Frances Faye – Relaxin’ With Frances Faye (1956/2014) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Frances Faye – Relaxin’ With Frances Faye (1956/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 30:32 minutes | 368 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Front Cover | © Bethlehem Records

An early session, released by Bethlehem in 1956, from a jazz vocalist. Frances Faye work with terrific musicians, some working without credit due to contractual problems, such as Maynard Ferguson, Herbie Mann and conductor/arranger Russ Garcia.

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Bobby Troup – The Songs Of Bobby Troup (1955/2013) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Bobby Troup – The Songs Of Bobby Troup (1955/2013)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 24:39 minutes | 521 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Booklet, Front Cover | © Bethlehem Records

Pianist Bobby Troup’s 1955 session The Songs Of Bobby Troup showcases his smooth vocals and the talents of his band: valve trombonist Bob Enevoldsen, guitarist Howard Roberts, bassist Red Mitchell and drummer Don Heath. The album includes an assortment of rarities kicking off with the happy-go-lucky Cuckoo In The Clock, in addition to beautiful instrumental arrangements of Laura and Jeepers Creepers.

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Tommy Watt and His Orchestra – Watt’s Cooking (1959/2014) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Tommy Watt and His Orchestra – Watt’s Cooking (1959/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 36:32 minutes | 719 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Front Cover | © Bethlehem Records

Scottish jazz bandleader and pianist Tommy Watt and his big band present this concept album released in 1959 on which all the songs have to do with food. This is Watt’s second US album and features Tubby Hayes, a renowned British multi-instrumentalist best-known for his tenor saxophone playing.

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The Herbie Mann & Sam Most Quintet – The Mann With The Most (1956/2014) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

The Herbie Mann & Sam Most Quintet – The Mann With The Most (1956/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 40:05 minutes | 876 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Front Cover | © Bethlehem Records

1956 album of eleven genial, high-spirited tracks featuring Mann and Most trading bright, up-tempo, virtually saxophonic flute solos. They work over an energetic backdrop provided by guitarist Joe Puma, bassist Jimmy Gannon, and drummer Lee Kleinman. Most of the tracks are brisk and cheerful, although a few tastefully spare ballads (“Love Letters”) are also included.

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Stan Levey – Grand Stan (1957/2013) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Stan Levey – Grand Stan (1957/2013)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 46:12 minutes | 762 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Digital Booklet | © Bethlehem Records

Drummer Stan Levey came to epitomize the sound of “cool school” West Coast jazz. He was one of the pioneers of bebop but relocated to the West Coast where he played on thousands of sessions, many for television and film soundtracks, and backed up all the greats.

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Ruby Braff – The Best Of Braff (1999/2014) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Ruby Braff – The Best Of Braff (1999/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 39:09 minutes | 807 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Front Cover | © Bethlehem Records

Reuben “Ruby” Braff was an American jazz trumpeter and cornetist. Jack Teagarden was once asked about him on the Gary Moore TV show and described Ruby as “the Ivy League Louis Armstrong”. The Best of Braff is a reissue of a Bethlehem collection that featured highlights from two ten-inch albums, A Ruby Braff Omnibus and Holiday in Braff, which is also released as Adoration of the Melody. Braff was at the beginning of his career as a leader here, yet he was already playing with ease, as these 12 songs illustrate. He may have gained greater popularity in the years following these recordings, but these remain among his finest waxings – and this is a nice way to acquire them.

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Marty Paich – The Jazz City Workshop (1955/2014) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Marty Paich – The Jazz City Workshop (1955/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 35:34 minutes | 739 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Front Cover | © Bethlehem Records

Pianist and arranger Marty Paich gets the credit on the cover, but this 1955 album is indeed a true collaboration between Paich and his sidemen: the great trombonist Herbie Harper, Larry Bunker on vibes, Curtis Counce on bass, Jack Costanzo on bongos, Frankie Capp on drums and vocalist Mickey Lynne who sings on one track. This recording was intended to be the first in a series of albums named after the Hollywood jazz club Jazz City.

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Joe Derise – Joe Derise Sings (1955/2014) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Joe Derise – Joe Derise Sings (1955/2014) 
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 23:10  minutes | 354 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Front Cover | © Bethlehem Records

Big band and cabaret singer Joe Derise is probably better known for his work with other bands but he also recorded several albums on his own. This 1955 session consisting mainly of standards was his debut recording as a leader; not only does he sing but he plays some piano and is joined by Milt Hinton on acoustic bass and drummer Osie Johnson.

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Howard McGhee Quintet – The Return Of Howard McGhee (1956/2014) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Howard McGhee Quintet – The Return Of Howard McGhee (1956/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 41:13 minutes | 450 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Front Cover | © Bethlehem Records

Bebop pioneer Howard McGhee was in and out of prison on drug charges for a good part of the 1950s, so there isn’t much on record representing that decade. In fact he hadn’t been near the studio in two years prior to this 1955 recordings, hence the title. He was anything but rusty, though: McGhee sounds re-energized here, possibly due to the inspiring presence of session musicians like Sahib Shihab on baritone and alto sax and Duke Jordan on piano.

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Howard McGhee – Dusty Blue (1961/2013) [PrestoClassical 24-96]

Howard McGhee – Dusty Blue (1961/2013)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 35:32 minutes | 691 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Digital Booklet | © Bethlehem Records

Howard McGhee made a comeback in the early 1960s and Dusty Blue from 1961 is one of the strongest sessions from that period. Ghee performs in both quartet and septet configurations accompanied by musicians like Pepper Adams on baritone sax, Tommy Flanagan on piano and bassist Ron Carter.

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