Monday, 21 July 2008

Art Farmer - Homecoming / Gentle Eyes + discog


68 MB
256+ VBR LAME mp3
Vinyl rip & scans from Mainstream MRL 332

Art Farmer - Flugel Horn
Jimmy Heath - Tenor & Soprano Sax, Flute
Cedar Walton - Piano
Sam Jones - Bass
Warren Smith - Percussion
James "Mtume" Forman - Congas
Billy Higgins - Drums

1 Homecoming
2 Cascavelo
3 Some Other Time
4 Blue Bossa
5 Here's That Rainy Day

Here's a post that's been on the back-burner for a bit. Since I was re-ripping the vinyl anyway, I used some of the extra time to flesh out the posts, merge them into one and do the dirty work of assembling all the currently available offerings of Art's material out there. Note that the links at the end of the post (18 LPs!) were all double-checked before posting and valid as of this date but there's no guarantee they'll stay that way. In fact, I had to remove two already since I started writing this post a week-and-a-half ago (OIR RIP). Don't bother ask me to update or remove dead links in the future since you'll be wasting your time but feel free to place any new info in a comment.

AMG Review by Ken Dryden

This Art Farmer studio session from 1971 has a slight contemporary flavor to it, due to the addition of conga player James "Mtume" Forman and percussionist Warren Smith Jr. to a core group of collaborators including Jimmy Heath, Cedar Walton, Sam Jones, and Billy Higgins. Unfortunately, the additional percussionists are too prominent in the mix, greatly distracting from the driving arrangements of Farmer's "Homecoming" and Kenny Dorham's "Blue Bossa" as well as a peppy bossa nova, "Cascavelo." Far better are the quintet tracks, including the laid-back and mellow interpretation of Leonard Bernstein's ballad "Some Other Time," featuring the leader's matchless flügelhorn and Heath's soprano sax, and an upbeat chart of "Here's That Rainy Day." Another annoying problem is the seemingly out of tune piano, though Walton makes the best of a bad instrument. Not an essential album in the vast Farmer discography, but worth acquiring if found at a reasonable price, though it will be difficult.

I find the comment about the out-of-tune piano interesting because if you check the gatefold from Blue Mitchell's Blue's Blues that I recently posted, you can see that Joe Sample was playing a rental keyboard. Both sessions were from roughly the same time (within a year) and both were produced by Bob Shad, who was notoriously miserly with the moolah and ran as tight a production schedule as he could.

Here's a note regarding the 2006 CD reissue from Lone Hill Records that has a couple extra tracks and is still floating around out there (Amazon for $15):

As a bonus to this splendid album, which appears here on CD for the first time ever, we have added two rare Farmer items, which also make their CD debuts on this edition. Both were recorded on June 4, 1972, during the Heidelberger Jazztage Festival in Heidelburg, Germany. The first tune consists of the only known "alternate" version of Cascavelo" by Farmer outside of his studio. The second tune, "Let's Boom Chitty Boom", from the same concert, is backed by a large combination of brass and percussion, as well as a second bassist.

According to his discography at All About Jazz it was also reissued in 1990 as Here's That Rainy Day by Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab and again in 1991 when Tamara Shad opened up the back catalog and in 1998 by Columbia/Sony, both times with the original track listing. However, all are hard to find and you can occasionally find the vinyl for the same price or cheaper as well online.

Get Homecoming courtesy of Soundological HERE or HERE.


88 MB
256+ VBR LAME mp3
Vinyl rip & scans from Mainstream MRL 317

Art Farmer - Flugel Horn
Robert Demmer - Trumpet
Robert Politzer - Trumpet
Garney Hicks - Trombone
Hans Löw - Alto Flute
Hans Salomon - Alto Sax, Bass Clarinet, Arranger
Leszek Zadlo - Soprano & Tenor Sax
Fritz Pauer - Acoustic & Electric Piano
Julius Scheybal - Guitar
Richard Österreicher - Guitar
Rudolf Hansen - Bass
James B. Woode II - Bass
Erich Bachträgl - Drums
Jula Koch - Percussion
Hans Grötzer - Concertmasters
Toni Stricker - Concertmasters
Wladi Cermac - Violins
Bruno Mayr - Violins
Erich Koritschoner - Violins
Paul Fickl - Violins
Herbert Heide - Violins
Walter Topf - Violins
Kurt Plaschka - Violins
Wolfgang Reichert - Violins
Johann Fuchs - Violins
Gerhard Zatschek - Celli
Heinz Fussgänger - Celli
Dagmar Söthje - Celli
Bruno Schimann - Celli
Stephanie - Vocal
Karl Kowarik - Arranger
Peter Herbolzheimer - Arranger

1 A Time for Love
2 Didn't We
3 Soulsides
4 So Are You
5 Song of No
6 Gentle Rain
7 We've Only Just Begun
8 God Bless the Child
9 Gloomy Morning
10 Gentle Eyes
11 Some Other Time

No links for the string section since the internet says they never existed. I also have no clue who this Stephanie person is either and wading through hundreds of search results did nothing to illuminate her identity. In fact, there's not a lot of info on this session at all except for the fact "Soulsides" was used by Kool G Rap on a track called "For Da Brotherz" as well as being comped on the 2nd volume of the Dusty Fingers series. However, during this period he was pretty active with Herbolzheimer's RC&B, many players of which are present on this effort. Although "effort" may not be the best way to describe this album because it's the aural equivalent of Ambien. Perry Como would get Restless Leg Syndrome listening to this pap. However, there are enough fleeting moments to make it a good album for sampling if you're making beats but don't expect the rest of the LP to sound anywhere near "Soulsides." Also recommended for those natural health practicioners searching for drug-free painkillers, anaesthetics and tranquilizers!

AMG Review by Scott Yanow

Flugelhornist Art Farmer has recorded very few albums through the years that are not worth getting, but this sleepy affair with a European string section is unremittingly dull. Farmer sticks to ballads including "Didn't We," "We've Only Just Begun" and "God Bless the Child," and the arrangements for the 15 strings, five horns and rhythm section are quite boring. There are many rewarding Art Farmer dates currently available, so skip this misfire.

Here's a couple of excerpts from a bio by Scaruffi pertinent to this disc:

"After moving to Europe, where he recorded Gentle Eyes (1971) with an Austrian orchestra, Farmer explored his lyrical side via a quartet with Walton, the big band of Something You Got (July 1977) and several other combinations."

"Throughout his career, Farmer's problem was a chronic lack of good material...He was certainly important for popularizing the flugelhorn in jazz music."

Yup, pretty much sums up the reason Art never broke out. He tended to play crappy songs very well with an instrument that didn't really capture the popular imagination. If you want
Gentle Eyes, Soundological offers it to you HERE or HERE. In the meantime, here's some vintage vids featuring Art from roughly the same era:

"Wild Chick" with Peter Herbolzheimer R C and B in 1974

Art Farmer, Red Mitchell & Jan Schaffer in studio (1)

Art Farmer, Red Mitchell & Jan Schaffer in studio (2)

With Kenny Clarke/Francy Boland Big Band "Faces" in 1977 (1 of 4)

If you're interested in hearing more Art Farmer, here is a collection of other albums I could find available:

1953 Farmer's Market
1956 Plays The Arrangements & Compositions of Gigi Gryce & Quincy Jones

1958 Modern Art
1959 Brass Shout / The Aztec Suite
1960 Killer Joe
1960 Big City Sounds
1961 The Jazztet at Birdhouse (reg req'd)
1962 Here And Now
1962 Another Git Together
1964 Many Faces of Art Farmer
1964 To Sweden With Love
1965 Sing Me The Blues (reg req'd)
1966 Baroque Sketches with The Baroque Orchestra
1969 Live at Cirkus, Stockholm 1990 bootleg
From Vienna With Art
1970 Live In Europe
1975 To Duke With Love
1976 A Sleeping Bee
1976 Summer Knows
1977 Crawl Space
1977 Something You Got
1978 Big Blues with Jim Hall
1979 Yama with Joe Henderson
1981 Foolish Memories
1982 Mirage
1982 Warm Valley
1983 Maiden Voyage
1987 Azure with Fritz Pauer
1988 Blame It On My Youth
1989 Ph.D.
1990 Live at Yoshi's Jazz House bootleg
1997 The Windmills of Your Mind with European Jazz Trio
2004 Ballad of the Sad Young Man with European Jazz Trio
2004 The Complete Argo/Mercury Jazztet Recordings


Simon666 said...

great post!
Thanks for all your work, have linked you up at my blog.

cheeba said...

Thanks Simon, it's an honour to be included!

Gianni said...

grazie cheeba,
anche questo lp mi è piaciuto molto.
ringrazio anche per la possibilità di utilizzare sharebee.

cheeba said...


adam said...

sing me softly of the blues has some good material on it and a good band. i would check it out. and from vienna with art has a nice version of the jimmy heath tune "the gap sealer"

moha said...

I've just discovered Your Farmer's Treasury. I didn't have Homecoming and Gentle Eyes, so thank You very much!

cheeba said...

Enjoy moha!

lcbriza said...

Thanks Cheeba for your great post. The sound quality is perfect, and Art Farmer is a giant, of course.

Anonymous said...

Just posted the Art Farmer & Fritz Pauer duo session 'Azure' and linked to your post.
Add it to your Farmer discog if you like.

cheeba said...

Hi porco! Thanks for the Farmer link, I added it to the discog. I also added a link to your excellent blog in my blog roll.