Monday, 24 December 2012

Lonnie Smith : THINK!

Lonnie Smith : THINK!
Blue Note 1968

Nothing to private press here, but this has been driving me crazy recently. 2, very heavy tracks, Son of Ice bag and the killer, The Call of the Wild which contains some of fiercest percussion out there. Just the ticket for Christmas morning hang- overs and hang- ups. 

Henry Pucho Brown on Drums, Willie Bivins and Norberto Appellaniz on congas and percussion lift these tracks to another level. Pretty damn wild for BN ...

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Barry Zweig : Desert Vision 1978

Barry Zweig : Desert Vision
Jazz Chronicles JCS 788 courtesy of Los Angeles Theaseum

Another west coast jazz rarity out of LA from 1978.

Barry Zweig : Guitar
Bobby Shew : Trumpet and Flugelhorn.
Tom Collier : Marimba, vibes and percussion.
Peter Donald : Drums.
Abraham Labortel : Bass
David Parlato : Bass

Loving this one, check out this version of Dave Gruisin's Queen Bee.

Slick ...

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

When Deep-Jazz became a Reality.

Just a few words to say a massive thank you to all those that made it to the Queens' Head on Saturday. We never really knew how this was going to turn out and if anybody would even bother to put in an appearance. It topped off quiet a special day for me, and one i will always remember. Olympia Record fair which for once came up with the goods this time. Ambiance on Ebun, some Gary Bartz, McDuff's Moon Rappin OG and Joe Henderson in Japan US original. Larry Stabbins playing Coltrane's Africa at the Royal Festival Hall, followed by DJR.

It's always difficult to know who's out there taking an interest in this obscure, abstract and impossible to label jazz. The music played that night was a culmination of many many years spent diggin' the crates, and will no doubt never end. Still, and always discovering hidden gems. 

Bacoso (damn that latin Stan Tracey drop!) has already name checked many of the players that reached and showed such enthusiastic support. Not sure if there be will another session quiet like it, but there should be another night sometime in the new year.

Saturday, 3 November 2012

17th November : Reach!

The Queen's Head
Denman Street

8 till Late.

Not for the faint hearted this one. Fierce  Jazz from the vaults of Private Press and Orgy in Rhythm's Bacoso. Rare gears from the  US to Japan. Olli, Sabu, Mtume, Shamek, McBee,  Bonner,  Chambers,  Weldon,   Hutcherson, Henderson, Tjader, Brooks, Blakey and plenty more. 

Im-Hotep, Flying Dutchman, Fontana, Chiaroscuro, Tribe, Strata-east, Nimbus, Impulse, Lightin, Vistone,  Blue Note, Fantasy, Muse, Strata, Mainstream, Judnell, Prestige and all the Private press labels will be in the shakedown. I think i'll leave the Latin gears to Bacoso, who could compete? There could be a pinch of Soul to lighten the mood. 4 Hours of darkness could be a step to far. 

It's a great location, next to the Piccadilly Theatre, in the heart of the West End. We'll be squeezed into the Function room on the 1st Floor.

Massive thanks for the Artwork  goes to Blackclassical. 
Try to reach, come along and support.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Mixed Bag's First

One of my favourite albums. Larry Nozero is the Don. Japanese loveliness abounds. Dedicated to Djalma. Dig in the bag, and dig it.

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

All Rhodes lead to Mexico

Blue Note : 1976

More rare private press gears. This time finds this Mexican only release from 1976 on NCL. Spaced out latinesque jazz of the highest order. 

Robert Aymes : Basses
Ramon Negrete : Sax
Adolph Sahun : Trumpet
Juan Ramon II : Drums
Eugenio Toussaint : Piano
Salvador Aguero : Percussion

Check the whole thing, especially La Nina de los Ojos Verdes. Hot!


Saturday, 15 September 2012

Deep-Jazz goes LIVE !!!

Katonah and Bacoso presents:

It looks like it's finally going to happen. Myself and the biggest jazz blogger on the planet, Bacoso, are planning a night of the heaviest jazz gears around. Super rare sounds will be hauled from the vaults and brought to the smart set of London. Light years from any watered down, Jazz-funk school disco disappointment, this will be for the feet, and the mind. 

No entrance fee required, but it's a small venue, just a stone's throw from Piccadilly. More details and Flyers to follow, with the date set for Saturday 17th November. 

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Byard Lancaster

A fitting tribute to the passing of Byard Lancaster compiled by Balckclassical.


Thursday, 23 August 2012


The sweetest acoustic jazz.
John Betsch on drums .......

Check this out

Monday, 13 August 2012

Caroline Peyton

Caroline Peyton : Intuition
Bar-B-Q from 1977.

A mellow break from the spiritual power jazz of recent times. Sometimes we need to step back from the wail of the tenor, the thundering bass, the frenzied conga and the crash of the cymbal. Presented here are 3 choice tracks for the discerning set. Yes, the Peterson cut "Just as We" is there, but you need to dim the lights, take a glass of Sancerre, relax and dip a toe into the Mitchell-esque "Try to be True". The soft baleful soul of "Brister" completes the trio.

Highly recommended.

Monday, 30 July 2012

Ndikho Xaba : A Gift

A Message from Mama Nomusa;

Greetings all,

On Nelson Mandela's 94th birthday - July 18, 2012 - we were honored to have Gwen Ansell, Jazz History Writer for Business Day in South Africa do an excellently crafted review of Baba Ndikho Xaba's Anthology CD - Sunsets. Click on this link to view it. Feedback is appreciated.

The CD (which includes Nomusa, Shwabada and features Ndikho on digeredoo etc.) is now available on CD Baby.

We can use all the help we can get getting the word out. And we are very grateful to you Katonah for keeping this blog going. 

Peace, Nomusa & Ndikho Xaba

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Earl Shabazz 7"

Earl Shabazz on S and M Records.

Deep, rare 7" from the early 1970's.
As it always seems to be, it's the soulful jazz support of tenor and walking bass behind the poetry that set the heavy tone to this little gem.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Errol Parker Tentet

Errol Parker Tentet
A Night in Tunisia : Sahara 1015.

Philip Harper
Michael Thomas
Doug Harris
Donald Harrison
Bill Saxton
Tyrone Jefferson
Patience Higgins
Cary de Nigris
Reggie Washington
and Errol Parker

It's time for some Errol Parker! Big band percussion business of the highest order. 

More info;

He was brought up as a Sephardic Jew, although his devotion to African roots led him to downplay that background in his adult life. He began to play African drums at the age of six in his native Algeria, and both that instrument and the music of North Africa would play an important role in the eventual development of his idiosyncratic music. At 14, he heard a jazz record for the first time -- the ex-Ellington trumpeter Rex Stewart with Stephane Grappelli -- during an intermission at a cinema in Oran, and was so overwhelmed that he not only took to the music, but switched his attentions to piano in order to play it.

He moved to Paris at the age of 18 to study sculpture at the French National School of Fine Arts, a move which allowed him to get involved in the local jazz scene. He worked with several of the notable community of American expatriates in the city during the 1950s, including drummer Kenny Clarke and saxophonists James Moody and Don Byas, as well as a local hero, guitarist Django Reinhardt.

He had a hit with a single named "Lorre" in 1963 (a recording which he freely acknowledged signalled his devotion to the style of Erroll Garner at that time, and which he later renounced as a novelty made for quick cash), but a shoulder injury sustained in road accident shortly afterwards forced him to change his style to a less floridly virtuosic approach.

He did so successfully enough to capture the attention of Duke Ellington in 1967. Ellington published two of Parker's compositions through his own music publishing company, and encouraged the pianist to move to New York, which he did in 1968. That was a period of militant politics and raised awareness of African roots within black jazz circles, and the stress on Afro-centricity revived his own interest in his early roots and musical experiences with the African drums, and in turn led him to take up drums again as his main instrument.

He evolved an original approach, using an adaptation of the hand-drumming techniques of North Africa on conventional western drum kit. He took that approach a step further when he replaced the snare drum with a conga, a move which gave his overall sound an even more African-influenced sonority. In addition, he began to place his kit at the front rather than behind his band, further emphasising the importance of the rhythmic element of his music.

Parker formed his own record label, Sahara, in 1971, and advanced his theories in his Errol Parker Experience during the 1970s, but found his most productive vehicle for his ideas in the Tentet which he established in 1983. As the name suggests, this was a ten-piece band which became his primary unit throughout the rest of his life, and its ranks included many of the up and coming stars of the New York scene, including such players as Philip Harper, Donald Harrison, Steve Coleman, both Kevin and Robin Eubanks, and Wallace Roney. 

Parker's highly integrated experiments with tonality, layered time signatures and polyphonic ensembles were rooted in the jazz mainstream as much as the legacy of his native land, but never succeeded in bringing him a wide audience. His colourful, unconventional autobiography, A Flat Tire On My Ass, was published in 1995, partly in an unsuccessful attempt to foster greater interest in the band.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Bobby Hutcherson : Happenings

Bobby Hutcherson

Rare 24bit Japanese cd release from a few years back @320.

Bobby Hutcherson
Herbie Hancock
Bob Cranshaw
Joe Chambers

Possibly the finest album of all time.

Hutcherson perfection.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Ndikho Xaba and the Natives (returns)

Ndikho Xaba : Ndikho Xaba and the Natives
1969 by Trilyte # LR-7001

Privately Pressed holy grail Afro Spiritual Jazz on the Trilyte label out of Oakland, California. Incredible music in the same vein as Tribe and Strata-East. Thought to be the first ever appearance of Plunky Branch ; Plunky & Oneness Of Juju on a vinyl record. Extremely limited private pressing which is both beautiful & moving Spiritual Free Jazz. It features long groove based tribal jams with "Freedom" being an amazing bluesy soul stomp. The album features some really moving and inspired playing, and even some vocalizing (chanting, singing) J. Plunky Branch is an acclaimed Avant Afro-Funk Jazz saxophonist from Richmond. Bassist Ken Shabala (Kent Parker) came from Brooklyn. They met in college & formed a group called the Soul Syndicate with Kent Parker the lead singer. From 1966-68 they played the New York circuit until moving to San Francisco where in 1969 they met Lon Moshe (Ron Martin) creating this African-Avant-Garde group with Ndikho Xaba. They recorded this one lone lp, led by South African pianist/percussionist, Ndikho Xaba until soon forming Plunky & Oneness Of Juju releasing their first album in 1972 and relocating to New York.

1 Shwabada
2 Freedom
3 Flight
4 Nomusa
5 Makhosi

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Bobby Hutcherson : Live at EJ's

Bobby Hutcherson : Live at EJ's.

Recorded live in Atlanta, Georgia, 8th-10th August 1980.

Bobby Hutcherson : Vibraphone
William Henderson : Piano
Heshima Williams : Bass
Eddie Moore : Bass

More pure class, from Bobby Hutcherson on this tricky to find cd. 

Part 1
Dolphin's Dance, Hancock
In your own sweet way, Brubeck
Highway One, Hutcherson

Part 2
All of you, Porter
Salt Peanuts, Gillespie/Clarke
Body and Soul, Green/Heyman/Sour/Eyton
Little B's Poem, Hutcherson
With a song in my Heart, Rodgers/Hart

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Monday, 16 April 2012

David Durrah : Sea of Nurnen

David Durrah.

Reflections in the sea of Nurnen 1975.
Idibib Productions.

This monster track is lifted from the Japanese cd compilation from 1997. Picked it up for peanuts a couple of weeks ago and haven't stopped playing it since. Top, top tune.

Monday, 9 April 2012

Karin Krog

A real favourite of mine, check Steve Swallow's bass outro on Meaning of Love, killer.

Thom Jureks's thoughts:

Recorded for Polydor, six years after her landmark Joy album, this set features Norwegian jazz iconoclast Karin Krog in the electric company of keyboardist Steve Kuhn, drummer percussionist Jon Christensen, and Steve Swallow on one of his early electric bass dates. More song-oriented than her other vanguard dates, We Could Be Flying still showcases the singer in a restless, searching frame of creativity. Obviously influenced by the work Flora Purim had done with Return to Forever and the heyday of jazz-rock fusion, Krog nonetheless puts her indelible stylistic stamp on all the material here. The best tunes here were written by Kuhn, who seems to understand the subtlest nuances in Krog's performing style, as evidenced by "Meaning of Love," with its driven, wispy Latin rhythms and melodic lines that seem to bleed into one another, capturing the softness of Krog's enunciation. The seemingly rocked-up cover of Joni Mitchell's "All I Want" feels out of place here, the band feels stilted into trying to rein themselves into the conventional cut-time signature and fixed spaces where fills are almost unwelcome. While Mitchell's own version is far looser and spacier than this, the band seems to have misunderstood her original intent in this song. The co-write between Carla Bley and Krog on "Sing Me Softly of the Blues," finds the band back on its square, swinging the blues in cool nocturnal fashion with Christensen's swinging cymbal work carries the band underneath the singer's husky contralto. The finest moment here is the funky "Raindrops, Raindrops" written by Kuhn, where his electric piano and double-time bass and drums fall in just behind Krog's shimmering, airy performance. This recording is a fine document of its time, capturing its naivete, sense of adventure, and its willingness to step outside the jazz and vanguard box while never giving in to pop convention.


Sunday, 25 March 2012


Here's a killer U-Tube recommendation from that man G.Raf. McCoy Tyner and Azar Lawrence is in there with some heavy percussion recorded live in Warsaw in 1974.


Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Don Rendell and Ian Carr LIVE (video)

Another incredible contribution.

Don Rendell, Ian Carr, Michael Garrick, David Green and Trevor Tomkins playing in France in 1968. 2 separate files, Hot Rod and Parvane. Very rare footage of the cream of British jazz.

Please leave some thanks, there's more in the pipeline.

Monday, 5 March 2012


The Underwolves : Under your Sky
Jazzanova Compost from 2001

A choice couple of tracks. Lay Down and Bird Song. Heavy sampling of Andrew Hill's Illusion and The Heath Brother's Smiling Billies Suite. The original artwork was dreadful ...

Try it

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Black Classical History of Spiritual Jazz 1955-2012

Serious about your Spiritual? Then Black Classical's got all the bases covered with this truly epic 12 hour mass.

Go Here Now ;

Friday, 10 February 2012

Electronic Sonata for Souls loved by Nature.

George Russell.
Electronic Sonata for Souls loved by Nature.

Strata East SES-19761.

Recorded live at a concert held at the Sonja Henie Niels Onstad Center for the Arts, 28th April 1969 at Hovikodden, near Olso, Norway. The concert was sponsored by Ny Musikk, the Norwegian branch of the International Society for Contemporary Music.

A truly amazing album from start to finish. The line-up:

Jan Garbarek
Manfred Schoof
Terje Rypdal
Jon Christensen
George Russell
Red Mitchell

There was a second edition of this set, recorded in Milano 1980 with different players. That one's tasty, but this is earlier version is so SPECIAL!

Friday, 3 February 2012

Back by popular demand #3

The Bobby Hutcherson Quintet.
Live at Stockholm, Sweden.

Recorded 28th July 1969.

Bobby Hutcherson : Vibes
Harold Land : Sax
Stanley Cowell : Piano
Reggie Johnson : Bass
Joe Chambers : Drums

Another installment of impossibly rare, stunning jazz. 4 tracks including Total Eclipse, Theme from Blow Up, Man on Mercury and The Peace-Maker.


Wednesday, 25 January 2012

The Billy Norine Group

The Billy Norine Group
Norinian Records NR 11754-2.

Recorded and Mixed at Baker Street Studios, Watertown Mass. April 25/26 1980.

Another incredible private press album, and a first for the world wide web. The much overlooked Billy Norine producing an amazingly percussive adventure with;

Billy Norine; Drums
Steve Olenick; Synthesizer
John Shapiro; Vibes
John Laine; Piano
Mark Carlsen; Bass
Ray Frisby; Percussion

"Billy Norine was one of my brightest pupils, whose remarkable drumming skills and compositional sense are the result of intentsive study and dedication"
George Russell

Check it out

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Rick Lawn

Rick Lawn's POWER OF TEN

A recommendation of the highest order. A classy new release from the man behind the ultra rare "Compass Rises" private press on schoolhouse records, Ohio. These guys should be supported and heard. Drop by Rick's place and find out more ...


Essential gears!

Friday, 13 January 2012

Drum Circus

Drum Circus : Magic Theatre.
Recorded 1971, Horst Jankowski.

Killer tune lifted from this rare cd lp. Pointed in the direction of this one by Arkadin and El Reza no less. Papera cannot be played to loud, heavy jazz percussion, short but sweet.

Essential ....