Gene Ammons ‎– The Happy Blues on OJC

Some OJC Pressings Sound Good, Some Don’t

This One Doesn’t

Typical bad OJC sound – thin and modern, lacking in the Tubey Magic that makes vintage pressings so musically involving.

This album is fairly common on the OJC pressing from the ’80s, but we found the sound of the OJC pressings we played seriously wanting. They have the kind of bad reissue sound that that plays right into the prejudices of most record collectors and audiophiles for whom nothing but an original will do. They were dramatically smaller, flatter, more recessed and more lifeless than even the worst of the ’70s LPs we played.

The lesson? Not all reissues are created equal. Some OJC pressings are great — including even some of the new ones — some are awful, and the only way to judge them fairly is to judge them individually, which requires actually playing a large sample.

Since virtually no record collectors or audiophiles like doing that, they make faulty judgments – OJC’s are cheap reissues sourced from digital tapes, run for the hills! – based on their biases and reliance on inadequate sample sizes.

You can find those who subscribe to this approach on every audiophile forum there is. The methods they have adopted do not produce good results, but as long as they stick to them they will never have to worry about discovering that inconvenient truth.


Potentially Good Sounding OJC Pressings

Not Very Good Sounding OJC Pressings


Alto Saxophone – Jackie McLean
Bass – Addison Farmer
Congas – Candido
Cover – Tom Hannan
Drums – Art Taylor
Liner Notes – Ira Gitler
Piano – Duke Jordan
Recorded By – Van Gelder*
Supervised By – Bob Weinstock
Tenor Saxophone – Gene Ammons
Trumpet – Art Farmer


Recorded in Hackensack, NJ; April 23, 1956.

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