Sunday, June 21, 2009

Woody Herman & The New Third Herd - Men From Mars 10 inch LP

This is a 10 inch album which was purchased by my Mom in England around 1955. I listened to the album since I was very young because I liked the cover illustration so much. I scanned the cover with a friend's camera and figured I would download the songs somewhere quite easily, after all this is the famous Woody Herman. I quickly realized that this is a very rare album, especially for downloading. Fortunately that same friend had just purchased a Roland Edirol recorder so we hooked it up to my Stanton turntable and got down to work. I also looked up recording dates for The Third Herd and proceeded to find a few more tracks which were recorded for the US Verve 12 inch release of this album. I found 5 tracks which were recorded around the same time and by the Third Herd to the best of my knowledge. I really hope you will enjoy this rare gem the way I have over the years. "Marakeesh" is the track that my Mom purchased this album for, and it is a beautiful piece of exotica. The flautist, Sam Staff really shines on this track, and sadly died at age 34 before this album was released in England. This album seems to fit stylistically in between Cool Jazz and Lounge Music, it is bouncy, sophisticated and modern. The title track features an unusual Organ/Electric Piano combination which helps give it a modern otherworldly quality. Woody was in his early 40s around the time he assembled his Third Herd and I think that is reflected in the music here, it is mature, somewhat restrained but forward looking collection.

get it here