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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - The Qobuz Standard
Of the three recordings Junior Mance made for Capitol, two were within a big-band format. Straight Ahead is the second of the two large-group recordings. The band is populated by some of the top studio musicians and bandmembers on the West Coast, including Don Fagerquist and Pete Candoli on trumpet, Milt Bernhart on trombone, and Shelly Manne on drums. Bob Bain fronts the group and wrote the charts. The major difference from the previous recording is that it's all brass here; no reeds are present. Combining Mance's natural blues-inflected piano with a big horn sound is a true aural treat. The result is a musical conversation with each side taking turns playing on or over the melody line. On "Li'l Darlin'," the band plays the familiar slow-drag melody while Mance improvises on top. There's a heated call and response on "Happy Time," with Mance going out swinging against blaring riffs by the brass. A similar swinging conversation takes place on "The Late, Late Show," with the band kicking off the cut with a roaring trumpet call. Usually a large-ensemble format doesn't allow for much diversion from the charts. Here it's clear that the band stayed with the charts, but Mance was allowed a good deal of leeway in his playing. He could respond to the call of the band as he saw fit. The result is a dynamic session combining the best of a disciplined brass assembly with the unfettered play of a top jazz improvisor. Some enterprising label should take the first album Mance made with this group, Get Ready, Set, Jump!, combine it with this one, and release them together on a CD. © Dave Nathan /TiVo
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2011 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2011 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2011 | Capitol Records

This was the Manhattan Transfer before they become The Manhattan Transfer, an altogether different vocal group from which founder Tim Hauser was the sole holdover. Released by Capitol in the 1970s, Jukin' is an accumulation of scraps recorded over a period of two years in New York and Nashville. Back in those days, the Transfer seemed to be one of several hippie groups (like Spanky and Our Gang and Dan Hicks and His Hot Licks) that looked at the past ironically with arched eyebrows, not like the later Transfer which affectionately celebrated old music at its face value. Hence the pure country treatment of "Fair and Tender Ladies," which has a strong whiff of condescension in the group's nasal accents; even the doo wop tribute "Guided Missiles" reeks of barely concealed contempt. Then as now, the Transfer were unpredictably eclectic in their tastes, while also very much aware of the then-current rock marketplace. Hauser's version of Fats Waller's "You're a Viper" bears some resemblance to the later Transfer manner, and one number, "Java Jive," appears in the same arrangement as the one the 1975 Transfer used, if rougher in vocal texture. For all of the careful production, there is a casual looseness about these tracks that is typical of its time, the heyday of the hippie -- and as such, today's Transfer fans are in for a surprise if they want to check out the group's beginnings. © Richard S. Ginell /TiVo
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Gospel - Released January 1, 2011 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2011 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2010 | Capitol Records

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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 2010 | Capitol Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard - Golden Oldies
Dakota Staton was a classy Sarah-influenced vocalist who easily straddled the worlds of jazz and supper club pop. Her biggest success, 1957's "The Late, Late Show," had a sort of novelty-value sing-song quality, almost a pre-requisite for a jazz side to hit the pop charts in the '50s. TIME TO SWING is a short and breezy Capitol LP from 1959, the mood uptempo though there are some ballad treatments here, like "You Don't Know What Love Is" and "Until The Real Thing Comes Along." The clean, lightly- scored arrangments are by Sid Feller, a Capitol house-arranger at the time. As stated, the album is a short one; all the tracks clock in under 2:50 and a few are under 2:00! The reissue label DRG (which has been licensing neglected Capitol LPs as of late) includes five bonus cuts to make up the shortfall, including a fine version of "You've Changed," which Billie Holiday memorably introduced on her 1958 LADY IN SATIN. © TiVo
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2010 | Capitol Records

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2010 | Capitol Records

Label

Capitol Records in the magazine
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