smallest detail, there is an irreverence and spontaneity which capture the spirit of the work like no other. Applause, too, for the atmospheric solo trumpet (and the fourth horn's sforzandos!) in the slow movement. Catfish Row, Gershwin's own five-movement orchestral suite from Porgy and Bess (not to be confused with Robert Russell Bennett's Symphonic Suite), provides a bridge and welcome contrast between the Rhapsody and the Concerto, containing as it does some of Gershwin's darkest music.


    Rhapsody in Blue opens the disc. It's a cracking account that inhabits the same world as the Concerto and is played in GrofÉ's original jazz-band version, from which the piece always benefits. Here again, Bollani's exuberance and panache are infectious - until he can't resist rewriting bars 243-75 and, more bizarrely, improvising the 26 bars after 12 minutes, 24 seconds in, in a style reminiscent of Bill Evans. If such anachronisms as Schnabel's cadenzas to Mozart's piano concertos don't bother you, then neither will Bollani's interpolations.... That said, there is no denying the merits of this fabulous disc superbly engineered by Philip Siney - and with the best cover shot of the year. - Gramophone, January 2010

    1. Rhapsody In Blue
    2. Catfish Row - Symphonic Suite
    -Catfish Row
    -Porgy Sings
    -Fugue
    -Hurricane
    3. Good Mornin' Sistuh!
    4. Concerto In F For Piano And Orchestra - Allegro
    5. Adagio - Andante Con Moto
    6. Allegro Agitato
    7. Rialto Ripples
    George Gershwin
    $69.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Temporarily out of stock
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