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Resonance Records Transcends The Record Store Day Chase : NPR

Wes Montgomery’s Smokin’ in Seattle: Live at the Penthouse captures him in full ascendency, on tour in 1966 with pianist Wynton Kelly, bassist Ron McClure and drummer Jimmy Cobb.

Lee Tanner/Courtesy of Resonance Records


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Lee Tanner/Courtesy of Resonance Records

Wes Montgomery’s Smokin’ in Seattle: Live at the Penthouse captures him in full ascendency, on tour in 1966 with pianist Wynton Kelly, bassist Ron McClure and drummer Jimmy Cobb.

Lee Tanner/Courtesy of Resonance Records

Record Store Day, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, is a consumer ploy in the guise of a cultural event. Or, depending on your vantage, maybe it’s the other way around. Whatever the case, record stores across the country and around the world are happily (or gamely) bracing for impact: Record Store Day 2017 falls this Saturday, April 22, with a wave of exclusive releases, in-store appearances and other retail enticements.

Much of the advance publicity around this year’s event has revolved around rock royalty: there will be two limited-edition David Bowie releases, as well as a 7″ of two pre-Sgt. Pepper’s songs by The Beatles. There are also dozens of 7-inch and LP releases from across the style spectrum, from Miley Cyrus to Meredith Monk.

But Record Store Day has acquired a special sheen for fans of classic jazz, mainly through the efforts of one tenacious record producer, Zev Feldman. One of his Record Store Day titles this year is Thelonious Monk: Les liaisons dangereuses 1960, an exceptional film soundtrack by the great pianist and composer, a joint release of two European labels, Sam Records and Saga Jazz.

And as general manager of Resonance Records, a Los Angeles label that specializes in deluxe releases of noteworthy but previously unissued material, Feldman has shepherded three more discoveries to market: a 1966 club date by the Wynton Kelly Trio with guitarist Wes Montgomery; a 1968 concert album by pianist Bill Evans, in a trio with bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Jack DeJohnette; and a 3-LP set by bassist Jaco Pastorius, with his Word of Mouth Big Band. Each release is a gem, and for now they’re exclusively on vinyl for Record Store Day.

“I thought that for the 10th anniversary, this would be one hell of a way to remind people that Record Store Day was also designed for jazz fans,” Feldman said this week, between business meetings in New York. “This has become an event now that really speaks to our audience.”

The Bill Evans Trio in 1968.


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