More Chet Baker
More Jazz Recordings Featuring the Trumpet
- This wonderful album of ballads has Mile Davis’ rhythm section supporting Chet, as well as contributions from other greats such as Kenny Burrell and Bill Evans
- These guys are playing live in the studio and, on a copy that sounds this clear, you can really feel their presence on every track
- This Chet Baker record belongs in any serious jazz collection, and for you audiophiles out there, prepare to be shocked when you play this copy against your Heavy Vinyl pressing, no matter which one you have
- “…this Riverside issue captures the gifted but troubled trumpeter at his best. It might even qualify as Baker’s most satisfying and representative recording.”
Chet is one of the best sounding Chet Baker records we’ve ever played, although that’s not saying much because finding good Chet Baker records is like finding hen’s teeth these days.
The albums he did for Pacific Jazz in the ’50s can be wonderful, but few have survived in audiophile playing condition.
The Mariachi Brass albums are as awful as everyone says — we know, we’ve played them, too. The album he recorded for CTI in 1974, She Was Too Good To Me, is excellent and will be coming to the site again soon I hope.
We’d never heard the album Chet sound better than in our most recent shootout, and that’s coming from someone who’s been playing it since it was first reissued in the ’80s.
The less said about the awful Doug Sax remastering for Analogue Productions in the mid-’90s the better. What a murky piece of crap that was. Audiophile reviewers may have been impressed, but even way back then we knew a bad sounding record when we played one, and that pressing is very bad indeed.
One further note: the Heavy Vinyl pressings being made today, decades later, have a similar suite of shortcomings, sounding every bit as bad if not worse, and fooling the same audiophile reviewers and their followers to this very day. Nothing has changed, other than we have come along to offer the discriminating audiophile an alternative to the muddy messes these labels have been churning out.
Like this one!
Based on what we’re hearing, my feeling is that most of the natural, full-bodied, smooth, sweet sound of the album is on the master tape, and that all that was needed to get that vintage sound correctly on to disc was simply to thread up that tape on a reasonably good machine and hit play.
The fact that nobody seems to be able to make an especially good sounding record — certainly not as good sounding as this one — these days tells me that in fact I’m wrong to think that such an approach would work. Somebody should have been able to figure out how to do it by now. In our experience that is simply not the case today, and has not been for many years.
George Horn was doing brilliant — albeit spotty — work for Fantasy all through the ’80s. This album is proof that his sound is the right sound for this music.