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  • Love's Crushing Diamond Love's Crushing Diamond Quick View

    $15.99
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    Love's Crushing Diamond

    Mutual Benefit's newest offering is an emotional one, ripe with tender evocations of a love that just won't take. It would be hard to believe anyone who said this record is not in response to a great loss. We've all been there. Teetering on the border between letting go and great hope, Jordan Lee sculpted Love's Crushing Diamond to perfectly capture the dark pit of the unfortunately frequent and very real human state of vulnerability.


    Each song accomplishes a very distinct purpose. Jordan will bring the listener back to very happy times, times when we wish we had behaved differently, times we wish we could erase... This violent back and forth gives off the impression that Jordan is toying with our emotions. In all honesty, it's remarkably exhausting, and at the end, we feel at peace. Jordan restores a much needed balance during a time of uncertainty.


    We are warning you now, do not be afraid to let the emotions wash over you. Do not be afraid to cry. Do not be afraid to laugh. Do not be afraid to worry. Do not be afraid to experience a whole new echelon of fear. Jordan wants you to give into all these emotions while you navigate his 32-minute present. Watch yourself as you listen. Do you get angry or feel like you're too good for the record's message? They're wonderful coping mechanisms, anger and avoidance, but they'll only leave you worse off, grasping at straws when you realize it might be too late. So do yourself a favor, forgive and dive in.


    I challenge you to imagine a scenario as you listen. You're in the orient, floating down a winding river. The only thing keeping you company is your thoughts. As the river twists and turns, you ask yourself where it will take you. You pass around a bend, and the countryside explodes into color. The sun beams down on your face. The vast expanse overwhelms you. Past doubts and worries dissolve. Fear is eliminated. We were made to be afraid, but you are perfectly serene. Prepare for a journey, close your eyes, and press play.
    We were made to be this way. We were made to be afraid.


    - Jonathan Abramson (Live For The Funk)

    1. Strong River
    2. Golden Wake
    3. Advanced Falconry
    4. That Light That's Blinding
    5. Let's Play / Statue of a Man
    6. C. L. Rosarian
    7. Strong Swimmer
    Mutual Benefit
    $15.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • The Cowboy's Prayer The Cowboy's Prayer Quick View

    $14.99
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    The Cowboy's Prayer

    Mutual Benefit's 2011 EP, The Cowboy's Prayer, will be re-released by Other Music Recording Co. ahead of a massive fall tour in North America. Previously available only as a Bandcamp download, The Cowboy's Prayer was the real introduction of the lush orchestral folk sound that many first heard on Mutual Benefit's breakthrough Love's Crushing Diamond LP. The Cowboy's Prayer EP has been remastered as a gorgeous one-sided etched 12".
    1. Auburn Epitaphs
    2. Passenger
    3. The Cowboy's Prayer
    4. Backwards Fireworks
    Mutual Benefit
    $14.99
    Vinyl EP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Ellington Uptown (Pure Pleasure) Ellington Uptown (Pure Pleasure) Quick View

    $34.99
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    Ellington Uptown (Pure Pleasure)

    Even back in the early '50s, Columbia Records took Duke Ellington seriously enough to place this album on its prestigious Masterworks label, heretofore reserved mostly for highbrow classical music and Broadway shows. Also, this LP explodes the critical line that the early '50s was a relatively fallow period for the Duke; any of these smoking, concert-length tracks will torpedo that notion. The young Louis Bellson was powering the Ellington band at that time, and his revolutionary double-bass drum technique and rare ability to build coherent drum solos are put to astounding use on his self-penned leadoff track, Skin Deep, which was quite a demonstration piece for audiophiles at the time. Old favorites from the Ellington hit parade are given extended treatments, with singer Betty Roche taking the A-Train for a bebop-flavored ride, The Mooche spotlighting clarinetists Jimmy Hamilton and Russell Procope, and Ellington's boogie-woogie piano kicking off a super-charged Perdido for trumpeter Clark Terry. The centerpiece of the disc is a sharply drawn, idiomatically swinging, probably unbeatable performance of A Tone Parallel To Harlem that lays waste to any of the 'symphonic' versions that turn up frequently at pop concerts. Another feature of this record is the great sound quality, a benefit of being entrusted to Columbia's best engineers.



    Musicians:



    • Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney, Russell Procope (saxophone)

    • William Anderson, Clark Terry (trumpet)

    • Quentin Jackson, Britt Woodman (trombone)

    • Billy Strayhorn, Duke Ellington (piano)

    • Betty Roche (vocal)
    • Wendell Marshall (bass)

    • Louis Bellson (drums)





    About Pure Pleasure



    At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Pure Pleasure all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.



    During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existent tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.



    A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.



    We should like to emphasize that Pure Pleasure Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle.



    We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.



    To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.



    1. Skin Deep
    2. The Mooche
    3. Take the A Train
    4. A Tone Parallel
    5. Perdido
    Duke Ellington
    $34.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Soul To Soul (Pure Pleasure) Soul To Soul (Pure Pleasure) Quick View

    $49.99
    Buy Now
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    Soul To Soul (Pure Pleasure)

    The acclaimed composer, jazz vocalist, producer, arranger and educator Carmen Lundy believes in honesty and sincerity in music. Her artistic passion has guided her around the world, working with numerous musicians such as Geri Allen, Patrice Rushen, Teri Lynne Carrington and many others. So it should come as no surprise that her fervent new song cycle, titled Soul To Soul, features an array of award-winning musicians that help her realize the next chapter in her critically acclaimed career.


    Soul To Soul is Carmen Lundy's 14th album and features 13 songs, 11 of which Carmen composed and arranged. She plays guitar on all tracks, piano on "Kindred Spirits", the electric Rhodes on "Don't You Know How I Feel", and the drums/percussion on "Sardegna" and also provides backing vocals on "Grace". The Los Angeles-based vocalist opens the program with "Kindred Spirits", a song that explores the concept of 'you reap what you sow' and the way you play the game of life. Next is "Life Is A Song In Me", during which Lundy's lyrics benefit from the synergy of her multi-octave range and vocalese, Rushen's Rhodes solo, Jamison Ross' exemplary drumming and the balanced backing vocals.


    Carmen Lundy continues to find new connections between the jazz elements used by vocalists and instrumentalists on the title track, "Soul To Soul". She adds the stellar accompaniment of trumpeter Randy Brecker, tenor saxophonist Ada Rovatti and piano chops of Patrice Rushen to underline her musical persona and vocal technique. The sound motion inherent in that song has great tone that many people will feel instantly and submit it to their memory and recall abilities. That is what makes a song a hit with people - its sound motion.


    Her great ballad, "When Will They Learn", is absolutely beautiful with its string arrangements for harpist Carol Robbins and the serene brushwork of Jamison Ross. Here Carmen delivers the song in her vocals lower octaves which make this moving song one of the best on the recording. You can hear that she has internalized the music, allowing it to flow in her veins and transferring it directly to the listener.
    Overall, Soul To Soul is among Carmen Lundy's best recordings. She understands that those notes she puts down on paper are important and have their place. But when it comes to delivering those notes, her vocal acumen and virtuosity proves that she has the right balance, the right accompaniments, the right musical formats and the right synergy, artistry and jazz sensibilities to make those inspired notes accessible to her worldwide fans. Check it out.


    Musicians:



    • Carmen Lundy (vocal, keyboard, guitar, drums, percussion)

    • Bennie Maupin (tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone)

    • Randy Brecker (trumpet, fluegel horn)

    • Patrice Rushen (keyboard)

    • Carol Robbins (harp)

    • Simphiwe Dana (vocals)

    • Darryl Hall (bass)

    • Mayra Casales (conga, percussion)

    • Jamison Ross (drums, percussion)



    Recording: 2014 at Firehouse Recording Studios, Pasadena (CA), by Don Murray
    Production: Elisabeth Oei & Carmen Lundy


    About Pure Pleasure



    At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Pure Pleasure all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.



    During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existent tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.



    A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.



    We should like to emphasize that Pure Pleasure Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle.



    We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.



    To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.

    1. Kindred Spirits
    2. Life Is a Song in Me
    3. Soul to Soul
    4. When Will They Learn
    5. Daybreak
    6. Between Darkness and Dawn
    7. Grace
    8. Grateful, Pt. 1
    9. Grateful, Pt. 2
    10. Everything I Need
    11. Don't You Know How I Feel
    12. Sardegna
    13. What's Your Story, Morning Glory
    Carmen Lundy
    $49.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • I Hear You Knocking (Pure Pleasure) I Hear You Knocking (Pure Pleasure) Quick View

    $34.99
    Buy Now
    x

    I Hear You Knocking (Pure Pleasure)

    Dave Bartholomew has often been quoted to the effect that Smiley Lewis was a »bad luck singer«, because he never sold more than 100,000 copies of his Imperial singles. In retrospect, Lewis was a lucky man in many respects - he enjoyed stellar support from New Orleans' ace sessioneers at Cosimo's, benefited from top-flight material and production (by Bartholomew), and left behind a legacy of marvelous Crescent City R&B. We're lucky he was there, that's for sure.



    Born with the unwieldy handle of Overton Lemons, Lewis hit the Big Easy in his mid-teens, armed with a big, booming voice and some guitar skills. He played clubs in the French Quarter, often with pianist Tuts Washington (and sometimes billed as 'Smiling' Lewis).



    As the New Orleans R&B sound developed rapidly during the early '50s, so did Lewis. He scored his first national hit in 1952 with The Bells Are Ringing, but enjoyed his biggest sales in 1955 with the exultant I Hear You Knocking (its immortal piano solo courtesy of Huey Smith). Here's where that alleged bad luck rears its head - pop chanteuse Gale Storm swiped his thunder for any pop crossover possibilities with her ludicrous whitewashed cover of the plaintive ballad.




    Musicians:



    • Smiley Lewis (guitar, vocal)




    Recording: At Cosimo's (New Orleans)

    Production: Dave Bartholomew




    About Pure Pleasure



    At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Pure Pleasure all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.



    During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existent tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.



    A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.



    We should like to emphasize that Pure Pleasure Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle.



    We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.



    To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.



    1. Bells Are Ringing
    2. Standing on the Corner
    3. Blue Monday
    4. Down the Road
    5. Lost Weekend
    6. Real Gone Lover
    7. Bumpity Bump
    8. I Hear You Knocking
    9. I Can't Believe It
    10. Hey Girl
    11. One Night
    12. Nothing But the Blues
    Smiley Lewis
    $34.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl Mono LP - Sealed Buy Now
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