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Mosaic Singles to Reissue Out-Of-Print LPs by Ellington, Blakey

While anthologies and compilation CDs are fine and good, nothing recalls jazz history with as much directness as an LP reissue. Jazz happens in sessions rather than retrospectives, and Mosaic Records recently launched the Mosaic Singles series to put back into print a few of those yesteryear recordings that deserve to be heard in their original context. Among these newly reissued albums is The Cosmic Scene, a 1958 one-off session with Duke Ellington directing a nonet he dubbed The Spacemen.

Essentially a select, condensed incarnation of Ellington’s big band, The Spacemen featured the adventurous Clark Terry bebopping on flugelhorn alongside stout-toned Newport hero Paul Gonsalves. The group swings with zest through a standards set that beautifully meshes bop technicality with swing-era compositional grandeur.

Track List:

1. Avalon

2. Body and Soul

3. Bass-Ment

4. Early Autumn

5. Jones

6. Perdido

7. St. Louis Blues

8. Spacemen

9. Midnight Sun

10. Take the “A” Train

11. Body and Soul (Alternate Take)

12. Jones

Other titles in the series include Bud Freeman’s Chicago/Austin High School in Hi-Fi, The Jazz Messengers’ Hard Bop (a 1956 LP featuring an overhauled Blakey group with Jackie McLean but without Horace Silver), the Al Cohn/Richie Kamuca/Bill Perkins collaboration The Brothers!, J.J. Johnson’s J.J.! and the Charles Lloyd Quartet’s Of Course, Of Course (an outstanding session with Ron Carter and Tony Williams that could use some serious remastering: Gabor Szabo’s guitar is stagnantly in the foreground during Lloyd’s solos).

For more information on the Singles series, visit Mosaic at www.mosaicrecords.com, or call (203) 327-7111.

Originally Published