Genre – Jazz – Flute

Herbie Mann – Latin Mann

xxxxx

A distinguished member of the Better Records Jazz Hall of Fame.

This White Hot Stamper 2-pack has Demo Disc Live Latin Jazz sound and crazy fun music. Both sides are so clear, rich, natural and present you’ll have a very hard time finding fault with the sound. And the music is great too – this is a Big Band with a swarm of Latin percussionists added to kick up the heat.

This Columbia recording from 1965 has the sound we love here at Better Records, or at least two of the sides of two of these copies do. When you play the other sides you may be in for quite a shock, especially the bad side two included in this two pack. (more…)

Herbie Mann – Live At The Village Gate on Audio Fidelity Heavy Vinyl

xxxxx

Sonic Grade: D-

Hall of Shame pressing and another Audio Fidelity / DCC LP debunked.

A murky mess. Hard to imagine you couldn’t find a common domestic pressing that wouldn’t sound better.. 

“Mann’s hit version of “Comin’ Home Baby” from this live set became his first big hit. Composer Ben Tucker plays second bass on that cut, and Mann’s other sidemen include vibraphonist Hagood Hardy, bassist Ahmed Abdul-Malik, drummer Rudy Collins, and Chief Bey and Ray Mantilla on percussion. In addition to “Comin’ Home Baby,” Mann and his men perform memorable versions of “Summertime” and “It Ain’t Necessarily So”; the latter is 20 minutes long. Recommended.” – AMG 4 1/2 Star Rave Review 

The Recordings of Hubert Laws – These Are Some that Didn’t Make the Grade

More Hubert Laws

More of that Didn’t Make the Grade

xxxxx

xxxxx

These are just some of the recordings by Hubert Laws that we’ve auditioned recently and found wanting. Without going into specifics we’ll just say these albums suffer from poor performances, poor sound, or both, and therefore do not deserve a place in your collection, and may even belong in our Hall of Shame.   

Free Service provided to the Audiophile Public, courtesy of Better Records.    

Hubert Laws Albums with Hot Stampers

Herbie Mann – Live At The Village Gate



xxx

  • A killer Triple Plus (A+++) side one backed with a solid Double Plus (A++) side two for what is probably the most well known album Herbie Mann ever made
  • Both sides here are full-bodied, open, spacious and balanced with plenty of bottom end weight
  • One of the better flute jazz albums we’ve heard, both in terms of sonics and music
  • 4 1/2 stars on Allmusic: “In addition to “Comin’ Home Baby,” Mann and his men perform memorable versions of “Summertime” and “It Ain’t Necessarily So”; the latter is 20 minutes long. Recommended.”

We’ve been trying to track down top pressings of this one for ages, but they are tough to come by and often noisy.

Both sides really shine with a meaty bottom end, lots of energy, an extended top and wonderful transparency. The soundstage is big and open with lots of depth, giving room to all the various players and their instruments.

Would you believe a song from this album was sampled and turned into a big hit in the ’90s? The great version of Gershwin’s Summertime on side one provided the backbone for the band Sublime’s 1997 single Doin’ Time. Maybe not of much interest to most of us baby boomer audiophiles, but the younger guys around here all had a good laugh when they recognized the break. Maybe your kids will too? (more…)