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1995: Barbara Dennerlein - Take Off Hard-bop, Post-bop
1995: Barbara Dennerlein - Take Off
Artist: Barbara Dennerlein
Album: Take Off
Label: Verve
Year: 1995
Format: Flac
Time: 1h 8m 39s
Size: 469 MB
AMG rating: 1995: Barbara Dennerlein - Take Off

Repost with new Link from Mr. peer57

German organist Barbara Dennerlein gained a lot of attention when she signed with Verve in the mid-'90s. This set shows that her sound is very different from the usual dominant influence on her instrument, Jimmy Smith. Much of the music is quite funky, with Dennerlein demonstrating that she can riff as passionately as anyone and come up with continually fresh ideas over fairly simple structures. There is more variety than expected on the program, including a straightforward version of the bebop standard "Hot House" and some moody ballads. Dennerlein is joined by a particularly strong supporting cast that includes trumpeter Roy Hargrove, trombonist Ray Anderson, Mike Sim on saxes, and guitarist Mitch Watkins. This is an excellent effort that is easily recommended to jazz/funk collectors.
~ Scott Yanow, All Music Guide
1957-58: Ray Charles & Milt Jackson - Soul Brothers / Soul Meeting Music » Soul » Soul-Jazz
1957-58: Ray Charles & Milt Jackson - Soul Brothers / Soul MeetingArtist: Ray Charles & Milt Jackson
Album: Soul Brothers / Soul Meeting
Year: 1957 1958
Label: Atlantic 7567-81951-2
Format: MP3@ 320 Kbs
Size: 101 Mb + 94,7 Mb (+ cover)
Time: 92:33

REPOST with new links from Mr. Teds. Please enjoy.

This twofer combines two classic atlantic sessions from 1957 and '58, "Soul Meeting" and "Soul Brothers." In 1957, Ray Charles still had not achieved the fame that would make him an icon of soul and r-n-b. He was still appearing in a variety of contexts, including these extraordinary jazz sets with Milt Jackson. Mr. Jackson was well-known via the Modern Jazz Quartet, but here we meet him in his solo nature a jazz man drenched in the blues. Mr. Charles was a perfect foil for these sets that swing with some great modern jazz ("Cosmic Ray", "Soul Brothers", or "Deed I Do"), but also cook with some down-n-dirty blues ("Blue Funk", "How Long Blues", and "X-Ray blues"). What comes to light is just how good Mr. Charles was on piano, and also alto sax ("How Long..."). He has a deft hand and is a brilliant improviser. This album is a great introduction to classic jazz from the '50s, but is also highly recommended for a glimpse of another side of the genius of Ray Charles, one rarely heard much today.
Caravan Palace - Caravan Palace Music » Jazz
Caravan Palace - Caravan PalaceArtist: Caravan Palace
Album: Caravan Palace
Label: Wagram
Year: 2008
Time: 55:44
Format, bitraet: MP3, 320 kbps
Size: 125.4 MB(All Covers)

Caravan Palace is a self-described lectro-swing group from Paris, France, that made its full-length album debut in 2008. Comprised of Charles Delaporte (bass, programming), Arnaud Vial (guitar, programming), Hugues Payen (violin, programming), Colotis Zo (vocals), Toustou (electronics, trombone), and Chapi (clarinette), the group is chiefly influenced by Django Reinhardt but also cites Vitalic, Cab Calloway, Justice, Lionel Hampton, and Daft Punk among its influences. Caravan Palace made their self-titled full-length album debut in 2008 on the French independent label Wagram Music. Promoted with the release of "Jolie Coquine" as a single, Caravan Palace was very well received, reaching the Top 20 of the French albums chart and garnering acclaim for its traditional jazz inclinations.
~ Jason Birchmeier, All Music Guide
Ann Hampton Callaway - At Last Music » Jazz » Vocal Jazz
Ann Hampton Callaway - At LastArtist: Ann Hampton Callaway
Album: At Last
Year: 2009
Label: Telarc
Format, bitrate: MP3, 320kbps
Time: 58:47
Size: 133.6 MB

Ann Hampton Callaway came to jazz through a background in cabaret. The rich-voiced alto has a touch of vibrato which she uses effectively. With a fine rhythm section consisting of pianist Ted Rosenthal, bassist Jay Leonhart, and drummer Victor Lewis, she mines the treasures of the Great American Songbook with a personal touch, showing off with a bit of effective scatting in "What Is This Thing Called Love," and delivering a playful "Comes Love" that is complemented by Wycliffe Gordon's gritty, muted trombone, along with a suitably dreamy "Lazy Afternoon." Callaway has a few surprises in store as well. She masters Chick Corea's demanding "Spain" with ease while she uncovers "On My Way to You," a forgotten gem by Michel Legrand with lyrics by Marilyn & Alan Bergman. She proves herself to be a talented songwriter with the soft bossa nova "Save a Place for Me" and the heartfelt "Finding Beauty," both of which add guitarist Rodney Jones and Latin percussionist Emedin Rivera. There are some misfires. Joni Mitchell's quirky "Carey" is an ill fit with the rest of the album, while the dull, narrow range of rocker Stevie Nicks' "Landslide" simply doesn't suit Callaway's rich voice. But these tracks are minor glitches in an otherwise outstanding release.
~ Ken Dryden, All Music Guide
Ida Sand - True Love Music » Jazz » Vocal Jazz
Ida Sand - True LoveArtist: Ida Sand
Album: True Love
Year: 2009
Label: ACT Music
Format, bitrate: MP3, 174 kbps
Time: 52:26
Size: 65.4 MB

For the new album True Love (ACT 9481-2), there has been no change of direction. Rather it takes on an even more personal sound than her previous work – one reason for this is that in the interim period Sand has become the mother of a baby girl. Some of the songs have to do with my family and my good fortune to have a loving man and a child. But of course, I also sing other pieces that are more about companionship or have social meaning.” Did her pregnancy change her voice? Not physically, but my attitude is different, and now its even more fun.”
The production was also a family affair”. Idas husband, guitarist Ola Gustafsson, is once again on board, just as he was on her ACT debut CD. On True Love he not only plays the guitars, including the pedal steel and dobro resonator; he also takes on the role of producer. The albums light and relaxed atmosphere has much to do with Gustafsson, who, after all, is a well-known name in Swedens pop and rock scene, and he has worked in the USA with Elvis Costello. The permanent members of the band include Per Lindvall on drums, Peter Forss on bass, Mattias Torell on the second guitar, along with guest musicians Peter Asplund on trumpet and woodwind player Magnus Lindgren. All the musicians are friends of ours, and weve spent so much time over the years at the Atlantis Studio in Stockholm that it feels like our second home – so it was a real family get-together.”
One can hear how creative and harmonious the whole process was during the recording of True Love. We played all the pieces together. I dont tell the musicians what to play; each one should put their own personality into the music. A song should develop intuitively and naturally.”
The common denominator running through all the songs on True Love are their deep-rooted emotive qualities. At the albums core are five outstanding original compositions, each with its own unique approach and direction, subtly catchy pieces that you cant get out of your head.

~ Liner note
Jacques Pelzer & Open Sky Unit - Open Sky Unit Jazz, Fusion
Jacques Pelzer & Open Sky Unit - Open Sky UnitArtist: Jacques Pelzer & Open Sky Unit
Album: Open Sky Unit
Label: Whatmusic
Year: 1974 (?)
Release: 2002
Format, bitrate: MP3, 256 kbps
Time: ~ 39 mins
Size: 71.74 MB

This treasured funky jazz LP features Belgian alto sax legend Jacques Pelzer with his group Open Sky Unit. OSU showcases pianist Ron Wilson's compositions, rhythmic soulful Fender Rhodes and vocals in unison with Pelzer & Steve Houben (reeds), Janot Buchem (electric bass) and Pelzer's daughter Micheline on drums. Some of you may be familiar with OSU via the Jazz Bizniz 2 LP on Counterpoint which featured the track Sunshine Star.

A rare example of Jacques PELZER's incursion into fusion jazz, and also one of the first appearances on record of saxophone/flute player Steve HOUBEN. For this live recording recorded in the early seventies, the compositions were written by US pianist and vocalist Ron WILSON.
Milt Jackson - Memories of Thelonious Sphere Monk Music » Jazz » BeBop » Post-bop
Milt Jackson - Memories of Thelonious Sphere MonkArtist: Milt Jackson
Album: Memories of Thelonious Sphere Monk
Label: OJC/Pablo
Year: 1982
Format, bitrate: MP3, 320 kbps
Size: 93.8 MB
Time: 39:19
AMG Rating: Milt Jackson - Memories of Thelonious Sphere Monk

Milt Jackson and his quartet of 1982 (with pianist Monty Alexander, bassist Ray Brown and drummer Mickey Roker) recorded three albums of material during an engagement at Ronnie Scott's Club in London. Pianist/composer Thelonious Monk had passed away two months earlier and Jackson decided to pay tribute to his old associate. The vibraphonist is in excellent form on four of Monk's standards in addition to a lengthy "Django," his own "Think Positive" and Ray Brown's "Blues for Groundhog.
~ Scott Yanow, AMG
Barbara Hendriks, Monty Alexander Trio - Tribute To Duke Ellington Music » Jazz » Vocal Jazz
Barbara Hendriks, Monty Alexander Trio - Tribute To Duke EllingtonArtist: Barbara Hendricks, Monty Alexander Trio
Album: Tribute to Duke Ellington
Format, bitrate: MP3, 320 kbps
Time: 1h 16m 1s
Size: 90.6 + 80 MB (+ covers)

While Barbara Hendricks is best known as one of the world's leading classical vocalists, she's also an accomplished jazz singer, and in this performance with the Monty Alexander Trio to pay homage to America's greatest jazz composer.
Angel's Tribute To Duke Ellington features loving interpretations of the jazz master's works from artists like Earl Hines, Cecil Taylor and Sir Roland Hanna. Randy Weston begins the album with a dedication to Ellington, then Hanna performs "Take The 'A' Train" and "I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)." Jay McShann's "Satin Doll," Hines' "In My Solitude" and Taylor's "After All" add to this collection's worthiness.

~ Heather Phares, AMG
Ann Hampton Callaway - After Ours Music » Jazz » Vocal Jazz
Ann Hampton Callaway - After OursArtist: Ann Hampton Callaway
Album: After Ours
Label: DENON
Release: 1997
Quality: MP3 320 kbps
Time: 63:65
Size: 130 MB

Ann Hampton Callaway is one of the top cabaret singers of the past decade. She has always been influenced a bit by jazz, and this 1997 release was her first full jazz recording. Callaway has a haunting voice and, as with most cabaret singers, a great respect for the lyrics she interprets; her singing on "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" is a bit eerie. Pianist Kenny Barron, Bob Mintzer on tenor and soprano, and trumpeter Randy Brecker all get a generous amount of solo space, while bassist Jay Leonhart and percussionist George Jinda are fine in support; considering the high quality of her sidemen, it is a major compliment to the singer to say that her vocals do not cause the set to sag or the listener to lose this interest. On "All Blues" and "Old Devil Moon" in particular, she shows the potential of becoming a significant jazz singer in the future if she sticks to this path. Strangely enough, an intriguing original blues (clocking in around four-and-a-half minutes) is included at the end of the program, but not mentioned on the back cover or in the liners. Recommended.
- Review by Scott Yanow.
Barbara Dennerlein - Outhipped Music » Jazz » BeBop » Post-bop
Barbara Dennerlein - Outhipped Artist: Barbara Dennerlien
Album: Outhipped
Year: 1999
Quality: MP3 CBR 320 kbps All Covers
Time: 1h 15m 22s
Size: 163 MB

Barbara Dennerlein has 75-and-a-half minutes to indulge her eclectic tastes on her third Verve outing, Outhipped, and she uses them. Working with ensembles numbering as many as nine sidemen, she embarks on such ambitious efforts as the nine-minute "Mabuse," a five-section reflection on director Fritz Lang's 1922 silent film epic Dr. Mabuse. The ten-and-a-half-minute funk workout "In the Mud" leaves considerable space for the horn section to shine. Trumpeter Darren Barrett and saxophone player Craig Handy are also heard extensively in the quintet arrangements of the boppish "Black and White" and "Farewell to Old Friends." And there is a version of the Rolling Stones' "Satisfaction" that sounds like what it might have become in the hands of the Meters, beginning with a second-line New Orleans R&B before becoming another funk number. Dennerlein, who wrote all the other numbers, is often content to comp behind her sidemen, though she does come out and play fluidly on her Hammond B3 organ in a style that emphasizes the instrument's rhythmic possibilities. Outhipped is the music of a composer/performer who has a wide knowledge of musical styles, and wants to play at least a little bit of all of them.
William Ruhlmann
Ann Hampton Callaway - Blues in the Night Music » Jazz » Vocal Jazz
Ann Hampton Callaway - Blues in the NightArtist: Ann Hampton Callaway
Album: Blues in the Night
Label: Telarc
Year: 2006
Format: MP3 192 CBR kbps
Time: 55:29
Size: 76.08 MB
AMG rating Ann Hampton Callaway - Blues in the Night

Ann Hampton Callaway is not your typical jazz songbird. For one thing, she's an accomplished and award-winning songwriter, which is unusual in a field dominated by interpreters. But what's most surprising is her voice -- it's a low alto instrument with a rich, dark, butterscotchy tone, and when she gets way down into her lower range the effect can be downright startling. Her latest album is a pleasing mixture of originals and standards, some performed with a small combo that includes bassist Christian McBride and drummer Lewis Nash, others with the all-female Diva Jazz Orchestra. The big-band pieces pack the most wallop, which is no surprise given both the quality of the band and the fact that the arrangements were written by the great Tommy Newsom; a powerhouse rendition of her own "Swingin' Away the Blues" opens the program with a serious bang, and her small-scale but equally powerful take on the chestnut "Blue Moon" carries the energy forward nicely. The rest of the album is a mix of tender ballads and vibrant uptempo numbers, most with a theme related to the blues, either in a mood of resigned acceptance ("Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most," "Willow Weep for Me") or defiant opposition (the Callaway original "Hip to Be Happy"). She imbues most of these songs with a smoldering, torchy quality that brings new energy to old material, and her new songs stand up very nicely next to the established standards. Highly recommended.
Rick Anderson, AMG
Legends of Acid Jazz : "Hammond Heros" Jazz, Modern Jazz
Legends of Acid Jazz : "Hammond Heros"Artist: VA
Album: Legends of Acid Jazz, Hammond Heroes
Label: Prestige Records
Year: 1967
Release: 1998
Bitrate: mp3, 320 kbps
Time: 71:11
Size: 162 MB

Very good compilation of 13 soul-jazz cuts from the Prestige vaults featuring the Hammond B-3 organ, recorded between 1959 and 1967. Some of the names (Shirley Scott, Jack McDuff, Richard Groove Holmes) are pretty well known to fans of the style, but others are not. It's also a useful disc because it has key sides on which McDuff, Larry Young, John Patton, and others were playing as sidemen to non-keyboardist leaders, and thus might be overlooked by collectors of the style. Willis Jackson's "Pool Shark" (with Carl Wilson on organ) and Trudy Pitts' ebullient run through "Take Five" are real groovers; Richard "Groove" Holmes' "Misty" was a Top Fifty pop hit and one of the few soul-jazz singles to hit the charts.
Richard Galliano - Spleen Music » Jazz
Richard Galliano - Spleen Artist: Richard Galliano
Album: Spleen
Year: 1999
Style: Tango | Jazz
Label: Dreyfus
Quality: MP3 CBR 256 kbps, Covers
Time: 38:12
Size: 70 MB

Richard Galliano brings us some wonderful smooth jazz grooves on this album. All featuring his beautiful accordion playing. This is the ideal album to chill-out to. His playing is so sensitive and minimal and is surely a lesson to all other accordion players! The backing band, is so smoothly produced and recorded, that listening to them is like swallowing honey! I bought this album without really being familiar with Richards work but this album has really made me want to explore more of his recordings. Spleen makes the ideal starting place for anyone who thinks they may be interested in Richard Galliano's Jazz accordion music. My advice to anyone who will listen is to get a copy right now!!!!!
Richard Galliano - New Musette Music » Jazz » Latin
Richard Galliano - New Musette Artist: Richard Galliano
Album: New Musette
Label: Label Bleu
Year: 1991
Quality: MP3 CBR 320 kbps; All Covers
Time: 00:57'
Size: 129.3 MB

He was born in Cannes on December 12, 1950. He studied piano and accordion with his father, Lucien Galliano, before pursuing his musical studies at the Nice Conservatory, presided at that time by organist Pierre Cochereau. He studied counterpoint, harmony, and trombone, graduating with a 1er Prix d' Excellence in 1969.
In 1973 he left the south of France for Paris. For several years he collaborated with Claude Nougaro, Barbara, Serge Reggiani, Charles Aznavour, Juliette Grco, Georges Moustaki and Zizi Jeanmaire. His duo performance with singer Allain Leprest for the album Voce A Mano won him the Grand Prix du Disque from the Acadmie Charles Cros. In the realm of French chanson we should also mention his musical encounters with the singer Catherine Ringer (of the group Rita Mitsouko) at the Cit de la Musique (Paris) and at the Antibes Jazz Festival in Juan-Les-Pins.
In 1983 Astor Piazzolla invited Richard Galliano to be the bandoneon soloist at the Comdie Franaise in his original music to accompany William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream”, directed by Jorge Lavelli. It was the beginning of a long friendship between the two men that lasted until Piazzolla's death in 1992.
In 1991 Richard Galliano created the New Musette” style and recorded it with Philip Catherine (guitar), Pierre Michelot (bass) and Aldo Romano (drums) for the record label Label Bleu.
Ann Hampton Callaway - Easy Living Music » Jazz » Vocal Jazz
Ann Hampton Callaway - Easy LivingArtist: Ann Hampton Callaway
Album: Easy Living
Year: 1999
Release: 2005
Label: Sindrome
Quality: MP3 CBR 192 kbps
Time: 56:56
Size: 79 MB
AMG Rating Ann Hampton Callaway - Easy Living

This is Ann Hampton Callaway's seventh recording, Easy Living, is one of her very best. It's a program of well-known standards and fairly stock arrangements, but in the middle is her pristine, well-defined, flexible voice. She retains a lower-end range in her style that suggests only one singer: Sarah Vaughan. She's joined by several different rhythm sections and soloists, including pianists Benny Green (six cuts), Bill Charlap (five), and Kenny Barron (two); bassists Peter Washington or Neal Miner; drummers Clarence "Tootsie" Bean and Lewis Nash; percussionist Jim Saporito; saxophonists Andy Farber, Nelson Rangell, and Gerry Niewood; and on three selections, trumpeter Wynton Marsalis. A collection of love songs sung convincingly and with no frills, Callaway shows great depth in ballad singing. Hard evidence is presented in her takes of "Skylark" and "The Very Thought of You," with Charlap's glistening piano tones ringing bells for the singer and Farber's tenor sax replies. "'Round Midnight" is the penultimate interp with Barron's wistful piano and Marsalis' spare trumpet offering advice on ol' midnight. Callaway can swing well when she chooses; "Easy to Love" brings home her lower dulcet tones, while Farber's tenor cops a Stan Getz-Joe Henderson type plea bargain. Green's intro to "Nice Work If You Can Get It" has a "Giant Steps" quote before the singer digs into this lyric. She scats a little during the middle of the program, on the melody line, and the coda, of "Bluesette," and more in the improvised bridge during "It Had to Be You." Bossa nova is always a sidebar for singers, and Callaway uses this Brazilian rhythm on an interesting arrangement of "You Don't Know What Love Is" spiked with high drama, Saporito's Latin percussion, Barron's deft piano, and Niewood's flavorful tenor. The lone composition of the vocalist "Come Take My Hand" is also bossa, with Rangell's flute chirping on this definitive love anthem. Marsalis is also bolder on the stark ballad title track and a nice version of "In a Sentimental Mood," while it's the singer getting brash and daring in a lower tone than normal for perhaps the highlight "All of You," Green's piano matching the depths of Callaway's yearnings. It's not hyperbole to understand this is the perfect singer with a perfect voice that sounds so effortless, mature, and flowing. Though the others six recordings are just fine, this one really hits the spot, especially instrumentally. Callaway proves up to the challenge with every measure, phrase, and inflection.
Michael G. Nastos, AMG
Chris Botti - In Boston (Live) Music » Jazz » BeBop » Third Stream
Chris Botti - In Boston (Live) Artist: Chris Botti
CD title: In Boston (Live)
Released date: March 31, 2009
Record Label: Columbia Records
Firmat, Quality: MP3, 320(cbr) Kbps
Time: 72'44"
Size: 167 mb

REPOST with new info from Mr. Gkjoflm.

A sequel of sorts to Chris Botti's 2006 PBS special, this September 2008 event "Live In Boston" found the sartorially splendid cool jazz trumpeter accompanied by the Boston Symphony and a collection of celebrity vocalists. The concert delivers an overview of popular music, with jazz standards like "I've Got You Under My Skin" right alongside "Ave Maria" and Sting's "If I Ever Lose My Faith in You." Whether featuring rocker Steven Tyler, American Idol chanteuse - Katharine McPhee, or pop-opera superstar Josh Groban, all the tunes are presented in Botti's inimitable, Chet Baker-influenced uber-smooth style. Includes guest appearances from Josh Groban, Yo-Yo Ma, John Mayer, Katharine McPhee, Sting, Lucia Micarelli and Steven Tyler.
Viktoria Tolstoy - My Russian Soul Music » Jazz » Vocal Jazz
Viktoria Tolstoy - My Russian SoulArtist: Viktoria Tolstoy
Album: My Russian Soul
Label: ACT
Duration: 51:42
Size: 121.7 MB
Bitrate: MP3 @320 kb/s

On My Russian Soul the Swede with Russian ancestors shows us another facet of her glamorous personality with her brilliant and expressive voice. For many years now, the great-grand daughter of Leo Tolstoy has been keen to explore her Russian musical roots. I had a conversation with Siggi Loch concerning that side of my music some time ago, but I didn't feel experienced enough for a project that big then. Russian music out of the classical genre has been adapted every now and then by jazz musicians - think of Ellington's 'Nutcracker Suite' - but never by a singer.

Les Doigts de L'Homme - Les Doigts de L'Homme (2005) Music » Jazz » Swing
Les Doigts de L'Homme - Les Doigts de L'Homme (2005)
Artist: Les Doigts de L'Homme
Album: Les Dogts de L'Homme
Genre: Jazz-Swing/Manouche
Release: 2005
Quality: MP3 256 Kbps
Tracks: 14
Time: 44:52
Label: Lamasrock
Size: 77 MB

've seen Les Doigts de l'homme for the first time at the Django Festival 2008 at Liberchies(hometown of Django Reinhardt in Belgium)and I was completely blown away from their fresh and original gipsy jazz. Lead guitar player, Olivier Kikteff,
demonstrates an extraordinary virtuosity, rarely seen, but the songs are very original and beautiful as well. The mix of Selmer guitars, banjo's, ouds and cajon and the different tempi are the trademark of Les Doigts de l'homme. I can highly recommend this most recent CD from Les Doigts de l'homme to everyone who loves the guitar, loves manousch jazz, cross-over
music,etc... Buy this, you won't regret it!!!
Michel Petrucciani - Power of Three (1987) Music » Jazz » Mainstream

Michel Petrucciani - Power of Three (1987)
Artist: Michel Petrucciani
Album: Power of Three
Label: Capitol
Year of Release: 1987
Genre: Jazz
Quality: MP3 @320 Kbps
Size: 139 MB+All Covers

This is an all-star summit that works quite well. Pianist Michel Petrucciani, a major jazz musician who had already led 11 record dates by this time (despite still being only 23), teams up with guitarist Jim Hall at the 1986 Montreux Jazz Festival for two lyrical duets: the altered blues "Careful," in which they comp exquisitely behind each other's solos, and "In a Sentimental Mood." Petrucciani and Hall are joined by Wayne Shorter on soprano and tenor for "Limbo," "Morning Blues," and the calypso "Bimini," and these songs feature some of Shorter's finest jazz playing of the era. Highly recommended.- Review by Scott Yanow
Lou Rawls - The Very Best of Lou Rawls - You'll Never Find Another Music » Jazz » Vocal Jazz
Lou Rawls - The Very Best of Lou Rawls - You'll Never Find Another
Artist: Lou Rawls
Album: The Very Best of Lou Rawls - You'll Never Find Another
Label: EMI
Years : 1966-1977, release:2006
Genre: VocalJazz-Blues/Pop
Bitrate: MP3 @ 320 kbps
Size: 90.5 & 73.3
Covers: Yes

Since the passing of Lou Rawls in early 2006, Capitol has been working overtime to document the singer's career. First was a collection of early jazz and blues recordings, then a two-fer containing two of Rawls' best mid-'60s recordings, and now something that Rawls fans have never had before: a best-of collection that contains the man's hits from the '60s with Capitol and his '70s hits with Philadelphia International. It isn't the definitive collection that listeners deserve, as it skips over his early jazz and blues sides, his late-'60s big-band sessions with Benny Carter, and his '80s recordings on Blue Note — but it is a start. All the big hits are here, like "Dead End Street," "Love Is a Hurtin' Thing," "Your Good Thing (Is About to End)," and his biggest, "You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine." Also included is a wide range of tracks that show just how impressive Rawls' gift truly was. Whether he is singing funky gospel ("Trouble Here Below"), smooth soul with a message ("Natural Man"), uptown soul ("You Can Bring Me All Your Heartaches"), disco ("Lady Love"), or lush pop ("Down Here on the Ground"), he sounds definitive and natural, like he could have sung just about anything and made it all his. The Very Best of Lou Rawls: You'll Never Find Another is a very fine introduction to the casual fan and a reminder to everyone that Lou Rawls was a true vocal giant. ~ Tim Sendra , AMG
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