Jazz buffs will know all about German label MPS. Founded back in 1968 by Hans Georg Brunner-Schwer, MPS issued albums on some of jazz’s seminal artists – people like Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Oscar Peterson, Dexter Gordon, Freddie Hubbard, The Count Basie Orchestra and George Duke. It seems that the MPS catalogue is now curated by German company, Edel who have just entered into an agreement with Bob Frank Entertainment to reissue a plethora of classics from the MPS vault on vinyl and CD.
Amongst the first tranche of releases are LPs from Ella Fitzgerald, Freddie Hubbard, George Duke, the Oscar Peterson Trio, Baden Powell, Bill Evans and Joe Henderson. The Fitzgerald album is of particular note – it’s her 1969 ‘Sunshine Of Your Love’ collection half of which was recorded live using a big band while the other half features Fitzgerald’s long-time accompanists, the Tommy Flanagan Trio. It’s of note chiefly because the repertoire sees Ella challenging herself by singing a collection of rock and pop classics by artists like Eric Clapton, the Beatles, and Burt Bacharach along with a few standards like Duke Ellington’s ‘Love You Madly’.
The second tranche of releases (out now, we believe) features albums by Oscar Peterson and his trio, The Count Basie Orchestra, and Rolf Kühn. The Basie album is 1970’s ‘High Voltage’ which offers swinging, big band renditions of standards the band had never recorded previously in its 30-year history. Recruiting Cuban composer/arranger Chico O’Farrill to arrange, The Count Basie Orchestra rifles through a dozen popular selections such as ‘The Lady Is A Tramp’, ‘Bewitched’, ‘Get Me To The Church On Time’, ‘On The Sunny Side of the Street’ and ‘I Didn’t Know What Time It Was’.
For more information and to see what else is coming soon from MPS, please visit www.mps-music.com.