ELLA FITZGERALD – ELLA IN BERLIN
Includes a 16-page booklet with the original artwork, plus the original and updated liner notes. This release presents the complete original LP Ella in Berlin: Mack the Knife (Verve MGV4041), as well as her comeback concert from the following year. It contains both of Ella Fitzgerald's celebrated performances at the Deutschlandhalle in Berlin, Germany, in their entireties. She is backed by all-star quartets featuring Jim Hall or Herb Ellis on guitar, and Paul Smith or Lou Levy on piano. The 1960 concert became one of Ella's most popular albums ever, winning two Grammy awards in 1960. On both concerts she performs amazing readings of the Weill-Brecht classic ''Mack the Knife.'' A complete rarely heard performance in Cannes that was taped in July 1959, and two 1956 tracks recorded live at the Hollywood Bowl, have been added here as a bonus. The latter two songs were mistakenly included on some issues of Ella in Berlin under the false belief that they formed part of the 1960 concert. This set also includes two rare versions of tunes from the second concert sung in German, which were recorded in Copenhagen in 1961 and originally issued as singles.
STEVE NELSON – BROTHERS UNDER THE SUN
Vibist Steve Nelson made a big splash as a newcomer in the jazz polls at the end of the '80s just as the vibraphone began to re-emerge as one of jazz's favorite instruments. The cool, drifty, slightly detached sound of the vibraphone will forever be associated with great jazz players like Lionel Hampton, Gary Burton and others, but Nelson has firmly established himself as a leader of top-notch small ensembles that showcase his own personal voice on the instrument. Leading a blue-chip quartet composed of pianist Danny Grissett, bassist Peter Washington, and drummer Lewis Nash, Nelson has put together an imaginative setlist that serves as a tribute to the late pianist Mulgrew Miller, with whom Nelson enjoyed a long and fruitful musical collaboration and friendship. Throughout the date the interplay of the quartet is engaging, the creativity unflagging and the joy in the music making is always apparent. Brothers Under the Sun is a substantial addition to Steve Nelson's far-too-small discography as a leader.
BENNY GREEN – HAPPINESS! LIVE AT KUUMBWA
2017 release. Some of Green's best work has been in the trio format, historically a configuration that has been one of the most popular in the advancement of jazz. The ensemble featured here is made up of bassist David Wong and drummer Rodney Green. Benny Green has been performing at the Kuumbwa Jazz Center for more than 35 years. He was introduced to the stage while in the ensembles of Betty Carter and Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers. Since then, Green has tried to make a point of playing the Northern California venue yearly. Begun as a non-profit and festival in 1975, Kuumbwa has maintained a steady presence in the jazz world as one of the premier jazz venues in the United States.