Seeking to offer definitive audiophile grade versions of some of the most historic and best jazz records ever recorded, Verve Label Group and UMe’s new audiophile vinyl reissue series ‘Acoustic Sounds’ will launch July 31 with its inaugural releases – the sensational collaborations, Stan Getz and João Gilberto’s landmark Getz/Gilberto (1964) and the remarkable Louis Armstrong Meets Oscar Peterson (1959).
Utilizing the skills of the top mastering engineers and the unsurpassed production craft of Quality Record Pressings, all titles will be mastered from the original analogue tapes, pressed on 180-g vinyl and packaged by Stoughton Printing Co.in high-quality gatefold sleeves with tip-on jackets. The releases will be supervised by Chad Kassem, CEO of Acoustic Sounds, the world’s largest source for audiophile recordings.
The ‘Acoustic Sounds’ series will feature two releases a month highlighting a different storied label spanning Verve/UMe’s extraordinarily rich archive. To begin with, the series will largely focus on some of the most popular albums from the 50s and 60s.
The July releases will celebrate two of Verve’s most beloved albums, the aforementioned Getz/Gilberto and Louis Armstrong Meets Oscar Peterson, and will be followed in August by John Coltrane’s immortal Impulse! Records, A Love Supreme (1964) and Ballads (1963).
Two of Nina Simone’s legendary Philips albums I Put A Spell On You (1965) and Pastel Blues (1965) will come in September which will be succeeded in October by two from the EmArcy Records vault: Sarah Vaughan’s self-titled 1954 album, the vocal great’s sole collaboration with influential trumpeter Clifford Brown, who is also represented alongside pioneering drummer Max Roach on the hard bop classic, Study In Brown (1955).
November will spotlight Decca Records with Peggy Lee’s first album, Black Coffee (1956), and composer George Russell’s important New York, N.Y. (1959) performed by an all-star orchestra that includes Bill Evans, John Coltrane, Art Farmer and Milt Hinton, among others. All titles and exact release dates are listed below. Additional titles will be announced as the series progresses.
“We are excited to launch our Acoustic Sounds series,” said Bruce Resnikoff, President & CEO of UMe. “Verve and UMe have one of the richest jazz catalogs ever recorded and our goal is to give vinyl and jazz lovers the best possible versions of classic albums. The Acoustic Sounds series is designed to appeal to today’s most discriminating fans, looking for the very finest in both artistic content and audio quality.”
“We’re very honored to have Verve and UMe partnering with us to create what we believe will be the highest quality reissues of some of the world’s greatest jazz albums,” said Chad Kassem, CEO of Acoustic Sounds. “Each step in our production process – from title selection to mastering, pressing and packaging – is designed to meet the highest standards, and we want everyone who hears these albums to feel the love and hard work we put into everything we do. We’ve long had a great relationship with UMe, pressing classic titles at our Quality Record Pressings from many of their highest-profile artists. We look forward to strengthening that partnership even further with these reissues from Verve, home of the world’s largest jazz catalogue.”
Louis Armstrong Meets Oscar Peterson found Verve’s legendary “house pianist” encountering one of jazz’s most revered giants. A significant part of Peterson’s genius was his ability to be an exceptional pianist and leader, while also being a perfect accompanist when the circumstance demands… and in a situation like this, to be both. Armstrong is not only recognized as one of the most innovative, singular, fascinating and beloved artists of the 20th century, but also one of the most generous in the way he embraced and stimulated his collaborators.
Backed by the Oscar Peterson Trio – bassist Ray Brown and guitarist Herb Ellis, and augmented by frequent fourth member Louis Bellson on drums – these peerless heavyweights created an album that is utterly compelling. The musicians provided the setting for the jewel that is Pops, with Peterson perfectly embellishing every phrase Armstrong sings or plays. The focus here is primarily upon his totally personal and thoroughly captivating vocal style, with his occasional trumpet solos limited in all but one case to a single chorus. Essentially culled from the Great American Song Book – Cole Porter, the Gershwins and Harold Arlen among the songwriters – the pieces range from poignant ballads and blues to effusive easy-grooved swing.
Getz/Gilberto is an album which had a profound influence upon the face of jazz and American popular music. This 1964 collaboration between Stan Getz, one of the most popular and respected tenor saxophonists of the era, and the remarkable Brazilian guitarist João Gilberto, launched the bossa nova craze and the career of João’s wife Astrud Gilberto with the hugely popular and iconic hit song, ‘The Girl from Ipanema (Garota de Ipanema).’ Even more impactful, it introduced the famed Brazilian composer Antonio Carlos Jobim to the English-speaking musical world. In addition to playing piano on the album, Jobim also composed six of the eight compositions, including two of his most popular masterpieces, ‘Desafinado’ and ‘Corcovado,’ along with the aforementioned ‘Garota de Ipanema.’
While Getz had embraced the music of Brazil prior to this with two outstanding Verve albums – Jazz Samba and Big Band Bossa Nova – Getz/Gilberto, with multiple Grammy Awards and a permanent place on various Best Albums of All-time lists is the album that launched a revolution.
View the full Acoustic Sounds Audiophile series titles below.
Acoustic Sounds Audiophile Vinyl Reissue Series:
July 31 / Verve Records
Stan Getz and João Gilberto – Getz/Gilberto (1964)
Louis Armstrong and Oscar Peterson – Louis Armstrong Meets Oscar Peterson (1959)
August 28 / Impulse! Records
John Coltrane – Ballads (1963)
John Coltrane – A Love Supreme (1964)
September 25 / Philips Records
Nina Simone – I Put A Spell On You (1965)
Nina Simone – Pastel Blues (1965)
October 30 / EmArcy Records
Sarah Vaughan – Sarah Vaughan (with Clifford Brown) (1954)
Clifford Brown and Max Roach – Study In Brown (1955)
November 27 / Decca Records
Peggy Lee – Black Coffee (1956)
George Russell – New York, N.Y. (1959)