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1. Getz/Gilberto
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2. Time Out
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3. Sketches of Spain [Bonus Tracks]
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4. Jazz Samba
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5. The Paul Desmond Quartet Live
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6. Playboy Jazz After Dark
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7. Chronicle Vol. 2: Twenty Great
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8. Round About Midnight [Bonus Tracks]
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9. Stan Getz & The Oscar Peterson
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10. Sunday at the Village Vanguard
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11. My Favorite Things
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12. Dave Brubeck - Greatest Hits
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13. Best of Chet Baker Sings
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14. The Best of the Song Books
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15. A Charlie Brown Christmas: The
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16. Jazz Samba Encore!
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17. Moon Beams
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18. Capitol Sings Cole Porter: Anything
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19. Ultra-Lounge, Vol. 14: Bossa Novaville
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20. Billie, Ella, Lena, Sarah

1. Getz/Gilberto
list price: $18.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B0000047CX
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 519
Average Customer Review: 4.84 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential recording

Originally released in March 1964, this collaboration between saxophonist Stan Getz and guitarist João Gilberto came at seemingly the end of the bossa nova craze Getz himself had sparked in 1962 with Jazz Samba, his release with American guitarist Charlie Byrd. Jazz Samba remains the only jazz album to reach number one in the pop charts. In fact, the story goes that Getz had to push for the release of Getz/Gilberto since the company did not want to compete with its own hit; it was a good thing he did. Getz/Gilberto, which featured composer Antonio Carlos Jobim on piano, not only yielded the hit "Girl from Ipanema" (sung by Astrud Gilberto, the guitarist's wife, who had no professional experience) but also "Corcovado" ("Quiet Night")--an instant standard, and the definitive version of "Desafinado." Getz/Gilberto spent 96 weeks in the charts and won four Grammys. It remains one of those rare cases in popular music where commercial success matches artistic merit. Bossa nova's "cool" aesthetic--with its understated rhythms, rich harmonies, and slightly detached delivery--had been influenced, in part, by cool jazz. Gilberto in particular was a Stan Getz fan. Getz, with his lyricism, the bittersweet longing in his sound, and his restrained but strong swing, was the perfect fit. His lines, at once decisive and evanescent, focus the rest of the group's performance without overpowering. A classic. --Fernando Gonzalez ... Read more

Reviews (105)

5-0 out of 5 stars Tall and tan and young and lonely...
The 1964 winner for Best Album was this mellow but spright cool jazz album that pushed Latin bossa nova and samba rhythms on the map. With a lineup that included Joao Gilberto on guitar and vocals, Antonio Carlos Jobim on piano, Tommy Williams on bass, Milton Banana on drums, and on the two most memorable songs, Joao's wife Astrud. However, the driving force behind this was tenor saxophonist Stan Getz, and his straight-tone, controlled-vibrato sound.

The album starts appropriately enough with the Grammy winner for best song, "The Girl From Ipanema". This is the full 5:22 version that begins with Joao Gilberto singing in Portuguese. Then comes that soft voice and those familiar lyrics: "Tall and tan and young and lonely/The girl from Ipanema goes walking/And when she passes/Each one she passes goes haaa." Well, the thing that makes me go "haaa" here is Astrud Gilberto's voice. Getz's sax solo and Jobim's piano in the middle serves as a bridge between the two refrains. There is a 45 rpm version of this classic, the 2:46 single edit of just Astrud singing, included later. I must confess that I first heard a parody of this song, Bob River's "The Girl With Emphysema", and then sought hard to find out the original version, which led me to this album.

"Corcovado (Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars)" is the other song featuring Astrud Gilberto. In the full 4:14 version, we have Joao doing Portuguese lyrics, as he did in the full version of "Ipanema." There is a dreamy quality about this song, particularly when Astrud sings "Quiet nights and quiet dreams/Quiet walks by quiet streams/And the window lookin' on the mountains and the sea how lovely." And Getz's sax really enhances that exoticness as does Jobim's piano. BTW, Corcovado is the name of a mountain overlooking Rio de Janeiro. There is a 2:21 45 rpm issue included here as well.

As for the rest of the songs, Getz's rich saxophone provides the rich qualities that make this a winner, particularly his solo on "So Danso Samba" with its "vai vai vai vai vai" refrain by Joao Gilberto. The song title means "I Only Dance Samba", as opposed to calypso, the twist, and the cha-cha that were sweeping the country's dance floors in the 1960's. And Joao Gilberto's soft vocals complement the soft qualities of the other instrumentalists. Only complaint: Astrud should've been featured on more songs.

5-0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece
This is such a terrific CD. It was a break trough in 1964 when it was released introducing Bossa Nova to world audiences. Every Grammy it received like best album and best song for The Girl From Ipanema was well deserved.

It's hard to say which performance is more impressive. Would it be the marvelous Tom Jobim composition? Or the whispering Joao Gilberto's voice accompanying his wonderful guitar cords? Would it be the melodic Stan Getz sax solos. Or the soft almost childish Astrud Gilberto's voice? Probably the combination of all.

Every track is special but my favorites are Corcovado and Doralice. Doralice has the most beautiful saxophone solo I ever heard however, for some strange reason, the song is almost unknown even in Brazil.

Most of the lyrics are in Portuguese but The Girl From Ipanema and the beginning of Corcovado are sung in English by Astrud but this shouldn't be an obstacle for the appreciation of this masterpiece. With under 40 minutes of total play time and two very similar releases of The Girl From Ipanema and Corcovado it might seem not too much bang for your buck but believe me it pays off.

5-0 out of 5 stars THE Best Bossa Nova Album
Have owned two vinyl copies of this album. Wore out the first copy. Will probably buy the CD. I can't add too much to the previous reviews but let me add two words, 'Timeless & Elegant.'

5-0 out of 5 stars One thing to say---
I do not know a word of Portugese, but I can sing "The Girl From Impanema" by heart -- in Portugese. That's how many times I've played this album.

If you can and have the means to play it, get this in its original LP format. But the CD is most excellent as well, and if you haven't ever heard it, I encourage you to buy it right now; you won't be disappointed.

5-0 out of 5 stars Something about Samba
This will just be a short review..this CD is absolutely wonderful. I am not going to compare it to anything...I'm not even going to try and describe it other than to say it brings me an incredible amount of joy. It's sexy cool, it's flippin' hot.

It's just right for a night of loving.

My only complaint is that it is too short...but maybe that's the genius of it because it made me crave other music by both Getz and Gilberto.

So I'm going to let you stop reading and let you purchase this beautiful recording. ... Read more


2. Time Out
list price: $11.98
our price: $8.99
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Asin: B000002AGN
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 433
Average Customer Review: 4.78 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential recording

Boasting the first jazz instrumental to sell a million copies, the Paul Desmond-penned "Take Five," Time Out captures the celebrated jazz quartet at the height of both its popularity and its powers. Recorded in 1959, the album combines superb performances by pianist Brubeck, alto saxophonist Desmond, drummer Joe Morrello and bassist Gene Wright. Along with "Take Five," the album features another one of the group's signature compositions, "Blue Rondo a la Turk." Though influenced by the West Coast-cool school, Brubeck's greatest interest and contribution to jazz was the use of irregular meters in composition, which he did with great flair. Much of the band's appeal is due to Desmond, whose airy tone and fluid attack often carried the band's already strong performances to another level. Together, he and Brubeck proved one of the most potent pairings of the era. --Fred Goodman ... Read more

Reviews (120)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Quartet at it's best!
When the inimitable Dave Brubeck Quartet went into the studio in the summer of 1959, they created a timeless, monumental message in jazz. Nearly everyone, jazz fan or not, has heard the classic "Take Five", the only Paul Desmond composition on the album. It feautures teriffic solos from Desmond on his dreamy, wistful alto. Brubeck takes a backseat on this piece to allow drummer Joe Morello to play a stunning, brilliant solo. The remaining tracks on the album are equally strong. The driving, insistent rythym of "Blue Rondo A La Turk" nearly knocked me out of my chair at first listen. The magnificent "Strange Meadow Lark" is both Brubeck and Desmond at their definiitive best. The rest of the album is a sheer delight, untouched by the fourty years that have passed. DBQ didn't expect their seminal foray into exotic and rare time signatures to be a success. However, one note of one song on this album will tell you why that happened.

5-0 out of 5 stars Take Five - Stars, That Is!
I was watching a B horror movie called "Tormented" in which the leading actor portrayed a famous jazz pianist. It was obvious from his arm movements that he wasn't even playing the piano, but watching that prompted me to turn off that turkey and take time out to listen to "Time Out." This is by far my favorite jazz album of all time. I never get tired of hearing it. It would definitely make my list of desert island discs. I also dig the painting which serves as the album cover.

The superb pianist Dave Brubeck is the nominal leader of the group, frantically kicking off the opening classic track "Blue Rondo A La Turk." Drummer Joe Morello amazingly keeps perfect time during all of the tempo shifts. He particularly shines on the appropriately named tune "Pick Up Sticks." Saxophonist Paul Desmond takes center stage on the most famous track of all, "Take Five." This song has rightfully taken its place among the greatest instrumentals of all time. Rounding out the quartet, Eugene Wright's bass deftly anchors the beat on the melodic "Kathy's Waltz." The song "Everybody's Jumpin'" would be right at home on an album of sophisticated swing music. I'm no jazz expert who can expound on exotic time signatures, but I know what I like. I love "Time Out" by the Dave Brubeck Quartet!

3-0 out of 5 stars Lightweight, Enjoyable but Overrated
More than 40 years after its first appearance, Time Out still retains its popularity. But along with this it has acquired a set of myths and misconceptions: for example, that it represents the Brubeck Quartet at its best; that Brubeck was a "cool" jazz musician; that his use of unusual time signatures and other time-related devices was some kind of important innovation in jazz.

In fact, in the context of Brubeck's work as a whole and of jazz in general, the quartet's experiments with time are less significant than is often supposed. The claim that these experiments would have an important influence on other jazz musicians has not been justified, and it's not difficult to see why. What matters in a jazz musician's use of time is not time signature - the number of beats in the bar - but rhythm - how phrases are placed and accents distributed in relation to the beat. In other words, what matters is how the music "swings". All four members of the Quartet knew how to swing (saxophonist Paul Desmond more subtly and flexibly than Brubeck or drummer Joe Morello). But the jazz musician swings most effectively and employs a greater range of rhythmic and poly-rhythmic resources when playing in a conventional time signature, one which, in the development of jazz, has been internalised to the point of being its "natural" rhythmic medium. The problem for jazz musicians when they try to improvise in time signatures more complex than "common time" (4 beats to the bar) or "triple time" (3 or 6 beats to the bar) is that the need to consciously "count" the beats in the bar inhibits the usual flexibility with which they can play in, against and around the beat (as well as inhibiting their melodic and harmonic invention). You can hear the effect of this inhibition on Time Out when the playing becomes overly self-conscious and the rhythms laboured and mechanical: for example, when Brubeck, on "Kathy's Waltz", hammers out his repetitive 4/4 phrases against the rhythm section's 3/4 time, or when Joe Morello, in his solo on "Take Five", tries to find rhythmic patterns to play "against" the 5/4 measure and sounds in danger of being cut adrift from any coherent time signature (on the other hand, his light, bouncing swing behind Desmond's playing on this famous track is one of the best things on the album).

Once the novelty value of these experiments with time has worn off, a listener might justifiably ask the question: why? Why play 4/4 against the rhythm section's 3/4, other than to show that it can be done? (And didn't we already know this from centuries of folk, ethnic and European classical musics?) In a piece like "Three to Get Ready", why bother to alternate throughout between two different time signatures if the musicians can play more freely and naturally in one? What would "Take Five" lose, apart from its novelty value, and its rhythmically inhibiting effect, if it were "Take Six"? (It would presumably not need Brubeck's repetitious "comping" to mark the time signature so obviously.) One of the most original compositions on the album is "Blue Rondo a la Turk". But it's not really a jazz composition as such, and it's significant that for its improvised solos it shifts from the "Turkish" theme in a complex 9/8 time signature into a conventional 12-bar "walking" blues in 4/4 time - which seems to concede that the unusual time signature is of limited value, and too tricky to negotiate, for an improvising jazz musician.

The other effect of this "time" material was to shift the focus of interest within the quartet's music to the compositions themselves, and away from their function as vehicles for jazz improvisation. This would matter less if they were more interesting as compositions, if the melodic and harmonic material were less simplistic ("Strange Meadow Lark", "Three to Get Ready" and "Kathy's Waltz" sound like themes which didn't make it into The Sound of Music or Mary Poppins). Perhaps this simplicity is a reason for the album's appeal to listeners from a background of pop/rock - that it makes the often-complex nature of jazz more easily assimilable. A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down.

I'm a long-time fan of the Brubeck quartet, and still find things to enjoy on this and the other "time" albums. But the problem when part of an artist's work is overvalued is that other works can be unfairly undervalued and the artist's true strengths neglected or misunderstood. The Brubeck quartet's strength was always in its spontaneous, creative improvisation - particularly in the ability of Brubeck and Desmond to improvise genuinely tuneful lines on fairly conventional standards. You can hear that gift for melodic invention on Time Out, but it is stronger on other sessions without the use of tricky time signatures to needlessly complicate the process; and both musicians were more rhythmically inventive when improvising within a conventional time signature. So I suggest that we should take with a pinch of salt some of the extravagant claims made for Time Out, see it for what it is - a lightweight, enjoyable but overrated album - and look elsewhere for the best of the quartet's music, not least to the early-50's concert recordings: Jazz at Oberlin, Jazz at Pacific College and Jazz Goes to College.

5-0 out of 5 stars COOL, CALM, SOPHISTICATED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This was my first exposure to The Dave Brubeck Quartet. My dad had this album in his record collection. As he bought it just for Take Five,and that was the end of him playing the album, so I kind of inhereted it. I enjoyed the album right away, and began collecting albums by Brubeck one after and another, week after week. After listening to this album, I was also introduced to drummer, Joe Morello. And now, after looking for albums by Brubeck, I only get albums by Brubeck with Joe Morello on it, and others with Joe Morello as a sideman. Anyway, this album starts off with one of the three most famous DBQ songs, (blue rondo a la turk, koto song, and take five). I had no idea about time signatures when I first listened to this album, being about age 12. But somehow I managed to play along with on the drums, no problem. For some strange reason, I was able to play all of Brubeck's odd time signature songs like Eleven Four, Castilian Drums, and of course Take Five, as most kids struggle with odd time signature songs, but I picked it up like that! The next song, Strange Park, was allright, displaying some 3/4, 4/4 techniques featured on the next side. The famous Take Five, which I new nothing of its signifigense was cool, especially with the drum intro. I almost instantainiously picked up the 3/4 brush patterns on 3 to get ready, Kathy's Waltz, and Everybody's Jumpin'. This album sounds like a real late night album. It's echo and coolness, sounded like backround music for a cd store, or a coffee shop. Most other Brubeck albums are not like this. Albums like Southern Scene, Gone With The Wind, and Countdown remind of sun, and the outdoors! I dont think there's a jazz fan in the world who doesn't own this on record or cd, or hasn't heard Take Five. Any young kid or an adult who is just getting in to jazz, will love this album, or jazz, for that matter, after listening to this!

5-0 out of 5 stars Timeless brilliance.
Judging from the other mixed comments on this page, it seems that this album is still being taken several different ways, just as it was in 1959. Want something easy & accessible for the new jazz fan? Like inventive solos and spontaneous group communication? Interested in odd rhythms and time signatures? Looking for something smooth-swinging that'll provide some nice background music? Well, the appeal of Time Out is that it works beautifully on *all* those levels. It started as a simple experiment in branching out beyond steady 4/4 time - which may not seem too rare now, but at the time it was pretty weird stuff - and was never intended to be anything more. But it's one of those works where everything falls into place so naturally it's uncanny, and the result from these sessions really caught on, due largely to the sinuous addictingness of "Take Five." You've probably heard that one somewhere, whether you know it or not.

There's more to offer in the way of rhythm, from the catchy alternating 4/4 and 9/8 of "Blue Rondo a la Turk" to the slow-hopping swing of "Three to Get Ready" to the easy-walking 6/4 beat of "Pick Up Sticks." The group has a wonderful chemistry. They listen and respond to each other but it never seems awkward or forced; they're all just having fun, and that's what really makes the whole affair sound so informal and inviting.

I wouldn't hold all its popularity against it - like Miles Davis's Kind of Blue and John Coltrane's A Love Supreme, Time Out is one of those classics that transcends its genre and succeeds wildly without sacrificing any of its quality. And like those other two albums it's highly recommended for jazz neophytes, absolutely essential for any serious collection, and even remains pretty enjoyable to non-jazz fans too. So simply put, if you have any interest in jazz at all, you need this disc. No way around it. ... Read more


3. Sketches of Spain [Bonus Tracks]
list price: $11.98
our price: $8.99
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Asin: B000002AH7
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 988
Average Customer Review: 4.45 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential recording

Miles Davis's impact on jazz is almost incalculable. From his early days as a sideman for Charlie Parker, through his groundbreaking Birth of the Cool sessions, to his stunning small groups of the '50s and '60s, through to his electric renaissance, the trumpeter, bandleader, and composer has left a deep mark on all who came after. He is one of jazz's true giants. Sketches of Spain, though one of Davis's most commercially successful sessions, is also one of his most controversial. Re-teaming with arranger and composer Gil Evans, who played such a pivotal role in Davis's 1949 Birth of the Cool recordings, Davis recorded a series of large group albums beginning in the late '50s, including Porgy and Bess, Miles Ahead, and Quiet Nights. Sketches of Spain, with its emphasis on flamenco, rich orchestrations, and relaxed tempos, is certainly one of Davis's most mellow recordings (he even works out on fluegelhorn), and proved to have broad appeal. To some critics, however, the project was "elevated elevator music." An expanded version of the album, featuring alternative tracks and unreleased material, was issued in 1997 by Columbia Legacy. --Fred Goodman ... Read more

Reviews (82)

4-0 out of 5 stars Miles In A Spanish Mood
The forever - changing and never resting Miles Davis, pushes the limits of jazz once more with this 1960 album called 'Sketches of Spain', managing to fuse jazz with an orchestra. Sure, he had done it before (with 'Miles Ahead' and 'Porgy & Bess'), but this one is his most coherent and best orchestrated jazz album. It has a couple of Spanish tunes, rearranged by Gil Evans especially for this edition and I must say it sounds really interesting. The rest of the album is written by Evans.

Turn off the lights, lay down and put on the CD. You'll be transported to the distant and beautiful landscapes of Spain. Dreamy music which is very relaxing and soothing. That is why some consider this to be an 'elevator music' type. Not at all. It's to complex for that. Miles Davis sure knew what he was doing. His trumpet sounds as good as ever, and it has some great long solos by him. This album comes right after the landmark 'Kind of Blue'. 'Sketches of Spain' is one of Miles's best - selling albums. Maybe that's why it's being bought by people who have previously purchased 'Kind of Blue'. None the less, check it out.

5-0 out of 5 stars Add Me To Its List of Fans!
I learned about this recording while watching the Ken Burns series on "Jazz" on DVD. I've got it now and have been listening to it continuously. It reminds me of many things. It is spare and Minimal like much of modern art (Miles Davis was also quite a good modern painter). Yet the Latin musical elements are definitely there as well with the modern art, right there making this album a very unique combination. The Burns' film said women are huge buyers of this album and I can see why. It is a very emotional recording, very romantic yet the potential for melancholy and sadness is there too. The cover image of Miles is of him being the matador to a charging bull but it is quite clear that he is the universal idealized lover as well. It is hard to believe this album was recorded over 30 years ago because it sounds so fresh and new. OTOH, have I been hearing music like this made recently? Of course not.

5-0 out of 5 stars an important part of miles' repertoire
I have about 20 or more Miles disks, which is probably fewer than many people posting here.

My impression is that this is an important facet of Miles Davis' repertoire. It's him with Gil Evans, going in new directions for jazz, at least so far as I am aware. Their other works together are good, but this is the most distinctive.

Some people have commented that Miles does not have any connection to the other players in the band, but they overlooking the key component connection between Gil and Miles. In many ways, this is really Gil's album, guesting Miles as lead soloist.

Take it for what it is, but I think it's an important demonstration of something Miles was trying to say about his art, as a neoclassical form.

I also think it sounds very good. Highly recommended, by me at least.

5-0 out of 5 stars Jazz Tone Poems
Miles Davis - Sketches of Spain

Among instrumentalists, the collaborations of Miles Davis and Gil Evans are often controversial. Though people universally acknowledge that Evans was a genius as an arranger, it's not easy for those who want a full out hard-bop blowing session to adjust to the cool colors and laid back aesthetic of these works. For many; the most difficult of the Davis/Evans collaborations is this third one in the series. While Miles Ahead and Porgy and Bess both have obvious roots in big band writing, Sketches of Spain delves into material that was generally not in the mainstream at the time. That it does so with subtlety and style is something that can often be overlooked by those who wish that Miles would blow more.

Sketches of Spain has its genesis in the slow movement of the Rodrigo Concierto di Arguanez, one of the most beloved pieces of classical music out of Spain. Both Miles and Gil Evans were taken with the piece when they were introduced to it and it forms the centerpiece of the album, and the number that seems to register the greatest number of complaints. Purists in the classical world dislike it's fast and loose treatment of the original work, and in fact, Rodrigo was on record as detesting the final product. And jazz musicians felt the work to be pretentious, with not enough room for Miles to solo, and not enough out and out swing. There was also a feeling that the work was just blatantly copied from it's origins and that any brilliance in the work was due to Rodrigo, not to Evans.

A careful hearing, especially a side-by-side comparison with the original Concierto, can dispel much of the criticism of this work. Evans does not merely imitate the piece; he imaginatively rethinks it for wind ensemble. Instead of the spare English Horn and strings with which Rodrigo opens the work, Evans creates a shimmering bed of castanets and harp, over which he layers low flutes and French horns an muted brass, moving in a dense carpet of parallel fourths. While the main points of the original form are followed, with Miles taking mostly the guitar parts, there are many sections that illustrate the genius of Evans, the arranger. Particularly impressive is Evans rethinking of the guitar cadenzas. For the first cadenza Evans contrasts Miles in his dark low register, with beautifully balanced chords in the flutes and low brass, characterized by unusual voicings that include tense dissonances at the top of the chord. Also stunning is the original section that Evans uses to replace the second cadenza. The bass begins an understated vamp. Miles solos over it with his typical cool understatement and the orchestra builds to the climax of the work.

The other cuts on the album are even more understated, but also highly original. Two particularly stand out. Saeta is inspired by a traditional Holy Week procession in which an effigy is paraded through a town, interrupted by a long mournful solo by Davis. The orchestration in this part is stunning. Evans layers martial percussion, a faint bassoon solo and a brass band against Miles' beautiful trumpet. The effect is a jazz tone poem, in the best tradition of the Ellington Orchestra.

The other standout on the album is Solea. This work is a long, beautiful Miles solo over a constantly changing orchestral vamp. Evans shows considerable ingenuity in constantly varying the rather static two-chord vamp, and Miles is given just one scale to improvise on. Though this album came out after Kind of Blue, it was recorded several months earlier, and you can see the influence that Evans had on Miles' revolutionary small group album.

The re-mastering of this album is terrific. The clarity by which you can hear the delicate sounds such as the castanets and the harp is truly lovely. It compares favorably to the old LP version. My one gripe with this reissue, which I have with most of the Columbia reissue series, is that the filler material is basically not worthy to be released. On this one, the filler includes a Brazilian character piece, which belongs in the filler to the Quiet Nights album instead, and two alternative versions of parts of the Concierto. Though last pieces have some documentary value, they are both vastly inferior to the final product and are ultimately annoying to listen to. I would prefer to have the album as it was finally released and save this sort of material for boxed set compilations, even if that means I only get 40 minutes worth of music.

In conclusion, this is a classic album, worthy to join the other Evans/Davis collaborations. It even pushes the art of jazz arranging farther than the other records. And the influence of this work on the history of jazz arranging and composition can't be overestimated. Don Sebesky, Bill Holman and numerous other large group arrangers continually show their debt to the genius of Evans. But, for those who want to hear Miles blow; stick with the quintet and sextet albums from this period. Sketches of Spain does feature Miles, but the real star of the album is the arranging.

3-0 out of 5 stars So many others to buy before this one
The reviewers that talk about playing Relaxin or Kind of Blue hundreds of times
but this only a dozen really sum up this great album. Yes, great if you are in that
category of collector crossing over to aficionado. This is Miles all by his
lonesome adjoined by a strange orchestra that has no cohesion with this artist.
Very similar to that hokey stuff Creed Taylor did with Wes Montgomery and that
Verve orchestra (which all his best offerings are on Riverside by the way). The

feel of this album is like some Columbia record exec. saying "hey Miles we're
going to put you in a room with an orchestra and it's going to be for your own
good because all the other jazz musicians who aren't half as talented as you are
doing this same thing.

But this is merely an opinion from a person who really has none other than if you
aren't a collector you will be much happier with well rounded classics like
Steamin, Talkin, Workin, and best of all Relaxin. Then on to the Columbia Sextet
but you can cut yourself on some of that insane wizardry. ... Read more


4. Jazz Samba
list price: $18.98
our price: $13.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0000047CW
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1960
Average Customer Review: 4.71 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential recording

Guitarist Charlie Byrd was invited to travel and play in Brazil during a cultural goodwill tour sponsored by the Kennedy administration in 1961. He was completely enamoured by the music, and when he returned, he headed straight for the recording studio to make the now classic Jazz Samba. Collaborating with Stan Getz on tenor sax and backed by a band that included Gene Byrd (bass, guitar), Keter Betts (bass), and Buddy Deppenschmidt and Bill Reichenbach (drums), Byrd forged a new and brilliant sound. American record companies were to churn out hundreds of watered bossa-pop albums that have since given the style its lounge-addled image, but this album stands as a tribute to the vitality and adaptability of jazz. --Louis Gibson ... Read more

Reviews (42)

5-0 out of 5 stars Stan and Charlie record first Bossa Nova hit.
Great companion to "Getz/Gilberto". Pure Samba without singers. NOTE: 20-bit version has best recording quality.

Charlie Byrd went to Brazil and heard the then unknown Antonio Carlos Jobim. He played Jobim records for Stan Getz, they got Keter Betts and two drummers and created the first Bossa Nova, Samba record in the US - a monster hit with "Desafinado".

Listen to polyrhythym drumming in "E Luxo So" and "Bahia". Most authentic Brazilian Getz Samba recording.

Hear Stan make each note 3-Dimensional blue fog count.

Beautiful!, Lyrical!! Soaring!!! One of the ten best Jazz recordings ever made.

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful & breezy
This is the album that kicked off the bossa nova craze in the US over 40 years ago. In the hands of lesser musicians this style could degenerate into lightweight cocktail music, but not here. Stan Getz's feathery, soft saxophone playing weaves beautiful melodies over the swaying, dancing Brazilian rhythms. Charlie Byrd's is terrific on the acoustic guitar and the tunes will get stuck in your head after 3 spins or less. The only possible complaint is the short playing time -- a mere 35 minutes.

This recording isn't as well-known as Getz/Gilberto but is just as essential. If you like Getz's playing, be sure to get some of his other, non-bossa-nova recordings as well. (One more caveat: those looking for more vocals by Astrud or Joao Gilberto will be disappointed -- this CD is entirely instrumental.)

5-0 out of 5 stars BOSSA NOVA IS NOT A STAN GETZ THING!!
Many think that this was "the first bossa nova album"... of course that this was the 1st album to introduce bossa nova to north americans, but stan getz and charlie byrd had to learn that from someone else.. they DID NOT invented the genre... if you want to listen to some true bossa nova, from one of the greatest brazilian musicians, the father of bossa nova, try some albums from the maestro TOM JOBIM!

5-0 out of 5 stars Tenor Saxophone and Acoustic Guitar Duets For All Seasons
Go to your nearest music store or get on the Net and buy this album right now. Skip dinner, skip the latest episode of "Survivor," skip tonight's poker game, do yourself a favor, go buy this album. Incredible as it seems to me now, this is the 3rd album I ever bought back in 1963, after Martin Denny's "Quiet Village" and Joan Baez's "In Concert," and it just blew me away. I just played this album about an hour ago and it still takes my breath away because it is so astonishingly beautiful, melodic, rhythmic and completely original. Jazz Samba is firmly ensconced in my own personal Pantheon of the greatest pop albums ever made. I mean right there with Sergeant Pepper, Fanfare for the Common Man, Graceland, September of My Years, Kind of Blue, Court and Spark, Highway 61 Revisited, Will the Circle Be Unbroken?, Waylon Jenning's Dreamin' My Dreams, Gordon Lightfoot's Saturday Concert, and Eric Clapton's Unplugged. No matter what kind of music you like---classical, symphonic, swing, country, rock, cool jazz, Dixieland jazz, calypso, soul, hip-hop, bluegrass, folk---you are going to love this music and the bossa nova form this album put on the contemporary musical roadmap. It is interesting to keep in mind that Jazz Samba and the sweet guitar music of Charlie Byrd and rich breathy vibrato of Stan Getz's saxophone caught the public's attention so thoroughly when it was released that it was the number 1 album, across all genres, for several weeks in 1962.

So, get set for one of the most memorable musical experiences of your life. You'll be hearing a most unusual marriage of tenor saxophone with acoustic guitar, with the two congenial partners exchanging the most engaging musical conversations imaginable, weaving in and out of each other's solos with immaculate beauty and terrific melodies you'll be humming for the rest of your time on this alternately amusing and perplexing little planet. Let the rhythm of Brazil, the great songwriting of Antonio Carlos Jobim and other bossa nova tunesmiths, and American jazz virtuosity waft thru your home or car stereo and let Jazz Samba introduce you to messrs. Byrd, Getz, Gene Byrd (bass, guitar), Keter Betts (bass), Buddy Deppenschmidt (drums) and Bill Reichenbach (drums). In addition to all of its other attributes, this album has an extraordinary intimacy about it; you feel as though you're sitting right in the middle of this small 5-piece band as they trade off solos with each other. Their warm, breezy, haunting musicianship will make you a bossa nova fan for life, and I genuinely believe that you will know that you have experienced an archetype. There are other great, great bossa nova albums from this era, among them "Getz-Gilberto," "Black Orpheus," "Jazz Samba Encore," "Bossa Nova Pelos Passaros," but this is the one that shook the world. Forty+plus years later, let it shake yours. Among the great attributes of this album is that it possesses two of the loveliest, most unforgettable songs ever recorded: "Desafinado" and "The One Note Samba," both of which were written by Brazil's great composer, Jobim. This gifted songwriter (lovingly called "Tom" by the Brazilians) died in 1994 at the age of 66; Stan Getz died in 1991 at the age of 64; Charlie Byrd died in 1999 at 74 (one month shy of seeing the new millenium). But they live again through this timeless album, which by the way, was recorded in ONE DAY day on February 13, 1962, in Pierce Hall at the All Soul's Unitarian Church in Washington, D.C. Once hearing Jazz Samba, you will agree that this hall was clearly an acoustically-warm, perfect venue for making a ground-breaking album. An excellent sanctuary for Stan, Charlie and friends to get together to materialize a music form that was very new to American ears and something that still sounds like a unique type of gospel to me.

5-0 out of 5 stars Jazz for Under the Moon...
Nothing could top the opening track. What else is there? To borrow an overused cliche, this is "Smooth Jazz" at its best. BUt the homogenized smooth jazz of today but the sweet delicious tone of Staz Getz. This is music to hold hands to , music to make love to, music to gaze at the moon. The only problem being there is a lack of diversity among the tracks so they tend to blur. ... Read more


5. The Paul Desmond Quartet Live
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Sales Rank: 39420
Average Customer Review: 4.75 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars This is a Great Example of "Cool" Jazz
Jazz can mean many things and the definitions vary from person to person. This recording is one of my favorite examples of the "Cool Jazz" that happened in the fifties and sixties.

Preserving the genre into the mid 1970s Paul Desmond stands out as a brilliant leader able to present a beautifully finished product in this classic setting. Recorded in a club you can hear the occasional clinking of glassware in the background although crowd noise is never a problem. The effect is to make one wish they had been there experiencing this performance in person. Thankfully the recording does a wonderful job of preserving the overall affect of this jazz master's later years.

Ed Bickert's guitar work is outstanding, an example few well known jazz guitarists can even approach. His harmonic content and control is nothing short of incredible. His solos tend to be chord based and unique to him.

In my humble opinion this is jazz at its best, mellow, warm and unobtrusive yet never boring. If you love cool jazz you will very likely love this recording.

4-0 out of 5 stars Replace Take Five with a better take!
When I first heard this live on double LPs in the early 90s, I thought Desmond's playing was feeble. His usual "slow" playing didn't sound "smooth" or "polished" but "tired" and "vanishing." This was understandable, given the fact that he was suffering not only from creeping old age but also from lung cancer, as we know now. But this CD reissue has given me a completely different impression. He sounds great with a lot more energy that I failed to catch in the LPs.

But what on earth happened to Take Five? Vulnerable Desmond is back. His sax sounds "off microphone" as compared to other tunes whose Paul's solos are captured much more clearly "on microphone." Since five evenings worth of their performances were recorded, much better take of Take Five should have been included in the LPs and this CD. OR, I welcome the box set issue of "The Complete Bourbon Street Sessions," as we have seen with a number of Bill Evans Trio club sessions.

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't just "Take Five", take 79 instead...
This is 79 minutes of very lovely, mostly mellow jazz from the excellent sax player and composer Paul Desmond, recorded live less than two years before his death from lung cancer. He is well supported here by guitar, bass and drums. His elongated version of his own famous "Take Five" comes out quite different than it was on the Dave Brubeck Quartet's "Time Out" recording which made the song and Desmond famous. This was originally issued as a double-LP in 1975, eight years after Brubeck's quartet disbanded. Here, Desmond is the leader, and there is no piano. His saxophone and Ed Bickert's guitar both offer many, many minutes of beauty, and the bass of Don Thompson and drums of Jerry Fuller get a little attention as well. This music is closer to "smooth jazz" than to the energetic deliveries of Coltrane or Rollins, yet it is never boring, never pedestrian enough to qualify as "background" music. You really can't help but like this a lot. It's the kind of album you want if you have a 90-minute drive to make on a crisp autumn day, alone (or two 45-minute segments for the round trip!) It also would set a great romantic mood if you were cooking for your loved one and hoped for cuddling after dessert. The extensive and fascinating liner notes are an added bonus, and tell the owner quite a bit about the kind of mind Paul Desmond had...witty and likeable.

5-0 out of 5 stars For Desmond fans only- but man, what a treat!
I should state a personal bias before writing this review: I am practically a Paul Desmond completist. Like many other Desmond fans, this was an album that I owned on vinyl for a few years and nearly wore out from listening to it so much. This is Desmond in his final days with his final quartet, which fit him like an old comfortable shoe. These songs are long and moody, often with long, pretty guitar solos by Ed Bickert and plenty of accomplished bass solos as well. What I love about this album is that Desmond plays some of his favorite songs here, and he plays them with so much emotion its enough to make one cry. This is Desmond at his best: emotional but not whiney. It's a great album, and a real treat for Desmond fans. Since it's so cool and down-tempo though, the new Paul Desmond fan may want to start else where, but for those familiar with his catalogue this is considered one of the most cherished recordings out there.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Treasure
I just want to put in another good word for this album. I've owned it on vinyl since it came out in the mid 70's and it's always been one of my irreplaceable treasures. To have it available again in this significantly improved reissue is a great joy. The sound on this cd gives full voice to Don Thompson's bass and also gives richer presence to Ed Bickert's incredible guitar.
Paul Desmond's tone, obviously, has always been to die for, but it's even better here with this digital remastering. He's never sounded better, to my ear, than he does in this live club setting where he can really stretch out. He plays chorus after chorus of inspired, lyrical, beautiful, impossible improvisation, putting his lifetime of experience behind every note. The first two tunes especially, Wendy and Wave show him at his best, but really they're all great.
This is one of my favorite albums; in fact, yes, it's one of my "desert island" discs. If you like Paul Desmond at all you have to get this. You'll be more than delighted. ... Read more


6. Playboy Jazz After Dark
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Average Customer Review: 4.91 out of 5 stars
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Album Description

The ultimate 2-CD collection of late-nite, mood-settingjazz, featuring classic performances by Miles Davis, JohnColtrane, Diana Krall, Tony Bennett, Duke Ellington, EllaFitzgerald and Billie Holiday! Playboy Jazz label. 2003. ... Read more

Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars This is an exellent jazz sampler... for late night romance
Weather you want to relax after a long day at work, and get into your cumfy chair and read, or you want to romance that special someone with great jazz and a roaring fire, and a bottle of pink champaigne, this is the 2 cd set to do it with(sure there are cd's like "John Coltrane+Johnny Hartman" and "Charlie Parker With Strings", but this gives you a variety). This cd is not like msot hophodged cd jazz compilations(which I normally despise), this is not a sampler for your average bozo who doesn't know the difference between Kenny G & Eric Dolphy, this cd gives a difinitive overview of good jazz singers and solosits, and the songs flow and create a beautiful and at times exotic mood. Such great yet obscure singer like Ernestine Anderson and Miss Mary Stallings are featured here as well as great intrumentalists like Joe Pass and Gene Harris, and the newer but great Ken Keplowski. This 2 cd set will introduce you to not only yhe popular singers and soloitst but the greater obscure ones too. A great set of jazz, for any occasion waether in be a sophistocated cocktail party or a romantic date for two, or just you, a great cd, buy one for yourself and get one for a friend... A truly wonderful buy.

5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderful romantic and moody album
This 2 cd set is essential for all hep cats! Normally I skip compilations, however this cd creates a perfect mood for an intimate evening of dinner and who knows what else... This cd combines vintage retro jazz with newer artists, but the music blends well and has high artistic quality thuoghout. This cd is recomended even if you already have these songs on other cd's or by other artists, because they flow so nicely on this exellent and well thought thru two cd set. Hugh Heffner must have personally selected these himself, this cd is worthy of the almight Bunny logo that adorns the cover. Another plus is taht such unknown but great singers liek Mary Stallings, and Ernestine Anderson are included in this great set. This is a cool , hip and swingin' cd, for lovers in a romantic mood, a great addition to anyone's cd collection with any clas or taste at all.

5-0 out of 5 stars Smoooooooth Jazz, with extra oooooo.
This set deserves 7 out of 5 stars. I really couldn't praise this two disk collection enough. It has been described as a sampler, and that's accurate enough. If you like (lounge) jazz enough to start a collection, but don't know WHO you like, this is an excellent place to start. As a musical genre, jazz is as diverse, if not more, than any other type. It contains Blues, Swing, Dixieland, Lounge, Ragtime, and a throng of others. These disks are primarily what I would call Lounge Jazz - the type you'd hear played on an ebony baby grand piano, from across a dark room, sewn with swirls of grey-blue smoke and perfume, as the redhead in the sparkling rhinestone gown, sitting next to you at the bar, orders a dry martini, and winks at you playfully. Got the picture? The first CD is all instrumental. Deep base, sultry horns / reeds, and a tickling of the ivories. I was almost afraid to put the second CD in, for fear that I'd be disappointed. Number two blew me away. I couldn't believe I liked it better than the first. My favorite track was 13. Solitude - Billie Holiday. I would recommend this set to anyone who wants to start a jazz collection, but doesn't know where to begin.

5-0 out of 5 stars JAZZ-JUNKIE's delight!!!
For all you JAZZ-JUNKIES like me,(that doesn't sound so irregular), you will want this cd, especailly for the late night hours with that special someone. Yes all of us jazz junkies, already have this stuff in it's original context, but it's nice to have a variety at your fingertips, and this will introduce the novices to new artists liek Miss Ernestine Anderson(not too many people know about her), so buy this and if you love it, you may be a future "JAZZ JUNKIE", and there's nothing wrong with being a JAZZ-JUNKIE. So buy this cd you'll love it(& I love the "Beach house" humor, whoever wrote that original review must feel dumb). Just get this cd it's AWESOME. And one more thing... Jazz junkie, jazz junkie, jazz junkie, jazz junkie, jazz junkie, jazz junkie, jazz junie
J-A-Z-Z J-U-N-K-I-E!!! That's for the guy who wrote never say Jazz junkie(we exhist and you can't shush us up). You wil llvoe this cd, jazz junkie or not.

5-0 out of 5 stars I keep a dozen of these at each of my Texas beach condos
Hi I'm erin, the Zillionaire stousee. I gave 20 of these away to all of my lovers, they all loved it. Just give this and an expensive bottle of wine to any jazz lover, or any lover(HAHAHA HAHA HAHAHA !!!!!!, nothing like rich person beach house humor). I love this cd and I have been searching for the perfect jazz CD with everything on it, and this is it! I have one at my beach condo and one at home, and I recommend it highly! Thansk for reading my review. Did i mention I'm a bragging annoying rich person, who has to mention my beach house. Wait a minute did I say beach condo(I'm from Texas?), oh well. Buy the cd you'll love it. ... Read more


7. Chronicle Vol. 2: Twenty Great CCR Classics
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Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1575
Average Customer Review: 4.56 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (16)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Second Great Anthology Album
There aren't too many bands who could put out an anthology album containing 20 songs ("Chronicle") and still have enough first rate material left to issue a second album that's equally strong. That CCR was able to do so is a testament to what a vastly talented group they were. "Chronicle Volume Two" contains a few leftover radio hits not included on the first "Chronicle" album, including "Born on the Bayou" and "Midnight Special." It then offers up a generous helping of first rate album tracks, including "Cotton Fields," "It Came Out of the Sky," "Pagan Baby," "Hideaway," and "Molina." Throw in some classic rock and blues covers "Before You Accuse Me," "Hello Mary Lou" and "Good Golly Miss Molly," and you have an excellent package on your hands. I actually prefer the second "Chronicle" album to the first because these are the songs that haven't been overplayed on classic rock radio stations. Between the two albums, CCR's heyday is well represented.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great music, but needs more blues
Everybody knows the songs on Chronicle volume 1, so I thought I'd comment on volume 2. Most of these songs are lesser known than those on the first CD, but still they are great. Some of my personal favorite CCR songs are included here. Good Golly Miss Molly, Tombstone Shadow, The Midnight Special, Pagan Baby, Born On The Bayou, and Wrote A Song For Everyone are just as good as any Creedence hits that landed in the top 20. If there's one problem, it's that I'd like to have seen more of CCR's blues side on this CD. A few of their blues tunes are here (Tombstone Shadow, Night Time Is The Right Time, Before You Accuse Me), but there are many more such as The Working Man, Penthouse Pauper, Get Down Woman, Keep On Chooglin', Feelin' Blue, just to name a few. Still if you don't want to invest in the entire Creedence catalog, this and Chronicle volume 1 make a fine collection of the music of this great band.

P.S. They should be ashamed for not including Sailor's Lament!

4-0 out of 5 stars great addition for the second-tier CCR fan
first tier fans need to go straight to the recently released box set, which contains their entire recorded history. fogerty didn't write a bad song for three years, and there were lots and lots of songs. with that said, here's some words on this particular release:

it's vastly inferior to volume 1, but i knew that when i bought it for five bucks or so way back in the day. nevertheless, this collection is full of great jams and wonderful bayou-influenced wailing...it should function perfectly fine as a cool-down after listening to vol. 1. "wrote a song for everyone" is fogerty's forgotten masterpiece, and "pagan baby" shows how great CCR could be when they stretched their own sonic boundaries.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great companion to the first Chronicle CD!!!
This second Chronicle CD is a great companion to the first volume. 20 more great CCR classics!!! A+

3-0 out of 5 stars A good companion to Vol. 1
Creedence Clearwater Revival (CCR) was one of the finest rock groups of the late sixties/early seventies. It's no surprise they still get oldies and classic rock airplay. Needless to say, over the years, a number of compilations have been released for these guys. How does this one measure up? Read on and find out.

PROS:
-If you got Chronicle Vol. 1 for all the big hits, but was disappointed not to find Born On The Bayou on there, you'll find it here.
-There are a plethora of underrated masterpieces here as well, making it an excellent companion to the first volume.

CONS:
-This seems more like a companion to Vol. 1 than its own independent compilation. Don't get this without getting Vol. 1!

OVERALL:
If you're a casual fan of CCR, get Vol. 1! If that isn't enough for you, get this. This compilation makes a great companion to the first volume, it just doesn't make that great of a compilation on its own. ... Read more


8. Round About Midnight [Bonus Tracks]
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Average Customer Review: 4.88 out of 5 stars
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In 1955, Miles Davis signed on with jazz powerhouse Columbia Records. With alto and tenor saxophonists Cannonball Adderley and John Coltrane, drummer Philly Joe Jones, bassist Paul Chambers, and pianist Red Garland, Davis released 'Round About Midnight, which evinces even more clearly what a phenomenal unit Davis was nurturing. Stylistically, Midnight encompasses standards (or soon-to-be standards) such as "Dear Old Stockholm," "Bye-Bye Blackbird," Tadd Dameron's "Tadd's Delight," and Jackie McLean's forward-thinking composition "Little Melonae." Miles and company reprise "Budo" from the historic Birth of the Cool sessions. The standout track is Davis's Harmon-muted reading of Thelonious Monk's ballad, "'Round Midnight, which is still a Miles standard bearer. Three alternate takes round out the session: "Two Bass Hit" and "Sweet Sue" feature adventuresome solos by Coltrane that preview his masterpiece "Giant Steps." And Garland moves away from his Ahmad Jamal pianisms with his introspective ivory ticklings. If you want to hear the origins of post-bop modern jazz, this isit. --Eugene Holley Jr. ... Read more

Reviews (25)

5-0 out of 5 stars Cool and stylish album from Miles' first great quintet.
'Round About Midnight' is the first album Miles Davis would record during his long tenure at Columbia, and is the beginning of the most prolific and consistentally impressive output in jazz music history. You can see where the level of sophistication and innovation is flourishing in these recordings, even though this is still more or less considered "traditional" jazz. But the improvised lines, and the cool, muted playing are already becoming apparent as a Miles standard. The album opens up with 'Round Midnight', which is a rich and stirring late-night ballad, starting out with Miles' brooding, muted trumpet playing over Paul Chambers' slowly rolling basslines, then changing pace slight with Coltrane's reflective tenor sax smoothing out the edges, and making it into a smoky nightclub classic. Truly a work of art. 'Ah-Leu-Cha' is a throwback to the classic bebop style of jazz, and is more uptempo, with some impressive soloing from Coltrane and Davis. Red Garland's piano work is great here as well, as he manages to keep up with every chord change being thrown at him. 'All of You' is an old pop standard that the quintet plays through easy and relaxed. The same goes for the cool and subdued interpretation of 'Bye Bye Blackbird'. This is one of the best renderings of this old standard that you will find, and Davis varies his playing softly and then brings it back up to higher notes to compilment Coltrane's tenor sax. The musicianship all blends together seamlessly on this song as Garland's excellent piano solo brings Davis back in to close it out with a final sweet, muted refrain; just beautiful. 'Tadd's Delight' is another nice throwback to hard bop, with rollicking drumming from Philly Joe Jones, and more impressive piano playing from Garland. The final song on the original album 'Dear Old Stockholm' is a strange and haunting number, particularly Paul Chambers' long bass solo, which is low enough to get your heart racing. This reissue contains four titles from these sessions that were not featured on the original album, but all of them are slighty subpar in comparison, the only real standout, to me, being the slightly upbeat interpretation of 'Little Melonae', with its interesting arrangements and Davis' cool and perfectly-timed trumpet interjections.

This is one of the essential recordings from Miles Davis' Columbia Years and anyone who is only familiar with the cool and stylish sophistication of 'Kind of Blue' and wants to know where to go next in Miles' HUGE catalog should check this album out. This quintet's musicianship are the perfect compliment to each other and smooths out all the rough edges that had previously marred some of Miles' work prior to this. It is especially interesting to note that this is the only album that was recorded by the quintet who would break up this same year over inner tensions. But the beauty is, they would reform a year later in 1957 with Cannonball Adderly as a sextet, and then would continue on an uphill journey making some of the greatest and most reputed recordings in jazz history.

5-0 out of 5 stars Classic Miles, yet another great album by him.
This album's beauty knocked me out when I first heard it. It swings better than almost any other combo album I've ever heard. This attributes greatly to Coltrane and Red Garland. Miles leads the way and stays impressive throughout, seemingly never missing a beat. Coltrane usually follows with wonderful intonation and technique, and then Red Garland comes out with that beautiful light touch. Most of the songs from this era follow the solo order of Miles, Coltrane and Garland. "'Round Midnight" is Miles's muted trumpet feature, in which he performed that previous year at the Newport Jazz Festival and brought his name back into the public eye. Coltrane sounds great here too. "Ah-Leu-Cha" is a Charlie Parker tune and was recorded with Miles in the 1940's. Now it sounds even fresher, and everyone swings and sounds great on it. "All Of You", Cole Porter's chesnut is a fast-paced tune with Miles playing beautifully on muted trumpet. Coltrane and Garland interact really well here, and Philly Joe Jones's brushwork is very prominent here, as it also is on the standard "Bye Bye Blackbird". Garland takes a most amazing solo here, and you can tell he's really enjoying himself, and Miles is at his muted best as usual. "Tadd's Delight" is another throwback to the old days of Tadd Dameron's bebop compositions. The playing is very clean and once again Miles, Coltrane and Garland follow suit interacting perfectly. The runs are all clean and fluid. Finally is the traditional that Stan Getz originally made famous, "Dear Old Stockholm". This opens up with Miles's muted trumpet, followed by a bass solo by Paul Chambers which is impeccably played. Then Coltrane comes in with his clean arpeggios and great ideas, and Miles closes it out nicely.

This was the first album for Columbia from the first great Miles Davis Quintet. There were also other songs added to the remaster, which I have heard from an album I have called "Miles & Coltrane". These tunes are "Little Melonae" and "Sweet Sue, Just You". There is also an interesting recording of Bud Powell's "Budo". They are great to hear, but slightly interrupt the flow of the 'Round About Midnight album, so I prefer the original version. Get your hands on the "Miles & Coltrane" album too if you can, because that has some worthy lesser known performances also.

5-0 out of 5 stars second best Miles Davis after Kind of Blue
The Miles Davis I listen to most, after Kind of Blue. All time best recordings of Round Midnight and Blackbird. You feel like Miles is there in the room with you, Harmon mute and all. You feel his loneliness, melancholy and great joy. Communicates true emotion like no other Miles recording.

Miles Davis first record with a major label.

The SACD is much better.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the best, if not the best
This record is one of those rare records that you can put on from the first song and to the last and never get bored or want to skip a song.
'Round Midnight is a perfect song, from start to finish. Both Miles and Trane express what they want with gorgeous melodies and tone.
Ah-Leu-Cha is a great rendition of the classic Charlie Parker tune, especially with the intertwining melodies at the beginning.
All of You shows the depth of Miles' Harmon mute, and is the best take of this song I've heard (better than the Blackhawk recording or some of the Plugged Nickel stuff).
Bye Bye Blackbird contains what I think is Miles' best solo ever. His use of the Harmon mute is gorgeous and the entire song is unbelievable. Listen specifically to Philly Joe Jones brush strokes and Garland's comping skills on this one.
Tadd's Delight is a great bop-style tune with one of Coltrane's best solo's on the disc. Jones' drumming is also unbelievable on this track.
Dear Old Stockholm is the baddest jazz track ever. Period. That track is just bad as sh*t, from the first note to the end. And the highlight of this track is Paul's rare extended solo and Coltrane's solo. If there is a "best" song on this album, this is it. And Miles probably put it at the end purposely to make sure every listener knew that his band was the baddest there was and will ever be.
Although there are extras which are great, I'm not going to talk about them because they weren't in the original album (even though Budo is awesome).

If you should get anything out of this album, it should be this: this group was the tightest group there ever was and listening to this album proves it. Everyone is right in time and right on top of the music--no one one this record even though about doing a half-ass job when it came to producing some of the best music ever laid down on record. Enjoy

5-0 out of 5 stars The first and best quintet.
This is my personal favorite of Miles' small group records, and his first for Columbia. It's simply a matter of taste whether you prefer the first quintet or the second. Those who tend a little more towards the free jazz choose the second, but I prefer the delicate swing of the earlier one, even though Coltrane was not yet fully formed as a sax player. Still, their rendition of Cole Porter's "All of You" has to be one of Davis' most perfect recordings, where Red Garland's piano block chords work to irresistible effect (as they do on "Bye Bye Blackbird"). Miles told Red that he wanted Ahmad Jamal's style transplanted into his band, and a good argument could be made that it was Garland's swing that set the tone for the direction of the band. At the very least, Miles always turned to Red for suggestions of which standards to play. The other highlight is the downright otherworldly performance of Monk's "Round Midnight" (of which Monk apparently did not approve), where Coltrane shows early signs of breaking through. Not very surprising that it was Coltrane's brief stint with Monk that finally set him loose for good. Also worth noting is a fantastic version of "Dear Old Stockholm" which features an extended and brilliant bass solo by Paul Chambers, who very rarely got any soloing time on Miles' studio records. Great, great music. ... Read more


9. Stan Getz & The Oscar Peterson Trio: The Silver Collection
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Stan Getz and Oscar Peterson were both consummate performers, comfortable at any tempo, when they met for this 1957 recording, and they're clearly enjoying one another's skills on ballads and uptempo tunes alike. The group is one of the finest editions of Peterson's trios, with bassist Ray Brown and guitarist Herb Ellis. It's virtually a machine for quiet swing, and the absence of a drummer lets Getz's silky sound come to the fore with all its details intact. For all his fame as a virtuosic pianist, Peterson is an underrated accompanist. He complements a soloist with deft fills and unobtrusive propulsion, and the backgrounds he supplies here are as subtle as his solos are extroverted. The program is a good mix of standards and Getz originals, including the joyous "Tour's End," while the extended ballad medley could define jazz lyricism. There's also a brief but infectious version of Ellis's "Detour Ahead," the guitarist's early and highly successful foray into songwriting. --Stuart Broomer ... Read more

Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars A dream quartet.
This CD presents a very important collaboration. Stan Getz may be the most lyrical tenor saxophone player to have ever graced the face of the earth. Only Lester Young comes close. Prez modeled his sound on that of Frankie Trumbauer's C-melody saxophone, and Getz' model is Prez. Both of them transcend Trumbauer's syrupy improvisations. Getz' tone and the lyricism it supports are evident. All of this is for context, of course. This recording is truly a major musical event. It was on a par with Lester Young's famous collaborations with Teddy Wilson and Oscar Peterson. During this 1957 recording session, all of which is on the CD, Peterson's trio and Getz were more than comfortable with one another, and their mutual musical respect yielded classic performances . The cooperation is evident in Getz' solo on "I Want to Be Happy," a model of precision and lyrical invention. Peterson's solos are equally impressive; there's no unnecessary embellishment or decoration, and he swings powerfully. The long ballad medley--"Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered," "I Don't Know Why, I Just Do," "How Long Has This Been Going On?", "I Can't Get Started," and "Polka Dots and Moonbeams"--features fine solos by Getz and Peterson as well as Herb Ellis on guitar and Ray Brown on bass. In the interplay between the trio and Getz in such numbers as Getz' "Bronx Blues." the quartet sounds like a permanent group. In "Three Little Words" Ellis sets down a solid rhythm and Peterson comps behind Getz' opening solo before delivering an eloquent statement of his own which Getz answers with equal grace. The Getz-Peterson collaboration is particularly appealing on Ellis' "Detour Ahead," a prime instance of their treatment of ballad material. On "Sunday" Ray Brown's persistent bass and Ellis' percussive guitar support Getz admirably. The quartet even approximates a rhythm 'n blues song with Getz' "Blues for Herky." It's not every day that you hear Herb Ellis playing blues guitar with Oscar Peterson doing boogie woogie and Stan Getz blowing like he was in a jump band. But here it is, and it comes as a surprise bonus with some really superb jazz.

5-0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly enjoyable jazz gem
The Oscar Peterson Trio never sounded so good. What a beautiful blending of melody and rhythm this group has. An atomic clock could be set with what Oscar, Ray and Herb do. The addition of Stan Getz's melodic ideas makes this CD a true joy. One gets the impression from how Oscar sometimes starts his solos by quoting the previous soloist that the guy can play almost anything that happens to enter his head.

5-0 out of 5 stars Heavenly hour of swingin' sax and piano from 1957...
This is the most enjoyable of the three Getz CD's I own, and of course, Oscar and his playing partners are superb, whether soloing or supporting. This has a great mix of uptempo and ballad tracks, and gives Herb Ellis on guitar and Ray Brown on bass some shining moments as well as the principals. There are ten earlier reviews posted here, and most of those folks agree with me that this is one of best albums to come out of what I consider the golden age of jazz...the second half of the '50's. I'm not sure why the 1955-'60 period produced such music, but rock was good, Broadway was good, classical LP's sold well, comedy records were hot, there still was a "pop" music segment distinct from rock, and rhythm and blues and country had their share of crossover hits as well. It just was a creative time in a fairly affluent culture, and all forms of music benefitted. There is not a minute on this Getz/Peterson outing which is boring. The menu is mostly standards, but played in quite interesting style. I can't imagine any general music lover not enjoying this one---you don't already have to be well-versed in jazz.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Oscar Peterson Trio - at work. Quality counts!
The Oscar Peterson Trio did a number of these releases featuring artists of the day. Stan Getz is another one who, with the help of the OPT, shines. Check out the OPT with Louis Armstrong... excellent craftmanship, and so is Stan Getz. The OPT set a standard for this type of collaboration. The sound quality is good, during periods of quiet some hiss is evident, this is probably caused by the tape quality and lack of effective filters for this white noise back when these recordings were put down on acetate. As always with OPT...Very enjoyable.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable
Check all of the other reviews for the technical talk of keeping time or the lack of a percussion session. Let me just add that many times during the album, I found my foot stomping to the beat. To me, that is the best litmus test out there!! The ballad medley can only be bettered by the swing of the blues numbers on this album. Truly an exceptional meeting of exceptional artists. ... Read more


10. Sunday at the Village Vanguard (20 Bit Mastering)
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Asin: B00005QY2Q
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 2559
Average Customer Review: 4.53 out of 5 stars
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This live recording by the Bill Evans Trio at the Village Vanguard on June 25, 1961, marked the end of one of the most sublime instrumental combinations in jazz history when bassist Scott LaFaro died in a car accident 10 days later. This unit is underdocumented because Evans, a notorious perfectionist, was reluctant to record. The interchange between Evans on piano, LaFaro on bass, and Paul Motian on drums is balletic in its balance of emotional beauty and technical precision. Multiple takes of "Gloria's Step," "Alice in Wonderland," "All of You," and "Jade Visions" show how the invention these players brought to each performance makes repeated material sound like movements in a suite. --John Swenson ... Read more

Reviews (15)

5-0 out of 5 stars 5 Stars For Bill Evans AND SCOTT LAFARO
First off, this album is a stone cold classic and it's importance to jazz can't be understated. If you are already a fan you know I'm stating the obvious and if you're a new comer to jazz this is a great place to start. That said, I'm only writing this review to offer the other side of the previous one in which the critic described Scott LaFaro's bass playing as "clunky" and "hysterical." I smell a jazz purist. But wait, even the purist of the jazz community would agree this album is amazing. I'm not putting down the reviewer as everyone has different tastes but it's hard to wonder why someone into jazz wouldn't like Scott LaFaro's bass playing. It's a perfect compliment to Bill's piano playing and his solos are tasteful and full of pulsing energy to the like that only Charles Mingus or Charlie Haden can match. It is by no means "rock guitar bass" or even fusion for that matter as the previous review may lead one to believe. For me, it's the bass playing that stands out and gives this album its niche in the many other great jazz albums I have. So I had to write this review just to clear the air about Scott's bass playing. It is superb and arguably some of the most exciting pressed to wax.

5-0 out of 5 stars Scott Lafaro was the greatest
Scott Lafaro's Playing on this record is perhaps his best ever, it is neither clunky nor hysterical. It is some of the most agile and artistic music ever played, tragically he died 10 days later. This trio was one of Bill Evan's favorites, if not the favorite (from biography) he struggled to release recording as quickly as possible, as a tribute to Lafaro, so everyone could hear the height of this musical achievment. This record is about Lafaro, to fast forward through his solos would be a crime. What some people don't understand is that the piano need not be the only focal point in a trio, it doesn't need to be solo piano with bass and drums. The concept here is where everyone in the trio is improvising in a more abstract way, playing off and around each other. The interplay is truly sublime, Paul Motian sounds great, Scott Lafaro sounds great, not only virtuostic, but also meaningful and with a well thought out timbre. I haven't ever heard a trio with this depth of musical thought. Keith Jarrett gets close, but this is where he is coming from. Too bad Lafaro didn't have a long carreer, or maybe this would be the concept people think of first. This is my favorite recording.

5-0 out of 5 stars I think even Danny Carrey (Tool) has this album!!
Yes, to the suprise of our illinformed reviever below, Danny Carrey probibly ownes this excelent album!! Why? because it's a rare work of beauty and art. Poor little Tool fan, somtimes we underestimate even the scope of those we admire: right?

Drop the bread Tool Head, and improve your 5 CD collection! Cheers jazz lovers- jb

1-0 out of 5 stars G-UNIT hates it!!!!
tool is the greatest band of all friggin time!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.I only wrote this review because this band realy sucks. g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unitg-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit g-unit. g-unit is cool.bill evans is worse thannn tis bandd. tool is rad

5-0 out of 5 stars JADE VISIONS
The last song on this one really got my attention, Jade Visions. It's one of the most beautiful things I've ever heard, and the highpoint of this set. It's short, focused, and electric.

Bill Evans' playing is remarkable throughout, and the rest of his unit do a good job in supporting him. It doesn't work as well when they're supporting the bass player, but the bass solos are infrequent.

There is something about the intimate atmosphere of this small nightclub, combined with the textures coming from Bill Evans' piano, and the gentle urgings of the rhythm section, particularly the drummer.

This is an amazing CD. It is my first Bill Evans CD. I wonder why, when I knew I loved his work with Miles Davis. I definitely put this on par with any of Miles' albums. If Miles is the Cool, then Bill is the Angel.

If you've bought lots of Miles albums, and Kind of Blue is still your favorite, then maybe you should check out Bill Evans, since he was part of the equation. ... Read more


11. My Favorite Things
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Asin: B000002I53
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Sales Rank: 1071
Average Customer Review: 4.92 out of 5 stars
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This 1960 recording was a landmark album in John Coltrane's career, the first to introduce his quartet with pianist McCoy Tyner and drummer Elvin Jones and the first release on which he played soprano saxophone. It also provided him with a signature hit, as his new group conception came together wonderfully on the title track. It's an extended modal reworking in 6/4 time that brought the hypnotic pulsating quality of Indian music into jazz for the first time, with Coltrane's soprano wailing over the oscillating piano chords and pulsing drums. The unusual up-tempo version of Gershwin's "Summertime" is a heated example of Coltrane's "sheets of sound" approach to conventional changes, while "But Not for Me" receives a radical harmonic makeover. This is an excellent introduction to Coltrane's work. --Stuart Broomer ... Read more

Reviews (25)

5-0 out of 5 stars I like this!
I was first exposed to Coltrane's later avant-garde work, like A Love Supreme, the weird Selflessness and the sonic nightmares Om and Ascesion, but then I got a copy of My Favorite Things, a song from a musical I HATE w/ a passion (The Sound of Music). Coltrane's version of the song is much better than the original one, because it omits the goofy and pretentious lyrics, added Eastern flavored styles to jazz and Coltrane and his band mates reworked it in an unusual but interesting time signature (6/4 I believe). Plus the solos by Coltrane on the song are absolutely amazing. The entire 10+ minutes of the track keep you interested and satisfied. The other 3 songs on this album are awesome as well. My Favorite Things may be Coltrane at his most accessible, but it certainly will appeal to more people than his later works, and is an esential to any jazz collection, or any CD collection, just like A Love Supreme or Miles Davis' Kind of Blue.

5-0 out of 5 stars Coltrane's most stellar effort between bop and free-form
Many would be quick to tell you that "A Love Supreme" is the unquestionable Coltrane masterpiece, but "My Favorite Things" deserves consideration. Recorded when Coltrane was moving away from hard-bop and closer to his own free-form compositions, this album is a literal representation of Coltrane in the middle of his career, and the playing shows an all-around gorgeous band exploring the beauty of these standards. The most impressive contribution is the bright work of pianist McCoy Tyner. Some view jazz albums not as a collection of songs but as one whole suite; this is an example of an albums that flows in such a way. The band carefully waves in and out of the melodies without ever drifting away from them. Coltrane does some of his most gentle sorprano sax playing here that is wonderfully offset by the energetic trio behind him.

Those of you interested in Coltrane who don't know where to begin and are hesistant about Coltrane's free-form albums that began with "A Love Supreme" should start with this album. A beautiful gift to all of us.

3-0 out of 5 stars Three stars is Fair, Five is too much!
If you only own 20 jazz albums you probably feel that you have covered the many bases of this music. But just listen to Coltrane's Impulse, or Prestige recordings!! It's as though John's Atlantic material was the precursor to his greatest work- Love Supreme, Crescent, w/ Duke .E, all on Impulse. His work with Miles for Colombia Records isn't too bad either! This record is OK, more for the romantic listener than the seasoned jazz collector. As another reviewer said, it's an easy introduction to jazz music; enough said. cheers- jb

5-0 out of 5 stars Perfect
This is a wonderful CD in so many ways. If you are not a lover of jazz, this would be a great introduction to the genre. Coltrane is one the greatest jazz musicians of all time and Elvin Jones is arguably in the top two or three greatest jazz drummers. Really a perfect CD.

5-0 out of 5 stars My Favorite Things; My Favorite Album!!!
My Favorite Things is my favorite album. The first track, My Favorite Things cooks. McCoy takes the first solo, but soon after comes in Trane takin down the house. The first song is 15 minutes of swingin avant garde jazz. Trane and his men take a whole new spin on But Not For Me, and Summertime just plain swings. (there's a ballad isn't there?) This is also the album that gave drummer Elvin Jones the recognition that he needed to soon be one of the most influential drummers of the sixties. This a landemark album, with killer material. Two words for you- BUY IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ... Read more


12. Dave Brubeck - Greatest Hits
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Asin: B000002AL8
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Sales Rank: 2948
Average Customer Review: 4.89 out of 5 stars
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While greatest-hits CDs abound, Dave Brubeck has been one of the few modern-jazz musicians to have actually enjoyed an occasional hit record. This CD compiles material from Brubeck's Columbia recordings of the 1950s and 1960s, revealing his deft combination of modernist harmony and unusual time signatures with the immediately accessible. Whether it's his own fine song "In Your Own Sweet Way" or Stephen Foster's "Camptown Races," his homage to Duke Ellington or the Mozart-inspired "Blue Rondo," Brubeck balances his taste for innovation with traditional melodic values. The quartet with altoist Paul Desmond was Brubeck's finest instrument. Desmond's gauzy sound and fluent improvisations provided effective contrast to Brubeck's own assertive, slightly stiff piano playing, and drummer Joe Morello smoothed out the most challenging rhythms. Desmond's "Take Five" has become a jazz standard, and this once-controversial music now conveys a special period charm. --Stuart Broomer ... Read more

Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars THE GREATEST SELECTION OF BRUBECK TUNES!!!!!!!!!!
If you haven't herd any Brubeck music, this is the album you must get first, besides Time Out. This album has the greatest assortment of Brubeck tunes I ever herd in the best order.
You'll love this music, and the album itself.

5-0 out of 5 stars (Some) of Brubeck's greatest tunes
I've always felt that of all the jazz composers, Dave Brubeck has the most original ideas and concepts. Bear in mind, the man is not just strictly a jazz composer, recently I saw one of Brubeck's newest compositions entitled 'Regrets' being performed by the Yale Cellos, an entire 22 piece ensemble of just cellos. At the recital, I saw him there and got a chance to speak to him and ask him some questions. Given that Dave is currently 82 years old he is still very sharp, though he did not have a lot to say. What he did tell me however, after I asked him how he thought jazz and improvisation related to his orchestral and chamber music, was that they are one in the same. This is clearly evident in all of his music. No one has embodied more of romantic and post-romantic music in the jazz idiom than Dave Brubeck. The tunes on this album I must stress are SOME of the best work he did with the Dave Brubeck quartet featuring Paul Desmond, one of the greatest jazz bands in history. You still get overview however of what makes this band stand out from all other jazz quartets in history. If you are not familiar with Brubeck you should definetely buy this album and listen to it from beginning to end with no distractions and then you will understand what makes his musical ideas so original. If you are familiar with Brubeck you already know what I'm talking about, and this album will just serve as a good summary of his work with Desmond, Morello, and Wright.

5-0 out of 5 stars Timeless Classic
What can you say about the best of one of the greatest jazz combos, ever? This is about as timeless as it gets. And in remastered sound, no less. I'm not necessarly a big jazz fan, but I recognize great music, whatever style.

The songs are from the 1959-1964 era, and include all the classics, including among others "Take Five", which remains as fresh today as it was in 1959, "I'm in a Dancing Mood", a live version of "The Duke", and "Blue Rondo a la Turk". I marvel at the genius of Dave Brubeck. My only regret is that I never I had the opportunity to see Dave Brubeck live in concert. Oh well... meanwhile I will do with this. Essential for any serious music lover, whatever your musical preference.

4-0 out of 5 stars Best of Brubeck
This is definitely Brubeck's best. A few tracks disagree with my tastes ("The Duke", "It's a Raggedy Waltz", "Bossa Nova USA"), but otherwise, it's a great listen.

5-0 out of 5 stars A real classic
Released in the start of the seventies this album of greatest hits, in what now is an "early" stage of Brubecks career this album has gained Classic Status in itself. Most people I know who like Brubeck value this album as a treasure.

Opening with the fabulous "Take Five" in the original recording sets the pace for a very easy hour of entertainment by four wonderful musicians. The combination of Brubeck and Desmond is made in heaven and either one of them has in all the albums they have released after that as soloists never matched the magic they had together.

Tracks like "Blue Rondo" and "Unsquare Dance" can be listened to many times and you still discover new elements. In fact, what makes this album so valuable, unlike so many other Greatest Hits, is the harmony between the songs and the easy flow of the tracks.

This is an album which should not miss in any serious Jazz collection. ... Read more


13. Best of Chet Baker Sings
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Asin: B000005HFH
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Sales Rank: 2305
Average Customer Review: 4.83 out of 5 stars
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Once Chet Baker arrived in California from his native Oklahoma, his career exploded. After landing gigs with Charlie Parker and Gerry Mulligan, Baker soon found himself a solo star and bandleader. Not long after that, he also found himself whispering love songs into a microphone. Baker was not gifted with the most robust voice of the day. Indeed, listening to pure singers like Nat "King" Cole or Johnny Hartman can expose Baker's weaknesses, but what Baker did, he did well. By choosing wistful, so-young, so-in-love tunes, Baker was able to pour his heart into the material, sketching soft, romantic moods and painting himself as the broken-hearted innocent. The effect can be devastating, as Baker's voice clings to the melody, threatening to disintegrate at any moment. Many of his best tunes--"I Fall in Love Too Easily," "But Not for Me," "Let's Get Lost"--are collected here, and as such, there is no better place to begin an appreciation of Baker's unique singing. --S. Duda ... Read more

Reviews (29)

5-0 out of 5 stars Simply fantastic! IÂ'm speechless
Oh my God... I never thought this CD was THAT good.

I bought it and I had in mind that it was just another Chet Baker CD with an OK selection, since I havenÂ't heard some of the tracks. But I found out I was wrong, really wrong.

Chet Baker as a trumpet player may sound like any other, like Miles Davis or Marsalis. But what a difference a voice makes... his voice is like a rendezvous to paradise. I canÂ't even count how many times IÂ've been enchanted by his satin voice. I fell in love by the first time I heard him, a few years ago. And indeed is a soundtrack for a lazy winter day :)

Beautiful romantic selection, good for die-hard fans and newbies. Trust everyone who rated 5 stars... too bad we canÂ't rate 6...

5-0 out of 5 stars Showcase of many of Chet Baker's best early songs
As a fan of Chet Baker's for almost nine years now, particularly of his singing, in my opinion this is one of his three best albums (the other two which I highly recommend - although they are hard to find but well worth the search - are: Let's Get Lost (the Soundtrack to the film about the life of Chet Baker- RCA,AAD,89), and Chet Baker Sings Again (Timeless SJP 238). This album contain many of Chet Baker's best early songs, but does not include his best later recordings, and has omitted some early gems too, such as How Long Has This Been Going On; Forgetful (Chet has four amazing versions of this publicly available, each one quite unique); Come Rain or Shine; or Angel Eyes. For completeness this album should have also included his best vocal recording from later in his career, which are mind-bogglingly poignant and reveal a depth and reticence in Chet Baker that his early recording only hint at, specifically: Moon and Sands; For Heaven Sakes Let's Fall In Love; You're My Thrill; Autumn Leaves; Alone Together; and I Can't Get Started With You. The opportunity is still out there to compile a more comprehensive, definitive set of Chet's best songs, a collection that would fairly reflect both his early and later achievements as a searing, raw, vulnerable singer, who shows here that he is - as a point of reference - on a par with John Lennon in the directness and honesty of his delivery. While it's hard to pick favorites on an album like this, in which (in my opinion) almost all the songs are stellar, one or two do lead the pack (in this order): i) I Remember You; ii) Just Friends; iii) Long Ago and Far Away; iv) It's Always You; v) Daybreak; vi) Time After Time. ***** HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

5-0 out of 5 stars Romantic Balladeer
This is great collection of singin' Chet Baker. Songs featured here are from 1953 to 1956. Some of them were issued on compilation "Young Chet" with Chet playing trumpet and the same personel. This collection contains some his most famous interpretations, including "My Funny Valentine," "Time After Time," "There Will Never Be Another You," and "Let's Get Lost". Beautiful! If you like Chet singin' you should have this one.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best of Chet Baker Sings
The guy cant sing? The guy is a so-so jazz trumpter? Well put him together, with his history, his mind and talent - man can he do it well . The music I get from this is outstanding. The tracks are so well put together. In fact I am more a fan of his trumpet playing, so much that when I listen to any of these tracks, the volume on my stereo goes up everytime he starts his solo bits. The accompanying musicians are excellent too. More than worth a buy. In fact this is an essential collection item.

2-0 out of 5 stars emperor has no clothes (nor voice)
after hearing a couple of these songs on another disc and reading the reviews here, i eagerly looked forward to listening to this cd. how disappointed i was! except for a handful of tunes, these songs are horrible! am i the only person who thinks chet baker can't sing? every phrase makes me cringe. the only thing that qualifies this as 'singing' is the sweet little vibrato he tacks on at the end of phrases. it almost saves him every time. just awful. two good things: 1, finally, here's a disc where i can sing along with and not feel like i'm overmatched; 2, i 'only' paid $8 so i don't feel like i was totally jipped.

if you're considering this cd, you MUST listen to the samplers here, AND go down to your local cd store and ask them to let you listen to the other cuts. THEN AND ONLY THEN should you shell out the $$$. ... Read more


14. The Best of the Song Books
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Asin: B0000046R2
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Sales Rank: 4605
Average Customer Review: 4.86 out of 5 stars
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Trying to cull a single-CD "Best of" from the 16-CD set of The Complete Ella Fitzgerald Song Books may seem like a daunting task, but it's also foolproof. The complete set is a monument to the century's greatest songs and, arguably, its greatest singer, and this selection is a series of gems programmed to simulate a Fitzgerald performance, carefully sequencing joyous uptempo swingers and moving ballads. Recorded between 1956 and 1964, Fitzgerald's finest years, the CD includes arrangements by Nelson Riddle, Billy May, and Buddy Bregman, as well as a superb rendering of "I've Got It Bad" with the Ellington orchestra and Johnny Hodges. Balancing the orchestral settings are some intimate small-group performances, including a witty rendition of Cole Porter's "Miss Otis Regrets" and Rodgers and Hart's "Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered." This is an ideal introduction to the "Song Books," a selection so good it will appeal to owners of the box sets. --Stuart Broomer ... Read more

Reviews (29)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best of the Best of the Best
It has been awhile since I have read all of the wonderful reviews for this CD. As the man who chose the songs, sequenced them and wrote the album notes, it is one of the high points of my career that so many of you love listening to this CD as much as I did making it. It was indeed a difficult assignment, narrowing down all the songs from Ella's songbook series to just these, but I hope I put in something for everybody. I agree that as a collection, there is no better representation of the best of singing, songwriting and musical arranging available.

Before I sound egotistical about it, remember that the reason the collection is so good is because Ella Fitzgerald is singing; Gershwin, Porter, Rodgers, Hart, Berlin, Ellington, Arlen, Kern and Mercer did the writing; and Bregman, Riddle, May, Strayhorn and Weston did the arranging.

What could possibly be better?

5-0 out of 5 stars Absolutely perfect
This was the first Ella Fitzgerald CD I ever bought. I haven't regretted it since.

This music has such warm tones to it, like "Love Is Here To Stay" and "I've Got My Love To Keep Me Warm." I got this CD just before a large snowstorm in my town, and I listened to it as the snow fell down onto the ground, and it was sublime. I challenge you to do that and not feel warm and secure.

This CD is also great for introducing a young person to Ella Fitzgerald - most of it is very listenable. You get a wide selection of styles, like upbeat tunes (Something's Gotta Give), ballads (Miss Otis Regrets), and loves songs (Love Is Here To Stay).

All in all: a must-have.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Great Songbird of the Great American Songbook
Is there any song in the Songbooks that she did not record?

She was the First Lady of Jazz, she was a multi-Grammy awardee, she was a terrific and versatile singer who has worked with almost all of the jazz giants, the Count, the Duke, the King, the Goodman, the Gillespie, the Ol' Blue Eyes, and the list goes on and on, she has recorded thousands of songs, she was a melody's best friend...the legendary Ms. Ella Fitzgerald.

This is one of the best compilations of the Songbooks series. It features a repertoire of 16 classics. Top 5 tracks for me are: Gershwin Brothers' "Love Is Here To Stay", "S 'Wonderful" and "They Can't Take That Away From Me"; Irving Berlin's "I've Got My Love To Keep Me Warm"; Rodgers and Hart's "Bewitched, Bothered And Bewildered". My second choices are: Arlen's "Hooray For Love" and "Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea", Cole Porter's "Every Time We Say Goodbye" and The Duke's "I've Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)".

This CD is a gem. I highly recommend it. It's a great addition to Great American Songbook collection.

4-0 out of 5 stars Ella at her best
It seems unfair to give this masterful collection four rather than five stars for what can only be termed religious reasons, but there you go. An outstanding CD, capturing Fitzgerald in all her perfection. If you love her, it's all here, but I find myself wishing she put more personality, more emotion, more soul into her music. In that spirit, I take one star and give it to Sarah Vaughan, my favorite jazz vocalist of them all.

5-0 out of 5 stars Sweet, Sweet Ella
This collection of songs-- the best of the Cole Porter Songbooks- is a must-have if you're an Ella fan, or just interested in Ella in general.

Who can resist that lovely voice? Those wonderful songs? Ella Fitzgerald sings these songs the way they should be sung. ... Read more


15. A Charlie Brown Christmas: The Original Sound Track Recording Of The CBS Television Special
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Asin: B000000XDJ
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 50
Average Customer Review: 4.92 out of 5 stars
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The first time you listen to this disc you will undoubtedly be transported directly back to your childhood. Charles Schulz's Peanuts characters will go toe-tapping and funky-dancing through your mind's eye. Play it a few more times, though (ignoring the dialogue snippets, if you can), and you will begin to truly revel in Guaraldi's wonderful, humorous, deep piano playing. You'll hear why he's such an influence on new age ivory tickler George Winston, but you'll also realize that Winston's holiday music never quite sparkles with the underlying passion, and humor, that twinkles in these grooves. Buy it for the nostalgia--keep it because it will remain one of the most enchanting albums in your holiday collection. --Michael Ruby ... Read more

Reviews (130)

5-0 out of 5 stars An all-time Christmas classic!
Thanks (so much) to the timeless annual television special which delights us each December, it's difficult to find a collection of songs which touch the inner child in quite the way A Charlie Brown Christmas does. The late Vince Guaraldi's brilliant interpretations of these holiday standards are borderline genius---tailor-made to reflect the Peanuts characters' pursuit of integrity and meaning as adults trapped inside little children. As good a true jazz piano record as anyone will find, this treasure chest echoes of many happy Christmases past, and warms the heart and soul like nothing before or since.

There simply aren't enough positive adjectives to describe this soundtrack. I wholeheartedly recommend it to all---those who fondly remember the TV special and look forward to its return every year; those who desire to add a slightly different flavor to their yuletide music collection; and those who enjoy fine jazz, by an artist whose immense talent was barely realized, but fortunately captured here. And pardon the cliche', but like a fine holiday wine, this one only betters as it ages. Drink it in as it rekindles your most joyous childhood memories.

STAR TRACKS: Classic carols "O Tannenbaum," "What Child Is This" (extended later on the album as its traditional "Greensleeves"), and "The Christmas Song" each are delivered in a style unlike any holiday chestnuts, but "My Little Drum," a lovely interpretation of "The Little Drummer Boy," is a far more stirring rendition than the famous original it borrows from. "Christmas Is Coming" and the ebullient "Linus and Lucy" are spirited, youthful celebrations guaranteed to raise a smile on anyone, anywhere, at anytime. But for pure imagistic splendor, the beautifully desolate "Christmas Time Is Here" (performed twice, once with a small children's choir) and the colorful "Skating" may be the album's most evocative numbers, transporting the listener into the story's animated world which every one of these enchanting songs so perfectly support.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Stocking Stuffer
This is one Christmas CD you should have in your collection! If you already have it, give it to someone special!

Vince Guaraldi's soundtrack to the 1965 classic TV special A Charlie Brown Christmas helped incorporate the style of music that became known with Charlie Brown specials (he would do several more soundtracks for Charlie Brown TV specials and their 1st movie until his untimely death in 1977).

This is more than just a soundtrack, as there are many pieces not featured in the special ("My Little Drum", a variation of The Little Drummer Boy, "The Christmas Song", "Greensleeves", and "What Child Is This").

Then of course come the songs from tne special. There's the original compositions "Christmastime Is Here", which opens the special, "Linus and Lucy", which would be featured in many of the other Charlie Brown specials for years, and "Christmas Is Coming" (a bossa nova number, which sounds a little like Richie Valens' "La Bamba"). Of course, you have the traditional Christmas carols included like "O Tanenbaum" (if you close your eyes, you can almost picture Charlie Brown and Linus shopping for the perfect Christmas tree!) and "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" (which closes the TV special. Sorry, you don't get the anticlimactic "MERRY CHRISTMAS, CHARLIE BROWN!".). Then there's the ode to Schroeder's favorite all-time composer, Beethoven, who as Lucy points out "never got his picture on a bubble gum card" with "Fur Elise" (you can almost picture Schroeder tickling the ivories as you hear this!).

4-0 out of 5 stars Reminds me of being a little kid watching Charlie Brown.
This is a great CD! It takes you back to when you were a little kid on the couch watching the Charlie Brown christmas special.
I think it will make a great CD to play around the holidays. =)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Definitive Christmas Album
This album is an absolute MUST HAVE. It is what Christmas is all about, a true masterpiece. No contest as my favorite Christmas album.

5-0 out of 5 stars Still the best Christmas Album Ever...
I first bought this LP (yes, LP) when I found it in a dusty used album bin, about 2 blocks from Fantasy Records in Berkeley where it was recorded. The album was in perfect condition, so I made a tape copy that got played year after year. Eventually I wore the tape out, so I took out my pristine album and made another copy. No one I knew had the LP or knew where to find it, so they'd ask me to make them a tape. I wouldn't copy the LP directly - it was priceless to me - though I'd lend out the tape for them to copy. Eventually someone never returned it, so I made yet another copy from the LP. I wore that one out too, but by then they'd issued the CD and I bought that. The CD had one or two tracks the LP didn't have, and to be honest they added little for me - the LP as it stood was perfect. A few years later a bunch of my CDs were stolen, so I bought it again, which is my current copy.

There really isn't any more to be said about this CD. Everyone's seen the show, and the music of Vince Guaraldi is timeless. One of the all-time greatest jazz musicians, Guaraldi had a unique and almost universally liked style few, if any, modern musicians can touch. The soundtrack has taken on a life of its own - play it at a party and people will smile and relax as they are almost subconsciously transported back to childhood.

The Christmas season starts for me right after Thanksgiving, when I first play "A Charlie Brown Christmas". Through all the hassles of traffic, shopping, cooking, cleaning, and the overall holiday rush, this CD always reminds me of the true meaning of Christmas, what this season is truly about. And I still take out and admire securely-stored LP version which I will never give up. ... Read more


16. Jazz Samba Encore!
list price: $14.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B0000046WB
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 8521
Average Customer Review: 4.69 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (13)

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the Greatest Albums Ever Created ie. a masterpiece
Luiz Bonfa's playing is as beautiful as Stan Getz's playing is as good as Maria Toledo's singing. After several years I still can't get over how good these three are, and how beautiful each arrangement is - Antonio Carlos Jobim lent a hand with the arrangements and also appears on several tracks playing the piano in his distinct and most singinglike way. There are upbeat sambas as well as some incredibly moving slower tracks. Their version of "Insensatez" is, without doubt, the most beautiful ever recorded.

It's such a treat to hear such wonderful music!

Both Stan Getz and Luiz Bonfa as masterful "singers" of their instruments. Everything they play on this album is singable; and I give you my personal guarantee that they will give you goose bumps, make your eyes water, spine tingle. Maria Toledo's voice is one of a kind - powerful, with a dark but sensitive tone.

Writing these things now as I ponder the effect "Jazz Samba Encore" has had on me, I realise that I am in love with the album. Everything I could and would say about it will be written from the perspective of one dizzy and confused by his emotions. It is impossible for me to retain a cool, unaffected tone in my writing because of my feelings for the album. As a result, I risk hyperbole and sickly attempts to poeticize upon what really speaks for itself - sample the music, keeping in mind that the initial beauty that strikes you will continue as you come to know the album better and the subtleties reveal themselves. Everyone who hears this album loves this album.

5-0 out of 5 stars It will haunt you forever.
'Jazz Samba Encore' is a more muted affair than its predecessors 'Jazz Samba' and 'Big Band'. Although featuring both men, the emphasis is more on Luiz Bonfa than Antonio Carlos Jobim, and Bonfa's songs 'lack' Jobim's pop instincts, favouring a restrained, more groove-based effect, which can be quietly intoxicating, Getz's melancholy sax contributing to the mood. Even more upbeat songs like 'So Danco Samba', despite its title, are more of a late night shuffle than a beach monster.

The effect can be largely attributed to singer Maria Toledo, whose strangely disembodied voice haunts the songs. She is rarely the focus, floating in and out of the background like a presiding ghost. Even in a song she clearly dominates, such as 'Insensatez', a phantosmagoric quality makes her vanish into the precious sadness of this song which, with Jobim's understated, unbearably poignant piano, is surely the most beautiful ever written.

5-0 out of 5 stars grbouder56
This is just what the title implies. ENCORE. Great Jazz Samba music for listening.

5-0 out of 5 stars Magical Mystery Tour
A fella from Madrid (I'm above 13 years):
I think Sgt. Peppers; Ziggy Stardust, ............and Jazz Samba Encore! are a must have. Luiz Bonfa's solos takes your heart and Getz fills all the amazing space. Smoke something, fix yourself a drink and
enjoy the Magical Mystery Tour.

5-0 out of 5 stars A MUST have Master Piece
This album should get a rating of 6 in the scale of 5. Is incredible how a guitar, a saxophone can make exquisite harmony with the addition of just percussion and a bass. Master Bossa Nova masters Luiz Bonfa and Stan Getz leave a great legacy no other instrumental album in the history of Bossa Nova has done.

If you are a Bossa Nova, Jazz or guitar afficionado, this is a must have album. Luiz Bonfa, the one and only player that "makes a guitar sound like and orchetra by itself", proves to the world that he is indeed has earned the respect of his peers as the "one and only". I guarantee you, once you listen to this album, you will be looking for Luiz Bonfa music all over. I did.

And for Stan Getz, can someone else make a sax create moods of happiness, melancoly, sadness etc...

The combo of Getz and Bonfa is an incredible harmony of one master speaking to the other via their instruments.

I have heard nearly all Bossa Nova music and others alike. I highly recommend this album. Once you listen to it, you will be listening to it over and over. The guitar improvisation will make you think, "how in the world can someone play like this". And you will then be writing the next review like me in here. ... Read more


17. Moon Beams
list price: $12.97
our price: $11.99
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Asin: B000000YNZ
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 3944
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Album Details

Japanese Extended Resolution (Xrcd) 20Bit Remaster. ... Read more

Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars One of Bill Evans most beautiful recordings!
This is by far one of the most beautiful recordings made by the Bill Evans trio. This was I'm told Bill's first all ballads record. Riverside records released it on vinyl way back in 1962. None of the music sounds dated. considering it's 41 years old. This is the first recording Bill made with Chuck Israels taking over for the late Scott Lafaro as the bass player. This album has a very haunting and romantic feeling to it. The music is sad in tone and suggests feelings of longing and sobering reflection. One goal that Bill always strived for was to ballance intellect with passion to make intelligent and original sounding jazz. I dont even know if jazz is the right stamp to put on this recording. To me it sounds more like European classical music. Also thank god for Bill's college music theory teacher at Southeastern University Gretchen Magee. Because if it werent for her motivation {Evans often thought of his work as unsatisfactory and sometimes needed alot of motivation from from bandmates and peers} he might not have composed his gorgeous original composition "Very Early" {which is the last track on the CD its just breathtaking...}Being an amature pianist myself, "Very early" and "childrens play song" were the first two Evans' compositions I taught myself to play. The piece is a composition played in C major at a slow waltz tempo. He played the tune until the end of his life in 1980, but the original version on "moonbeams" might be the all around finest one. It is given a very slow and delicate treatment, and when he restates the theme at the end you can almost feel an imagrey of leaves or snow falling gently around you. I also really like his interpretation of "It might as well be spring". I think that Bill Evans was a beautiful person and pianist because he was never flashy and this album proves that. He didnt play anything he didnt have to. He always played just the right amount of notes and chords. With this record it all comes together coherently to make a truly stunning musical statement. Evans once told Tony Bennet to forget everything else and just concentrate on "truth and beauty." With the album "moonbeams" fans of Evans' music and important legacy will clearly be able to hear his own truth and beauty about life glowing from this gorgeous album. Highly recommended!

5-0 out of 5 stars Purple-Tinted Masterpiece
Bill Evans has been called the Chopin of Jazz, and MOON BEAMS, perhaps moreso than any other album, shows you the reasons why. Like the composer of the NOCTURNES, Evans in this collection of understated ballads evinces a nocturnal after-hours feel, a haunted sense of melancholy that nevertheless doesn't slide over into lugubriousness, a poetic sensitivity to phrasing, and an incredibly sure touch that registers the subtle gradations of pianissimo. In addition, Evans, employing his gorgeous and instantly recognizable tone, is such an intelligent, tasteful and unflashy player he almost promotes the illusion as he goes along that his improvisations are inevitable and definitive and could hardly have been phrased or stated in any other way -- almost as if they'd been scored ahead of time. Finally, though he was no minimalist, Evans NEVER overplays, and that phenomenon is such a rarity in post-Swing jazz that it is to be avidly cherished by any serious lover of this music (it is also one of the reasons why Evans can be listened to with enjoyment by people who are otherwise unreceptive to modern jazz).

This recording is ideally to be listened to after midnight, in a dimly lit room -- preferably with your significant other -- with snifters in hand as you blow smoke rings at the ceiling and ponder the romantic possibilities of life. Yes, it really is that gorgeous.

5-0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous
Bill Evans is a musician you never tire of listening to. He has the ability to play a tune freshly, every time. This recording is, in my opinion, his finest. The first date after the untimely death of Scott LaFaro, this album is beautiful ,melodic and haunting. Every tune is played with typical Evans genius, but on this session he seems to be expressing his musical ideas with even more flavor and emotion. The first cut is the most expressive and emotive I have ever heard in the trio setting. I am sure it was dedicated to LaFaro, even though it supposedly is an anagram for the producer of the date, Orrin Keepnews. Evans expresses his passion, joy and grief for his young bassist in every note and the result is, to my mind, stunning. I love Chuck Israels' bass lines and the chords Evans plays quietly over the bass solo are beautiful and ephemeral. Every tune on this CD is wonderful, the playing of everyone is at such a high level of creativity that this music will live on forever. This is a can't miss choice if you like piano music.

5-0 out of 5 stars It Might As Well Be Spring!
This is the "perfect" ballads album from Bill. As strong as silk thread, tender and moving all at the same time!

When you see him bends his back, lower his head down, eyes closed, fingers gently touching the keys....how can you not be moved with this recording? Man!

Read his books and you understand how this is a shy, loving man who just pours himself anytime he produces the music. Simply one of the most intelligent persons in the music business, before and after, he is here with the carefully selected tunes to accomodate his sensitive side, thumbs up to Orrin Keepnews who compiled this only all-ballads album from Evans!

Check out If You Could See Me Now....or I Fall In Love Too Easily..you'll understand how this man can simply describe the color of the rainbow and the soft radiant evenings with fewest notes possible...carefully arranged, simply astonishing! How did he do it?

The mover, the shaker, the genius that inspires the millions, the center of the soft glowing light, here it is: Bill Evans!

5-0 out of 5 stars the quintessentially nocturnal bill evans album
i give this album 5 stars simply because every track is stunningly sublime. the mood of the album is much grayer and introspective than bill's other albums (although its hard to be more introspective than bill already is), as 'moonbeams' was one of the first albums evans recorded after the accidental death of Scott LaFaro, the transcendental virtuoso bassist who formed the most 'simultaneous improvisation' trio jazz has ever seen (along with paul motian on drums).

evans respected laFaro as a musician held him in the highest regard. after laFaro's death (10 days after the Village Vanguard show) evans took a short sabbatical from music. this album shows bill coming out of this depressing cave, at night, rediscovering the moon and stars...

the disc is worth the first track alone 're: person i knew,' a track probably dedicated to lafaro. evans himself recorded this composistion on other occasions (one of my favorites, on the 1970 'from left to right' album which features evans on the fender/rhodes electric piano). evans probes the keys, searching for a reply to some anguish.

the rest of the tracks are marvelous gems of nightmusic; this is also the only evans CD which features all ballads. if you are looking for an evans album that 'swings' dont buy this one (opt for 'everybody digs bill evans'). this music does not swing; it sways, broods, subtly swimming in the night;

incidentally, the title (and the track 'moonbeams and polka dots') comes from a bud powell (probably the biggest pianist to influence evans) track by the name of...well...'moonbeams and polka dots' ... Read more


18. Capitol Sings Cole Porter: Anything Goes
list price: $11.98
our price: $10.99
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Asin: B00000DRCN
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 10022
Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (5)

3-0 out of 5 stars Pleasant But Seldom Memorable
The 1950s and 1960s found Capitol Records with a bright roster of recording artists who specialized in pop classics--and in the course of their Capitol careers many of them took a crack at a Cole Porter song or two, with this compilation the result. And although pleasant enough, taken as a whole it is surprisingly innocuous.

Some of the selections are a bit strange. Judy Garland was a truly memorable performer who could work wonders with a Porter song--but "I Happen to Like New York," one of Porter's truly minor works, is not particularly suited to her gifts. Helen O'Connell was a gifted vocalist, but in similar fashion her style is somewhat at odds with the delicate and formal "In The Still of the Night"--a song specifically written with a male vocalist in mind.

Even so, all of the artists, including those whose luster has faded with the passing years, give at least respectable showings--and here and there a diamond pops out at you, as in Peggy Lee's "From Now On," Louis Prima's "I've Got You Under My Skin," and Nancy Wilson's "You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To." But by and large, this is really Cole Porter reduced to background music for a 1960-ish suburban cocktail party: pleasant, but not remarkable enough to stop conversation.

GFT, Amazon Reviewer

4-0 out of 5 stars A Clarification
I must clarify a point in Mr. Lawrance M. Bernabo's review. When one speaks of Cole Porter's lyrics, one must remember he didn't write all of them. For songs from "Anything Goes" he partnered with the man few people remember as having penned the words to the most concurrent Broadway hits ever back in the beginning of the last century: Jeeves' author P.G. Wodehouse. If you listen to some of those lyrics and then cast your mind to the wacky world of Bertie Wooster, The Drones, et. al., it begins to become evident. And what a wonderful pairing Porter and Wodehouse were!

As for the CD itself, it seems to be wonderful. The only limitation is the "Capitol" label. So many fine versions, which might make an even better collection if mixed in, don't happen to live in their domain.

2-0 out of 5 stars contrarian view
As a long-time fan of Cole Porter, I found this recording a mishmash of vocalists promoting their own singing style and mangling the purity of the composer's work. What was done to "Begin the Beguine" is beyond description.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Series -- Perfect Gift
There are a couple of these series of composer's "songbooks" culled from the archives of various record labels. The Verve series and the "Capitol Sings" are the best of the bunch. The Capitol collections tend to be a bit more pop, while the Verve disc are "jazzier," but with artists like Stan Kenton, Gerry Mulligan, Peggy Lee and Nancy Wilson, Capitol was no slouch in the jazz department, either.

This collection is especially fine, start to finish. It's a nicely diverse selction of Porter tunes performed in a variety of styles, from Broadway to near be-bop. It's impossible, even if you're a fan of the more improvisational stuff, not to love Judy's Garland's weirdly majestic "I Happen to Like New York" or the tender Jo Stafford/Gordon McCrae "Wunderbar." And hooray for Louis and Keely, and Peggy Lee with George Shearing, for giving us fresh treatments of canonical tunes that make them evergreen.

This is a great gift for people who don't know how great the American pop standard can be.

5-0 out of 5 stars Yeah, Cole Porter's tunes, but man those lyrics!
It is interesting to note that until you get to the last three tracks on "Anything Goes," the Capitol Sings collection of Cole Porter tunes, the songs are arranged in alphabetical order from "All of You" by Annie Ross to "You're the Top" by June Turner. Go figure. The main thing is that these songs harken back to the old days when hearing the words was important to enjoying the song. Certainly Cole Porter's lyrics are even more fun than his melodies. "Anything Goes" features the standard mix of big names such as Peggy Lee, Tony Bennett, Dean Martin and Nat King Cole with lesser known talents such as Martha Tilton, June Christie, Jeri Southern, Trudy Richards and Jean Turner. Actually, this album probably has more great songs by the latter group than any other in the Capitol Sings series. The lasting appeal of Porter's songs is represented by having songs covered by both Judy Garland and her daughter Liza Minelli. It is really hard to just pick a few favorites from this one: Gordon MacRae's "Begin the Beguine," Tony Bennett's "Anything Goes" with Count Basie, Louis Prima and Keely Smith ripping through "I've Got You Under My Skin," and Jo Stafford and Gordon MacRae's tender duet of "Wundebar" easily spring to mind. This album also features a couple of previously unreleased tracks: Martha Tilton singing "Blow, Gabriel, Blow" and Chris Connor's cover of "I Get A Kick Out Of You." As always you get a wide mix of musical stylings, from the most up-tempo version of "In the Still of the Night" you will ever hear done by Helen O'Connell to a somewhat slow but still swinging version of "True Love" by Dino. With "Anything Goes" you will hear some quite different versions of your favorite Porter tunes gathered from the Capitol vaults, and virtually every song has those remarkably witty lyrics. ... Read more


19. Ultra-Lounge, Vol. 14: Bossa Novaville
list price: $11.98
our price: $10.99
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Asin: B000002UH7
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 13092
Average Customer Review: 4.71 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (17)

5-0 out of 5 stars Have I got a companion CD for you !!
If you like the Bossa Nova lounge sound, you will really like the variations on the theme here in Bossa-Novaville. So why stop at this ?? ....You must get the coolest of the Bossa-Nova CD's: THE COMPOSER PLAYS - On this CD you will find only orchestral versions of the music of Antonio Carlos Jobim. Jobim brought the Bossa Nova sound to America in the early sixties !! You will find it listed under Antonio Carlos Jobim. I owned the original LP in 1964 and now it is re-born as a CD. You will love it. !!

4-0 out of 5 stars Bossa Smooth
Although I like all the tracks on this CD, I have a difficult time getting past the first (So Danco Samba). I keep playing it over and over. And over. Sometimes I forget just how great Denny's tracks on it are. And the perennial 'One Note Samba'. In a noisy world of angry or tedious tunes (and people), this is a sweet reminder of how pleasant 'pleasant music' can be. It's not a collection of elevator tunes. It's the real deal.

5-0 out of 5 stars Martini Music For Glenn Beck Fans
Meditation (Meditacáo) by Laurindo Almeida And The Bossa Nova All Stars is reason enough alone to buy this. And I think you know what I'm sayin'

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the best in the "Ultra Lounge" series
This is by far one of the best in the ultra hip, ultra cool, "Ultra Lounge" series. For those of you who are new to the "Ultra Lounge" experience, thsi CD will take you back in time to the 1960's lounge era. This CD in particular has a very relaxing feel to it and although there are some songs that may sound a little cheezy compared to the true authentic bossa nova music from the pioneers like João & Astrud Gilberto or Antonio Carlos Jobim, it still delivers a good presentation of bossa nova inspired lounge songs. But some of the artists on this CD, such as Walter Wanderley, are in fact Brazilian. Finally, for those of you who are already familiar with the "Ultra Lounge" series, this is definitely one of the best in the entire series.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best Ultra Lounge CD
This is my pick as the best Ultra Lounge CD. Every song is so silky, soft, and velvety smooth. It's the type of CD you can put on eternal repeat and never get tired of it. Yes, it's really that good. ... Read more


20. Billie, Ella, Lena, Sarah
list price: $9.98
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Asin: B0000029FJ
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 4192
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Creme De La Creme
There are not enough adjectives for the tremendous impact of this recording - all it takes is one play - one memory - cascades! These ladies are to "Die For".

5-0 out of 5 stars Billie, Ella, Lena, Sarah - their best was yet to come.
This collection was first issued in the mid '50s as "Ella, Lena and Billie" - Sarah was added later - and if you don't know these great vocalists by their first names, you must be from the Moon. The sessions by Billie and Ella are from the '30s, and Lena's sessions are from 1941. Most of these numbers were recorded with a Teddy Wilson-led band which included several of Basie's sidemen. The Sarah Vaughn numbers were recorded in 1950 with a lineup that included Miles Davis on trumpet. It's wonderful to hear these singers in the early stages of their careers. The sound quality is better than one might expect.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great sample of early jazz queens !!
This album introduced me to jazz a couple of years ago. Now, I'm a big fan. I know the work of Amstrong, Chet Baker, Stan Getz, Nina Simone and others. Still, this is the best I have.The lyrics, instrumental richness and even the imperfect recording quality makes it really charming and beautiful. Horne's emotion in "Prisioner of Love" and all Sarah's performances give it an extra star. ... Read more


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