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AllAboutJazz.com and Creed Taylor Release Eleven Titles Exclusive to AAJ Download Store


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AllAboutJazz.com, the internet's largest and top-rated jazz portal, and Creed Taylor's CTI Jazz Online have released eleven CTI Jazz titles exclusively available through the AllAboutJazz.com Download Store. Eleven full-length albums by such respected musicians as Larry Coryell, Jim Hall and Charles Fambrough, which feature Wynton Marsalis, Chet Baker, Bobby Hutcherson, Grover Washington, Jr. and other soloists, are available only through the AAJ Download Store.

These exclusive debuts feature a release by Gilberto Gil with two-time Grammy Award winner saxophonist Ernie Watts that includes English and Portuguese versions of “From Japan," where the Brazilian guitarist / vocalist is especially revered. The current Brazilian Minister of Culture, Gil granted US audiences a rare solo performance with guitar at Carnegie Hall in March 2007. The New York Times' performance review, titled “Sounds of Brazil and Beyond, All in One Man's Voice and Guitar," enthused: “As one of the songwriters who transformed Brazilian pop through the Tropiclia movement in the 1960s, he respected tradition while embracing modernity. Puckishly, he started his Carnegie Hall set with “Mquina de Ritmo," which celebrated digital rhythm machines although he was plucking an acoustic guitar. Mr. Gil, who became Brazil's Minister of Culture in 2003, has supported local arts from traditional forms to hip-hop. He is without doubt the most musically gifted cabinet minister anywhere."

Producer and entrepreneur Creed Taylor has created some of the best and most influential jazz records of the past half century. He began as producer for Bethlehem Records, working with Charles Mingus and others, and in 1960 formed ABC-Paramount's jazz subsidiary, Impulse! Records. Taylor's Impulse! productions include such landmark titles as Oliver Nelson's Blues & The Abstract Truth and John Coltrane's A Love Supreme.

Taylor's next move was to Verve Records, where he started the international bossa nova wave with his production of Stan Getz—-Charlie Byrd's Jazz Samba, which included the hit single “Desifinado," and through subsequent collaborations with Antonio Carlos Jobim and others. His production of “The Girl from Ipanema" won the 1964 Record of the Year Grammy Award and the album from which it came, Getz / Gilberto, won four more Grammy Awards, including Best Jazz Album and Album of the Year. After moving on to work with Wes Montgomery and A&M Records, Taylor founded his own record company in the early 1970s: CTI Records—-Creed Taylor Incorporated.

Since its inception, CTI has explored lush arrangements of originals, pop and jazz standards, and contemporary pop and rock hits, with a fluid roster of leading jazz artists that has included Herbie Hancock, Freddie Hubbard, Ron Carter, Milt Jackson, George Benson and others.

“The internet revolution has created great flexibility and enormous opportunities for delivering new music to new listeners in new formats," says Creed. “It is extremely rewarding to be able to make these CTI recordings available by download, hopefully to new generations of listeners, through AllAboutJazz."

AllAboutJazz.com has become the internet's definitive guide to jazz since its 1995 inception. Published by founder Michael Ricci, AAJ maintains a first-rate reputation among jazz aficionados both on—and off-line for its in-depth content and information services, including the customizable “MyAAJ." For the past five consecutive years, AAJ has been voted “Best Website Concentrating on Jazz" by the international membership of the Jazz Journalists Association.

“AllAboutJazz has always been devoted to disseminating information and content to help jazz fans get the most enjoyment from their music," says Ricci. “The ability to deliver new music for their enjoyment is a very rewarding and promising new phase in our development. Being able to deliver such quality music, and being selected by Creed Taylor as the exclusive outlet for this music, is truly an honor for our website."

Charles Fambrough, The Proper Angle, CTI 1-AAJ

The Proper Angle features Fambrough leading a stellar ensemble through several different mainstream styles, all to good effect. Roy Hargrove soars and glides through Milton Nascimento's opening “Don Quixote," arranged by Kirkland, and through Fambrough's “Sand Jewels," Latin jazz set afire by Hargrove's and Ford's hot swapped licks. Other tracks feature trumpet by Wynton Marsalis, with whom Fambrough played in Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, and his brother Branford Marsalis on saxophone; the trumpet player and bassist honor their time together with “Our Father Who Art Blakey," quintet bop ridden hard by Watts and Fambrough. Though Wynton composed and arranged “Uncle Pete" (in between studio takes), it's Branford who slams in two weighty mid-song breaks until “Pete" swaggers like the well-off cousin of another famous soul-blues stroll, “Killer Joe." Kirkland and Ford scorch “Earthlings" (Ford's tune, for quartet) and Fambrough's “Broski," Ford particularly incendiary in leading a robust round of solos that again features both Marsalis brothers blowing blue smoke and fire. Recorded and mixed at Van Gelder Recording Studios.

Track Listing: Don Quixote; The Dreamer; Uncle Pete; Sand Jewels; Broski; Dolores Carla Maria; Earthlings; The Proper Angle; Our Father Who Art Blakey; One for Honor; The Tonality of Atonement

Personnel: Charles Fambrough: bass; Kenny Kirkland: keyboards, piano; Roy Hargrove: trumpet; Joe Ford: soprano saxophone, alto saxophone; Jeff Watts: drums; Steve Berrios: cabasa, congas, shakere, guiro, percussion; Mino Cinelu: percussion; Wynton Marsalis: trumpet; Branford Marsalis: tenor saxophone; Jerry Gonzalez: congas.

Charles Fambrough, The Charmer, CTI 2-AAJ

Recorded and mixed at Van Gelder Recording Studios, the follow-up sessions after The Proper Angle feature the bassist with Hargrove, Kirkland, and saxophonists Kenny Garrett and Grover Washington, Jr. The title track opens with the deep dark profound acoustic sound of Fambrough's custom-restored antique European symphonic bass. ("I can tell Charles Fambrough's bass by just one note," says producer Taylor.) Washington's tender and emotive soprano sounds perfectly cast in his “Lullaby for Shana Bly," with Fambrough's bass resoundingly vibrant, sometimes even bouncy, especially during Kirkland's solo. Pianist Ibrahim could not have titled “Beautiful Love" any better: His acoustic piano and O'Connell's singing synthesizer introduce the piece in quiet before Washington's sweet soprano saxophone snuggles in. Johnson taps out a quiet counter-rhythm in reggae—-no drummer, which creates an airy rhythmic feel and subsequently makes Fambrough's trademark solid, deep foundation even more essential. This thick, solid sound also brings full body to the leader's title composition. Fambrough's bass rumbles like a runaway diesel train to lead the closing quartet “Sparks," with O'Connell's left hand feeding chords for his right hand to munch, Drummond splashing and bombing the rhythm, and Garrett shooting off saxophone fireworks against just bass and drums.

Track Listing: The Charmer; Beautiful Love; Alycia / Andrea; Oasis; Lullaby for Shana Bly; Little Man; Sparks

Personnel: Charles Fambrough: bass; Kenny Garrett: alto saxophone; Bill O'Connell: piano, synthesizer; Jeff Watts: drums; Doc Gibbs: percussion; Bashiri Johnson: percussion; Grover Washington, Jr.: soprano saxophone; Abdullah Ibrahim: piano; Roy Hargrove: trumpet; Kenny Kirkland: piano; Billy Drummond: drums; Steven Scott: piano; Yoron Israel: drums.

Larry Coryell, Fallen Angel, CTI 3-AAJ

Long considered one of the founding fathers of guitar jazz-rock fusion, Coryell first came to prominence in bands led by Chico Hamilton (where he replaced the legendary Gabor Szabo) and Gary Burton. “I wouldn't be surprised if some listeners are taken aback by the wide-ranging scope of this project, especially in light of some of my more esoteric recordings over the past decade," writes the guitarist in its notes. “This is definitely a different direction, not unlike the fusion work I did in the '70s." Don Sebesky arranges for Coryell's guitar colorful cover versions of “Inner City Blues," and of “Stardust" and “Misty" as duets between Coryell's electric guitar and Mulgrew Miller's piano. Coryell bounds through solo guitar versions of “Stella by Starlight" and “I Remember Bill," composed by Sebesky to honor pianist Bill Evans. Two other arrangements pair Coryell with pianist Ted Rosenthal, the angular if not twisted “Monk's Corner" and “Pieta," Sebesky's adaptation of Rachmaninoff with Coryell's beautiful guitar almost healing in its power. “(Angel on Sunset) Bumpin' on Sunset," Coryell's overdubbed duet with recorded Montgomery, elevates you to the rarified presence of greatness times two as his lines dovetail into and out of Montgomery's masterful phrases, cool and hot in blue.

Track Listing: Inner City Blues; Fallen; Never Never; (Angel on Sunset) Bumpin' on Sunset; Stardust; Misty; I Remember Bill; Pieta; Thus Spoke Z; Stella by Starlight; Monk's Corner; Westerly Wind; The Moors

Personnel: Larry Coryell: electric guitar, acoustic guitar; Klyde Jones: vocals; Jeanie Bryson: vocals; Richard Elliot: tenor saxophone; Mulgrew Miller: piano; Ted Rosenthal: piano.

Charles Fambrough, Blues at Bradley's, CTI 4-AAJ

“My 300-year-old rebuilt Tyrolian bass sounds better in Bradley's than it does almost anywhere else," says Fambrough. “The room is so intimate that I need only minimal amplification and I can hear what my bass really sounds like." This live set recorded at the historic University Place venue and hangout, one of the smallest jazz piano clubs in the world (and where Paul Desmond donated his piano to the house), stretches out five band originals upon Ricky Sebastian's elastic New Orleans drumming and the leader's irrepressible and rock-solid beat. The opening “Duck Feathers" rocks a soul-jazz workout on Sebastian's chewy Crescent City beats; Harrison's roundly swinging solo introduces Broom, who weaves soul-jazz threads of Pat Martino and Billy Butler then introduces Turre's trombone; Harrison, Broom and Turre joyously wail on top of its churning New Orleans rhythm to close. “Blues for Bu" melt together different flavors of blues from Fambrough's acoustic bass, Broom's acoustic then electric guitar, and Turre's ethereal, muted shells. The group really stretches out on these first two songs, taking nearly thirty minutes! Credited to Turre, “Steve's Blues" showcases his moon-dancing trombone, as the rhythm section spins out rhythmic carpet just as fast as Turre can cut the rug. During O'Connell's piano solo, powerfully hewn chords and clusters, this finale pops with echoes of swinging, propulsive big bands like Count Basie.

Track Listing: Duck Feathers; Blues for Bu; Andrea; Better Days are Coming; Steve's Blues

Personnel: Charles Fambrough: bass; Donald Harrison: alto saxophone; Steve Turre: trombone, shells; Joe Ford: soprano saxophone; Bill O'Connell: electric piano, acoustic piano; Bobby Broom: guitar; Ricky Sebastian: drums; Steve Berrios: percussion.

Larry Coryell, Live from Bahia, CTI 5-AAJ

Coryell live from northern Brazil in communion with international jazz (Donald Harrison, Billy Cobham) and Brazilian musicians (Dori Carmmi) plus native musicians, dancing through international and indigenous music. “Technically, you could call it samba," says Taylor. “But it's a heavier kind of samba than you hear in Rio. It's a darker thing, much more intense as opposed to romantic like in the south." Coryell's panoramic “Old City New City" paints a tourists' portrait in pastoral Pat Metheny watercolors; Caymmi's “The Crab Peddler" beautifully intertwines his vocal, acoustic guitar and acoustic percussion into a similar native tapestry. Composed and led by local musicians in the Yoruba spiritual tradition, “Bahian Night Walk" spans the Caribbean, Afro-Cuban and Brazilian musical Diaspora: Its opening reggae lilt grows more thickly and complexly Afro-Cuban as Marcio Montarroyos' trumpet and Coryell's guitar solos burn both deeper and brighter. Coryell's “Bloco Loco" sharpens more traditional electric jazz fusion on the barbed hooks of the composer's cutting guitar and dynamic saxophone and trumpet passages. (Paul Simon traveled to this region and used some of these same musicians on his album The Rhythm of the Saints.)

Track Listing: The Harbor; Old City New City; The Crab Peddler; Oshum, Goddess of Love; Bloco Loco; Panama; Bahian Night Walk (live); Gabriela's Song; Vera Cruz

Personnel: Larry Coryell: acoustic guitars, electric guitars; Dori Caymmi: acoustic guitar, vocals; Romero Lubamo: acoustic guitar, electric guitar; Billy Cobham: drums; Donald Harrison: soprano saxophone, alto saxophone; Marcio Montarroyos: trumpet; Luiz Avellar: keyboards; Nico Assumpco: electric bass; Monica Millet: percussion; Tio Oliveira: percussion; Bashiri Johnson: percussion; Francisco Centeno: electric bass.

Donald Harrison, The Power of Cool, CTI 6-AAJ

“I grew up listening to and playing pop music," says New Orleans native Harrison, “and I always knew I could come back to play it because I knew and understood and liked it." Just the few first bars of the opening “The Tropic of Cool" announce that this is a more romantic jazz record than most, and thanks to Harrison's smooth-sailing alto and soprano saxophones, which often conjures the supple ghost of Grover Washington, Jr., plus several cuts with vocals by Sharon Bryant (former lead singer for R&B hit-makers Atlantic Starr), this set placed in the R&B charts. Bryant swaps lead vocals with James “D Train" Williams on “Close the Door," written by the prime movers of Philly International Records, Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, for Teddy Pendergrass, turning up the flame on this simmering quiet storm of soul. Cool expands in multiple directions through other cover versions: “The Wind Cries Mary" creates a tempest in which guitarist Marian Graves honors Hendrix by unleashing his own sprawling fuzztone guitar monster; Harrison thrusts and parries incisive solos with Larry Coryell to muscle up Lee Morgan's “Ceora," then casts Miles Davis' “Four" in neon New Jack swing and rolls with Wallace Roney on trumpet in airy blowing that remains surprisingly true to the inscrutable open-endedness of Davis' construction. “Both Chuck and Rob are masters at this kind of sophisticated pop sound, and Creed is probably the only producer who knows both the pop and jazz sides equally," Harrison says. “He really knows how to get to the sound!"

Track Listing: The Tropic of Cool; The Wind Cries Mary; Shadowbrook; All I Want is You; Till U Comeback; Close the Door; The Power of Cool; Too Fast; Ceora; Four

Personnel: Donald Harrison: alto saxophone, soprano saxophone; Chuck Loeb: keyboards, guitar, programming, piano; Larry Coryell: guitar; Mark Egan: bass; Rob Aries: keyboards; Marlon Graves: guitar; Carmen Cuesta: vocals; James “D Train" Williams: vocals; Sharon Bryant: vocals; Wallace Roney: trumpet; Joe Bonadio: drums, percussion; David Charles: percussion; Will Lee: bass, fretless bass; Zach Danziger: drums, percussion; Vaneese Thomas: vocals; Roberta Lawrence: vocals; Jon Werking: keyboards, strings.

Larry Coryell, I'll Be Over You, CTI 7-AAJ

Coryell sings through this set in his most romantic voice: The opening, title track features smooth soulman Peabo Bryson singing in tandem with Sharon Bryant and Grover Washington Jr.'s sweet soprano, and with just Washington in “Tonight is the Night." “Try a Little Tenderness" lights the candlelight mood for Coryell and Chuck Loeb to dance on flamenco guitars, cushioned by soft keyboard whispers, of a piece with Coryell's instrumental slow dance with The Isley Brothers' “quiet storm" classic “For the Love of You." The guitarist sharpens his blues hooks on W.C. Handy's trademark “St. Louis Blues," stabbing chords to counterpoint Harrison's blues vocal and Dan Haymann's piano boogie. “Redwing" features Coryell on both flamenco and electric guitars, as do the trios “Before Dawn" and “Cumulus," mists of flamenco, Mark Sherman's vibes and keyboards, and Zach Danziger's floating drums. The concluding duet between Coryell and Loeb on Charles Mingus' “Better Get Hit in Your Soul" spins together an encyclopedic holy grail of modern guitar accompaniment and improvisation, convening a joyously blue exclamation from their guitarist's souls to close.

Track Listing: I'll Be Over You; Redwing; Tonight is the Night; Try a Little Tenderness; St. Louis Blues; For the Love of You; Nightshade; This Love of Ours; Before Dawn; Cumulus; Better Get Hit in Your Soul

Personnel: Larry Coryell: electric guitar, flamenco guitar; Chuck Loeb: electric guitar, synthesizer, keyboards, flamenco guitar, rhythm guitar; Peabo Bryson: vocals; Sharon Bryant: vocals; Grover Washington, Jr.: soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone; Steve Ferrone: drums; Rick Bottari: keyboards, programming; Will Lee: bass; Donald Harrison: soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, vocals; Tracy Wormworth: bass; Mark Sherman: keyboards, vibes, programming, percussion; Zach Danziger: drums; Chris Parks: keyboards, drum programming; Dan Heymann: piano; Vaneese Thomas: vocals; Carmen Cuesta: vocals; Lani Groves: vocals.

Jim Hall, Youkali, CTI 8-AAJ

A legendarily influential modern guitar master who has recorded with just about everybody who has ever been anybody (Ella Fitzgerald, Bill Evans and Ron Carter, to name just a few), Hall demonstrates his amazing stylistic range through surveying this far-reaching collection of material by Kurt Weill, John Lewis, Hoagy Carmichael with Johnny Mercer, and Miles Davis, plus his own “All Across the City" and Ernesto Lecuona's famous “Malaguea." Hall, Chet Baker and Grover Washington Jr. eloquently serve as primary soloists throughout, intertwining their smooth yet strong individual voices. Jim Pugh's arrangement of Weill's title track opens the set in an island atmosphere for guitarists Hall, whose chords chime out full as bells, and Loeb, who unleashes some of the most genuinely ferocious, snarling electric guitar he ever recorded. Lewis' classic “Django" spotlights Kenny Barron's electric piano in the rhythm section with Mark Egan and Dave Weckl, plus Baker's cool romantic trumpet; Hall's solo, like Lewis' piano style, is tonally and emotionally forthright—-nothing fancy, everything beautiful. Davis' soft yet expansive “All Blues" proves the perfect vehicle for the talents of this ensemble: Sebesky's arrangement seems to lock the instruments into a seamless glide, upon which soloists Hall, Baker, and Washington eloquently swing. “It's a very special cut on this album, 'All Blues,'" Taylor understates.

Track Listing: Youkali; Django; Skylark; All Blues; Malaguea; All Across the City

Personnel: Jim Hall: guitar; Chuck Loeb: guitar; Ira Siegel: guitar; Grover Washington, Jr.: soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone; Carmen Cuesta: vocals; Ted Rosenthal: synthesizer, piano; Francisco Centeno: bass; Dave Weckl: drums; Lew Soloff: trumpet; Bob Millikan: trumpet, flugelhorn; Jim Pugh: trombone, tenor trombone; Dave Taylor: bass trombone; Bashiri Johnson: percussion; Chet Baker: trumpet; Donald Harrison: soprano saxophone; Kenny Barron: electric piano; Mark Egan: bass; Larry Lunetta: flugelhorn; Sir Roland Hanna: piano; Jimmy Madison: drums; Byron Stripling: trumpet; John Clark: French horn; Keith O'Quinn: trombone; Matt Finders: tuba; Danny Gottlieb: drums.

Ted Rosenthal, Calling You, CTI 9-AAJ

Rosenthal was the second winner of the annual Thelonious Monk International Piano Competition and also served as pianist in Gerry Mulligan's last Quartet. On his second set as a leader, Bobby Hutcherson and Donald Harrison join Rosenthal as the primary solo voices. Hutcherson first steps out with his trademark blue chimes in the up-tempo “Sea Song," which scoots like a crab on the legs of Bashiri Johnson's percussion and Dave Weckl's drums. Harrison's alto and Hutcherson's vibes swing free against a percussion-only backdrop to peel open “Para los Papines" as Rosenthal casts out his solo like a net, with Bill Evans' dexterity and intricacy. Hutcherson also chops and flies through similarly percussive passages in Ralph Burns' “Bijou." Rosenthal's adaptation of a piece by Debussy, “La Soiree dans Grenade (Estampes, No. 2)" complements the Latin tinge of “Papines" with immaculate support from the rhythm section of Eddie Gomez and Weckl; Rosenthal on piano and Eubanks on acoustic guitar paint soft pastel sounds that seem to disappear in a mist. “This is a real showcase for Ted Rosenthal," says Taylor. “You don't hear much about him but he plays in so many other great ensembles." Recorded and mastered at Van Gelder Recording Studios.

Track Listing: Calling You; Sea Song; Groove Control; Para los Papines; La Soiree dans Grenade (Estampes, No. 2); Bijou; Model A

Personnel: Ted Rosenthal: piano; Bobby Hutcherson: vibes; Donald Harrison: tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone, vocals; Francisco Centeno: electric bass; Dave Weckl: drums; Lew Soloff: flugelhorn, trumpet; Jim Pugh: euphonium, trombone; Ken Bichel: synthesizer; Bashiri Johnson: percussion; John Patittucci: electric bass; Kevin Eubanks: electric guitar, acoustic guitar; Eddie Gomez: bass; Frank Valdez: percussion.

Jack Wilkins, Mexico, CTI 10-AAJ:

Wilkins' only release for CTI demonstrates the dexterity that has kept the guitarist in demand as a jazz sideman since the 1970s. Alto saxophonist Phil Woods, one of Wilkins' frequent employers, switches chairs to sit in as sideman for two numbers: The cutting bop jam “Opal," tempered by Wilkins' round blue guitar notes, and Wilkins' “Captain Blued," opened by Woods with a dizzying alto solo that blows through the introduction, then through the first verse, to dive headlong into the first solo break. Woods' abandon seems to inspire subsequent soloists Carl Barry (guitar), Albert Dailey (piano) and Akira Tana (drums). Antonio Carlos Jobim's “O Grande Amor" proves a near perfect match of producer, performer and material, from Taylor's soft and lush yet vibrant production (listen to the sheen on the electric piano solo and underlying rhythm), the Latin / Spanish tinges of Wilkins' guitar, and Jobim's romantic melodic flair. “7th Variation On a Catalan Folk Song, Opus 25" and “My Foolish Heart" present miniature solo interludes for Wilkins' acoustic guitar to caress their melodies while ruminating upon their underlying chords. And you'd be forgiven for mistaking the pianist Albert's opening “Dailey Double" for a mislabeled lost track from one of George Benson's more famous sessions for CTI, as Wilkins dashes about his fretboard with casual, taut intensity.

Track Listing: Dailey Double; You Must Believe in Spring; My Foolish Heart; Captain Blued; O Grande Amor; 7th Variation on a Catalan Folk Song, Opus 25; Mexico; Captain Marvel; Streets of Rio; Opal; Jamba

Personnel: Jack Wilkins: guitar; Phil Woods: alto saxophone; Albert Dailey: piano; Harvie Swartz: bass; Akira Tana: drums; Ted Moore: percussion; Carl Barry: guitar.

Gilberto Gil, Oriente, CTI 11-AAJ

Gil, the Brazilian Minister of Culture, granted a rare solo performance with guitar at Carnegie Hall in March 2007. Here he revisits soft Afro-Cuban and Brazilian rhythms in the company of two-time Grammy Award winner and session ace Ernie Watts, whose has lent his supple, luxurious saxophone to sessions led by Quincy Jones, Oliver Nelson, and Cannonball Adderley, including English (to open) and Portuguese (to close) versions of “From Japan," where the guitarist / vocalist is especially revered.

Rhythms of Bahia: Brazilian singer and guitarist, Gilberto Gil is a legend whose resum brims with brilliance: The current Minister of Culture co-founded the 1960s Tropicalia movement and has recorded 50 albums, which have sold over 5 million copies. It's true what Brazilians say about this seven-time Grammy winner: 'There is God, and then there is Gilberto Gil'." —Grace Bastidas (March 14th, 2007).

Track Listing: From Japan (English); Oriente; Raca Humana; Meditation; Gondwana; Free Afox; From Japan (Portuguese)

Personnel: Ernie Watts: tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone; Gilberto Gil: guitar; Jack DeJohnette: drums; Eddie Gomez: bass; Victor Bailey: bass; Kenny Kirkland: piano; Marlon Graves: guitar

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