Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Milt Jackson with the Ray Brown Big Band - Memphis Jackson

It's been a while since my last offering, I've been bogged down with work and other trappings of life and haven't been had the time to work on any new posts. To add to that, the place where I used to do most of my updating / post & prep work has decided to block access to blogger.com making it that much harder for me to find time to get things done.

[Sidebar: Did anyone out there even notice the lapse between posts? I don't mean to sound like a crybaby or anything but, to be honest, I don't know how many of y'all are even out there. Especially since the comments around here are practically non-existent with the exception of the valued few that spend the time to say thanks and drop a line without shamelessly trying to plug their own pages. Seriously, 80-something downloads and ZERO comments? C'mon man, what is that? It takes a lot of time and effort to keep this thing goin'. How much time would it take to stop and say a simple "thank you" before clicking that download link?]

Anyway, for those who appreciate what they find here and keep coming back to support, I thank you and hope you'll enjoy this one too. I was diggin' thru a tub o' wax in my basement and pulled out Milt Jackson's Memphis Jackson album recorded in 1969 with the Ray Brown Big Band for Impulse records.

Milt Jackson started on guitar when he was seven, and piano at 11; a few years later, he switched to vibes. He actually made his professional debut singing in a touring gospel quartet. After Dizzy Gillespie discovered him playing in Detroit, he offered him a job with his sextet and (shortly after) his innovative big band (1946). Jackson recorded with Gillespie, and was soon in great demand. During 1948-1949, he worked with Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk, Howard McGhee, and the Woody Herman Orchestra.

After playing with Gillespie's sextet (1950-1952), which at one point included John Coltrane, Jackson recorded with a quartet comprised of John Lewis, Percy Heath, and Kenny Clarke (1952), which soon became a regular group called the Modern Jazz Quartet. Although he recorded regularly as a leader (including dates in the 1950s with Miles Davis and/or Thelonious Monk, Coleman Hawkins, John Coltrane, and Ray Charles), Milt Jackson stayed with the MJQ through 1974, becoming an indispensable part of their sound.

By the mid-'50s, Lewis became the musical director and some felt that Bags was restricted by the format, but it actually served him well, giving him some challenging settings. And he always had an opportunity to jam on some blues numbers, including his "Bags' Groove." However, in 1974, Jackson felt frustrated by the MJQ (particularly financially) and broke up the group. He recorded frequently for Pablo in many all-star settings in the 1970s, and after a seven-year vacation, the MJQ came back in 1981. In addition to the MJQ recordings, Milt Jackson cut records as a leader throughout his career for many labels including Savoy, Blue Note (1952), Prestige, Atlantic, United Artists, Impulse, Riverside, Limelight, Verve, CTI, Pablo, Music Masters, and Qwest. He died of liver cancer on October 9, 1999, at the age of 76.

Like so many other great albums, Memphis Jackson is currently on OOP status but every so often, you can find one here or even here.

Featured cut: "Enchanted Lady"

Listen to the full album here.

10 comments:

invisiblenigma said...

Much Thanks Fam! I haven't vistited you in a while. I love your blog, though! You're choice of music is great along with the info!

taro nombei said...

by a circuitous route I have come to your excellent blog. many nice shares here, including this Milt Jackson. Much appreciated!
TN
Now I'm off to rummage through your archives...

darkgnome said...

First time downloader saying many thanks. Lovin' the Memphis Jackson. Keep the faith!

Bill said...

Looking forward to this if I could find the password?? Thank you anyway

Slay'd said...

password is on the right

jcmoss33 said...

Thanks for getting this post up there!!! Nice site and I just bookmarked you!!! Peace

Laurent said...

Thanx a lot! Just discovering your blog, I was looking for that LP.
Enchanted Lady is so... waaaahh...

Laurent

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the rapper said...

Thanks for this one, I have jus stumbled upon your blog whilst searching for a missing track fro my rip of Anglo-Saxon Brown album.

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing!

verge said...

Thanks for this classic shit right here!!

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