Archive for the Herb ELLIS Category

Herb ELLIS & Stuff SMITH – Together! 1963

Posted in Herb ELLIS, JAZZ, Stuff SMITH on December 2, 2010 by whoisthemonk

Herb ELLIS & Stuff SMITH – Together! 1963
1995 Issue


This Koch CD reissues an interesting and very successful matchup between guitarist Herb Ellis and the great swing violinist Stuff Smith. Pianist Lou Levy and Bob Enevoldsen (doubling on his cool-toned tenor and valve trombone) contribute some solos and drummer Shelly Manne adds fine support. The reissue (which has three alternate takes in addition to the original six-song program) features plenty of cooking and strong interplay between Stuff and Ellis on some blues, the ancient standard How Come You Do Me Like You Do (which has one of the violinist’s two personable vocals) and Smith’s two originals Hillcrest and Skip It. This is one of Ellis’ personal favorite records and one of the best recordings from Stuff Smith’s later years.
By Scott Yanow, All Music Guide.
A rare treat from the now defunt Koch Jazz . Stuff really benefits from having two other front liners to enhance his customary drive and swing.They all gain from having Manne on board. Stand out track – Get Acquainted Blues. Three bonus takes mean good value. Surpassed only by NOTHING BUT THE BLUES.Recommended
By Brian E. White.
Stuff Smith-  Violin, Vocals
Herb Ellis- Guitar
Shelly Manne- Drums
Bob Enevoldsen- Trombone, Tenor Sax
Lou Levy- Piano
01. Skip It 8:07
02. Alone Together (take 2) 4:18
03. Blues For Janet 4:16
04. How Come You Do Me Like You Do 3:06
05. Get Acquainted Blues (take 5) 7:33
06. Hillcrest  (take 2)  7:09
07. Get Acquainted Blues 7:33
08. Alone Together (take 1) 7:15
09. Hillcrest (take 5)  6:08

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Herb ELLIS, Joe PASS, Ray BROWN, Jake HANNA – Arrival 1973

Posted in Herb ELLIS, Jake HANNA, JAZZ, Joe PASS, Ray BROWN on November 24, 2010 by whoisthemonk

Herb ELLIS, Joe PASS, Ray BROWN, Jake HANNA – Arrival 1973
2003 Issue.


For lovers of guitar jazz, inspired pairings like Joe Pass and Herb Ellis make for special outings. While both players prospered in a number of settings, they brought out a new quality in each other when paired together, bumping up the energy a notch or two. Arrival is special because it reissues the duo’s first two albums with Concord: Jazz/Concord in 1973 and the live Seven, Come Eleven in 1974 (also Concord’s first two albums). The quartet is completed by bassist Ray Brown and drummer Jake Hanna, two fine players who keep the program bopping along. Both discs, filled with reliable standards, are excellent in different ways. Arrival kicks off with “Look for the Silver Lining,” which bounces along like the perfect daydream for nearly five minutes. The stereo separation of the two guitars sounds great on the hi-fi, and renditions of “Stuffy” and “Georgia” are fantastic. Seven, Come Eleven begins with “In a Mellow Tone” but really blasts off with the title track, a Charlie Christian/Benny Goodman tune played faster than one can imagine anyone’s fingers moving. This set, unlike Jazz/Concord, feeds from the energy of the audience. While the roots of both of these recordings date back to swing, the music never sounds like a nostalgia trip. Instead, these discs have captured Pass and Ellis in the moment, delivering crisp solos and dense accompaniment. Arrival offers two great CDs and a chance to check out, or revisit, two great guitarists.
By Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr.
The very first release by the Concord label (recorded at the 1973 Concord Jazz Festival) was a quartet set featuring guitarists Herb Ellis and Joe Pass, bassist Ray Brown and drummer Jake Hanna. Ellis and Pass (the latter was just beginning to be discovered) always made for a perfectly complementary team, constantly challenging each other. The boppish music (which mixes together standards with “originals” based on the blues and a standard) is quite enjoyable with the more memorable tunes including “Look for the Silver Lining,” “Honeysuckle Rose,” “Georgia,” “Good News Blues” and “Bad News Blues.” This was a strong start for what would become the definitive mainstream jazz label.
This is, above all, a fun album–the musicianship is superb and the group was obviously enjoying themselves during the performance, which comes across clearly in the recording. All the songs are exceptional, but to me the standout is “Concord Blues”–it absolutely flies, both with the chugging rhythm section and the guitar interplay. The Pass solo (the second of the two) starts off softly and then builds to the point that all someone on the recording can do is whistle (whew!) with the perfection of it.
Herb Ellis- Guitar
Joe Pass- Guitar
Ray Brown- Bass
Jake Hanna- Drums
Arrival: Jazz/Concord/Seven, Come Eleven CD 1:
01. Look for the Silver Lining 4:47
02. Shadow of Your Smile 2:30
03. Good News Blues 3:22
04. Honeysuckle Rose 3:07
05. Happiness Is the Concord Jazz Festival 3:54
06. Stuffy 5:07
07. Georgia on My Mind 5:24
08. Love for Sale 3:48
09. Bad News Blues 5:17

Arrival: Jazz/Concord/Seven, Come Eleven  CD 2:
01. In a Mellow Tone 7:32
02. Seven Come Eleven 5:09
03. Prelude to a Kiss 5:34
04. Perdido 4:51
05. I’m Confessin’ (That I Love You) 5:12
06. Easy Living 4:32
07. Concord Blues 8:49

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Herb ELLIS & Red MITCHELL – Doggin Around 1988

Posted in Herb ELLIS, JAZZ, Red MITCHELL on November 23, 2010 by whoisthemonk

Herb ELLIS & Red MITCHELL – Doggin Around 1988
Recorded live at The Loa, Santa Monica, California in March 1988.

After recording many albums for Concord (including the majority of the label’s first releases), Herb Ellis did not lead any sessions for seven years until this duet date with bassist Red Mitchell. Other than three originals (including Mitchell’s “Big ‘N’ and the Bear” which features the bassist’s vocal), the repertoire is taken from the swing era. The interplay by the two greats on tunes such as “Sweethearts on Parade,” a medium-tempo “Over the Rainbow,” “Lady Be Good” and Mitchell’s “Life’s a Take” plus the classic cover drawing by cartoonist Gary Larson (depicting a jazz club run by and for dogs called “The Stuffed Cat”) are good reasons to acquire this high-quality straightahead session.
By Scott Yanow, All Music Guide.
Guitarist Herb Ellis, 88, has died. He got his big break as a member of the Oscar Peterson Trio 1953-58 then accompanied him in several years, Ella Fitzgerald. Together with fellow Barney Kessel, and Charlie Byrd he formed in the late 70’s the group Great Guitars. A duosamarbete with Red Mitchell in 1988 resulted in the album “Doggin ‘Around” (Concord). Another groovy disc example “is” Rhythm Willie “(Concord), which is heard by Herb Ellis Basiegitarristen Freddie Green.
Herb Ellis Guitar
Red Mitchell Bass, Vocals
01. Sweethearts on Parade Lombardo, Newman 3:54
02. I’m Confessin’ (That I Love You) Daugherty, Neiburg, Reynolds 4:45
03. There’s No Bad Blues Ellis 5:08
04. Easy Living Rainger, Robin 4:13
05. Over the Rainbow Arlen, Harburg 6:51
06. Oh, Lady Be Good Gershwin, Gershwin 4:35
07. Willow Weep for Me Ronell 4:15
08. Big ‘N’ and the Bear Mitchell 4:47
09. Mean to Me Ahlert, Turk 5:58
10. Life’s a Take Mitchell 3:27
11. Blue Moon Hart, Rodgers 3:24
12. Old Folks Hill, Robison 4:38

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