Black Friday is a term that has different meanings depending on the context. For some music lovers, it might bring up the Steely Dan
song from the 1975 album Katy Lied
(ABC). For other music lovers, however, Black Friday is significant because it means there is another Record Store Day event.
Originally established to promote independent record stores, each Record Store Day drop features a wide variety of vinyl and CD releases in practically every genre, and jazz is no exception. Most of these releases are limited-run special editions, offered on a first-come-first-served basis. As a result, customers will wait in line hours before the stores open in order to have a chance to get their hands on the albums they want. Here is a list of some of the jazz albums to be on the lookout for on November 25.
Mose Allison Mose Allison Trio Live 1978
There are plenty of jazz songwriters, but none is quite like Mose Allison
, Many of his quirky, bluesy compositions, such as "Your Mind is on Vacation" and "I Don't Worry About a Thing" have become standards in their own right. This album, recorded at the Showboat Lounge in Silver Springs, Maryland, features Allison on piano and vocals, Tom Rutley on bass, and Jerry Granelli
on drums. As the press release says, this album is recorded by "sidemen who get it, for people who dig itthe real deal."
Larry Coryell Coryell
Culture Factory USA
2022 Larry Coryell
is often referred to as the godfather of fusion, and this album offers a hint of things to come in Coryell's career. While Coryell would become one of the most important jazz guitarists, this early album often leans a little more on the rock side of the fusion spectrum. Some of the music here maintains the psychedelic, hippie vibe of his former group, The Free Spirits, but there's still plenty of jazz goodness included in the package. As with his previous RSD releases, this album is pressed on colored vinyl.
Bobby Cole A Point of View
One of the coolest things about Record Store Day releases is discovering obscure albums that slipped under the mainstream radar. Such is the case with Bobby Cole's 1967 release, A Point of View
. Although artists like Frank Sinatra and Judy Garland were among his admirers, Cole never received the attention he deserved as a singer, pianist, and songwriter. Although some sources classify this as lounge music, Cole's vitality as a singer and musician elevates it to new levels. Cole certainly has a cult following, and original copies of this album command high prices online. Hopefully, this release will make more people aware of his work.
Paquito D'Rivera and Arturo Sandoval Reunion
Cuban born musicians Paquito D'Rivera and Arturo Sandoval
performed together frequently during the 1970s, and they were both members of the Latin jazz group Irakere. Their collaboration went on hiatus, however, when D'Rivera defected to the United States in 1980. Sandoval later defected in 1990, which gave the two musicians an opportunity to work together again. This vinyl release of Reunion
, which originally released on CD in 1991, offers some impressive Latin jazz by two masters of the genre.
Ahmad Jamal Emerald City Nights: Live At The Penthouse (1963-1964)
Deep Digs/The Jazz Detective
Ahmad Jamal Emerald City Nights: Live At The Penthouse (1965-1966)
Deep Digs/The Jazz Detective
Zev Feldman is no stranger to Record Store Day. His work with Resonance Records has resulted in some of the finest RSD reissues to date. His new label, The Jazz Detective, makes its debut with two previously-unreleased live recordings of Ahmad Jamal performing with his trio. For Jamal fans, this is an ideal setting, and the quality of the recording should be exceptional.
Joe Lovano and Dave Douglas
Soundprints Other Worlds
2022 Joe Lovano
and Dave Douglas
's Soundprints made its debut in 2013 with a tribute to Wayne Shorter
. Since then, Shorter's influence has permeated the ensemble. Other Worlds
, originally released digitally and on CD in 2021, is being released on vinyl for the first time. These players are known for their chemistry, and most of the album's tracks were good to go on the first take. As Lovano explains, "'the way we'd play the themes and improvise together and trade, we were right there next to each other, so we were feeling what each other was playing."
Charles Mingus Mingus
This classic Mingus album, originally released in 1961, sees its first vinyl reissue in 40 years. Although sometimes overshadowed by some of Mingus's other albums from this period, Mingus
is still an impressive recording. Remastered from original tapes, this vinyl copy is being released on opaque turquoise vinyl.
Thelonious Monk The Classic Quartet
Record Store Day has featured several Thelonious Monk
recordings in recent years, and this Black Friday is no exception. For this drop, Candid is reissuing The Classic Quartet
. Although this album, which was recorded in 1963, is fairly common on CD, it hasn't been reissued on vinyl in several years. This copy is remastered and is being released in opaque blue vinyl.
Jaco Pastorius Truth, Liberty & Soul
The Record Store Day vinyl releases are always a limited run, which can be frustrating for collectors who miss out on getting a copy during the sale. However, there are certain titles that generate enough interest to warrant a second release. Truth, Liberty & Soul
is such a case. Originally included in the April 2017 drop, this three-album-set is hitting the shelves once again. Recorded in 1982 for NPR, the set features an all-star jazz lineup. Bootleg copies of these recordings circulated for years, but this is the official release, which features exceptional audio along with rare photos, essays, and interviews.
Oscar Peterson On A Clear Day: Live in Zurich, 1971
2022 Oscar Peterson
was one of the greatest jazz pianists, and he is probably best-known for his work in a trio setting. These previously-unreleased recordings feature Peterson along with bassist Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen
and drummer Louis Hayes
. The sound quality of the recordings is excellent, and the level of musicianship here is superb. As an added bonus for collectors, this double-album set is being released on clear vinyl.
The Stark Reality The Stark Reality Discovers Hoagy Carmichael's Music Shop
When fusion really started getting popular in the late sixties and early seventies, many musicians were jumping on the jazz-rock bandwagon. In many cases, the resulting music was great. However, there were plenty of other instances where things probably did not work as well as planned. The Stark Reality was one of those instances where a good idea turned out to be a little odd.
The group's story is quite fascinating. The original idea for the band came from Hoagy Carmichael's son, Hoagy Bix Carmichael, who was working for a PBS station in Boston. He wanted to develop a television show that introduced children to his father's music. He hired some local musicians to try getting Carmichael's music to not only connect with kids but rock and roll audiences as well. The result was The Stark Reality Discovers Hoagy Carmichael's Music Shop
, an album that put a modern-day spin on Hoagy Carmichael's 1958 children's album, Havin' A Party
The musicians on this recording, including John Abercrombie
on guitar, are obviously talented, but the resulting recording is slightly strange to say the least. It's a somewhat odd combination of jazz mixed with rock and psychedelia. There is a jazzy foundation supplemented by plenty of electronic distortion and lots of wah-wah guitar.
After the group recorded this album, they made an unsuccessful tour, playing to mostly empty venues. They broke up shortly afterward. Since then, several artists have sampled portions of the album, and original copies bring very high prices online. Although this album might not appeal to everyone's tastes, it has a certain charm. It sounds a little like listening to Frank Zappa
and Soft Machine playing children's music. It might not be for everybody, but it is pretty cool for listeners with slightly adventurous tastes.
Tony Williams Play or Die
2022 Tony Williams
is one of the famous drummers in jazz. While probably best known as the drummer for the Miles Davis
Quintet during the sixties, Williams also made a name for himself both as a session player and a band leader. Play or Die
is one of Williams's more obscure albums, but is certainly worthy of recognition.
In the early months of 1980, Williams was on a European tour, and his group was disbanding. While in Germany, Tom Grant
, the only member of his band remaining, suggested the idea of recruiting bassist Patrick O'Hearn
to form a trio. They went to a studio in Stuttgart and recorded Play or Die
in just two days. The album was released on an independent German label, and its original release was limited to only 500 copies. The level of musicianship here is impressive, and it is definitely one to be on the lookout for.