Ray Brown with The All-Star Big Band, Engineered by Ray Hall

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Ray Brown Recordings We’ve Reviewed


These two sides offer bigger brass, more transparency and more presence than every other side we played save one!

This may become one of your favorite big band albums to demo or test with. Or you can just enjoy the hell out of it if you prefer. So transparent and tonally correct, this is a killer sounding copy. We put this one right up there with the best of the Verve jazz titles we’ve done to date.

This album sounds like a big room full of musicians playing live, which it surely was. The Tubey Magical richness of the 1962 recording is breathtaking – no modern record can touch it.

The best copies recreate a live studio space the size of which you will not believe.

The Sound

Both sides are tonally correct, Tubey Magical and above all natural. The timbre of each and every instrument is right and it doesn’t take a pair of golden ears to hear it.

It’s also big, clear and balanced, with an especially sweet, rich, tubey sax for Cannonball’s solos — what a sound! So high-resolution too. The top extends beautifully on this copy, and that was not true for most of what we played.

If you love ’50s and ’60s jazz you cannot go wrong here.


What do we love about these vintage jazz Hot Stamper pressings? The timbre of every instrument is Hi-Fi in the best sense of the word. The unique sounds of the instruments are reproduced with remarkable fidelity. That’s what we at Better Records mean by “Hi-Fi”, not the kind of Audiophile Phony BS Sound that passes for Hi-Fidelity these days. There’s no boosted top, there’s no bloated bottom, there’s no sucked-out midrange.

This is Hi-Fidelity for those who recognize The Real Thing when they hear it. I’m pretty sure our customers do, and whoever picks this one up is guaranteed to get a real kick out of it.


Ray Hall was the engineer for these sessions from January of 1962 in New York. It’s yet another remarkable disc from the Golden Age of Vacuum Tube Recording.

Hall has engineering credits on some of the best jazz recordings of all time. Some of note:

  • Louis Armstrong & Duke Ellington – Recording Together For The First Time
  • Desmond Blue, Two of a Mind, Take Ten (Paul Desmond)
  • What’s New, Now’s the Time, The Bridge (Sonny Rollins)
  • Jazz Samba Encore

and scores of others that we would love to do shootouts for, if only copies were more plentiful and in better playing condition.

But we do have this one to offer, and it’s superb in every way.