Must-have CDs for upright jazz ???

Discussion in 'Recordings [DB]' started by crocau, Oct 29, 2004.

  1. Hi ! I wish to improve my old-school jazz library (and culture) ! In these days, i'm always listening to Keith Jarrett Trio, Patitucci, Mingus play-along, Meyer-O'connor-YoyoMA, Jazz at the Pawnshop 1&2, blue note and verve collections and that kind of stuff. :confused:

    Please give me your list of must-have upright bass jazz albums. No compilations, a little variety, no fusion, no electric bass. :p

    My ears are thanking you in advance !
  2. If you want mainly bass, try one of the Superbass discs with Ray Brown, Christian McBride, and John Clayton.
  3. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    Personal favorites
    1.MOTION - Lee Konitz, Sonny Dallas, Elvin Jones
    THE best quarter note line, par none

    2.THE ARRIVAL OF VICTOR FELDMAN - Victor Feldman, Scotty LaFaro, Stan Levey
    Scotty at about 19, he just takes over this record

    3.ALL NIGHT SESSIONS - Hampton Hawes, Jim Hall, Red Mitchell, Bruz Freeman (I think). Red before he switched tunings, very swinging, very melodic. The solo on THESE FOOLISH THINGS is transcribed in Todd Coolman's HISTORY OF BASS book

    4.JIMMY RANEY LIVE IN PARIS - Jimmy Raney, Sonny Clark, Red Mitchell and I can't remember the drummer (EDIT:Bobby White). Great group, great feel, great ideas. Recorded in 59.

    5. JIMMY RANEY LIVE IN TOKYO - Jimmy Raney, Sam Jones, Leroy Washington. recorded in the 70s, very swinging and solid work from Sam.

    6. JIM HALL LIVE - Jim Hall, Don Thompson, Terry Clark

    7.WALTZ FOR DEBBIE - Bill Evans, Scotty LaFaro, Paul Motian. More killer Scott.

    8. CONFERENCE OF THE BIRDS - Sam Rivers, Anthony Braxton, Dave Holland, Barry Altschul

    9. THE REAL NEAL - Doug White, Chris Bergson, Neal Miner, Joe Strasser. Newer on the scene, but such a solid musician. Great sound, great ideas.

    10.GROOVY - Red Garland, Paul Chambers, Art Taylor. One of the swingingest rhythm sections around, this is like having cake AND pie.

    There's LOTS more, but that's a nice cross section. These are all records I've spent a LOT of time with.
  4. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    A slightly different approach:

    1. Duke Ellington 1938-40 -- the Jimmy Blanton years. This is where it all begins.

    2. The New Oscar Pettiford Sextet -- The first jazz bass virtuoso.

    3. Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus -- So much creativity in such a groovin' package

    4. Wes Montgomery with the Wynton Kelly Trio -- Smokin' at the Half Note -- a fine later recording date by Paul Chambers

    5. Bob Brookmeyer Quartet -- Live at Sandy's a/k/a Small Band featuring Michael Moore at his finest, and that's damn fine.

    6. Sonny Rollins Quartet with Doug Watkins -- Saxophone Colossus -- old school bass-playing at its essence


    A few entries in the "Not old school" category:

    a. The Bill Evans Trio -- Live at the Village Vanguard with Scott LaFaro -- 43 years and counting, and there's more freedom in this bass-playing than on most records released last year.

    b. Chick Corea's Return to Forever -- Light as a Feather featuring 20-year-old Stanley Clarke re-defining the double bass.

    c. Dave Holland Quintet -- Not for Nothin' -- my favorite record from the past five years, for amazing writing and playing

    d. Bill Evans & Eddie Gomez -- Intuition -- A terrific duo record; my favorite old Gomez

    Happy hunting & have fun!
  5. Sam, A great list ,although not to be a Jazz History Snob on a Bassists recorded history[Paul Chambers] I do have a record Paul recorded w. Wynton Kelly Trio in 1968[Paul passed away in 69] Not his best playing , So your comment on his final recording would be pretty much correct from the quility of his playing as the last several of his life he really started to lose it.But he did do several dates in his later years.
  6. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    Nice stuff: Sam, Ed ,Mark,
    You guys picked some of LP/CD's I would of recommended.
    So l 'll suggest some others:
    1) Miroslav Vitous- "Mountain In The Clouds"- Atlantic. with
    Joe Henderson, Herbie, John Mclaughlin, Joe Chambers,
    & Jack Dejohnette. prefusion- on Freedom Jazz Dance. Miroslav does great solo work on the other tracks too. May not be your taste- tho.

    2) Albert Stinson- under Clare Fischer " 2nd Trio." Pacific Jazz. LP. Not sure if it's on CD.

    3) Oscar Pettiford-"The Finest of O.P." Bethlehem. Stardust is great solo piece.

    4) Oscar Pettiford-under Helen Merrill 's "Helen Merrill" EmArcy. with Clifford Brown.

    5) Morrison Peck- under Charlie Rouse's "Unsung Hero" Epic. The other side of Charlie- straight ahead.

    6) Paul Chambers-under Frank Strozier's " Fantastic Frank Strozier". VeeJay. with Booker Little.

    7) Paul Chambers- under Art Pepper's " Art Pepper Meets The Rhythm Section". Contemporary.

    8) Doug Watkins-"Watkins At Large" Transistion/ BN. Japan
    import Lp. or BN "Transistion Double CD.-not sure??

    9) Doug Watkins-under Jackie McLean's" The Jackie McLean Quintet". Jubliee.

    10) Scott LaFaro-under Booker Little's "Booker Little" Time.

    11) Art Davis- under Booker Little's "Booker Little 4" UA. Cd has 2 extra tracks with Phineas Newborn & Jamal Nasser(Ahmad Jamal's bassist) who takes some nice solos.

    12) Red Mitchell-"The Red Mitchell- Harold Land Quintet- Hear Ye- Hear Ye". Atlantic. If you look at the cover- Red's holding a 5 String DB- unusual for a '62 recording.

    Does anyone know the make of the Red's 5 string bass??

    13) Tony Dumas- under JJ Johnson & Nat Adderley's "The Yokohma Concert" Pablo Live. Tony does play electric on
    some of tunes, but I like the album for his upright playing.

    14) Eugene Wright- any of Chet Baker's albums " Grooving, Bobbin', Cookin', etc .Prestige.Lp's with George Coleman. Issued as CD 3'fer?? with George Coleman.

    15) Ray Brown " With The All-Star Big Band" Guest Soloist: Cannonball Adderley. Verve Lp. Ray does great solo work &
    duet with Cannonball -cello & upright. Don't know if it came out on CD.

    16) Sam Jones-"Something New" 12 Piece Band. Interplay. nice solo work with a big band. Again don't know if it came out on CD.

    17) Sam Jones " Visitation" SteepleChase. Nice solo work by
    Terumasa Hino- trumpet, Bob Berg- sax and Sam. Not sure
    if it's available on CD. Has been reissued on audiophile vinyl.
  7. larry

    larry Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2004
    Oscar Peterson Trio w/ Ray Brown
    "We Get Requests" Is one of my favs.

    And Oscar Pettiford on
    Monk's "Monk Plays Duke Ellington"
  8. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    Are you talking about Wynton Kelly's "Blues On Purpose" .Xanadu. recorded in July - August 1965?
    I just dug the LP out as you got my curiosity...
  9. Dennis,
    The album is called "The Last Trio Session" Wynton Kelly Trio and is on Delmark records out of Chicago.
    The recording date is listed as August 4,1968.
    The trio sounds pretty good ,although I believe it must of been the record company who had artistic control of the song selections .They are mixing some rock tunes of the day w.some blues and ballads.Tunes like 'Light my Fire', "Say alittle Prayer for Me", and 'Yesterday' are among the choices on this record.
    As I stated before Paul Chambers sounds like he is on his way out,he doesn't even get one solo on the album.Fairly commercial for it's time.It says he passed away on Jan.4,1969, so this may be his last recording.
  10. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    Thanks Mark:
    I 've seen that album and always have veered away from it
    because of the song selections even tho' I do like Rock.
    It's hard for me to imagine those guys do rock standards instead of the usual jazz standards. And Paul not taking any
    solos too.
    I suggest the Xandau recording if you' re Paul complete-ist.
    The recording itself is not too good- kinda murky sounding and bass is very soft. Musically it's pretty good -Paul takes
    some good blues solos- not his best but I like to hear how
    those guys sound live -mistakes and all. It gives you a better prespective of them being human as well as them being the supermen.
  11. BassGreaser


    Aug 22, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Mingus is one of my fave jazz bassist! He's just out there....but I PC is on the top of my list. The first time I heard his sound I thought he was using steel strings. THen I learned he used guts. To me PC has the best old school Upright jazz sounds ever!!! :D
  12. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    A lady in the audience last night gave me a copy of the Monty Alexander trio CD entitled "Full Steam Ahead", with Ray Brown. Like most Monty albums, I have a hard time getting through it in one sitting, there's just so much piano. But Ray is just unstoppable, like a f***in' freight train. Unbelievable bass sound.

    It features a hilarious over-top-version of "Satisfaction".
  13. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    Actually Paul did change to steel strings on of the last albums he recorded with Teddy Edwards- "Nothin" But The Truth!" Prestige 7518 LP. (1967).

    I was chatting with the late Teddy after his gig at Standford
    Univ in July 7 '02 and he mentioned that to me. Nice guy too-
    and got him to autograph my album- "Good Gravy" Contemporary M3592. :D

    Wish I had a digital camera at that time so I could of taken a photo with him. :(
  14. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Speaking of Mingus....just had to listen to "Free Cell Block F, 'Tis Nazi USA" before bed. Felt better after...

    Mingus, now there was a great American.
  15. I would like to thank you for all of the suggestions.

    The sad thing is a lot of the CD you suggested or either very expensive or hard to find.

    I have bought CDs with Mingus, Paul Chambers and Scott Lafaro. I will listen to them for a little while, a then load my credit card with some others !

    If I may contribute, my must-have jazz CD's are :

    Holly Cole trio, Don't smoke in bed, with David Piltch on bass. Well, basically, I have all of their albums but this one is the very best. The bass lines are simple, but amazing in the same time. Did I mention it is an audiophile recording ?

    Jazz at the Pawnshop 1 & 2, speaking of audiophile recording, this is one of the best recordings ever. No compression, no eq, minimal number of mikes.... There is a lot of I-IV-V forms, but these guys are all amazing, Georg Riedel on the bass is great too. Don't miss their version of Take Five. (Nice bass line in 5/4 !) You can find it on eBay.

    I'll only recommend these two, but don't miss them !
  16. Dennis Kong

    Dennis Kong Supporting Member

    Sep 1, 2004
    San Mateo CA
    I would like to thank you for all of the suggestions. (QUOTE)

    The sad thing is a lot of the CD you suggested or either very expensive or hard to find. (QUOTE)

    Thank you too. Unfortunately you 're right!!
    The domestic cds (US) are cheaper in comparision to the JA imports tho'. Sometimes the Spanish Cds are good buy-
    Fresh Sounds - Re- issues for example.

    I collect the LPs which are even more expensive than either of
    the two combined at times. (I 'm Vinyl addict with poorman's
    budget having audiophile taste.) have 3 basses to feed :( )

    I like the vinyl better than CD's for its sound (my taste).
    And makes most cd prices seem reasonable to me.( except the new JA imports .And low maintenance too. (Lps take up lot room, have to stored & cleaned properly, etc, as compared to the cd). A vinyl addicts' dilemma. :(

    There was a forum while ago on outrageous Lp's prices where some of us were shocked & amazed at prices of the original Lps.
    Sam, and others including myself were commenting on them.
    Especially if you compare the current cd price to the original Lp winning price on Ebay for certain BN albums.


    And another source is / web /radio station in the Bay Area. They' re 24 hour college station that broadcasts
    only jazz. There's lots of variety to listen to and lot of it I
    don't care too- but they do give a bigger exposure to everything.
    My favorite DJ's are Sunny Buxton on Sat mornings (he's gots lots of interesting stories about the greats
    like: Oscar Pettiford or Paul Chambers, or whoever's cds he playing.
    And Mike Vermin- He plays more the obscure recordings of the
    greats. His hours tend change a lot as he's the sub for the
    other DJ's.)
  17. larry

    larry Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2004
    Try subscribing to a service such as "Rhapsody". For $9.95 a month I can stream anything from their site. They don't have evrything, but they have a lot. A service like that is amazing for just checking out so many recordings without paying 10-15 bucks each. You can pay extra to download the tunes, but streaming them is fine for me. It has been a great way to hear more players. It's also great when I'm trying to write an arrangement for a tune. I can search for a specific tune, and find dozens of versions. I listen to them and get ideas for how I want to play them.
  18. olivier


    Dec 17, 1999
    Paris, France
    I just re-discovered Pop Pop by Rickie Lee Jones, with Charlie Haden on db. It's an excellent exemple of what can be done in a db + guitar + melody sans drums type of format.
    Very tasty. So much so that I suggest to add it to the list of must-have's
  19. The Reff

    The Reff

    Feb 11, 2004
    Soul Station - Hank Mobley, Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers and Art Blakey

    Everything with Ray Brown
  20. olivier


    Dec 17, 1999
    Paris, France
    13 pages of listings for records with RB... :meh: which one do you prefer ?