We guarantee you have never heard this album — or any later Chet Baker album — sound as good as this one does.
There’s so much life in these grooves. The sound jumps out of the speakers right into your lap. This kind of warm, rich, Tubey Magical analog sound is gone forever. You have to go back to 1974 to find it!
The early ’70s were a good time for Van Gelder, the engineer for these sessions. Grover Washington Jr.’s All the King’s Horses from 1973 is an amazing Demo Disc for large group. We could easily name-check a dozen others on CTI recorded by RVG that we’ve done shootouts for.
But any album only sounds good on the copies that it sounds good on, on the pressings that were mastered, pressed and cleaned right, a fact that seems to have eluded most jazz vinyl aficionados interested in good sound but axiomatic (if not tautological) here at Better Records.
The extended song structures, ranging from four to seven minutes in length, leave plenty of room for the band to stretch out.
And of course Chet sings the title track beautifully.
The Players and Personnel
Bass – Ron Carter
Clarinet – Romeo Penque
Drums – Jack DeJohnette (tracks: B2, B3, B4)
Steve Gadd (tracks: A1, A2, A3, B1)
Electric Piano – Bob James
Flute – George Marge, Hubert Laws
Saxophone [Alt] – Paul Desmond
Vibraphone – Dave Friedman
Arranged By, Conductor – Don Sebesky
Producer – Creed Taylor
Engineer, Mastered By – Rudy Van Gelder
She Was Too Good To Me
Funk In Deep Freeze
With A Song In My Heart
What’ll I Do
It’s You Or No One
Baker began his comeback after five years of musical inactivity with this excellent CTI date. Highlights include “Autumn Leaves,” “Tangerine,” and “With a Song in My Heart.” Altoist Paul Desmond is a major asset on two songs and the occasional strings give variety to this fine session.