Monday, 05 September 2011 14:08 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

harveyDAVID NATHAN'S label has just reissued three fine albums on legendary drummer HARVEY MASON. MASON has enjoyed a long and illustrious career – playing with anyone and everyone who is anyone and, of course, he's now a mainstay of FOURPLAY.

In the mid '70s he was signed as a solo artist by Arista Records – where he recorded five albums and it's three of those that have just hit the racks again. They are – 1976's 'Earthmover', '77's 'Funk In A Mason Jar' and 'M.V.P.' from 1981. They all feature MASON'S distinct brand of jazz fusion and soul-based dance grooves and –as ever with albums – the three CDs all include in-demand bonus tracks.


Read SJF's review of 'Funk In A Mason Jar':

Also, SJF hopes to speak to Mr. Mason about those reissues very soon so keep your eyes peeled for an in-depth feature on one of jazz-funk's finest drummers.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 07 September 2011 13:14



Monday, 05 September 2011 13:19 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

sedakaThe latest in Ace Records' "songwriter" series turns the spotlight onto two doyens of the famous Brill Building music factory – NEIL SEDAKA and HOWARD GREENFIELD.

SEDAKA, of course, was – indeed is – a hit-making artist in his own right but in the late fifties and early sixties, working with HOWARD GREENFIELD, he penned an incredible number of hits... and good 'ole Ace have assembled a generous 25 here.

Soul fans will be interested in cuts from LITTLE ANTHONY AND THE IMPERIALS, DIONNE WARWICK, CLYDE McPHATTER, BEN E KING, THE COOKIES, NANCY WILSON and PATTI DREW whose original recording of 'Working On A Groovy Thing' was re-worked by the FIFTH DIMENSION into a huge hit. There's also a lovely early DEE DEE SHARP recording –a take on 'Calendar Boy'.

Other featured artists include CONNIE FRANCIS, BOBBY DARIN, THE MONKEES, TOM JONES, LESLEY GORE and GENE PITNEY... an essential slab of pop music history, this!



Sunday, 04 September 2011 17:37 Charles Waring E-mailPrintPDF

Soul-Time-LP-FrontAficionados of retro-styled-funk and soul will rejoice at the news that the redoubtable Sharon Jones and her group, The Dap-Kings, are returning to the fray with a collection of eleven newly-minted songs called 'Soul Time!'

Here at SJF we've had a sneak preview of the album and can confirm that it's the lady's funkiest offering yet (it's also her fourth for New York's Daptone label).






The album's due for release on 31st October. Keep your eyes peeled for a review at SJF soon.



Saturday, 03 September 2011 14:44 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

johnny_mathis_2011Veteran crooner JOHNNY MATHIS comes to the UK for a three show mini tour in October. The dates are - 12th October O2 Arena, London; 14th October LG Arena, Birmingham; 16th October Manchester Evening News Arena.

It's MATHIS' first tour to the UK in five years and to coincide with the shows SONY have just released a 23 track album on him. 'The Ultimate Collection' features all the Texan's classics like 'Misty', and 'The Twelfth Of Never' along with the wonderful Philly sourced 'I'm Stone In Love With You'.

Soul collectors will be interested in a pair of previously unreleased cuts – 'Something To Sing About' and 'I Love My Lady'. Both were produced by the CHIC team and come from a collaborative album that was never released. The songs are classic CHIC productions and though JOHNNY'S as smooth as ever, they offer something just a bit different.

The album, by the way, also features 'When A Child Is Born'.... just to remind us, maybe, that there are only 120 days left to Christmas.

JOHNNY MATHIS – The ULTIMATE COLLECTION is released by SONY on October 10th.



Thursday, 01 September 2011 18:58 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

mamasMAMA'S GUN – whose excellent 'The Life and Soul' album we reviewed back in May (see our REVIEWS pages)– take to the road in November to promote the set. The tour dates are:- 3rd Nov – High Barn, Essex; 4th Nov – Jazz Cafe, London; 6th Nov – Mama Stones, Exeter; 11th Nov – Cox's Yard, Stafford; 12th Nov – Cellers, Portsmouth; 13th Nov – Erics, Liverpool; 19th Nov – Alter Ego, Manchester; 26th Nov – The Duchess, York. Local press will give you more details

The band has also released the second single from the LP. It's the jauntily wild 'Reconstruction' and if you're inclined you can watch the JAMES STONELY- directed video for it @


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