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Wayne Shorter: Adam's Apple

Read "Adam's Apple" reviewed by Greg Simmons

In all the perpetual hubbub surrounding Blue Note records from the 1950s--the aggressive opinions and stratospheric prices--it's sometime easy to forget that the label released really high quality music all the way through the 1960s, and some of the recordings from the later years of the decade are every bit as worthy of attention as the ...

Grachan Moncur III: Evolution

Read "Evolution" reviewed by Greg Simmons

One of the more unusual records in Music Matters series of Blue Note Records reissues is Grachan Moncur III's avant-garde classic Evolution, released here on a 45 rpm double LP. The Music Matters Blue Notes are among the highest quality jazz vinyl available, with fanatical attention to sound, packaging, and pressing quality, here doing serious justice ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Duke Pearson: WAHOO!

Read "WAHOO!" reviewed by Greg Simmons

Duke Pearson occupied an unusual position within Blue Note Record's roster of artists. In addition to recording as both leader and sideman he also served as the label's A&R man, following in the footsteps of Ike Quebec. Pearson also served as the arranger on many albums, including sessions--Stanley Turrentine's Rough 'n' Tumble, comes to mind--where other ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Hank Mobley: Hank Mobley

Read "Hank Mobley" reviewed by Greg Simmons

During the 1950s and '60s Hank Mobley was an especially prolific musician. In addition to many dates as a sideman, his string of 26 or so records under his own name for Blue Note certainly makes him the one of, if not the label's productivity champion. Most of his dates are excellent performances, yet somehow his ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Thad Jones: The Magnificent Thad Jones

Read "The Magnificent Thad Jones" reviewed by Greg Simmons

It's all about the swing. Featured in the Count Basie Orchestra, one of the hardest swinging bands ever, Thad Jones had more swing in his little toe then most musicians will ever dream of. Even when he slowed the tempo he still swung, and his second date as a leader for Blue Note Records, The Magnificent ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Kenny Clarke: The Golden 8

Read "The Golden 8" reviewed by Greg Simmons

The first time I dropped a needle on a Music Matters 33 rpm test-pressing of Kenny Clarke and Francy Boland's The Golden 8 I was surprised to hear something quite unusual: a Blue Note record that was clearly not recorded in Hackensack.

With only a few exceptions, most Blue Note records of the 1950s ...

Music Matters slows it down

Read "Music Matters slows it down" reviewed by Greg Simmons

Music Matters is pulling a fast one. For the past several years they've been hawking a series of reissues of the classic Blue Note Records catalogue of the 1950s and 60s. The defining features of this series have been that they've all been re-mastered from the original session tapes by mastering guru Kevin Gray and, in ...

Music Matters and the Blue Note Oddballs

Read "Music Matters and the Blue Note Oddballs" reviewed by Greg Simmons

In its heyday, Blue Note records had a relatively stable roster of musicians. Leaders including saxophonist Hank Mobley, trumpeter Freddie Hubbard, pianist Horace Silver and saxophonist Lou Donaldson all released lengthy strings of records during recording relationships that were measured in years. Some players, like bassist Paul Chambers, became de facto house musicians for the label, ...

Music Matters: The Blue Note Reissue Series

Read "Music Matters: The Blue Note Reissue Series" reviewed by Greg Simmons

Music Matters has been reissuing classic Blue Note jazz records since 2007. It has dug deep into the catalog, remastering lesser known, infrequently heard titles, and done so with passionate attention to presenting the highest possible sound quality. Offering an analog solution in a digital age, this exceptional series is available on 45rpm vinyl records only. ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Kenny Dorham: 'Round About Midnight at the Cafe Bohemia

Read "'Round About Midnight at the Cafe Bohemia" reviewed by Matt Marshall

There's a thickness to the sound of this 1956 Kenny Dorham set as reissued by Music Matters on two 45-rpm records--a density that blows from the speakers and settles in the room like smoke. Which is to say the fidelity of the Music Matters product proves itself as strong on live recordings as it has on ...