"The musicianship of Jim Galloway, Ralph Sutton, Milt Hinton and Gus Johnson during these 1988 sessions is a joy throughout ... although they chose tunes affiliated with Armstrong, they avoided many of the obvious choices, and included material from different periods throughout his long career. Galloway, who is mostly heard on soprano sax, shines in less commonly recorded compositions such as 'Song of the Islands' and 'You Rascal You' ... Sutton easily switches between utilizing a very light touch and powering the band with his style of driving stride piano that can be mistaken for no one else's ... Milt Hinton was one of the first call bassists for decades for many reasons, his thoughtful accompaniment always sounded fresh and his solos are a joy. Gus Johnson, a very dependable drummer, provides just the right touch on every track." (4 stars) - Ken Dryden, allmusic
This 1983 recording, originally issued on Sackville LP, features jazz trumpeter Leo Smith with the Bill Smith Ensemble. "The playing by these adventurous musicians is advanced ad quite free on the four group originals, and all five players share equally in the creation of these fresh explorations." -- Scott Yanow, Allmusic. "An inspired Leo Smith is to be heard throughout Rastafari, ruminating about the spaces of the title piece; singing in the shimmering light of Prentice's 'Madder Lake'; exhorting the madness of war in Bill Smith's anti-war statement, 'Rituals'; and bantering throughout 'Little Bits', the saxophonist's portrait of his daughters. In turn. Rastafari is an inspiring album. This should not be surprising, as inspiration is the function of the hero; and Leo Smith is a hero of American music." --Bill Shoemaker from the original LP descriptive notes.
This 1983 recording, originally issued on Sackville LP, features jazz trumpeter Joe McPhee with the Bill Smith Ensemble. " ...a stimulating set of avant-garde music. The interplay between these masterful improvisors on group originals and Albert Ayler's classic 'Ghosts' is consistently impressive and worthy of a close investigation by the more open-eared segment of the jazz audience." -- Scott Yanow, Allmusic "Vistation breathes as if it were music that was recorded yesterday. Joe McPhee and the Bill Smith Ensemble play music that has no history assigned to it that is evident in the listening. It is the underground vein of music that came up to visit its public." (5 stars) --Lyn Horton, Jazz Review.
with CLAUDE HOPKINS, ARVELL SHAW, BUSSY DROOTIN RE-MASTERED FROM ORIGINAL TAPE!
A member of a distinguished New Orleans musical family, Herb Hall was the youngest of five brothers. He grew up somewhat in the shadows of brother Edmund who had become a world-renowned clarinetist. After time in San Antonio and Philadelphia, Hall moved to New York and joined the Eddie Condon band in 1957. He toured France and North America with Sammy Price and generated much excitement on Louisiana Lament, a studio session for Vogue. In '67 Hall shared the stage in Toronto with Don Ewell and a year later with The Jazz Giants (issued as Wild Bill Davison, The Jazz Giants, Sackville 3002). This all-star band returned to Toronto several times and it was on one of these tours that Herb recorded this quartet date on January 10, 1969.
In 1976 George Lewis' association with Muhal Richard Abrams and the AACM led to recordings with Roscoe Mitchell, Anthony Braxton and a tour with Count Basie. Gradually his startling musicianship - the time-honored jazz virtues of a mellow tone and driving sense of rhythm, harnessed to a soaring imagination and technique – became known to a growing number of listeners. Lewis came to play at A Space in Toronto -his first solo concert - and record this album. On "Toneburst (Piece for Three Trombones Simultaneously)", Lewis overdubbed all three trombone parts in the studio. The rest is solo. Solo horn albums have a curious ambience, inherent in the perfect clarity with which they reveal a performer's abilities. In this setting this amazing musician revealed himself as a unique solo voice.
This 1981 date was the first of three albums by this truly all-star lineup of Buddy Tate (tenor sax, clarinet), Jim Galloway (soprano, tenor, baritone sax), Jay McShann (piano), Don Thompson (bass) and Terry Clarke (drums). "The music is at a high level throughout, though a trio of tunes from the vast band book of Duke Ellington, Mercer Ellington's "John Hardy's Wife," a strutting take of Johnny Hodges' "Good Queen Bees," and a gospel-flavored "Saturday Night Function" particularly stand out on this highly recommended disc." Ken Dryden, Allmusic. Also available: The Sackville All Stars Christmas Record (Sackville SK 3038).
Perhaps best known as a blues label Delmark Records actually has issued more jazz albums than blues and was the first label to record Chicago's AACM jazz collective. Founded in 1953 by Bob Koester, Delmark Records continues to record jazz and blues under Koester's leadership including today's cutting edge jazz scene in Chicago. Delmark 60th Anniversary: Jazz features Red Holloway, Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis from masters originally recorded for the Apollo label but never issued on CD, Sonny Stitt, Nicole Mitchell, Corey Wilkes, Ernest Dawkins, Kahil El'Zabar, a sneak preview of the forthcoming new album from The Fat Babies, Ira Sullivan with the Jim Holman Trio, Keefe Jackson, Josh Berman and more.