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Ayo - Joyful (2006) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Artist: Ayo
Title: Joyful
Genre: R&B, Neo-Soul, Soul, Soul Jazz, Blues, Folk, Alternative/Indie Rock
Label: © Mercury Music Group
Release Date: 2006
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: Qobuz
Duration: 00:58:09
Recorded: January 2006, Sony Music Studios, New York City

Blending equal amounts of Sade's cocktail-lounge take on world music, Jill Scott's dignified neo-soul and Corinne Bailey Rae's sunny AAA pop, the debut album by German singer/songwriter Ayo sounds like it will be a mainstay in middle-of-the-road coffee houses for years to come. The daughter of a Roma gypsy mother and Nigerian father, Ayo Ogunmakin makes exactly the sort of polite, low-key, largely acoustic pop-soul that's a mainstay of a certain mature, well-heeled demographic; indeed, a live Ayo performance recorded in Monte Carlo was a popular PBS special in late 2007. But while all that implies a certain inoffensive blandness, Ayo's a genuinely talented singer/songwriter, with a malleable voice that swings easily from the helium-pitched wispiness of the gentle bossa nova "And It's Supposed to Be Love" through the Tracy Chapman-like murmur of "What Is Love?" to the assertive, soulful strength of "Letter by Letter." While there are occasional missteps like the utterly forgettable reggae cop "Only You," Ayo's songwriting is refreshingly free of the earnest self-importance of many similar artists, trafficking neither in exhibitionist emo-porn nor the sort of vague sub-Bob Marley moralizing that's the usual province of dreadlocked white guys in hemp shorts. Joyful may not be the most exciting debut of 2006, but it's a satisfying example of a subgenre that all too often goes wrong. --AllMusic Review by Stewart Mason
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AWAKE - As We Fall (2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Artist: AWAKE
Title: As We Fall
Genre: Jazz, Modern Jazz, Contemporary Jazz
Label: © Jazz And People
Release Date: 2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: Qobuz
Duration: 00:53:23
Recorded: Studio Des Egreffins

AWAKE prend le nom d’un éveil. L’éveil d’un groupe, issu de la scène des clubs de jazz parisiens, qui fait entendre sa différence. L’éveil d’un son, au plus près du chant et de la mélodie, qui assume sa sensibilité folk et son profond lyrisme… AWAKE marque la naissance de la nouvelle génération française du jazz..
Marqué par l’association du saxophone de Romain Cuoq et de la guitare d’Anthony Jambon, coauteurs du répertoire, AWAKE existe depuis cinq ans. Cela s’entend dans la plénitude du son qui s’en dégage, dans la manière dont la musique se développe, se noue et se dénoue collectivement, au travers de formes longues qui font une place à tout le monde et à chacun. AWAKE est un groupe autant qu’il est une réunion de personnalités. Ce n’est pas si fréquent dans un genre musical qui se polarise souvent sur des individualités et n’a d’yeux que pour les virtuosités solistes et les auras de stars.
Sans rien masquer de ses fragilités, de son romantisme, de ses mélancolies secrètes, AWAKE puise dans le faisceau des talents individuels la force de son expressivité. Ces musiciens envisagent l’espace collectif comme le lieu d’épanchement des sensibilités personnelles, sans faux semblants. C’est la force du groupe de permettre ainsi ces mises à nu qui révèlent chez les solistes, une fulgurance, une envolée, qui loin de se détacher, vient se lover au cœur des compositions pour les sublimer. Leurs inspirations, qui apparentent leurs morceaux parfois à des chansons folk, parfois à des sonates pour quintet, n’empêchent ni la soul ni le blues d’affleurer dans leur répertoire, dont les compositions aux mélodies affirmées donnent à AWAKE une couleur particulière, émouvante et sensible, qui tranche dans le paysage du jazz actuel.
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Attila Zoller & Masahiko Sato - A Path Through Haze (1972/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: Attila Zoller & Masahiko Sato
Title: A Path Through Haze
Genre: Jazz, Post Bop, Free Improvisation, Guitar Jazz
Label: © MPS - Musik Produktion Schwarzwald | Edel Germany GmbH
Release Date: 1972/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: highresaudio.com
Duration: 00:34:12
Recorded on the occasion of the Berlin Jazz Festival at Teldec Studio Berlin, November 7th 1971


Atilla Zoller was touring Japan with fellow guitar greats Kenny Burrell and Jim Hall when he first played with pianist Masahiko Sato. Zoller exclaimed, “From the first sound on we were completely together, as if we had known each other for years.” Besides his fame as a player, Sato is known for his arranging and composing, having worked on the albums of such stars as Nancy Wilson and Art Farmer. Although often labeled “free jazz”, this album is everything but. Meet is a hard-driving up-tempo quartet adventure. On Sazo Zoller and Sato play off each other in an improvised dance for two. The Appalachian folk song Black is the Color of My True Love’s Hair is transformed into a pulsating modernistic piece featuring Sato’s trio. Close Up gets personal with Zoller and Sato again exploring in duo. Together Not Alone is exactly what it says, with the two improvising off the changes of the standard Alone Together. The title piece is the quartet’s majestic modal excursion into the light. With masterful improvisations and an integral familiarity that borders on the extrasensory, this is a musical path well worth taking.
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Attila Zoller - Katz und Maus (1967/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: Attila Zoller
Title: Katz und Maus
Subtitles: Der Meistdiskutierte Film - Die Meistdiskutierte Filmmusik Des Jahres
Genre: Jazz, Post Bop, Guitar Jazz, Filmmusik
Label: © MPS - Musik Produktion Schwarzwald | Edel Germany GmbH
Release Date: 1967/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: highresaudio.com
Duration: 00:45:45
Recorded: New York, December, 14th And 15th, 1966


“Attila is one of my heroes” was Pat Metheny’s comment when asked about Hungarian guitarist Attila Zoller. At the urging of Oscar Pettiford and Lee Konitz, Zoller moved from Germany to New York in 1959. Praised for his ability to combine straight-ahead playing with free jazz, his career included working with the who’s who of jazz. The album is ostensibly Zoller’s music for the movie adaptation of the Günter Grass book Katz and Maus. However the first three pieces were recorded in New York with the all-star group of bassist Ron Carter, pianist Albert Daily and drummer Bobby Thomas. The straight-ahead swing of Mahlke, emotive depth of Conradium Ballade, and free-flowing experimental drive of Pilenz highlight Zoller as a consummate straight-ahead change player and composer. The next three pieces has Zoller teamed up with premiere avante-garde bassist Barre Phillips and acclaimed trumpeter Jimmy Owens. Catnip and A.B.J. alternate between freedom and form. Seascape is a cleverly worked-out piece in 6/4. Exemplary music from a composer and player with a special voice whose music ranged from sophisticated modern jazz to free-form experimentation.
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Art Van Damme Quintet - The Gentle Art of Art (1967/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: The Art van Damme Quintet
Title: The Gentle Art of Art
Genre: Jazz, Post Bop, Swing, Cool Jazz, Mainstream Jazz
Label: © MPS - Musik Produktion Schwarzwald | Edel Germany GmbH
Release Date: 1967/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: highresaudio.com
Duration: 00:34:55
Recorded: SABA-Tonstudio, Villingen/Black Forest, March 1967

Called “The hippest cat ever to Swing an accordion”, Art Van Damme was born in the small town of Norway, Michigan in 1920. The 40’s and 50’s saw the classically trained Van Damme revolutionize the way the accordion was played, removing it from its stereotyped role as a polka playmate; in 1947 Van Damme made the cover of the prestigious jazz magazine Downbeat and was voted “Top Accordionist” 10 years in a row. He starred on such popular American TV programs as “Today”, “The Dinah Shore Show”, and “The Tonight Show”, and toured Europe some 40 times. With his decision to combine guitar and vibes with accordion, Van Dam’s groups developed a unique sound early-on. His recordings with MPS were some of his best, given the company’s predilection of allowing the musicians a free hand. As one reviewer put it, Van Damme played “…right-hand runs with a velocity and lightness of touch that defied the presumed limitations of the instrument, consistently emphasizing the lyric contours of a melodic phrase rather than the lightning technical flourishes that led up to it.”
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Art van Damme Quintet - On the Road (1969/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: The Art van Damme Quintet
Title: On the Road
Genre: Jazz, Post Bop, Swing, Cool Jazz, Mainstream Jazz
Label: © MPS - Musik Produktion Schwarzwald | Edel Germany GmbH
Release Date: 1969/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: highresaudio.com
Duration: 00:34:12
Recorded: MPS-Tonstudio, Villingen/Black Forest, 1969

Called “The hippest cat ever to Swing an accordion”, Art Van Damme was born in the small town of Norway, Michigan in 1920. The 40’s and 50’s saw the classically trained Van Damme revolutionize the way the accordion was played, removing it from its stereotyped role as a polka playmate; in 1947 Van Damme made the cover of the prestigious jazz magazine Downbeat and was voted “Top Accordionist” 10 years in a row. He starred on such popular American TV programs as “Today”, “The Dinah Shore Show”, and “The Tonight Show”, and toured Europe some 40 times. With his decision to combine guitar and vibes with accordion, Van Dam’s groups developed a unique sound early-on. His recordings with MPS were some of his best, given the company’s predilection of allowing the musicians a free hand. As one reviewer put it, Van Damme played “…right-hand runs with a velocity and lightness of touch that defied the presumed limitations of the instrument, consistently emphasizing the lyric contours of a melodic phrase rather than the lightning technical flourishes that led up to it.”
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Art Van Damme Quintet - Keep Going (1971/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: The Art van Damme Quintet
Title: Keep Going
Genre: Jazz, Post Bop, Swing, Cool Jazz, Mainstream Jazz
Label: © MPS - Musik Produktion Schwarzwald | Edel Germany GmbH
Release Date: 1971/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: highresaudio.com
Duration: 00:30:47
Recorded: November 1970 at MPS-Tonstudio/Villingen


Called “The hippest cat ever to Swing an accordion”, Art Van Damme was born in the small town of Norway, Michigan in 1920. The 40’s and 50’s saw the classically trained Van Damme revolutionize the way the accordion was played, removing it from its stereotyped role as a polka playmate; in 1947 Van Damme made the cover of the prestigious jazz magazine Downbeat and was voted “Top Accordionist” 10 years in a row. He starred on such popular American TV programs as “Today”, “The Dinah Shore Show”, and “The Tonight Show”, and toured Europe some 40 times. With his decision to combine guitar and vibes with accordion, Van Dam’s groups developed a unique sound early-on. His recordings with MPS were some of his best, given the company’s predilection of allowing the musicians a free hand. As one reviewer put it, Van Damme played “…right-hand runs with a velocity and lightness of touch that defied the presumed limitations of the instrument, consistently emphasizing the lyric contours of a melodic phrase rather than the lightning technical flourishes that led up to it.”
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Art van Damme Quintet - Blue World (1970/2014) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: The Art van Damme Quintet
Title: Blue World
Genre: Jazz, Post Bop, Swing, Cool Jazz, Mainstream Jazz
Label: © MPS - Musik Produktion Schwarzwald | Edel Germany GmbH
Release Date: 1970/2014
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: highresaudio.com
Duration: 00:35:32
Recorded: June 1970, MPS-Tonstudio/Willingen


Called “The hippest cat ever to Swing an accordion”, Art Van Damme was born in the small town of Norway, Michigan in 1920. The 40’s and 50’s saw the classically trained Van Damme revolutionize the way the accordion was played, removing it from its stereotyped role as a polka playmate; in 1947 Van Damme made the cover of the prestigious jazz magazine Downbeat and was voted “Top Accordionist” 10 years in a row. He starred on such popular American TV programs as “Today”, “The Dinah Shore Show”, and “The Tonight Show”, and toured Europe some 40 times. With his decision to combine guitar and vibes with accordion, Van Dam’s groups developed a unique sound early-on. His recordings with MPS were some of his best, given the company’s predilection of allowing the musicians a free hand. As one reviewer put it, Van Damme played “…right-hand runs with a velocity and lightness of touch that defied the presumed limitations of the instrument, consistently emphasizing the lyric contours of a melodic phrase rather than the lightning technical flourishes that led up to it.”
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Art van Damme & The Singers Unlimited - Invitation (1974/2014) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: Art van Damme & The Singers Unlimited
Title: Invitation
Genre: Jazz, Swing, Cool Jazz, Vocal Jazz, Harmony Vocal Group, Smooth Jazz, Easy Listening
Label: © MPS - Musik Produktion Schwarzwald | Edel Germany GmbH
Release Date: 1974/2014
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: highresaudio.com
Duration: 00:36:36
Recorded: June 1973, MPS-Studio, Villingen by H.G. Brunner-Schwer

In the early 1970’s, Oscar Peterson gave a demo tape to his friend Brunner- Schwer. It contained a recording of a vocal quartet from Chicago, Singers Unlimited. Enthralled by the music, the MPS chief spontaneously booked the group, which previously earned their money performing advertising jingles. For the three-man and one woman choir, it was the beginning of a successful international career. In the following years MPS produced no less than 15 albums for the vocal virtuosos. They included one LP with the Oscar Peterson Trio and three a cappella albums. In June 1973, MPS engaged accordion virtuoso Art van Damme (1920-2010) for a session with the Singers Unlimited. The American is seldom mentioned in today’s jazz literature, yet he brought the accordion, a popular instrument in folk music, into jazz. Van Damme played Benny Goodman clarinet solos on what is perceived as an unwieldy instrument; the “accordion world champion” appeared in shows with Dizzy Gillespie and Ella Fitzgerald. For the recordings with Singers Unlimited, van Damme wrote instrumental arrangements for a combo (with MPS house bassist Eberhard Weber and Swiss drummer Charly Antolini). The Singers Unlimited were recorded using the then revolutionary multitrack technology; their production was one of the most expensive MPS recordings. On the other hand, with its swinging easy-listening sound, the album was also one of the company’s best-selling.
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Art Van Damme - Mit Art Van Damme in San Francisco (1966/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: Art Van Damme
Title: Mit Art Van Damme in San Francisco
Genre: Jazz, Post Bop, Swing, Cool Jazz
Label: © SABA/MPS - Musik Produktion Schwarzwald | Edel Germany GmbH
Release Date: 1966/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: Qobuz
Duration: 00:37:13
Recorded: Golden Gate Studio, San Francisco, January 1966

Called “The hippest cat ever to Swing an accordion”, Art Van Damme was born in the small town of Norway, Michigan in 1920. The 40’s and 50’s saw the classically trained Van Damme revolutionize the way the accordion was played, removing it from its stereotyped role as a polka playmate; in 1947 Van Damme made the cover of the prestigious jazz magazine Downbeat and was voted “Top Accordionist” 10 years in a row. He starred on such popular American TV programs as “Today”, “The Dinah Shore Show”, and “The Tonight Show”, and toured Europe some 40 times. With his decision to combine guitar and vibes with accordion, Van Dam’s groups developed a unique sound early-on. His recordings with MPS were some of his best, given the company’s predilection of allowing the musicians a free hand. As one reviewer put it, Van Damme played “…right-hand runs with a velocity and lightness of touch that defied the presumed limitations of the instrument, consistently emphasizing the lyric contours of a melodic phrase rather than the lightning technical flourishes that led up to it.”
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