In memory of Johnny Peret

In memory of Johnny Peret
In memory of my friend Johnny Peret, vibist, drummer, accordeonist extraordinaire

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


Polydor LP, GERMANY, 1965 

I must confess that until recently I had little knowledge of Max Greger’s achievements in the field of jazz.  Max Greger was a name I associated with German Schlager / dance music, in the same category as James Last or Bert Kaempfert.  I never paid much attention if I saw a Max Greger LP in a record bin.  With the benefit of hindsight, I realize I should have been more adventurous.

This album is a perfect example of the quality of big band jazz Max Greger could achieve.  When he was offered a job as Musical Director for Germany's second television channel in the early sixties, Max Greger’s ambition was to have the best big band in Europe.  This recording from 1965 clearly demonstrates that he wasn’t far from reaching his goal. Count Basie himself stated that the Max Greger Orchestra was the best European band he'd ever heard.

For a start, Greger hand-picked some of the best musicians around, including a few American expats.

I shall quote extensively from the article on the Max Greger Orchestra on the Jazz Professional website.

Dick Spencer from Florida was already in the band, having just completed his military service in Germany.

Benny Bailey, who has the distinction of having worked with both Lionel Hampton and Dizzy Gillespie, had been playing with Harry Arnold in Stockholm for six years when the Quincy Jones band came to Europe with the ill-fated Free and Easy show. Benny joined, then found himself stranded in Paris when the show folded. He moved over to the Radio Free Berlin orchestra to work with Herb Geller, Nat Peck and Joe Harris in 1962, eventually leaving to become featured jazz trumpeter in the Max Greger orchestra.

Don Menza,did a stint with Stan Kenton and Maynard Ferguson before getting an offer from Max.

Other non-Germans in the band are Ferenc Aszodi, Pierre Favre and Branko Pejakovic. Ferenc, who hails from Bucharest, was the original trumpet lead.

The rest of the brass section are German: Rick Kiefer in the trumpet section, Karl-Heinz Donick from Dresden, an excellent lead trombonist; Helmut Rink from Chemnitz (trombone) and Fritz Glaser from Drebach (bass trombone).

Pierre Favre, from Switzerland, was a small-band drummer before joining Greger.

Branco Pejakovic, a Yugoslavian, is the bassist. . He deputised in the Duke Ellington band on the recent tour when Ernie Shephard was taken ill. 

Armin Rusch, on piano, comes from Hanover. Both he and Manfred Mende, the second alto, have the uncanny power of being able to understand English without being able to speak a word of it.

Freddy Brock, who plays fourth trumpet, is a nationally famous TV and film comedian. He comes from Karlsruhe.

Re-issued on CD in 1999 (OOP)

With thanks to Onxidlib for the rip and Quimsy for the original art.

Saturday, January 19, 2013


LP MOLE JAZZ 6 – UK, 1981

The recent posting of Don Weller’s Major Surgery on OIR reminded me that I still had to post this live album of Hannibal Peterson with the Weller – Spring Quartet.

In 1981 Don Weller stood in for Michael Brecker when the Gil Evans Orchestra played at the Bracknell Jazz Festival.  He subsequently toured the UK with the Orchestra and recorded a live album with one of the band's trumpeters, Hannibal Marvin Peterson, added on to the Weller–Spring Quartet.

A strong album, four tracks with ample room for everyone to stretch out.  There is some deep playing in there.  Check the title track and 19+ minutes version of “Africa”.

Hannibal c. 1976

Trumpet – Hannibal Marvin Peterson
Tenor Saxophone – Don Weller
Piano – Martin Blackwell
Bass – Dave Green
Drums – Bryan Spring

Poem Song (Marvin Peterson) 14:06
All Blues (Miles Davis) 13:05
Misty (Errol Garner) 12:40
Africa (Marvin Peterson) 19:16

Recorded At The 100 Club,London On Monday 2nd November 1981

Don Weller

Friday, January 18, 2013


Blues & Boogie 
Miriam Klein - Oscar Klein - Henry Chaix - Bob Carter - Hans Peter Giger ‎
LP Europa – E 385, Germany. 1969

Blues and boogie woogie were among my earliest musical loves and this LP has been a favourite for nearly 40 years.  

It’s on the Europa label, a discount label that was often sold in supermarkets.   The same label as the Emil Mangelsdorf album posted earlier and the St Tropez Jazz Octet posted on OIR a good while ago.

It is not even a rare album, it keeps on poppin’ up in used record bins.  I have three or four copies at home, each bought for about 1 Euro.  It probably deserves the title of the Most Overlooked Record– at least in Belgium where nobody seems to have the least idea of the quality of the musicians playing here.

So who do we have here?  Three Swiss, one Austrian and one American-Hawaiian!

Vocal : Swisss vocalist Miriam Klein first came into the public eye when she performed in Paris in the 1950s with Dexter Gordon, Pierre Michelot, Don Byas and Art Simmons. Later she attended Music School in Vienna and went back to Switzerland to work with the ensembles of her husband, trumpeter and guitarist Oscar Klein. It was in the 1960s and 1970 that she became known internationally.  In 1978 her album 'By Myself' was produced by concert management tycoon Horst Lippmann for the L+R label.  

Miriam Klein

Guitar, cornet, harmonica: Oscar Klein (5 January 1930 in Graz, Austria – 12 December 2006 in Baden-Württemberg) has, for many decades, been one of the top trad trumpeters/cornetists in Europe. In addition, he was a fine blues guitarist and a good harmonica player. Oscar Klein was an Austrian born jazz trumpeter who also played clarinet, harmonica, and swing guitar. His family fled the Nazis when he was young. He became known for "older jazz" like swing and Dixieland. In the early sixties he joined the famous Dutch Swing College Band in Holland as first trumpeter and he is to be found on several of their recordings. He was also a member of the Tremble Kids (MPS).  He played with Lionel Hampton, Joe Zawinul, Romano Mussolini ... and as a duo with bluesman Philadelphia Jerry Hicks.  In 1996 he was honored by then President Thomas Klestil.  
Oscar Klein
Piano: Henri Chaix, (21 February 1925, Geneva, Switzerland, d. 11 June 1999)  played piano from an early age, becoming professional while in his late teens. He played with a number of Swiss bands, eventually becoming a leader in the early 60s. He gained a strong local reputation and during the 50s, 60s and 70s was constantly on call as accompanist for visiting American jazz musicians. Among those with whom he played during these years were Sidney Bechet, Buck Clayton, Rex Stewart and Albert Nicholas. He also played an important role at many Swiss jazz festivals and throughout western and central Europe. A powerful and dynamic player, he displayed a marked penchant for the blues, and his solid accompaniment was of considerable merit. His solos demonstrated an imaginative approach to mainstream jazz. He occasionally played trombone.

Bass : Robert Kahakalau, better known as Bob Carter (b. February 11, 1922, New Haven, Connecticut) was an American jazz bassist and arranger.
Carter learned bass and guitar from his father, a vaudeville performer of Hawaiian heritage. He played in local orchestras from 1937 to 1940, toured from 1940 to 1942 and worked with his own trio in Boston in 1944. In 1944-45 he worked in various groups on 52nd Street in New York City, with Tony Scott, Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, Stuff Smith, and Charlie Shavers among others. Following time spent playing bebop with Allen Eager and Max Roach in 1946, he worked with Charlie Ventura from 1947 to 1949 and again in 1953-54. In the interim he played with Benny Goodman in 1949-50.

After his second stint with Ventura he studied composition with Wesley LaViolette. Later that decade his arrangements were used by Red Norvo, Bob Harrington, and Shelly Manne. He spent 1957-58 in Hawaii, then returned to New York in 1959, where he played with Bobby Hackett. In the early 1960s, he worked in Germany in the orchestra of Kurt Edelhagen. He did little playing after the end of the 1960s.

Drums :  Hans Peter Giger is a Swiss percussionist and bandleader with a musical career stretching over 50 years. In the sixties he worked as studio-musician in Paris, with Claude Bolling and others.  In then moved to Germany and took part in various experimental Kraut bands and projects (Dzyan, Drum Circus - with Joel Vandroogenbroeck) .  He joined the Albert Mangelsdorff Quintet in 1972. In 1977 he went out on his own with his project, the Family of Percussion, a percussion-only quartet, along with Trilok Gurtu, Doug Hammond and Tom Nicholas.

Peter Giger

A1 Cafe Society Memories Written By – H. Chaix 2:20
A2 Black Sweet And Tall (Voc.) Written By – M. Klein 2:53
A3 Beatin' The Boogie Written By – H. Chaix 2:12
A4 Blue Valves Written By – O. Klein 2:58
A5 Two Timing Girls (Voc.) Written By – M. Klein 2:55
A6 Lazy Foot Written By – O. Klein 2:26
A7 Midnight Written By – M. Klein 1:48

B1 Story Telling Man (Voc.) Written By – M. Klein 3:42
B2 Boogie For Everybody Written By – H. Chaix 2:36
B3 Louisiana Sunset Written By – H. Chaix 2:08
B4 This Little Lamp Of Mine (Voc.) Written By – Trad. / M. Klein 2:02
B5 Red Head Blues Written By – O. Klein 2:47
B6 O.K., A Blues Written By – O. Klein 2:43
B7 Who's Groove (Voc.) Written By – M. Klein 3:11

Made in Germany by Miller International Schallplatten G. M. B. H.

14 tracks, quite generous for a discount label!  And all the tracks but one are originals.  
Now, don’t tell me it wasn’t a well spent Euro !

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Sunday, January 13, 2013


EP VERSAILLES  90 M 374 (France, 1963).

I have found records in some strange and unexpected locations.  This EP was found in the 80s in Moroni, capital of the Indian Ocean archipelago of the Comoros.  It had a stamp of “Radio France - Comores”, discarded by the radio station after independence probably.  The record was dirty but in fairly audible conditions.  Certainly in better condition than the Albert Ayler ESP LP I had seen used as a table-math!

Enjoyable Northern Soul with some funky organ solos (courtesy of Georges Arvanitas).

Tony Middleton was born June 26, 1934. Born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, he moved to New York withe his mother in the mid-1950s. Although he participated in various sports through the years (including amateur boxing in his late 20s), he was always involved in music as well. In 1952 he became the lead singer of the 5 Willows (who would later be billed simply as the Willows); in 1956 they had a hit record, "Church Bells May Ring". He left the group for a solo career in 1957. After recording for several years without chart success, he moved to Paris in 1962, where he acquired a large following. 

Middleton cut his first French session with Michel Legrand, who wrote the score for Joseph Losey’s movie ‘Eva’ which starred Jeanne Moreau and Stanley Baker. Tony’s contribution was the glorious vocal on ‘Adam & Eve’ that was featured in the movie and was issued on a Phillips EP in Europe and the UK.

While in Paris, Tony shortened his surname to Milton and cut a number of well known songs like ‘I Can’t Stop Loving You’ and ‘Comin’ Home Baby’, under the direction of US guitarist Mickey Baker that were only issued in France. Of these recordings Tony later said “Yeah, they wanted a Ray Charles kinda thing so that’s what I tried to give ‘em”.

Middleton returned to New York and recorded for several more labels over the next decade, including A&M, Columbia, Scepter, MGM and ABC/Paramount, for whom he cut the powerful "You Spoiled My Reputation" in 1965. He is featured singing lead on several records by Burt Bacharach, including "My Little Red Book" (1965) and " I Come To You" (1973, duet with Cissy Houston). He also sang on recordings by other artists including Smokey Robinson, Della Reese and Nell Carter. Later he returned to the Willows and toured with them for a decade on the oldies circuit. Although Tony Middleton did not have major solo success, he has something of a cult following on the Rare/Northern Soul scene via several excellent dancers. Paris Blues was recorded for Bell (1776, Broadway, New York) subsidiary record label, Mala in 1966. This autobiographical number concerned Tony's down-and-out stay in the French capital in the early 60's. Enormously popular in 1976, 'Paris Blues" still commands a high price today for this big city style production by Claus Ogerman, particularly on original blue issue copy.


Details of the session (source

Recorded at Studio CHARCOT , Paris on 23rd January 1963.

Arranged and produced by Mickey Baker.

Musicians: Charles Hernandez (flute), Robert Jeannoutot (oboe), Jo Hrasko (alto sax),  Pierre Gossez (tenor sax), William Boucaya (baryton sax), Georges Arvanitas (org/pn), unknown (gtr), Rene Duchaussoir (bass gtr), Michel Gaudry (bass), Willie Lewis, Chrisitan Garros (drums) + 4 female voices (Fans of French Jazz will easily spot some famous jazzmen in this list!)

Georges Arvanitas
Trivia :
Tony Milton appears as himself in the French film Nous irons à Deauville ( Francis Rigaud – 1962)

UPDATED LINK - 19/07/2017

Friday, January 11, 2013


PHILIPS 423 192 BE (EP) – Germany, 1956

A rare EP by a bunch of forgotten musicians, ripped, cleaned and contributed by Onxidlib.

I could not find much info on these musicians.   
For those who read German, there is a bio of George Maycock on the german version of Wikipedia (here).  I also recommend reading this interesting article.
I found some info on the Crownpropeller blog also. 
These last two blogs are also the source for the pictures posted here. I hope they won't mind me using their pictures. 

George Maycock (1917–1979) and drummer Owen ”Big Fletchit” Campbell (1916–1983) both came from Panama.  In the sixties George Maycock would be gathering some local fame in Düsseldorf where Frank “Boogie”Sergent and Owen “Big Fletchit “Campbell where among the members of his quintet.  (source: http://crownpropeller.wordpress)

The saxophonist Sammy Walker was Jamaican and had played with Dizzy Reece, Mike McKenzie Quintet  and Cab Kaye a.o.

No info on bassplayer George Gillespie but I assume he was West Indian also.

n.b. Maycock and Fletchit were both Panamean but one has to remember that there was  (is) a large English-speaking community in Panama consisting mostly of descendants of the West-indian workers who took part in the construction of the canal and settled there.  They came not only from Jamaica but from all over the Caribbean).

George Maycock, piano, vocals
Frank "Boogie Sergeant" Segrants, trumpet
Sammy Walker, tenor saxophone
George Gillespie, bass
Owen "Big Fletchit" Campbell, drums

The George Maycock- Quintett in  the "Oase" in Düsseldorf 1963   left to right:          Big Fletschid -drums    Georg Gillespie - contrabass     Boogie Sergeant - Trumpet        George Maycock - Piano               Wilton Gaynair -Tenor-Saxophone (source:

Big Fletchid,  Drummer, composer & singer, with  Boogie Sergeant, - "Oase" in Düsseldorf 1963
source: idem

Big Fletchit Campbell at the Odeon, Basel, august 3 1950. Photo by Hans Bertolf.
Side A:
1. Lonely Man Blues  3:33
2. Maycock's Bop  3:19

Side B:
1. That's Right - What's Wrong ?  3:28
2. Walkin' Sam  3:18

Recorded in Hamburg, Germany on March 14, 1956.

Note: Soundtrack to the Boyadjieff-Film "Jazz-Rhythmus der Zeit" (1957).
It was a short documentary directed by Georg Thieß.  

PHILIPS 423 192 BE (EP)

Thursday, January 10, 2013


( LP JAZZTONE J-1259, AUSTRIA, 1962 )

From the vault of Paul D., a very rare LP documenting some fairly advanced Austrian  jazz played in the early 60s by an “Austrian All Stars Band”.  The recording features two different group settings:

Side A (1-4) Friedrich Gulda (bs, fl) Fatty George (cl) Dick Merphy (tp) Hans Koller, Hans Solomon (ts) Erich Kleinschster (tb) Robert Palitzer (tuba) Hans Rettenbacher (b) Vikter Plasil (ds) 
Side B (5-8) Hans Koller (ts) Friedrich Gulda (p)  Hans Rettenbacher (b) Vikter Plasil (ds)

Side A – pianoless as Gulda plays baritone – is the most interesting – and advanced.  It recalls the spirit of some US “Jazz Workshops” (Mingus a.o.)

Side B is in quartet, a showcase for both Hans Koller and Gulda’s display of virtuosity (Cherokke a.o.).

All in all a very satisfying album. 

I do not think it has been re-issued (or perhaps under a different name?).  Does anyone know of a re-issue?
Shame if it hasn't, this music deserves to be heard.

A1 The Horn And I
A2 My Funny Valentine
A3 Sto-Vie-Lon
A4 Blue Most
B1 The Opener
B2 East Of The Sun
B3 Margaret Rose
B4 Cherokee

Baritone Saxophone, flute – Friedrich Gulda
Trumpet – Dick Murphy
Trombone – Erich Kleinschuster
Tuba – Robert Politzer 
Tenor Saxophone – Hans Koller, Hans Salomon
Clarinet – Fatty George
Bass – Hans Rettenbacher
Drums – Viktor Plasil

Jazztone CH pressing (manufactured in Switzerland by Turicaphon “Tu” ca. 1962, European original issue).

Beautifully ripped and restored by Paul D.

Friday, January 4, 2013


Hold Records (Private Label), Boston -1980.

Found this album –apparently a rather rare private pressing – while cratedigging in Brussels last week. And what a find it was: an obscure and strange modern big band by a group of mostly forgotten Berklee students / graduates.

No information whatsoever on the Net.  The only relevant info I managed to find was, sadly, an obituary for Steve Bauer.

It was Bauer’s sole album.  An Internet research confirmed that most of the participating musicians took teaching (at Berklee) or have faded into (semi)-obscurity.  How strange is destiny!

This record is weird, really: the 1’40” version of This Thing Called Love ranges among the most bizarre versions of this theme.
Spring is Here received a strange treatment also.

There is an haunting quality, difficult to define, in some tracks, e.g. the title track “Living Dreams” by guitar player Ken Taft (who’s now a very respected academic at Berklee).  
There is a sprinkling of electronic keyboards but don’t worry it ain’t no smooth jazz. 

The Last Straw starts as a fairly dissonant blues fanfare.  No wonder it had to be issued as a private pressing, it did not fit into any known mould.

On the whole it doesn’t sound like anything else.  One may hear some shades of Gil Evans, and some of the occasional pomposity of Kenton but it’s definitely Bauer, whatever that may mean.  I would label it Garage Big Band as it sounds as if it were recorded in someone’s garage.

With the benefit of hindsight, the sleeve notes appear completely off the mark.

All in all this is an auspicious recording debut for a musician whom I’m sure will be around the jazz scene for many years to come” 

How ironic as it was to be Bauer’s sole recording.

Steve Bauer (c. 1979)
First time in the blogworld I think?


Promotional flexi-disk, 45 rpm, 7",one sided,
Belgium, early 60s

This one is for fun. It's also the first time I post a Flexi-disk.  Ripped and submitted by JC from a rare original.

Promotional flexi released by SECA Petrol company. 
Instrumental Twist with singers only chanting the word "SECA".

Pressed by Sonopress.

Seca, l'essence en baisse qui monte! 

And here is a photo of this amusing artefact from a bygone era.

Note that it is a 45 rpm and not 33 1/3 rpm as stated in Discogs..

Jack SAY (real name Jacques YSAYE) hails from a well-respected musical family.     Grandson of the great violonist EUGENE YSAYE, Ex-SABAM's administrator. Ex-conductor of the TV Variety Orchestra (RTBF) under his pseudo Jack SAY    He also recorded some jazzy sides under the pseudo of Jack DIXIT (= "says" in latin).

No details on the session.

Thursday, January 3, 2013


(25 CM FIESTA IS 10.043 – BELGIUM, 1956)

Hard to get 10" E.P from the Belgian jazz-history, kindly provided to me by Sunbop! Many thanks for this wonderful Christmas present.

In 1956, a jam session with a select crowd of musicians and jazz critics was held in the Decca studios in Brussels. The musicians were Jacques Pelzer on alto sax, Herman Sandy on trumpet, Jean Fanis on piano, Jean Warland on bass and Jo De Muynck on drums. They recorded seven tracks that would end up on this 10” called ‘Jazz For Moderns’. 
Belgian jazz history, captured on a beautiful 10” with modernist art work. 
Sunbop also sent it to Peer who posted it on his excellent Dutch Jazz blog (a private blog). 

There is a good biography of Herman Sandy on the very informative Lundis d'Hortense website..

Herman SANDY bought his first vinyl record, Georgia On My Mind, by Nat Gonella, in 1935. He then began studying trumpet and classical music, but was more interested in listening to Buck Clayton, Louis Armstrong and all the great American jazz musicians on the radio.
He toured in Germany after the Liberation, then returned to perform in Brussels.
He played and recorded with the bands of Bill Alexander, Septette Van Bemst, Charlie Calmeyn, Jack Sels, Jacques Pelzer, etc...

While playing in Leo Souris', David Bee's and Fud Candrix's historical Belgian orchestras, he went to perform with Toots Thielemans, Sadi and Jacques Pelzer at the Nice Jazz Festival in 1948.
He played with the band of Léo Souris a the Comblain-la-Tour jazz festival.
He spent six years in the Henry Segers TV orchestra, and 17 years with the great Flemish Francis Bay TV orchestra (later Freddy Sunder's orchestra).
In 1955, he records with the Jacques Pelzer Modern Jazz Sextet, with Jean Fanis (p), René Thomas (gt), Paul Dubois (b) and Rudy Frankel (drs).

In 1957 at a Miles Davis concert held at the Brussels Theatre Patria, Miles stopped Herman after finishing his set (his band opened for Miles Davis) and asked "Was that you playing 'You and the Night and the Music' ? It was damned good!"

He appears on the legendary LP "Jazz in Little Belgium" (1958, on Decca records 123.259) in the company of Willy Albimoor (p), Constant Letellier (ts), Roger Asselberghs (bar sax), Paul Dubois (b) and Johnny Peret (drs).

Herman Sandy & Toots Thielemans
In the nineties and around 2000 he plays with "Jazzfun" (Alex Scorier, Roger Asselberghs, Robert Pernet), and with Paul Dubois'.

Herman SANDY also led several bands, such as Herman Sandy’s Jazz Gang, Five is a crowd, with Vincent Mardens (saxophone), José Bedeur (bass), Jean Haurez (piano), José Wampach.He also played with the Retro Jazz Orchestra.

Album Info & Personnel:

Alto Saxophone – Jacques Pelzer
Bass – Jean Warland
Drums – Jo De Muynck
Piano – Jean Fanis
Trumpet – Herman Sandy


A1 Confirmation  
A2 Shank's Prank  
A3 Wailing Wall  
A4 Saul  
B1 Salute The Band Box  
B2 These Foolish Things  
B3 You And The Night And The Music


BRUSSELS - cratedigging capital of Europe

I was back in Brussels for the end of the year celebrations and managed to do a bit of cratedigging in my favorite collectors / second-hand books and records stores, all located in  the center of town: the vicinity of the Beurs/ La Bourse (Collectors), rue de Midi (Hors Serie), Bld Lemonnier (Pele Mele and a few others).  Found quite a few interesting LPs at affordable prices. I'll try to post some of them on the blog in the coming weeks.
Pele Mele on Chaussée de Waterloo (Ixelles - Bascule) is also worth a visit.