Aretha Franklin – Yeah!!! (1965)

FrontCover1Yeah!!! (or Aretha Franklin In Person With Her Quartet) is the eighth studio album by American singer Aretha Franklin, Released on May 17, 1965 by Columbia Records. Contrary to the overdubbed sounds of audience murmurs, the album was not a live album, but instead was recorded live at New York’s Columbia Studios and produced by Clyde Otis. This would be Franklin’s last collection of jazz recordings until the release of 1969’s Soul ’69, released during her landmark tenure at Atlantic Records. An expanded version of the album that also contains the original session tracks without audience overdubs has been released on CD in the Columbia Box Set Take A Look: Aretha Franklin Complete On Columbia. (by wikipedia)

This ‘live’ nightclub date with a jazz trio, revealed to be a faked on the Columbia compilations that have since come out, is nonetheless a great LP, maybe the best single Columbia LP from Aretha. John Hammond discovered her and just wanted great music, but the label couldn’t decide if she was a show tune singer, jazz or r&b and never figured out she was all of the above and deserved her own category. This is the most jazzy Aretha ever and if she’d wanted to concentrate on this one area of her talent, she would still be ruling it. Hopefully Columbia will issue the undoctored recordings complete some day soon. The clicking silverware and audience murmurs as if they were ignoring her are actually distracting on a couple of songs, which given that it was dubbed in are overkill besides being ridiculous. To this day, Columbia is mishandling her legacy there … Even faked, a great LP (John Ellison)

Aretha Franklin

Personnel:
Kenny Burrell (guitar)
Hindel Butts (drums)
Aretha Franklin (vocals, piano)
Teddy Harris (piano)
James Richardson (bass)

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Tracklist:
01. This Could Be tThe Start Of Something (Allen) 1.31
02. Once In A Lifetime (Newley/Bricusse) 3.22
03. Misty (Garner/Burke) 3.37
04. More (Oliviero/Ortolani/Newell) 1.50
05. There Is No Greater Love (Jones/Symes) 4.41
06. Muddy Water (Richman/Trent/De Rose) 2.27
07. If I Had A Hammer (Hays/Seeger) 2.35
08. Impossible (Allen) 3.23
09. Today I Love Ev’rybody (Arlen/Fields) 3.26
10. Without The One You Love (Franklin) 3.34
11. Trouble In Mind (Jones) 2.54
12. Love For Sale (Porter) 2.39

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Aretha Franklin – Through The Storm (1988)

frontcover1Through the Storm is the thirty-fifth studio album by American singer Aretha Franklin, released on Arista Records in the spring of 1989.
Despite the number 16 Billboard Hot 100 hit title track (a duet with Elton John), the album was not a commercial success; it reached number 55 on the Billboard 200. Selling approximately 225,000 copies in the United States, it was taken swiftly out of print shortly. The follow-up single, “It Isn’t, It Wasn’t, It Ain’t Never Gonna Be”, a duet with Whitney Houston, failed to make the top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number 41. Other guest artists included James Brown, The Four Tops and Kenny G. (by Wikipedia)
Having scored in the recent past with producer Narada Michael Walden and some star duets, Franklin and Arista turned out another album with the same approach but less successful results. The title duet with Elton John went Top 20, but its followup, “It Isn’t, It Wasn’t, It Ain’t Never Gonna Be” was an embarrassing failure for both Franklin and the previously pop-perfect Whitney Houston. The rest was even less distinguished, including a song with The Four Tops and Kenny G and a remake of the old hit “Think.” (by William Ruhlmann)
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Personnel:
Walter Afanasieff (bass, drum programming, keyboards, Synthesizer)
Renaldo Benson (vocals)
Chris Botti (trumpet)
Michael Davis (trombone)
George Devens (percussion)
Abdul Fakir (vocals)
David Foster (keyboards, Synthesizer)
Aretha Franklin (vocals, piano)
Greg “Gigi” (ercussion)
Reggie Griffin (guitar)
Kenneth Hitchcock (saxophone)
Yogi Horton (drums)
Louis Johnson (bass)
Steve Khan (guitar)
Ren Klyce (keyboards)
Jerry Knight (bass)
Robbie Kondor (bass, piano, Synthesizer)
Steve Kroon (percussion)
Arif Mardin (strings, synthesizer)
Sammy Merendino (drums)
David Paich (Keyboards)
Lawrence Payton (vocals)
Jeff Porcaro (drums)
Doc Powell (bass, guitar)
John “J.R.” Robinson (drums)
Marc Russo (Saxophone)
Corrado Rustici (guitar)
Bob Smith (drums)
Kent Smith (trumpet)
Andy Snitzer (Saxophone)
Levi Stubbs (vocals)
Narada Michael Walden (drums, keyboards, percussion, Synthesizer)
Aaron Zigman (keyboards, vocals)
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James Brown (vocals on 01.)
The Four Tops   (vocals on 08.)
Kenny G (Saxophone on 08.)
Whitney Houston (vocals on 04.)
Elton John (vocals on 05.)
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background vocals:
Kitty Beethoven – Margaret Branch – Brenda Corbett – Siedah Garrett – Liz Jackson – Skyler Jett – Melisa Kary – Edie Lehmann – Myrna Mathews – Marti McCall – Claytoven Richardson
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Tracklist:
01. Gimme Your Love (duet With James Brown) (Walden/Cohen) 5.19
02. Mercy (Garrett/Ballard) 4.09
03. He’s The Boy (Franklin) 4.06
04. It Isn’t, It Wasn’t, It Ain’t Never Gonna Be (duet With Whitney Houston) (Hammond/Warren) 5.39
05. Through The Storm (duet With Elton John) (Hammond/Warren) 4.23
06. Think (1989) (Franklin/White) 3.39
07. Come To Me (Price) 3.43
08. If Ever A Love There Was (with the Four Tops and Kenny G) (Oland/Cerney) 4.47
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Aretha Franklin with James Brown

Aretha Franklin – A Bit Of Soul (Unreleased LP) (1965)

frontcover1A previously unreleased 1965 album from the great Aretha Franklin, first issued in 2011 as part of a three-vinyl package, The Electrifying Aretha Franklin, and 9CD box set, Take A Look: Aretha Franklin Complete On Columbia. The pre-Atlantic Aretha – signed to Columbia by John Hammond – turned out to be a tough sell to the masses, as Franklin was, first and foremost, a piano playing gospel singer. The label’s attempts to channel her immense talents into more pop-oriented commercial surrounds were artistically successful (since Aretha could do anything) but, as history would later inform us, the “Queen Of Soul” didn’t fully hit her sales stride until the late 60s on Atlantic. So this previously unissued album, recorded, sequenced, matrixed and ready to go as the follow-up to 1964’s Runnin’ Out Of Fools, is a mixed bag of lush, string-driven “pop” and a “bit” of smoldering soul. Ashford & Simpson are involved in two of the set’s more soulful numbers (“Cry Like A Baby” and “Take It Like You Give It”). But one listen to that soaring, crystalline voice, in any musical context, makes it obvious why both Columbia and Atlantic saw the same potential in Franklin… just waiting to be tapped. The original 11 track LP is bolstered by 3 bonus tracks and 8 mono mixes (and an outtake), and will probably send you scurrying for more of the early work you probably were never exposed to back in the day.

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Personnel:
Aretha Franklin (vocals)
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a bunch of unknown studio musicians

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Tracklist:
01.Follow Your Heart (Hendricks/McCoy) 2.29
02. Only The One You Love (Snyder/Singelton) 2.29
03. One Step Ahead (Snyder/Singelton) 2.38
04. Can’t You Just See Me (Hendricks) 2.07
05. How To Murder Your Wife (Hefti/Mattes) 2.59
06. A Little Bit Of Soul (Bland/Mitchell/Wilkinson) 2.26
07. Cry Like A Baby (ArmsteadAshford/Simpson) 2.17
08. Her Little Heart Went To Loveland (Kaye/Springer) 2.37
09. Remember Me  (McCoy/Otis) 2.16
10. Land Of Dreams (Franklin/White) 2.18
11. Little Miss Raggedy Ann (White) 2.14

Bonus Tracks:
12. Deeper (Clivillés/Cole) 2.14
13. I Still Can’t Forget (Franklin) 2.56
14. Rose Of Washington Square (Hanley/McDonald) 2.40

Mono Mixes:
15. Take It Like You Give It (Franklin)  1.55
16. Follow Your Heart (Hendricks/McCoy) 2.27
17. Only The One You Love (Snyder/Singelton) 2.24
18. One Step Ahead (Snyder/Singelton) 2.28
19. How To Murder Your Wife (Hefti/Mattes) 2.50
20. A Little Bit Of Soul (ArmsteadAshford/Simpson) 2.20
21. Cry Like A Baby (Mono Mix) 2.07
22. Her Little Heart Went To Loveland  (Kaye/Springer) 2.35

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Various Artists – Silent Night, Jazzy Night (2001)

FrontCover1It´s christmas time again … and I will start with some special recordings, christmas records, of course !

And I have a dream for this christmas, a very old dream, the dream of Martin Luther King:

“Let us not wallow in the valley of despair, I say to you today, my friends.

And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”

MartinLutherKingI have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of “interposition” and “nullification” — one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today!”

And this ist not an american dream only … I wish all readers of this blog a peaceful December 2013.

And listen carefully to some great Jazz interpretations of all these old christmas songs !

BookletBackCover1Tracklist:
01. Duke Ellington & His Orchestra: Jingle Bells (alternate version) (1962) (Traditional) 3.19
02. Leon Parker: In A Sentimental Mood (1996) (Ellington) 4.39
03. Nat King Cole: The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You) (1986) (Trome/Wells) 3.11
04. Johnnie Ray: As Time Goes By (1954) (Hupfeld) 3.14
05. Mahalia Jackson: Silent Night, Holy Night (1962) (Gruber/Mohr) 5.04
06. Miles Davis & Gil Evans: Blue Xmas (master) (Dorough) 2.40
07. Glenn Miller Orchestra: Moonlight Serenade (1960) (Miller/Parish) 3.39
08. Billie Holiday: God Bless The Child (1941) (Holiday/Herzog) 2.56
09. Grover Washington Jr:. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas (1997) (Martin/Blane) 4.53
10. Chet Baker: I Married An Angel (1954) (Hart/Rodgers) 3.39
11. The Manhattan Transfer: Santa Claus Is Coming To Town/ Santa Man (1991)(Gillespie/Coots/Paul) 3.01
12. Aretha Franklin: Winter Wonderland (1964) (Smith/Bernard) 2.12
13. Mel Tormé: Strangers In The Night (1966) (Kaempfert/Snyder/Singleton) 2.41

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