The Cover Art Of Blue Note Records – The Collection
Graham Marsh and Glyn Callingham (C&B Publishing)
If there is one label whose sleeves defined the essence of cool and hip, Blue Note is it. You could spend a fortune on their records for the sleeves alone - or you could buy this book. Dean Rudland reviews.
In the mid 80s as a customer of Ray's Jazz Shop in London's Shaftsbury Avenue I often wondered if the tall chap who worked there with the grey crop and the blue oxford cloth button down shirt had once been a mod.
This turned out to be Glyn Callingham co-author of the seminal 'Cover Art Of Blue Note Records', which first appeared in the early 90s. The mod connection was confirmed as I sat in Bar Italia in Soho's Greek Street with Graham Marsh supping their fine cappuccino.
Graham was wearing Selvedge edge Levi 501's, burgundy Bass Weejun loafers without socks all topped with a white single-breasted rain Mac. We talked about various things, including some of the obsessional clothes behaviour that we both betrayed, and a hell of a long time on Levi's (Graham has recently co-authored a book on Denim). Of course we talked jazz and Blue Note and those cool cool sleeves that dressed the original albums
Blue Note had become bit of an obsession in my life. I had got into jazz by purchasing the mid 80s Blue Note vinyl re-issues from my local Our Price, a Kenny Burrell 45 from the Wimbledon Oxfam and my first Blue Note original John Patton's 'Got A Good Thing Going On' for £12 from a record fair in the crypt of a Brixton church.
The appearance of the first 'Cover Art Of Blue Note' was awesome, as in fact was the second. Full colour shots of hundreds of rare albums, carefully laid out and with some pertinent introductory pieces. And now they have been amalgamated into one in a 7 inch format.
I didn't think I should buy this at first, but it was lying around at a friends and I picked it up. Man I was back in a dream world! Firstly the introductory articles were back. Ruth Lion and Horace Silver on the label itself, a page by cover designer Reid Miles' design assistant Wayne Adams. Graham Marsh writes on the wonders of the Brooks Brothers button down shirt and the Bass Weejun loafer. No wonder my friend Leon had exhumed his Weejuns from the back of the wardrobe and was busting them out and about.
Then there are the covers. Pushed down to the smaller format they seem to jump out at you.
Never has a single record label been so consistently well dressed and this book shows exactly why. With the records getting harder to find, and a CD cover not being quite the ideal showcase for this work, this is an almost essential addition to any well turned out book shelf.
[Published 11 February 2003]
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|Liam||jan 23 2006 8:30AM|
|You can get the blues one in Fopp at the moment and Select-a-Disc have the blue note ones for £5 each.|
New York and California ones are harder to get.
|Eddie Piller||mar 7 2003 1:02PM|
|I love Dean Rudland!|
|Bongo Bill||mar 4 2003 1:10PM|
|Like er... Dig! Grip! Outsize! Ow!!!|
(Many Finger Clicks and Pops!) Shape, Form
and Dimensions head the ratio... dig! OW!!!
Palettes and earthtones vibing upmost! Feeeel-It-Baby! Image, imagining, Imagine OW!!!
(Many Finger Clicks and Pops and taps on rimshots!) Roasted!!! Mango coloured tinted tints spreading and dividing... perfection!
|Greg Boraman||mar 1 2003 10:07AM|
|Dean & Fred, I will assist you both in the heavy drinking of alcopops if you so wish! There is one of my email addresses above - I am at your complete disposal...oh PS BBC 6 Music - Hammond Time segment on Craig Charles Funk Show - it's me gabbling on about organ shite!!! Every week! Waste of the license fee if you ask me - tish|
|JTO||feb 26 2003 8:33PM|
|Lee - yeah, the new book is a mix of Vol.1 and Vol.2 but in a reduced size format (7" rather than 12").|
For earlier C20th covers check out:
For the Record
In the Groove: Vintage Record Graphics 1940-1960
|Fred, Uppers||feb 25 2003 2:29PM|
|Yeah - Greg, what is it? And when are we gonna meet up for another piss up? Why not meet all three of us and discuss fave labels...good to have you on here, Dean, by the way.|
|Dean Rudland||feb 25 2003 2:27PM|
|Greg - what's your favourite label then, mate?|
|lee sigerson||feb 20 2003 10:23AM|
|re;bluenote cover art.dean rutlands' article on the "new" cover art book which i highly recomend you buy,seems to be the best of vol1&vol2,both i already have.does this new book have any new material not found in the previous volumes?|
can i also recomend the west coast story also by graham marsh.
keep the faith..lee
|Greg Boraman||feb 12 2003 2:01PM|
|Blue Note Records best label in the world ever - the most hip thing since my grannies fur lined booties. Hmmmmm... The 3 Sounds ...hmmm ...Eric Dolphy hmmmm ..Bobby Hutcherson...just saying those names makes me damp....ooops|
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