Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Be Hard Bop - New Stream In Jazz Vol. 9

The compilation series dedicated to the Golden Age of the Japanese Jazz scene through the years 60-70's. The volume 9 celebrates the Groove into the Boogie sphere, highly tinted of Slapping Bass, Disco Rhythms & Funky Beats, including thirteen tracks recorded between 1974-1980 featuring Kimiko Kasai, Jiro Inagaki, Kiyoshi Sugimoto, Toshiyuki Miyama, The Soul Media, Teruo Nakamura, Mieko Hirota, Ryo Kawasaki, Akira Ishikawa, Toshiyuki Honda, Shunzo Ohno, The Count Buffalos, Hiroshi Fukumura & Sadao Watanabe

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Monday, December 28, 2015

Be Hard Bop - Brazilian Tapestry Vol. 1 To 4

Be Hard Bop's mixtapes from volume 1 to 4 of "Brazilian Tapestry" are available for free download for a limited time (includes front covers). The Compilation series which brings together essential latin grooves from the Brazil '60 & '70, ranging from Bossa Nova, Jazz Funk to Samba Rock & MPB, including the emblematic sound of Tropicália movement & psychedelic music. It features the Kings & Queens of Brazilian Pop (Wanderléa, Vanusa, Wilson Simonal, Erasmo & Roberto Carlos), main actors of Tropicália (Caetano Veloso, Gal Costa, Gilberto Gil & Tom Zé), international artists (Quincy Jones, Deodato, Airto Moreira), and of course the masters of Bossa (Baden Powell, Marcos Valle, Jorge Ben, Chico Buarque, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Elis Regina). All tracks are recorded between 1965-1976.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

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Takehiro Honda Trio - The Trio

Year : 1970
Label : Trio Records
Genre : Jazz
Style : Hard Bop, Modal

Recorded with engineer Okihiko Sugano, the second solo album of Takehiro Honda is his first in trio formation featuring drummer Fumio Watanabe (brother of Sadao) & bassist Yoshio Suzuki. "Chin" Suzuki was his regular bassist from 1969 to 1972, recording no less five albums whose his debut album and This is Honda. Titles include "This Guy's In Love With You" composed by Bacharach, the Jazz standard "Fall In Love Too Easily" and three original compositions by Honda : the modal "Hakai To Jojyo", CMT & T and Emergency (maybe inspired by Tony Williams who will play later with Honda). 

Takehiro Honda_piano
Yoshio Suzuki_bass
Fumio Watanabe_drums

01. This Guy's In Love With You
02. Hakai To Jojyo
03. Fall In Love Too Easily
04. CMT & T
05. Emergency


Saturday, December 26, 2015

Masabumi Kikuchi Sextet - Matrix

Year : 1970
Label : RCA/Victor
Serie : Modern Jazz Series
Genre : Jazz
Style : Soul Jazz, Post Bop, Contemporary Jazz, Modal, Spiritual

Recorded in 1969, best known under the 1977 US reissue by Catalyst Records, Matrix is the first album as a leader of Masabumi Kikuchi featuring Tetsuo Fushimi & Hideyuki Kikuchi (if one ignores the album duet with Terumasa Hino in 1968). Matrix is obviously a masterpiece, released after significant experience years as sideman, close to various Jazz masters, it was conceived, reciprocally, on the saxophone overtones occurred by Hideyuki Kikuchi alongside Akio Nishimura on tenor. The track list constits in great variations selection of standards & covers rearranged with brio by Kikuchi, from Chick Corea (the amazing piano run "Matrix"), the modal "On A Green Dolphin Street" (based on the 1958 Miles Davis version), the Jazz Rock Baroque (Kikuchi using harpsichord) "If I Said The Sky Was Falling" composed for the TV drama "Matte Masu Wa" by Sadao Watanabe, and the bossa "Black Orpheus" composed by Luiz Bonfa, including two own compositions that completes magnificently the album : the original ballad, reminiscent of John Coltrane, "Little Aby", & "In Fourth Way".

Masabumi Kikuchi_piano
Tetsuo Fushimi_trumpet
Hideyuki Kikuchi_alto saxophone
Akio Nishimura_tenor saxophone
Hironori Takiya_bass
Takahiro Suzuki_drums

01. Matrix
02. Little Aby

03. On Green Dolphin Street
04. If I Said The Sky Was Falling
05. In Fourth Way
06. Black Orpheus


Friday, December 18, 2015

Giuliano Sorgini E I Visconti - Under Pompelmo

Year : 2015/1973
Label : Cinedelic Records/Montecarlo
Genre : Jazz, Prog Rock, Funk/Soul, Stage & Screen
Style : Jazz Rock, Music Library, Psychedelic

Legendary Milanese killer groove album, reminiscent of the swinging London from the late sixties, reissued by italian label Cinedelic and originally released in 1973 on Montecarlo. Under Pompelmo contains some best elements from typical soundscape of crime films, including acid organ & fuzz guitar with pop overtones (Echos From Canyon, To Rebound), Funk/Soul (Wandering Man), psychedelic rock (When I See You) and a hypnotic jam session approaching 17 minutes. Giuliano Sorgini is an italian composer and pianist specializes in music for TV programs (Scappo Per Cantare), b-movies (Non Si Deve Profanare Il Sonno Dei Morti) and various documentaries produced for RAI (Gli Animali...Che Simpatia ; Pauline, Il cavallo Sapiente). All tracks conducted & arranged by Giuliano Sorgini.

Giuliano Sorgini_piano, organ
Marcello Caruti Atonelli_bass
Luigi Massari & Massimo Tonson Latour_guitar
Franco Romagniello_drums

01. Under Pompelmo
02. Echos From Canyon
03. To Rebound 
04. Wandering Man 
05. When I See You
06. Honda


Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Be Hard Bop - Brazilian Tapestry Vol. 4

Volume 4 of the compilation series dedicated to the essential sound of the Brazil '60 & '70, including Latin Grooves, MPB, Psychedelic Music & Tropicália featuring Lalo Schifrin, Maria Bethânia, Tom Zé, Caetano Veloso, Bossa Três, Raulzinho, Edú Lobo, Á Tribo, Joyce, Guilherme Coutinho, Zito Righi & more...All tracks recorded between 1966-1976.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Be Hard Bop - Spicy Reggae Island

Tropical Jazz, Funk & Caribbean Flavors coming from Jamaica to Japan by France & USA. A reading of Reggae by the masters of Jazz featuring Ryojiro Furusawa, Eumir Deodato, Herbie Hancock, Teruo Nakamura, Sadao Watanabe, Ahmad Jamal, Idris Muhammad. Includes also various Jamaican/Carribean artists incorporating Jazz & Soul in Reggae music : Ernest Ranglin, Fabiano Orchestra (Guadeloupe), Monty Alexander, Rico Rodriguez, Cedric Brooks and Max Romeo. All tracks released between 1973-1980.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

George Otsuka Quintet - Sea Breeze

Year : 1971
Label : Union/Teichiku Records
Serie : Young Generation Music
Genre : Jazz
Style : Hard Bop, Modal, Jazz Funk

Masterpiece of Hard Bop/Modal Jazz by George Otsuka Quintet featuring Hideo Ichikawa, Takashi Mizuhashi, Takao Uematsu & Shunzo Ohno. George plays with his regular pianist, since 1965, in charge of all compositions (except The Beatles song), to the point of wondering whether Sea Breeze would not rather a Ichikawa's project. The young Shunzo Ohno completes the formation and demonstrates, at just 22 years, that he's one of best japanese jazz trumpeter from his generation. Sea Breeze includes a variety of styles, with cool & mellow atmosphere, centered around the Fender rhodes, associated to funky rhythms (Potato Chips) & Hard Bop (Jumping cats), Modal (Fool On The Hill), gospel & spiritual styles (Cannibal).

George Otsuka_drums
Hideo Ichikawa_electric piano 
Takashi Mizuhashi_bass
Takao Uematsu_tenor, soprano saxophone
Shunzo Ohno_trumpet, flugelhorn

01. Sea Breeze
02. Fool On The Hill
03. Cannibal
04. Potato Chips
05. Jumping Cats


Maki Asakawa - Asakawa Maki No Sekai (Maki)

Year : 1970
Label : Express
Genre : Jazz, Folk Rock, Latin Jazz
Style : Pop, Bossa Nova, Avant-Garde

Maki Asakawa was a prolific blues & jazz songstress, cantor of japanese counter culture, who recorded over 30 albums between 1970-2010, her first decade being marked by american psychedelia & folk music. Asakawa Maki No Sekai (literally "the world of Maki"), is an approach of various musical genres mastered by this versatile artist, singing as well as Pop, Jazz, Latin, Folk & Rock 'N' Roll music. Supported by some experienced musicians such as Masaru Imada, Jiro Inagaki & Yokouchi Shoji, she associates compositions of the Jazz arranger  Kozaburo Yamaki to the lyrics of the emblematic avant-garde poet, Shuji Terayama. This first Maki's testimony consists in studio & live recordings ranging from Jazz, Bossa Nova, Acid Folk & Psychedelic Rock, including also some japanese modern folk vocal's overtones (Enka). All tracks composed & arranged by Kozaburo Yamaki except Kamome by Osamu Kitayama, the New Orleans traditional "Sometimes I Feel Like A Motherless Child", and Tombe La Neige by Adamo.

Maki Asakawa_vocal
Masaru Imada_organ, piano

Masanaga Harada_bass 
Kohsuke Ichihara_flute, saxophone
Jiro Inagaki_saxophone, flute
Yokouchi Shoji, Kozaburo Yamaki_guitar
Chico Kikuchi_drums

01. Yo Ga Aketara
02. Fushiawase To Iu Na No Neko
03. Sabishisa Ni Wa Namae Ga Nai
04. Chiccha Na Toki Kara
05. Zenkasha No Kurisumasu
06. Akai Hashi
07. Kamome
08. Sometimes I Feel Like A Motherless Child
09. Tombe La Neige
10. Ai Sanai No Ai Senai No
11. Jūsannichi No Kinyōbi No Burūsu
12. Sanga Ariki


Toshiko Akiyoshi Quintet - Toshiko At Top Of The Gate

Year : 1968
Label : Nippon Columbia
Serie : Takt Jazz Series
Genre : Jazz, Latin Jazz
Style : Hard Bop, Bossa Nova

Recording live by the best known japanese pianist, Toshiko Akiyoshi (ex-wife of saxophonist Charlie Mariano, spotted by Oscar Peterson in 1952, first record with the same in 1953), performed during a concert at the Top of the Gate, the jazz club of the Village Gate Theater located in Greenwich Village. Her quintet is based on first class musicians, among the best renowned like Kenny Dorham & Ron Carter, playing in the Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers way, including Hard Bop arrangements and Bossa Nova rhythms on How Insensitive & Morning of the Carnival. The first side contains only Toshiko's songs, while the side b is devoted to standards & covers plus another original, "Elegy". This album features among the Sleep Walker's favorites, Phrygian Waterfall being included in their Jazz compilation made for Nippon Columbia.

01. (Introductions)
02. Opus No. Zero
03. First Night
04. Phrygian Waterfall
05. Let's Roll in Sake
06. How Insensitive
07. Morning of the Carnival
08. The Night Song
09. Willow Weep for Me
10. My Elegy


Toshiaki Yokota, Primitive Community - Primitive Community


Year : 2013/1971
Label : Think! Records/EMI
Genre : Jazz, Folk
Style : Jazz Rock

Primitive Community (Genshi Kyodotai) is a band especially formed for a mystical project created by Yoshiaki Yokota, in the line of the Beat Generation, ranging from Free Jazz to Jazz Rock, by Folk & African music. As the front cover suggests Primitive Community consists in an sophisticated avant-garde fusion, in a kind of theatrical way, materialized by ethnic music, Psychedelia and mixed with hypnotic tribal percussions, fuzz guitar & acid organ. Titles include only originals composed & arranged by Yokota plus cover of The Beatles "Flying".

Toshiaki Yokota_indian, alto & bass flute
Shunzo Ohno_trumpet
Yusuke Hoguchi_Hammond organ
Kimio Koizumi_bass
Kimio Mizutani_guitar
Chito Kawachi_drums
Pedro Umemura, Tadaomi Anai, Larry Sunaga_percussions
Fujio Sato, Minoru Ishiyama, Yoshinori Nohmi_percussions

01. A Forbidden Ceremony
02. Devil's Tears
03. Hare Krishna
04. Savannah
05. Flying
06. Black Narcissus


Monday, November 30, 2015

Shunzo Ohno - Something's Coming

Year : 1975
Label : EW
Genre : Jazz
Style : Jazz Funk, Fusion

Miles Davis's most inspired album by trumpeter Shunzo Ohno, his first recording outside Japan featuring Masabumi Kikuchi & the giant jazz drummer Roy Haynes. Indeed, Something's Coming is one of the finest tribute to the Miles Davis's Jazz Funk/Rock era (as evidenced the title-track), happened between 1968-1974 (also called Electric Miles), and more precisely from Miles In The Sky to Get Up With It albums. So it is not surprising to see him to evolve alongside Cedric Lawson & Reggie Lucas, both were sidemen for Miles during this emblematic period. Titles include only compositions by Shunzo Ohno, recorded at Basement recording studio, New York.

Shunzo Ohno_trumpet
Masabumi Kikuchi_organ
Cedric Lawson_keyboards
Don Pate_bass
Reggie Lucas_guitar
Roy Haynes_drums

01. Something's Comming
02. You Dig That ?
03. I Remember That It Happened
04. But It's Not So


Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Be Hard Bop - New Stream In Jazz Vol. 8

Compilation series dedicated to the Golden Age of the Japanese Jazz scene through the years 60-70's. This volume includes thirteen tracks ranging from Soul Jazz, Hard Bop & Jazz Funk styles, all recorded between 1967 and 1977, featuring Eddie Daniels, Toshiaki Yokota, Shoji Yokouchi, Jiro Inagaki, the Tokyo Cuban Boys, Kazuo Yashiro Trio, Takeshi Inomata, George Otsuka Quintet, Hiroshi Matsumoto, Hideo Ichikawa Quartet, Terumasa Hino, Norio Maeda, Hiroshi Suzuki and Okihiko Sugano.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Be Hard Bop For Mascarade Records - Sunday Roast # 4 by Be Hard Bop

The fourth chapter of the Sunday Roast # mixtape serie compiled & mixed by Be Hard Bop, broadcasted on mixcloud for Mascarade Records, Sunday, November, 15, 2015. From Brazil, USA to Japan by Africa, discover this amazing selection of International Funk Music including rare soul grooves recorded between 1964-1974, featuring Roberto Carlos, Eddie Boe, Jimmy Takeuchi, Spanky Wilson, Peter King, Gilberto Gil, The Isley Brothers, Gal Costa & more.


Friday, November 13, 2015

Giovanni Tommaso - Vivere A : Tokio Città Del Paradiso

Year : 2015/1972
Serie : Original Cast
Genre : Jazz, Funk/Soul
Style : Music Library, Stage & Screen, Jazz Rock

Giovanni Tommaso is a italian studio bass player, Jazz composer & arranger, who professionaly started in 1957. During the seventies, he was prolific in music library, collaborating to the Sandro Brugnolini & Stefano Torrossi productions and composing several TV soundscapes. Giovanni Tommaso also played for various prestigious Jazz Masters such as Chet Baker, Dexter Gordon, Art Farmer or also Sonny Rollins for the Studio Uno show, broadcasted on RAI TV from 1961 to 1966. This "impossible to find" of cult Italian library from 1972, finally reissued by SONOR, was entirely composed by Giovanni Tommaso for an italian documentary focused on the capital city of Japan. It features some uncredited musicians who played with him in this session among Antonello Vannucchi, Gegè Munari & Silvano Chimenti. Vivere A : Tokio Città Del Paradiso includes some typical elements of folk music from Far East, melded with psychedelic accents and played in the Jazz Rock style. It foreshadows the future sound of the Italian Progressive/Jazz Rock group '70, Perigeo, whose Giovanni was a main member.

Giovanni Tommaso_bass, organ
Antonello Vannucchi_organ
Gegè Munari_drums
Silvano Chimenti_guitar

01. Vivere A Tokio
02. Rituale N.1
03. Geisha '71
04. Yamanaka Lake
05. Sopraelevata N.1
06. Square Dance In Tokio
07. Rituale N.2
08. Underground Number Seven
09. Cherry Blossoms
10. Vivere A Tokio (Solo Flauto)
11. Green Kimono


Jiro Inagaki & His Soul Media, Tokyo Cuban Boys - Quad Dimension/Rock'N Latin

Year : 1971
Label : Nippon Columbia
Serie : Master Sonic
Genre : Jazz, Latin Jazz
Style : Jazz Rock, Pop, Latin Rock

An umpteenth recording session performed by Jiro inagaki & His Soul Media, released in 1971, arranged by Jazz producer Takeo Ogawa, and backed by the most famous japanese Latin Big Band, the Tokyo Cuban Boys, formed in 1949 and conducted by Tadaaki Misago (they released over 200 albums between 1949 and 1980). Although less interesting than the Head Rock album, Quad Dimension/Rock'N Latin leaves however its mark by its originality and remains a well-made Jazz Rock fusion album including latin breaks, pop rhythms & some psychedelic mood. Titles include a variety of international Pop songs having had a great success in Japan (from The Beatles, Blood, Sweet And Tears to Fleetwood Mac & The Creedence), and also jazz standards as the Watermelon Man by Herbie Hancock. All tracks arranged by Takeo Ogawa.

Tadaaki Misago_conducting
Jiro Inagaki_tenor saxophone
Ryo Kawasaki_guitar
Yasuo Arakawa_bass 
Masaru Imada_organ 
Takeshi Inomata_drums
Tetsuo Fushimi_trumpet
Tadayuki Harada_baritone saxophone
Shigeo Suzuki_alto saxophone
Takehisa Suzuki Shunzo Ohno_trumpet
Takashi Imai Shigemichi Domoto_trombone

01. 25 Or 6 To 4
02. Black Magic Woman
03. Bridge Over Troubled Water
04. 21 ST Century Show
05. Love Story
06. Spinning Wheel
07. Proud Mary
08. Watermelon Man
09. Up, Up And Away
10. Hey Jude


Jiro Inagaki & Soul Media - Wandering Birds

Year : 1971
Label : Nippon Columbia
Serie : Master Sonic
Genre : Jazz
Style : Jazz Rock, Psychedelic

The Soul Media led by saxophonist Jiro Inagaki, supported by horn section & strings,  in another important japanese Jazz Rock chapter from 1971, including Heavy Rock, Jazz Funk & Pyschedelic Music. The formation expands with the introduction of new members, two prominent actors of the progressive & experimental japanese rock '70 scene, Kimio Mizutani (in groups Sound Limited, The Beat Generation) & Hiro Yanagida (Shinki Chen & His Friends, April Fool), the female rock singer Sammy & special guest Masahiko Sato in person. Titles include the two Wandering Birds sung by Sammy, Do It! , the psychedelic trip "Parajika" & the funky On the Grass both feat. Masahiko Sato.

Jiro Inagaki_tenor & soprano saxophone, flute
Tsunehide Matsuki & Kimio Mizutani _guitar
Hiro Yanagida_organ
Hideaki Takebe_bass
Kiyoshi Tanaka_drums
Masahiko Sato_moog synthesizer
Sammy & Sawada Yasushi_vocal
01. Wandering Birds (Interlude)
02. After Noon
03. Parajika
04. Do It! 
05. On the Grass
06. Hyakunen Tattara
07. Wandering Birds


Toshiaki Yokota & The Beat Generation - Elevation

Year : 1970
Label : Toshiba
Serie : Express
Genre : Jazz
Style : Jazz Rock, Funk/Soul, Spiritual

Gorgeous rare groove gem that this second album of The Beat Generation, led by one of most famous japanese flutist, Toshiaki Yokota from Sound Limited, arranged by the jazz master, Masahiko Satoh, and featuring Takeshi Inomata, Hideo Ichikawa & Jun Suzuki, all supported by strings. Unlike their following album, the experimental "Flute Adventure", released in 1971, Elevation is more characterized by a pop oriented sound in a kind rock "baroque" style occurred by the Ichikawa's harpsichord playing. Titles include covers (What'd I Say) and originals composed by Yokota (Elevation, On The Road), Inomata (Curved Navel) & Ichikawa (How Long Have I Been Waiting For You). All tracks arranged by Masahiko Sato.

Toshiaki Yokota_flute
Hideo Ichikawa_keyboards
Sadanori Nakamure_guitar
Jun Suzuki_bass
Takeshi Inomata_drums
Larry Sunaga_percussion

01. Elevation Part 1
02. On The Road
03. Easy To Be Hard
04. And When I Die
05. Curved Navel
06. What'd I Say
07. How Long Have I Been Waiting For You
08. You Are My Way Of Life
09. Elevation Part 2


Sunday, October 25, 2015

The Blackbyrds (Self-Titled)

Year : 1974
Label : Fantasy
Genre : Jazz
Style : Jazz Funk

The debut album of an american rhythm section produced by Larry Mizell, formed & supervised by Donald Byrd for six students of music department from the Howard University, playing Jazz Funk fusion. It's a typical Mizell Brothers production, a music conceived for dancefloor based on Funk/Soul arrangements, as was done for for the Donald Byrd & Bobbi Humphrey (Fancy Dancer) albums, recorded during the seventies. Most of the tracks include original compositions of Donald Byrd such as Do It, Fluid or Funky Junkie, Larry Mizell's contribution with Life Styles and Allan Barnes' Summer Love.

Allan Barnes_soprano & tenor saxophone
Kevin Toney & Orville Saunders_keyboards, melodica, synthesizer
Steve Johnson_sax et flute
Joe Hall & David Williams_bass
Keith Killgo_drums
Oscar Brashear_trumpet, flugelhorn
Ray Armando & Perk Jacobs_percussion

01. Do It, Fluid
02. Gut Level
03. Reggins
04. The Runaway
05. Funky Junkie
06. Summer Love
07. Life Styles
08. A Hot Day Today
09. Love Is Love

Friday, October 23, 2015

Björk Guðmundsdóttir & Tríó Guðmundar Ingólfssonar - Gling-Gló

Year : 1990
Label : Smekkleysa
Genre : Jazz
Style : Contempory Jazz

Gling-Gló, released in 1990, is the only album by this jazz trio featuring the most iconic Icelandic singer, Björk, and lead by the pianist Guðmundar Ingólfsson from Jazzvaka band (just as drummer Guðmundur Steingrímsson). Produced & mixed by Tómas Magnús Tómasson from the rock band Stuðmenn, it was released under the Smekkleysa label (Sigur Rós & Björk albums issues) and  recorded while Björk was a member of The Sugarcubes. Gling-Gló consists of fourteen songs only in islandic tongue, including Scandinavian themes as the title track (the English equivalent of "Ding Dong") & international covers such as Það Sést Ekki Sætari Mey based on You Can't Get a Man with a Gun composed by Irving Berlin for the 1946 Broadway musical comedy, Annie Get Your Gun.

Björk Guðmundsdóttir_vocals & harmonica.
Guðmundur Ingólfsson_piano & tambourine
Guðmundur Steingrímsson_drums & percussion
Þórður Högnason_bass

01. Gling-Gló
02. Luktar-Gvendur
03. Kata Rokkar
04. Pabbi Minn
05. Brestir Og Brak
06. Ástartöfrar
07. Bella Símamær
08. Litli Tónlistarmaðurinn
09. Það Sést Ekki Sætari Mey
10. Bílavísur
11. Tondeleyo
12. Ég Veit Ei Hvað Skal Segja
13. Í Dansi Með Þér
14. Börnin Við Tjörnina


Thursday, October 22, 2015

Be Hard Bop - We've Got The JAZZ [Jazz (We've Got)] Vol. 5

The great meeting between Jazz & Hip-Hop by oldschool rappers & from the independent Hip-Hop scene of US, Europe & Japan featuring Jurassic 5, Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth, Insight, Substantial, DJ CAM Quartet, A Tribe Called Quest, Pete Philly & Perquisite, De La Soul, Glue, Blackalicious & more. All tracks released between 1991- 2009.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Various - Trio By Trio + 1

Year : 1971
Label : VICTOR
Genre : Jazz
Style : Free Jazz, Contempory Jazz

Recommended by the Swing Journal, the legendary Japanese jazz magazine from 1947 to 2010, here is essential live recording at the forefront of the japanese jazz including avant-garde Jazz & free improvisations. Performed and recorded at Yamaha Hall in Tokyo in 1970, it features three jazz sections led by the masters Yosuke Yamashita, Itaru Oki and Yuji Ohno, joined by jazz vocalist Kimiko Kasai, all met in an exceptional concert. Titles include Free Jazz tracks played by the Yosuke Yamashita & Itaru Oki Trio, Jazz Samba with Kenny's Moods, the standards Autumn Leaves, I Can't Give You Anything But Love & Get Out Of Town by Yuji Ohno Trio, Black Shadow Woman & Theme Of The Unkown People by the meeting Yuji Ohno + Itaru Oki Trio feat. Kimiko Kasai.

Yosuke Yamashita,Yuji Ono_piano
Itaru Oki_trumpet
Seiichi Nakamura_tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone
Takeo Moriyama, Hozumi Tanaka, Kazuyoshi Okayama_drums
Keiki Midorikawa, Takashi Mizuhashi_bass
Kimiko Kasai_vocal

01. Dore
02. Mokurin - Gugan
03. Conversation With Water
04. Flying To Space
05. Autumn Leaves
05. I Can't Give You Anything But Love
06. Get Out Of Town
07. Kenny's Moods
08. Black Shadow Woman
09. Theme Of The Unkown People


Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Ramsey Lewis - Mother Nature's Son

Year : 1968
Label : Chess/Cadet Records
Genre : Jazz
Style : Jazz Funk, Pop

As the cover album  The Other Side of Abbey Road by George Benson, Ramsey Lewis revisits another great Beatles' act, based on ten songs from their "White Album", supported by strings & conducted by Charles Stepney featuring the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Mother Nature's Son includes jazz improvisations, using experimental electronic effects on the moog synthesizer, pop rhythms & funky accents. Recorded in december 1968, just after the White album release, it's further evidence of the importance of the group in the recording industry. The Beatles in Jazz has known various tributes, inter alia by Helen Merrill, Count Basie, Jun Fukamachi or Sarah Vaughan.  More recently, the Nippon columbia label has edited three compilations (Blue, Red & White) dedicated to The Beatles in cover songs performed by japanese renowned jazz musicians. All tracks arranged by Charles Stepney.

01. Mother Nature's Son
02. Rocky Raccoon
03. Julia
04. Back in the U.S.S.R.
05. Dear Prudence
06. Cry Baby Cry
07. Good Night
08. Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except Me and My Monkey
09. Sexy Sadie
10. Blackbird


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Daniel Janin - Dinha Mantha's Power

Year : 1974
Label : PSI
Genre : Jazz
Style : Big Band, Music Library, Funk/Soul, Jazz Funk

Most famous album released under PSI, parent label of French Music Library label "Musique pour l'image", by Daniel Janin at the top, including the soulful song, Sand & Rain featuring american jazz vocalist Nancy Holloway (selected by Mickaël Darmon for the Mélodie En Soul Sol Paris '70 compilation). Daniel Janin is a french vibrationist, arranger, conductor & composer for various TV shows, who was a Big Band leader for the Bruno Coquatrix Olympia Hall in Paris from 1961 to 1964, and worked with several artists of the french variety such as Jacques Brel, Gilbert Bécaud or Dalida. A part of his work has been often sampled by several Hip-Hop artists (Trumpet flower, Black Night or Fat fat Fellow...). All tracks composed & arranged by Daniel Janin, except Abdul H'Mid by Georges Lartigau, I Love Life by Marc Steckar, performed by Daniel Janin et son Orchestre.

Daniel Janin's selected discography :

  • Mouvements Modernes (Musique Pour L'image - 1967)
  • Nancy Holloway - Hello Dolly (Concert Hall - 1969)
  • Post Combustion (PSI - 1970)
  • Chahut Bohut (Musique Pour L'image - 1973)
  • Vade Retro (Les Tréteaux - 1974)

01. Sand And Rain
02. Dhani Dinha Mantha
03. Jam With Daniel
04. Abdul H'Mid
05. Ad Debutum
06. Ice Cool
07. I Love Life
08. Mouse Race


Thursday, October 15, 2015

Raulzinho - Impacto 8 - International Hot

Year : 1968
Label : Equipe
Genre : Jazz, Funk/Soul, Latin
Style : MPB, Soul Jazz, Boogaloo, Bossa, Pyschedelic, Jazz Funk

The legendary Bossa Funk & second album as a leader by Raul de Souza alias Raulzinho, under the name Impacto 8, featuring brazilian singer Betinho, drummer Robertinho Silva & saxophonist Oberdan, respectively from famous Som Imaginário & Banda Black Rio groups. Raulzinho is a brazilian jazz trombonist and multi instrumentalist coming from Rio de Janeiro, one of the greatest player of his generation, who started as professional player at the age of 20 alongside Baden Powell. In 1964, he was recruited by Sérgio Mendes in his Bossa Rio group‎ for Você Ainda Não Ouviu Nada!, also known as The Beat of Brazil album, and later, evolved in the american jazz fusion group, Caldera. This versatile musician has played as well as in jazz, soul, funk & even disco ('Til Tomorrow Comes, released in 1979). During the seventies, he has recorded for various brazilian latin jazz artists such as, A. C. Jobim, Flora Purim, Airto Moreira, Milton Nascimento or Hermeto Pascoal, but also for some renowned american jazz musicians as Sonny Rollins (Nucleus - 1975) or Cal Tjader (Amazonas - 1976), and invited to play with Jimmy Smith & Sarah Vaughan. In 1975, with the Colors' album (produced by Airto), he embraces an international career, signed on Milestone & Capitol Records, released two albums produced by George Duke : Sweet Lucy and Don't Ask My Neighbors (1977-1978). Titles include the club killer Two Beat Manchild (Mundo Louco), the international pop hits Spinning Wheel & You've Made Me So Very Happy, the funkiest I've Got The Feelin', the jazz standards Fried Bananas, Mercy, Mercy, Mercy & Cantalope Island. All tracks are arranged by Bill Vogel & Raulzinho.

Robertinho Silva_drums
Frederico_guitar, violin
Hélio Celso_organ, piano
Oberdan Magalhães_saxophone, flute
Bill Vogel, Sérgio_trumpet

01. Tesouro De São Miguel
02. Spinning Wheel (Vida Torta)
03. Boogaloo Bill No. 2
04. Two Beat Manchild (Mundo Louco)
05. Fried Bananas
06. You've Made Me So Very Happy
07. Mercy, Mercy, Mercy
08. Hello Monalisa
09. Cantalope Island
10. I've Got The Feelin'
11. Slick
12. Tesouro De São Miguel


Friday, October 2, 2015

Be Hard Bop - la Musica è un Messaggio

The lovely days of the electronic beats featuring some main actors of Trip Hop genre among which, Mr Scruff, Blockhead or DJ Shadow, others, such as Dan The Automator, Madlib, Fat Jon & the japanese beatmakers Fantastic Plastic Machine, U.F.O. (United Future Organization) & DJ Ryow from the Levitatorz/ShinSight Trio groups. Seventeen selected tracks, released between 1996 & 2009, under various labels including the British independent record label Ninja Tune.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Be Hard Bop - We've Got The JAZZ (One More Time) Vol. 4

One more time, the great meeting between Jazz, Hip-Hop & Soul, performed by instrumental Jazz Funk bands & international DJs coming from Europe & Japan, highlighting funky organ, jazzy samples & groovy beats, featuring The Poets Of Rhythm, Chris Joss, 6ix Toys, Soil & Pimp Sessions, The Roots, 45 A.K.A. SWING-O, The RH Factor, Soulive, Talib Kweli & more...

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Be Hard Bop - Agent Double-O-Soul

24 musical masterpieces extracted from the late sixties/early seventies, which were recorded for various screen movies, TV shows, advertising or others commercial programs. Most of them were released under the KPM, Montparnasse 2000, Orly or Télémusic files, among the most famous european music library labels. This compilation of amazing grooves includes cinematic & psychedelic moods, pop rhythms, some jazz rock & funky sounds, featuring Alan Hawkshaw, John Schroeder, Janko Nilovic, Vladimir Cosma, Alan Moorhouse, Sandro Brugnolini & many more.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Monday, August 31, 2015

Joe Henderson In Japan

Year : 1973 
Label : Milestone Records
Genre : Jazz, Latin Jazz
Style : Hard Bop, Post Bop, Bossa Nova

Live recording performed at the Junk Club (Tokyo) in 1971, by american saxophonist Joe Henderson & his japanese rhythm section, formed in trio with some best players of their generation : Hideo Ichikawa, Kunimitsu Inaba & Motoko Hino. "In Japan" was originally released on Milestone Records in 1973, it include two jazz covers from Thelonious Monk (Round Midnight) & Kenny Dorham (Blue Bossa), plus Henderson's originals, whose a variation of his In 'N' Out song called Out 'N' In.

Joe Henderson_tenor saxophone
Hideo Ichikawa_electric piano 
Kunimitsu Inaba_bass
Motohiko Hino_drums

01. Round Midnight
02. Out 'N' In
03. Blue Bossa
04. Junk Blues


Friday, August 28, 2015

Be Hard Bop - New Stream In Jazz Vol. 7

Compilation series dedicated to the Golden Age of the Japanese Jazz scene through the years 60-70's. The following of the Volume 2 bringing together other titles ranging from Bossa Nova & Jazz Samba including Jazz standards & cover songs of Antonio Carlos Jobim, Jorge Ben, João Gilberto & Edu Lobo, featuring Konosuke Saijo, Sadao Watanabe, Shungo Sawada, Takeshi Inomata, Yuji Ohno, Akira Ishikawa, George Kawaguchi, Keitaro Miho, Hozan Yamamoto & Toshiaki Yokota.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Friday, August 14, 2015

Helen Merrill - Bossa Nova In Tokyo

Year : 1967
Label : VICTOR
Genre : Latin Jazz
Style : Bossa Nova

The third album recorded in Japan by Helen Merrill with the Sadao Watanabe Quintet featuring Masabumi Kikuchi, Isao Suzuki & Masahiko Togashi, arranger Norio Maeda plus strings ensemble. The band replays the Bossa Nova's greatest hits among others, original compositions  from the master Antonio Carlos Jobim as So Danço Samba, How Insensitive or Agua Di Beber, just as some Japanese Pop (Yume Wa Yoru Hiraku, Shinjite Itai) & Jazz standards (Fly Me To The Moon, The Shadow Of Your Smile). All tracks arranged by Norio Maeda (tracks: 1, 3, 6, 8, 11, 12) & Sadao Watanabe (tracks: 2, 4, 5, 7, 9, 10), recorded at Victor Studios, Tokyo.
Helen Merrill_vocal
Sadao Watanabe_alto saxophone, flute,
Masabumi Kikuchi_piano
Isao Suzuki_bass
Sadanori Nakamure_guitar
Masahiko Togashi_drums
Hideo Miyata_cabasa

01. Fly Me To The Moon
02. The Boy From Ipanema
03. The Shadow Of Your Smile
04. So Danço Samba
05. La Chanson D'Orphée
06. Yume Wa Yoru Hiraku
07. A Man And A Women
08. How Insensitive
09. Johnny Guitar
10. Agua Di Beber
12. Shinjite Itai


Helen Merrill Sings The Beatles

Year : 1970
Label : VICTOR
Genre : Jazz
Style : Jazz Funk, Pop, Jazz Vocal

Helen Merrill sings the classic tunes of the Beatles featuring Masahiko Sato, Yasuo Arakawa & Takeshi Inomata ! Often compared to Billie Holiday for his voice, Helen Merrill is the last great lady of jazz still alive, admired in japan, she was among the first western artist to sing in japanese tongue. Since 1954, she has recorded over 40 albums, including several records with japanese musicians during the sixty years decade : In Tokyo (1963) & Sings Screen Favorites (1968) with the Takeshi Inomata West Liners group, Sings Folk with the flutist Hozan Yamamoto, Bossa Nova In Tokyo with the Sadao Watanabe Quintet, Plaisir d'Amour (1968) feat. Akira Miyazawa, Shungo Sawada, You Tokuyama & Sposin' (1971) with Gary Peacock Trio (Masahiko Sato & Motohiko Hino)‎. Sings The Beatles was entirely recorded in Japan at Victor studio and arranged by Masahiko Satoh.

Helen Merrill_vocal
Masahiko Sato_piano
Yasuo Arakawa_bass
Takeshi Inomata_drums
The Singers Three_chorus

And More....

01. Let It Be
02. Lady Madonna
03. Because
04. The Word
05. Norwegian Wood
06. Here There And Everywhere
07. Golden Slumbers
08. And I Love Him
09. In My Life
10. Mother Nature's Son
11. If I Fell
12. I Want You


Thursday, August 13, 2015

Be Hard Bop - Brazilian Tapestry Vol. 3

More Latin Grooves from the Brazil '70 with Jazz Funk, Bossa Nova & MPB featuring Marilia Medalha, Eumir Deodato, Di Melo, Tom Zé, Airto Moreira, Walter Wanderley, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Caetano Veloso & many more...All tracks recorded between 1967 &1974. 

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Be Hard Bop - New Stream In Jazz Vol. 6

Compilation series dedicated to the Golden Age of the Japanese Jazz scene through the years 60-70's. This volume includes Contemporary Jazz, Bossa Nova with Samba rhythms, Jazz Funk & Soul Jazz, featuring Terumasa Hino, Sadao Watanabe, Isao Suzuki, Kimiko Kasai & Gil Evans, Mieko Hirota with Billy Taylor Trio, Yoshio "Chin" Suzuki & more... All tracks recorded between 1967-1973. 

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

Friday, July 24, 2015


This is Super Sound ! A collection of some incredible funky beats & groovy sounds, seventeen tracks recorded between 1968-1976, featuring : Manu Dibango, The Fatback Band, Kool & The Gang, Betty Davis, Oliver Nelson, Minnie Riperton, Earth Wind And Fire, Oneness Of Juju, The Stovall Sisters, O'Donel Levy, The Sisters Love, Incredible Bongo Band, Eric Burdon & War, The Gil Evans Orchestra, Michael Bloomfield, Marlena Shaw, Jimmy Castor Bunch and more...

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop​

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Various, Yuji Ohno - The Boss & His Piano by Be Hard Bop

Yuji Ohno is one of the best pianist than Japan can counted, best known as composer & arranger of various music for films and japanese animation series, among others Nigen No Shomei (The Proof Of The Man), Inugamike No Ichizoku (The Inugamis), Lupin III & Captain Future. Sideman for Terumasa Hino, Masahiko Togashi or Ryo Kawasaki, he also produced & arranged for several female vocalist as Ann Young, Mieko Hirota, Kimiko Kasai or the Brazilian singer, Sonia Rosa. From 1970 to 1975, his trio consists of drummer Kazuyoshi Okayama and bassists Yoshio Ikeda & Takashi Mizuhashi. In the late seventies, he turn his music to Jazz Funk and formed You & The Explosion Band featuring Jake H. Conception, Takeru Muraoka & Akira Okazawa. From 1999, he regularly played in trio with bassists Yoshio Suzuki, Masayuki Tawarayama & drummer Kenichiro Murata, and created in 2006, his new Jazz Funk band, The Lupintic Five. This compilation includes studio recordings & live performances from 1967 to 1975, feat. Terumasa Hino, Hiroshi Suzuki, Masahiko Togashi, Sonia Rosa, Ann Young, Itaru Oki & Kimiko Kasai.

Compiled & Mixed by Be Hard Bop

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