Magazine article IAJRC Journal

Vinyl Coverings

Magazine article IAJRC Journal

Vinyl Coverings

Article excerpt

Hooray for Record Store Day! April 20th was the 6th annual Record Store Day, and by all, admittedly aneCDotal, accounts it was the biggest ever. Record Store Day has become the biggest sales day for independent record stores, eclipsing any other time including the Christmas season. It is a day when record companies, both major and independent, release limited edition pieces. The overwhelming majority is vinyl.

This year about 400 new releases were scheduled for RSD, some in such limited quantity that they were out of print the same day and now command high prices on Ebay. Of course, some are more limited than others. For example, the three Miles Davis - Gil Evans mono Columbia reissues produced for last year's RSD are still available online and at most stores. Most of the titles released are Rock, but we get a few Jazz titles every year.

Following their effort of last year, Columbia released mono versions of Miles Davis' Round About Midnight, Someday My Prince Will Come and Milestones on vinyl this year. These classic sessions need no explanation or analysis here, but, while Prince has always been available in true stereo, Midnight and Milestones were always reprocessed, so these mono issues are very welcome. Since I have nice copies of all three, I did not pick any of them up but they are 180 gram audiophile vinyl in numbered editions. If last year is any indication, they will be around for a while so walk, don't run to your local record emporium and pick them up. They should run approximately $20- $25.

Domestically, two 10" records also made the shelves. Cal Tjader Trio Fantasy 3-9 on orange vinyl and Dave Brubeck Trio Fantasy 3-2 on red vinyl. They are both very limited but are still available. They should run about $12.

Not all of the Jazz was reissues. Two new pieces that intrigued me turned out to be imports and harder to track down. Both are live broadcasts on the English Birdland label.

First is Art Blakey And The Jazz Messengers - Munich '59 - Birdland 009LP with Lee Morgan tpt., Wayne Shorter ts., Walter Davis Jr. p., Jymie Merritt b., 11/28/1959 Round Midnight, Close Your Eyes, Like Someone In Love, Lester Left Town (inc). A number of dates from this tour have made it to vinyl (RCA and Fontana w/ Bud Powell on piano) and CD (Jazz Up, Moon, Dragon) but this date is previously unreleased. This is prime Messengers with Lee and Wayne in full cry. The tunes are standard fare, played with fire and conviction. The fidelity, however, is mediocre radio broadcast quality. It's on the level of some of the bootleg issues from this tour. At $35 it's pretty expensive, so it is only for completest like me. There is a cheaper CD issue, but if you spring for the vinyl, they throw in the CD free! Is this a commentary on the cost of CD manufacturing?

The real gem is John Coltrane - Newport '61 - Birdland 015LP with McCoy Tyner p., Art Davis & Reggie Workman b., Elvin Jones d., 7/1/1961 Introduction, Impressions, Naima, My Favorite Things. I had Impressions and My Favorite Things as one side of an obscure bootleg from Italy (Musica Jazz 2MJP 1051), but Naima has remained unreleased until now. Unfortunately for me, the complete package, including the Introduction, and Naima, is less than ½ hour. Naima is only 4 minutes long and contains only a Tyner solo. Newport sets were strictly regulated in those days, but most were 45 minutes long.

But my disappointment should not be yours. The music is sublime. Coltrane packs a lot of music into the 25 minutes he's allotted. Impressions is a compact gem and My Favorite Things bursts with enthusiasm. The fidelity is again mediocre live soundboard quality but there are really no equivalent issues out there (the Musica Jazz issue is long out of print). There is no stand-alone CD issue, but you get a free one with the vinyl. Again, cost is about $35.

A wonderful surprise was the appearance on vinyl of Von Freeman - The Great Divide - Premonition 90759 with Richard Wyands p. …

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