Freddie Hubbard – Red Clay (1970) 320 kbs

I’m not typically a huge fan of the CTI catalog. Creed Taylor’s production aesthetic leans towards a sterile polish, with a dampened sense of dynamic, and with the listener feeling like they are hearing everything through headphones even when they’re not. Everything feels close-mic’d to me — the drum sound favors close-mic techniques over overhead microphones that are more common in jazz recordings from the hard-bop era where cats like Hubbard cut their teeth, resulting in a drum sound that doesn’t “breath” or have much “air,” to use the usual sound engineer metaphors. And all this in spite of the fact that the one and only Rudy Van Gelder was manning the controls as lead engineer. But I don’t really know anything about what the CTI situation was like behind the scenes.. Perhaps some kind blog visitor will set me straight.

But this record stands as a shining exception for me. Not that those production elements aren’t still there to some extent, but Hubbard’s vibrant arrangements and the energy of this ensemble overcome them easily. To borrow some imagery from my friend Clint Striker, CTI records are often just too “clean” — they could benefit from being more “dirty.” Well this one still has some grit to it, some “dirt,” particularly in the lovely Fender Rhodes work from Herbie Hancock and Johnny Hammond, the latter on the previously unissued live performance of the title track. This track is in itself worth the price of admission of this remaster. It highlights the funky loose-booty tightness and explosive dynamism that Hubbard’s band was capable of when they were not reined in by Taylor’s hermetic controls.

I think the best way to hear this album is on wax. If I had time – which I don’t — I’d give you all a vinyl rip. But this remaster, loud and brash as it may be, should hold you over. Enjoy!
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Freddie Hubbard – Red Clay (1970) 320 kbs in em pee three

Originally released on CTI
Reissued in 2002 as a Legacy Remaster

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Freddie Hubbard – Backlash (1967) 320 kbs


Thanks to Kung for this rip of the recent remaster. I lost my copy of the first CD pressing years ago, nice to have this again! Next up is Red Clay, my personal favorite. We lost a lot of great artists in 2008, so much so that I’m tired of eulogizing them. Rest well, Freddie…
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Freddie Hubbard – Backlash (1967) 320 kbs

01. Backlash [4:15]
02. The Return Of The Prodigal Son [5:43]
03. Little Sunflower [7:56]
04. Om The Que-Tee [5:48]
05. Up Jumped Spring [6:43]
06. Echoes Of Blues [9:45]

Freddie Hubbard – Trumpet & Fluegehorn
James Spaulding – Flaute & Alto sax
Albert Dailey – Piano
Bob Cunningham – Bass
Otis Ray Appleton – Drums
Ray Baretto – Percussion (1-3)

Review by Scott Yanow, AMG
The first of trumpeter Freddie Hubbard’s three Atlantic albums (reissued on a Koch CD in 2000), this excellent set falls between hard bop and the avant-garde, often hinting at both. Hubbard’s regular group of the time (with James Spaulding on alto and flute, pianist Albert Dailey, bassist Bob Cunningham, and drummer Otis Ray Appleton, plus guest conga player Ray Barretto) performs the debut version of his famous “Little Sunflower,” an excellent remake of “Up Jumped Spring,” and four lesser-known pieces. Hubbard and Spaulding made for an excellent team and there are plenty of exciting moments on this brief but potent set.

Rating: 4.5 Stars
Recording Date: Oct 19, 1966,Oct 24, 1966
Label: Koch
Time: 40:04
LabelAtlantic (2005)

01. Backlash [4:15] 02. The Return Of The Prodigal Son [5:43] 03. Little Sunflower [7:56] 04. Om The Que-Tee [5:48] 05. Up Jumped Spring [6:43] 06. Echoes Of Blues [9:45] Freddie Hubbard – Trumpet & Fluegehorn James Spaulding – Flaute & Alto sax Albert Dailey – Piano Bob Cunningham – Bass Otis Ray Appleton – Drums Ray Baretto – Percussion (1-3) Review by Scott Yanow, AMG The first of trumpeter Freddie Hubbard’s three Atlantic albums (reissued on a Koch CD in 2000), this excellent set falls between hard bop and the avant-garde, often hinting at both. Hubbard’s regular group of the time (with James Spaulding on alto and flute, pianist Albert Dailey, bassist Bob Cunningham, and drummer Otis Ray Appleton, plus guest conga player Ray Barretto) performs the debut version of his famous “Little Sunflower,” an excellent remake of “Up Jumped Spring,” and four lesser-known pieces. Hubbard and Spaulding made for an excellent team and there are plenty of exciting moments on this brief but potent set. Rating: 4.5 Stars Recording Date: Oct 19, 1966,Oct 24, 1966 Label: Koch Time: 40:04 LabelAtlantic (2005)”>
Download LINK

Eddie Kendricks – Eddie Kendricks (1973)

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Eddie Kendricks
Eddie Kendricks (1973)
Tamla / Motown T327L

1 Only Room for Two
2 Darling Come Back Home
3 Each Day I Cry a Little
4 Can’t Help What I Am
5. Keep on Truckin’
6 Any Day Now
7. Not on the Outside
8. Where Do You Go (Baby)

Eddie Kendricks – Eddie Kendricks (1973) in 320kbs em pee three

VINYL RIP – Technical Specs

Music Hall MMF.5 Turntable with Goldring 1012GX cartridge, Gyger II diamond stylus, and MK II XLR Ringmat –> Projekt Speedbox II -> Parasound Z Phono Preamp -> Marantz PMD 661 digital recorder at 24/96khz

Declicked on very light settings with Click Repair -> DC Offset and track splitting in Adobe Audition 2.0

Dithering to 16-bit in Adobe AUdition
Converted to FLAC and mp3 with DbPoweramp

Eddie Kendricks – Going Up In Smoke (1976) 320kbs

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This goes out to Agnes in Atlanta on her BIRTHDAY! Happy birthday, yo!!! Agnes is one of my oldest friends (by which I mean a friend I’ve held on to for years, not as in old age) We haven’t actually seen each other in years but hopefully that will change soon.

I can’t get enough of Mr. Kendricks lately. I DJ’d a party this Halloween and played two or three of his songs, and could have just played an entire hour-long set. All of his solo albums are fantastic. This will be the first of several I’ll post here. It’s actually taken from a boxset called “The Thin Man”. I’ve left the track numbering intact but changed the ID tags to reflect ‘Going Up In Smoke.’

LINK HERE

A typical AMG review that makes me say “whatever…” But it’s something:

Review by Lindsay Planer

Although the title could be interpreted to portend the relationship between Eddie Kendricks and his longtime record label, contextual and lyrical clues would suggest Goin’ Up In Smoke (1976) has a motif of triumph over tragedy. In many ways it is a continuation of the work that had begun on He’s A Friend (1976) with songwriter/arranger and multi-instrumentalist Norman Harris back at the helm of the same Philly-based Stigma Sound Studio with many musicians likewise making encore appearances.

With pop and soul music having been temporarily hijacked by disco, it stands to reason that Harris’ scores reflect the latest trend in pop music. All the more significant is that the title song joined “Goin’ Up In Smoke,” “Music Man,” “Born Again,” and “Thanks For The Memories” as they collectively sent the LP to a very respectable #11 on the recently created Dance/Disco survey.

That impressive accomplishment aside, in retrospect Kendricks does not seem well served by the aggressive brass section. He occasionally struggles to be heard over them. Or, perhaps producers intentionally buried the vocalist deep inside the mix as to not get in the way of the four-on-the floor beat. To a similar effect, the slow churning of “The Newness Is Gone” is awash in overbearing strings that sadly detract from the intimacy of the artist’s performance. While the heart is definitely in the right place, “Don’t You Want Light” is little more than an homage to “The Hustle” and again, does little to reveal the singer’s talent

Caroline Crawford – Nice and Soulful (1979) 320 kbs


Caroline Crawford – Nice And Soulful (1979)

www.dustygroove.com
A stunning set of soul tunes from the lovely Caroline Crawford — produced by Bohannon, and some of his best work from the time! Caroline’s got a great style that moves past other club singers of the time — much more soulful and sophisticated than simple disco diva styles, drenched in a deeper soul sound that grounds the album nicely in a strong tradition of 70s soul. The production is tight, but unobtrusive — a bit like some of the best work that Barry White did with singers of a similar style — and the whole album sparkles with a freshness that will make you say “Hey, why I have I been missing this one all these years?” Titles include “The Strut”, “I’ll Be Here For You”, “Havin Fun”, “Facts Of Life”, and “Love Me Or Leave Me Alone”.

Tracks
1. I’ll Be Here For You
2. Can’t Hold Me Back
3. Love Me Or Leave Me Alone
4. The Strut
5. The Facts Of Life
6. Havin’fun