Traditional Jazz, Stomp and Swing
In “No Local Stops”, Oliver serves up some of Morton’s best-loved piano works, supplementing them with masterpieces by Willie “The Lion” Smith, Joseph Lamb, Seger Ellis, James P. Johnson, Arthur Schutt, Frank Melrose, and others. The performances are bold, virtuosic, and thoroughly captivating. 3 tracks feature renowned percussionist Nicholas D. Ball.
“A masterclass in early jazz piano.” – The Observer
“A collection that blows away the cobwebs.” – The Sunday Times
A new overdubbed album featuring Portland stalwarts Doug Sammons and Dee Settlemier’s vocal stylings accompanied by a variety of fantastic national and international musicians in collaborations which would only be possible in this format. The tunes, originally performed by artists such as Bessie Smith, Fats Waller, Slim and Slam, and the Harlem Hamfats, range from 1920s hot stomps and washboard band tunes to low-down dirty blues and 30s swing.
In early 2019, we set out to learn more about the iconic ensemble style of King Oliver’s famous Creole Jazz Band. We transcribed a selection of their most famous 1923 recordings note-for-note and learned to them as closely as possible to the style of the original recordings. In addition to our artistic and musical motivations, the fidelity of the 1923 recordings is notoriously poor, so we hoped to shine some light on the inner workings of the band with a new recording of all the parts as originally played. We have also included three tunes which were performed by the Oliver band but not recorded by them, adapting what we learned from the transcribing process to these tunes.
Second album of London’s stylish purveyors of early jazz.
“a vibrant, unpredictable – and funky – set” – THE SUNDAY TIMES UK
“Daylight Savin’ is a contender for album of the year” – THE JAZZ RAG UK
“A beautiful production, thoroughly recommended – just order and enjoy!” – VINTAGE JAZZ MART UK
“We’re lucky in 2020 to have new jazz of this caliber to celebrate” – SYNCOPATED TIMES US
In this album, we present our versions of 13 Biguines, Valses, and Mazouks from some of the great dance orchestras of Martinique and Guadeloupe from the 1920s-1950s. The somewhat unlikely combination of French ballroom dance forms and African rhythms in these Caribbean islands gave birth to this exciting and rambunctious style of music in the early 20th century. The music’s strong percussion sections, unusual swooping clarinet and trombone melodies, and undeniable tropical aesthetic survive today on the great recordings by Stellio, Eugene Delouche, Alphonso, and many others.
A collection of 33 overdubbing recordings made during quarantine by expert hot jazz musicians around the world!
“They coalesce in dozens of small all-star groups on multi-track recordings that can only be described as a creative explosion. The project includes musicians from around the world, some in the top tier of their instruments. Every jazz fan needs to hear it.” – Syncopated Times
“One finds it hard to believe that the participants were not in the same room together, which is praise indeed, given the circumstances.” – Vintage Jazz Mart
One of the top 10 jazz albums of 2019 in the Times – the follow up to our 2018 YouTube marathon where we learned all of pioneering New Orleans composer and pianist Jelly Roll Morton’s compositions, this album features 15 of our hand-picked favorites of Morton’s compositions recorded at the incomparable Master Chord studios in London.
Brilliantly played and madly enjoyable. JAZZ JOURNAL
Compelling, soulful and huge fun. SUNDAY TIMES UK
A sensational new album … two extraordinary musicians. JAZZ WAX
They’re fantastic… spirited and accomplished perfomances. THE GUARDIAN
Expertise, eloquance and good taste that is both rare and welcome. JAZZ DA GAMA
They amaze with the depth, nuance and rhythm they draw out of each of these titles. SYNCOPATED TIMES
One thing we tend to forget, squabbling over discographies, is how sexy this brand of early jazz can be. It’s easy to assume that Jelly Roll Morton, Sidney Bechet et al can’t speak to a younger generation, but the pianist Andrew Oliver’s quartet lays that notion to rest. – THE SUNDAY TIMES
Lovingly curated examples of great music from the ancestral repertoire of jazz – JAZZ DA GAMA
Swings from start to finish – JUST JAZZ UK
Laid-back swing and clever interplay makes their music feel fresh and vibrant – JAZZ SOCIETY OF OREGON
When we first formed the Vitality Five in 2015, one of our main aims was to focus on performing a wide variety of compositions and styles beyond the common traditional jazz repertoire, and the versatility and commitment of the band members provides an ideal workshop for shedding some light on the amazing dusty corners of early stomps, blueses, and rags. This album features 17 numbers ranging from hot stomps to dirty blueses, all performed by an international cast of true specialists in the style.
Comprising specialist syncopators from the UK and USA, Horniblow’s Hot Three play riotous 1920s hot jazz – the original piano trio format at its most stomping. Specialisms include elegant ‘impressionist’ jazz of the late 20s, imaginative versions of classic ragtime tunes, and spirited recreations of the down-home washboard-trio style of Jimmie O’Bryant and George McLennon. Horniblow’s Hot Three incorporate humour, musicological research, foot-stamping energy, and a commitment to representing the full spectrum of 1920s jazz from the ridiculous to the revolutionary.
In 2019, the year of their centenary, VEAC Phonograph Co. is proud to present “CLARINET SQUAWK!”, a tribute to the Louisiana Five in an unusual format – part reissue, part recreation. Part One is a celebration of the recorded legacy the Five left behind exactly a century ago. It comprises brand-new digital transfers of seven classic Louisiana Five sides sourced from our own record collections. In Part Two, we’re delighted to present our best attempt to recreate this unusual chapter in jazz history, recorded during the autumn of 2019 in London.
“The Bridgetown Sextet’s new album release “Stomp, Defined” is the quintessential representation for the vintage jazz and swing renaissance exploding across the globe. […] What sets The Bridgetown Sextet apart as arguably the most talented vintage hot jazz and swing ensemble in the Pacific Northwest is their ability to not only harness, but intensify the unbridled energy of their musical antecedents.” – Jon Taylor, SwingPortland.com
“[R]etro-gazing is always a dicey proposition, running the risk of being precious, irrelevant, or, usually, both. But the Bridgetown Sextet pulls off their time-travel whimsy by emphasizing musical chops rather than mutton chops. Their tunes are the work of fantastic players, boasting excellent stride piano from both Scott Kennedy and Andrew Oliver, strict tempo from guitarist Doug Sammons and bassist Eric Gruber, and just the right shade of sassafras from John Moak on trombone and David Evans on clarinet and sax. Their new album, The New Old Fashioned, ably captures this combustible energy.” – The Portland Mercury
After a number of composition projects of original tangos in traditional and alternative styles, Alex, Andrew, and Megan wanted to create some new danceable tangos with lyrics in English. The waltz “What We Do” and the milonga “Shoes”were co-written by Megan and Andrew, and premiered by Alex’s sextet at Valentango a couple of years ago. We decided to release them as a special extremely limited-edition 45rpm vinyl single, individually lathe cut by Little Elephant Custom Vinyl in Ohio. The tracks are also available as a digital download. We hope you enjoy our contribution to the world of danceable and contemporary tango!
Classic Argentine tangos from the 1920s-1940s are reinterpreted with sultry vocals and a classic jazz piano while still keeping true to the traditional syncopation and undying passion of this beloved genre. Megan and Andrew began performing tangos together for a year before Andrew had the opportunity to move to London. On one of his visits back, Megan and Andrew reserved an afternoon of studio time and recorded what came to be this album. It had been two years since they had rehearsed together but their natural connection and sensitivity to the music felt as if no time had passed since they last played.
You notice the album and buy it, thinking, “huh, not many tango groups are putting out new original Argentine Tangos.” You put it on and feel as though the group has spent time studying the great orquestas of the Golden Age of Tango but you also sense that they are doing something new. You play the album for your friends and family; they are intrigued because it’s not jazz, not classical music, but at the same time evokes universal feelings of nostalgia, melancholy, joy, playfulness, love, longing and loss. You play it for friends and family that do dance and they get excited because it is danceable and new.
What the Tango?! explores the alternative vein of tango music — danceable and laid back with acoustic versions and downtempo electronic remixes of the original material. This album takes the legendary flamenco voice of Vicente “El Cartucho” Griego, blends it with the chromodal saxophone lines World/Jazz musician and Professor of World Music at SFSU, Dr. Hafez Modirzadeh, mixes in the tango sounds of the bandoneón, with a rock backbeat in the percussion section, piano, jazz and classical bass, violins and electric guitar.
“The Kora Band doesn’t really sound like any other group. This is an amazing feat, in a century supersaturated with music of every hue, and a convincing testament to the innovative sound of a jazz band successfully incorporating non-Western traditional instruments.” ★★★★ All About Jazz
“An inspired third release for The Kora Band, a transatlantic quintet exploring the links between contemporary jazz and traditional West African music.” ★★★★ Evening Standard
“World jazz” projects frequently come off as gimmicky. Not so with the Kora Band, a group of Portland and Seattle musicians […] who successfully incorporate West African rhythms and textures into their otherwise mainstream jazz sound. “Cascades” proceeds in a manner that’s unhurried and consistently inviting. – Jazziz
“Cascades treads a careful line here, able to fuse the musics into something that is at once modern, thoughtful jazz and innovations upon traditional music.” – All Music Guide
“If M.C. Escher had led a band, this would be the sound of it.” – Downbeat
PJCE Records, the recording branch of the Portland Jazz Composers Ensemble, is proud to release a new album of music by The Ocular Concern, the genre-bending quintet led by PJCE founder Andrew Oliver on electric piano and former PJCE co-director Dan Duval on guitar. The album was recorded in June 2013, in the same weekend of studio sessions which led to their award-winning 2014 release Sister Cities. The material on The Lost Album was intended to be released soon thereafter, but Oliver’s 2013 move to London for 7 years put the brakes on the project. Now back in Portland, Oliver and Duval are proud to unearth this collection of minimalist, globally inspired and melodic compositions from the archival dusty hard drives.
“the category-defying chamber quintet constructs and deconstructs intriguing pyramids of texture, counterpoint and harmony. If M.C. Escher had led a band, this would be the sound of it. The group weaves in jazz, neo-classical, African dance, tango, pop, twang, blasts of crunch-rock and subtle odd-metered funk. Minimalism is a strong influence in the music’s pointed rhythmic layers, but the band delivers it all with a fluidity and warmth that minimalism often lacks. The Ocular Concern’s music ultimately charms with a melodic and almost innocent sense of wonder.” – Downbeat (****)
This album takes a different path from our previous releases, showcasing the musical movements that are evident within each of Tunnel Six’s disparate members, while never losing sight of common threads that weave our stories together. The music explores vast landscapes, the peaceful complexity of nature, and the way it’s filtered through the human experience in music. Journeys, Spaces, Stories isn’t simply a collection of songs, but rather an expression of group interplay and band dynamics that have been honed on the road over the last seven years.