Wednesday, June 9, 2021

La La Lars - La La Lars III (2021)

Over the course of three albums, Lars Skoglund’s La La Lars ensemble has focused intricate music through the lens of a crystal clear melody. A quintet of drummer Skoglund (also on acoustic guitar and keyboards), trumpeter Goran Kajfeš, tenor saxophonist Jonas Kullhammar (also on flute and bassoon), pianist Carl Bagge (also Wurlitzer 200A and organ), and bassist Johan Berthling show that a light-hearted delivery and a riveting presence aren’t mutually exclusive. The music of La La Lars is a heady drink, with a rich palette that goes down smoothly.

1. Häxa 03:47
2. Dur 05:20
3. Oår 04:37
4. Det Blev Sent 03:19
5. Kolsvarta Natten 04:51
6. Pour Qui Pourquoi 04:48
7. Ett Nytt Kapitel 03:42
8. Vart Ska Du? 04:23

Jonas Kullhammar - Tenor Saxophone, Flute and Bassoon,
Goran Kajfeš - Trumpet
Carl Bagge - Piano, Wurlitzer 200A and organ
Johan Berthling - Bass
Lars Skoglund - Drums, Cymbals, Acoustic Guitar and Additional Keyboards

Various Artists - DJ Amir Presents ‘Strata RecordsThe Sound of Detroit’ Volume 1 (2021 180 Proof Records)

In association with DJ Amir and 180 Proof Records, BBE Music presents ‘Strata Records – The Sound of Detroit – Volume 1’, a new compilation taking in just a few highlights from the short-lived but hugely influential jazz imprint.

With a raft of Strata material now entering entering the BBE Music catalogue for the first time, joining together with already-released gems such at the long-lost Charles Mingus live album ‘Jazz In Detroit’, we asked 180 Proof founder and Strata catalogue curator DJ Amir to compile a selection of tracks as an introduction to the uninitiated.

Over to DJ Amir to tell us more:

I carefully selected my top-choice select tracks that have not been already bootlegged or comp’d in the past; from the well-known fan favourites, to the obscure, to the previously unreleased cuts. This is by no means an exhaustive and comprehensive compilation, but these are the songs that truly represent the catalog and help to tell the story of Strata.

I thought it would be fitting to begin the compilation with one of my all-time favourites from the catalog, ‘Beyond the Dream’ by Kenny Cox, a spiritual groover, highlighted with the haunting mellotron strings and soulful vocals from Detroit legend Ursula Walker. And I absolutely love the ending, with the chanting of “Vamonos Que Ya Fiesta Se Acabo” (“It’s time to go because the party is coming to an end”)!

When I originally issued the previously unreleased album ‘Mirror, Mirror’ by Sam Sanders in 2013, the track ‘Face At My Window’ that features an unknown vocalist instantly became a fan favourite thanks to its hypnotising vocals and mellotron strings.

How could I not include my all-time track from Lyman Woodard, ‘Saturday Night Special’? This track represents the best of that lo-fi jazz funk organ groove and bass combined, again, with those mellotron strings. And after meeting Lyman in 2008, I became even more of a fan! His magnum opus that is ‘Saturday Night Special’ began my journey to re-introducing the world to the Strata label.

After a chance discovery of a Strata master with only the letters ‘TJ’ written on the front, I took a chance and digitally transferred the master. Unfortunately, the master was in awful shape, but what I discovered was truly a stunning recording! At first, I thought I was listening to a young Shuggie Otis but then I quickly realised that I was not. TJ, armed with a basic drum machine, guitar, and incredibly infectious vocals, was able to communicate the pain and joy in his soul so clearly in tracks like ‘Time Is Wasting’.

With further tracks from Kenny Cox featuring the Contemporary Jazz Quintet (CJQ), Larry Nozero (saxophone player on ‘What’s Goin’ On’ by Marvin Gaye), to the ever-elusive and spiritual deep Maulawi Nururidin, to a few previously unreleased gems from Ursula Walker, Mixed Bag, and the Soulmates, hopefully, you’ll be inspired to dive deeper into the Strata catalog!


Amir Abdullah aka DJ Amir

1. Beyond The Dream – Kenny Cox 13:22
2. Tune For L.N. – Larry Nozero 05:48
3. Face at My Window – Sam Sanders 03:29
4. People We Got to Do Better – The Soulmates 03:18
5. Scorpio’s Child – Bert Myrick 13:55
6. Norwegian Wood – Mixed Bag 04:00
7. Noh Word – The Contemporary Jazz Quintet 01:58
8. Joy Road – The Lyman Woodard Organization 04:57
9. Time Is Wasting – TJ 03:48
10. Root in 7/4 Plus – Maulawi 05:46
11. Salsa Pt. 1 – Fito Foster 03:21
12. Maiden Voyage – Ursula Walker 05:09
13. You’re the One – TJ 03:56
14. Chronicle Of The Murdered House Pt. 1 – Larry Nozero 03:55
15. Chronicle Of The Murdered House Pt. 2 – Larry Nozero 05:10
16. Where Is The Place? – Maulawi 04:19
17. Saturday Night Special – The Lyman Woodard Organization 07:08
18. Island Song – Kenny Cox 09:12
19. Inner City Player – Sam Sanders 05:01
20. Bees – Ron English 05:47
21. Pithecanthropus Erectus- Charles Mingus 25:04
22. Dizzy Profile – Charles Mingus 12:52
23. All But Blind – Mixed Bag 06:35

Girls in Airports - Leap (2021)

The modus operandi of the ensemble Girls In Airports, featuring saxophonist Martin Stender, keyboardist Mathias Holm, percussionist Victor Dybbroe, drummer Anders Vestergaard, and violinist Nils Gröndahl, is to combine moody melodic perspectives with a propulsive attitude. Their collaboration with the Aarhus Jazz Orchestra nurtures both of these qualities, while also allowing new facets to emerge. Sunnier tones and a vast harmonic horizon give this music a bigger, brighter sound, and opens up new possibilities to explore.

1. Myanmar 06:23
2. Dovetail 06:40
3. Violet 02:28
4. Weaver 05:19
5. Outside Looking In 06:00
6. Vejviser 06:22
7. Sea Trail 05:43
8. Anima 07:58
9. Memory Wagon 07:56
10. Myanmar 06:23

Girls in Airports x Aarhus Jazz Orchestra

Martin Stender, saxophones
Mathias Holm, keys
Victor Dybbroe, percussion
Anders Vestergaard, drums
Nils Gröndahl, violin
Aarhus Jazz Orchestra

All music and arrangements by Girls in Airports
Recorded and produced by John Fomsgaard
Mixed by August Wanngren
Mastered by Noel Summerville
Recored at Lundgaard Studio in January 2021
Cover photo by Nicholé Velasquez

UNDP Collective -Esto Sí Se Llama Querer (2021 UnderPool)

Similar to the function Smalls played in the New York City jazz community, Underpool has been rehearsal space, record label, social center, and second home to Barcelona’s jazz community. Esto Sí Se Llama Querer marks the label portion’s 50th release. Reflecting the familial relationship the musicians have to the venue—and one another—an astounding 64 musicians contribute to this recording. Constructed with the bolero as a guiding vision, individual singers and arrangers, paired up for each of the album’s 12 pieces, decide upon the composition and instrumentation. It’s a sublime recording, and a worthy celebration of Underpool’s remarkable achievement as a focal point of both the Barcelona scene and the worldwide jazz landscape.

1. Martín Leiton & Lucia Fumero - Mi Amor Fugaz 04:03
2. Rubén Fernández & Néstor Giménez - Encadenados 05:18
3. Mayte Alguacil & Ester Quevedo - Te Me Olvidas 05:35
4. Eva Fernández & Lluís Vidal - Negrura 04:38
5. Rita Payés & Jordi Matas - Esto Sí Se Llama Querer 03:31
6. Marbis Manzanet & Jaume Llombart - Por donde pasas tú 02:40
7. Miquel Casals & Àlex Cassanyes - Cita a las Seis 03:54
8. Yadira Ferrer & Roger Mas - Duele 06:59
9. Juan Carlos Piñol & Alfred Artigas - Triste, Muy Triste 05:46
10. Carme Canela & Toni Vaquer - Qué Sabes Tú 06:09
11. Laia Cagigal & Javier Galiana - Alitas Rotas 03:36
12. Sílvia Pérez Cruz & Alfred Artigas - El Seductor 03:59

Adrià Plana - guitarra
Alba Careta - trompeta
Àlex Cassanyes - arranjador
Alfred Artigas – guitarra, veu i arranjador
Àlvar Monfort – trompeta
Ana Fernández - violí
Anna Llorens – cello
Armando Osuna Gradaille “Mandy”- conga, bongo, cub de llauna
Cándido Rodríguez – trompeta
Carme Canela – veu
Dani Pérez Amboage – guitarra
David Mengual – contrabaix
David Xirgu – bateria
Dídac Ruíz – bougarabous, cítara i percussions
Ester Quevedo – piano i arranjadora
Eudald Payés – trompeta
Eva Fernádez – veu
Eva Monroy – violí
Fernando Brox - flauta
Gabriel Amargant – clarinet i saxo alt
Irene Reig –saxo alt
Jaume Llombart – guitarra, veu i arranjador
Javier Galiana- arranjador
Joan Mar Sauqué – trompeta
Joan Moll – bateria
Jordi Guasp - trompa
Jordi Matas – guitarra i arranjador
Jorge Retuerta – viola
Jorge Rossy - vibràfon
Juan Carlos Piñol - veu
Juan Pablo Balcázar – contrabaix
Laia Cagigal - veu
Laura Pacios– violí
Lluc Casares - clarinets
Lluís Vidal – piano i arranjador
Lucía Fumero – veu, piano i arranjadora
Marbis Manzanet – voz
Marc Ayza - bateria
Marc Cuevas - contrabaix
Marcel·lí Bayer – clarinet Baix
Marta Roma - violoncel
Martín Leiton- veu, guitarra, contrabaix i arranjador
Mayte Alguacil – veu
Miguel Villar ‘Pintxo’– saxos
Néstor Giménez – piano i arranjador
Noè Escolà – saxo baríton
Oriol Roca – bateria
Pablo Gómez- congas
Pablo Selnik - flauta
Pau Lligades – contrabaix
Pau Sala – baix
Pedro Campos –contrabaix
Rita Payés –veu i trombó
Roger Mas – piano i arranjador
Roly Berrío – voz
Rosa Garcías - flauta
Rubén Fernández - veu
Santi Colomer - bateria
Sergi Felipe - flauta
Sílvia Pérez Cruz – veu i arranjadora
Toni Vaquer - arranjador
Vicent Pérez – trombó
Víctor Carrascosa -trompeta
Yadira Ferrer – veu

All music recorded at UnderPool Studio except marked (see detail on track 2, 6, 9).
Mixed by Sergi Felipe at UnderPool Studio.
Master Eivind Opsvik Greenwood UnderGround, Brooklyn, NYC
Design by Pepon Meneses

Oriol Vallès 4tet - Recer (2021 The Changes Music)

Before the vaccine, physical distance was the basic measure against the pandemic. The lockdown in March 2020 meant a dramatic change for both individual and collective lives. At first sight, some advantages could be observed after this new situation; in our case, digressing from social events and more time to compose. Quickly, this apparent opportunity changed to a widespread yearning to produce through social media, telework became fundamental and boundaries between retreat and work became blurred. 

1. Pur Entreteniment (Oriol Vallès)
2. Recer (Oriol Vallès)
3. Quarantena Song n.28 (Xavi Torres)
4. Ribs (Oriol Vallès)
5. Quarantena Song n.27 (Xavi Torres)
6. Represa (Oriol Vallès)

Oriol Vallès – trumpet
Xavi Torres – Rhodes
Giuseppe Campisi – bass
Andreu Pitarch – drums

Recorded at Magneti Studio, 27-7-2020
Recorded by Marc Ribera
Mixed by Quim “Kato” Puigtió
Cover by Joel Codina
Produced by Oriol Vallès

Irene Reig - Mira (2021 The Changes Music)

“Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the Irene Reig Trio!!!”

In these unprecedented times, this is the closest thing you'll get to a live concert. Originally planned as a live recording, the session took place last November at the Milano Jazz Club in Barcelona. It finally took place without an audience, apart from our loyal sound engineer, Kato. Nevertheless, the band were in great shape and ready to record, thrilled to be joined by one of their most beloved accompanists, the pianist Joan Monné, who added his beautiful touch to the last three pieces of the set.

Irene is so determined with this date that she is going all the way with it, publishing the music on vinyl. This makes me so happy as a member of the trio, of the label and as a designer, because it gives me the chance to once again participate beyond the drums alone.

This selection of music, almost completely original, creates within the listener the feeling of a packed club. Place the needle, sit down, and start swinging with us.

1. Borinquen 06:25
2. I let a song go out of my heart 05:35
3. Mira 05:59
4. The Sweetest Sounds 04:36
5. Kleinetjeeta 05:22
6. Bebesoy 05:08
7. Opus. 18 - Regar Regularment 05:18
8. Song for Monné 05:45

Irene Reig - Alto Sax & Compositions - bandleader
Pau Sala - Double Bass
Joan Casares - Drums
Joan Monné - Piano (featuring)

Recording, mixing and mastering: Quim "Kato" Puigtió
Recorded at Cafè Milano (Bcn) Nov 2020
Label: The Changes Music

Artwork by Joan Casares
Photos by Joel Codina and Maria Fuster.

All songs written by Irene Reig, except:

"Bebe-soy" by Joan Casares
"I let a song out of my heart" by Duke Ellington
"The Sweetest sounds" by Richard Rogers

Joan Mar Sauqué - Gone With The Wind (2021 The Changes Music)

01. Bitty Ditty (Thad Jones)
02. My Dream (Tadd Dameron)
03. Ray's Idea (Ray Brown, Gil Fuller)
04. I Only Have Eyes For You (Harry Warren)
05. In The Land Of Oo-Bla-Dee (Mary Lou Williams)
06. I Cover The Waterfront (Johnny Green)
07. Gone With The Wind (Allie Wrubel)
08. Kitchenette Across The Hall (Tadd Dameron)
09. Bill (Jerome Kern)
10. Shabozz (Gigi Gryce)
11. Strictly Romantic (Gigi Gryce)
12. Stompin' At The Savoy (Edgar Samson)

Joan Mar Sauqué - Trumpet
Josep Traver - Guitar
Giuseppe Campisi - Double Bass

Recorded, Mixed and Mastered at Sotrack Records by Adrià Vidaña

Liner notes by Fernando O. de Urbina

Artwork and photography by Blanca Funes

Fernando Brox Sexteto - Factor Humano (2021 The Changes Music)

New project of old friends and partners who have shared tablas, music and good moments on more than one occasion. For this time, Fernando Brox brings together some of the musicians that have influenced him in all aspects. They first introduced him in the world of Jazz some years ago. Without any doubt, they have showed him a vital course and a way (and a lot of them at once) of understanding music and life. As an excuse for getting this great personnel together, Fernando has come up with an original repertoire during the last year that reflects his most recent musical research.

“In a nutshell, this music works as a vehicle to acknowledge all that I've learnt from these great people and also to celebrate what I consider the most important thing when speaking about the musical phenomenon: to share and come together with the others and with ourselves, all from our common nature.

This project is for all people from all ages. The main objective, besides making a quality record and offering a live musical experience, is to put the spotlight on the high level of the Jazz we have in our country and to claim a more active presence of the local musicians in the Jazz festivals.” 

1. Lucky Strike 06:40
2. Eclipse 04:59
3. Cleopatra 04:31
4. EFG 07:22
5. Carnitas 06:18
6. D.D (to David Defries) 05:17
7. Candombe Ralente 07:42
8. Dark Water 04:11
9. Maytal's Party 08:08

Julián Sánchez - Trumpet
Enrique Oliver - Tenor Sax
Toni Vaquer - Piano
Bori Albero - Bass
Juanma Nieto - Drums
Fernando Brox - Flute & compositions

Sound Enginner: Manolo Toro en el
Recorded at Estudio Puerto Records (13 january 2020)
Mixing and Mastering by Curro Ureba at Trafalgar Studios
Art Work by José Such
Published by The Changes Music

CD's available (message us for more info)

Ken Stubbs - 3 Shadows, 4 Angels (June 2021)

Ken Stubbs formed his first jazz group – ‘First House’, with fellow ex music biz sufferers, Tube driver and Demon of the double bass, Mick Hutton, the marvellous, number-crunching drum genius, Martin France and the formidable composer and magician-keyboardist, Django Bates.

They where fortunate to record twice for ECM, with the Perfectionist-German-Sound Wizard, Manfred Eicher.

1. 2 Ounces of Love 02:55
2. Melancholia 06:38
3. Nobody Else But Me 09:05
4. 3 Shadows (for Jonny Cash) - The Beast in Me 04:27
5. 4 Angels 11:15
6. En La Orilla Del Mundo 06:37
7. Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams 08:54
8. Unity Village 07:29
9. For Heaven's Sake 05:30

Ken Stubbs - Alto Saxophone
Ivo Neame - Piano
James Muller - Guitar
Brett Hirst - Bass
Simon Barker - -Drums

Recorded 2020 - 2021 In Australia

Recorded and mixed by Christian Pyle and Ken Stubbs

Mastered by Ken Stubbs