Great value set show casing some of sweet Papa Lou's best be-bop work from 1957-1960. Lou is fast and fluid throughout with various band mates including pianists Herman foster and Horace Parlan and trumpeters Blue Mitchell, Donald Bird and Bill Hardman.These discs catch Lou at pretty much the top of his game before he moved into Soul jazz organ territory. Those expecting Eight individual discs in mini LP slip covers will be disappointed as they are supplied in the two albums to one disc format.They are then packaged in a plastic ,four disc ,hinged case with a simple bookle giving just the very basic information.All discs have been re-mastered for great sound quality. Also,as of 11.10.2011 when I wrote this review many of the discs are currently out of print with some of them costing £20-£40 if purchased via Amazon Marketplace.All in all you have got yourself a great set of albums at a bargain price.
The GOOD is clearly as other reviewers have noted, simply the music - its availability at an absolute bargain price.
The sound quality is good enough - the remastered sound is a little bit "thin" in places, as it is wont to be. I am not sure if that is entirely because of the age of the recordings: Rudy van Gelder generally produced quite a full sound, even in those days, even if he never went for opulence.
The DOWNSIDE is a certain slovenliness in presentation. True, we can't expect Rolls Royce treatment (original art, liner notes, etc.) for the price of a Lada. But the notes such as they are are a bit messy (just a couple of examples: the wrong recording date is given for album/session 3, none is given for album/session 4, Jamil Nasser and not Masser was the name George Joyner took, it's Jimmy Wormworth, not Wormsworth ....). And perhaps most of all, as AD of Sacramento CA notes on the American site, the order of the albums is mixed up on two of the CDs - which has confused Glenn Cook above in his attempts to be helpful!
To repeat JD's corrected lists of tracks for the co.uk readership:
DISC #2 (Corrected order)
(BLUES WALK) 1. Blues Walk 2. Move 3. The Masquerade Is Over 4. Play, Ray 5. Autumn Nocturne 6. Callin' All Cats
(SUNNY SIDE UP) 7. Blues For J.P 8. The Man I Love 9. Politely 10. It's You Or No One 11. The Truth 12. Goose Grease 13. Softly As In A Morning Sunrise 14. Way Down Upon The Swanee River
DISC #4 (Corrected order)
(LOU TAKES OFF) 1. Sputnik 2. Dewey Square 3. Strollin' In 4. Groovin' High
(THE TIME IS RIGHT) 5. The Nearness Of You 6. Mack The Knife 7. Lou's Blues 8. Be My Love 9. Tangerine 10. Crosstown Shuffle 11. Idaho
If you can get through this messiness, it's a bargain and a half, with some fine blowing
Thought a track Listing would help. Read JD Nelson and Montis reviews in adddition to this Track listing 1. Caravan 2. Old Folks 3. L.D. Blues 4. That Good Old Feeling 5. There Is No Greater Love 6. Move It 7. Dorothy 8. I Won't Cry Anymore 9. Herman's Mambo 10. Peck Time 11. There Will Never Be Another You 12. Groove Junction 13. Grits and Gravy
1. Sputnik 2. Dewey Square 3. Strollin' In 4. Groovin' High 5. Blues Walk 6. Move 7. The Masquerade Is Over 8. Play, Ray 9. Autumn Nocturne 10. Callin' All Cats 11. Untitled 12. Untitled 13. Untitled 14. Untitled
1. Light Foot 2. Hog Maw 3. Mary Ann 4. Green Eyes 5. Walkin' by the River 6. Day Dreams 7. Stella by Starlight 8. Blue Moon 9. Smooth Groove 10. Jump Up 11. Just Friends 12. Three Little Words 13. Don't Take Your Love from Me 14. Confirmation
1. The Nearness of You 2. Mack the Knife 3. Lou's Blues 4. Be My Love 5. Tangerine 6. Crosstown Shuffle 7. Idaho 8. Blues for J.P. 9. The Man I Love 10. Politely 11. It's You or No One/The Truth/Goose Grease/Softly, as in a Morning Sunrise/Way Down Upon the Swanee R
Another fantastic bunch of 8 LP's re-issued on 4 CD's. For a fiver you get : Wailing with Lou, Swing and Soul, Lou Takes Off, Blues Walk, Light Foot, LD+3, The Time is Right and Sunny Side Up. Excellent material from the 1957-60 period.
Good music, good sound and great value for this set of Lou Donaldson late fifties, playing good hard bop, almost always blussy, and accompanied by excellent musicians, including Ray Barreto which provides a savory flavor to the music with congas, on the sets when it accompanies. When the whole set is good, Blues Walk and LD +3, are perhaps the best albums of the lot. As for the information, this is basic, but considering the price, you can not ask for more