Reissues are becoming an increasingly important part of the jazz record business. Well aware of that fact, veteran producer Joel Dorn, who has worked with everyone from Roberta Flack and Bette Midler to Charles Mingus and Eddie Harris, has created 32 Jazz, a new independent label dedicated to repackaging more than 600 jazz, blues, R&B and Latin masters recorded over the past 25 years.
According to Dorn, some of the releases will be reissue recordings by artists such as pianist Kenny Barron, saxophonists Sonny Stitt and Phil Woods, trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and numerous others. The 32 Jazz program also will feature compilations of material that has never been released, as well as other unreleased bonus tracks on many of the CDs. Best of all, the prices will be extremely competitive.
Two-CD boxed sets will have a retail list of $19.98, and a "Twofer" series, featuring two vinyl albums on a single CD, will retail at $12.98. 32 Jazz expects to release approximately 65 to 70 albums in 1997, with a total of between 350 and 400 titles over the next several years. The initial albums--including discs by Barron and a tribute to Thelonious Monk--will be in stores in April.
Speaking of reissues, Rhino Records has announced that it will release a two-CD Charlie Parker anthology, "Yardbird Suite: The Ultimate Charlie Parker Collection," in March. Although the legendary alto saxophonist's work is thoroughly documented on recordings, the Rhino set crosses label lines with 38 remastered tracks drawing from Parker's work on Guild, Savoy, Dial, Clef and Columbia. Among the classics in the package are "Salt Peanuts," "Hot House," "Ko," "Yardbird Suite," "Confirmation" and numerous others. Parker fans, however, will still have to go to the Verve reissues--which are not represented here--to chronicle substantial segments of Parker's finest playing.
Saxophone Conclave: Saxophonist Bruce Eskovitz has put together a two-day interactive workshop for jazz saxophonists. The event, which takes place Jan. 25 and 26 at the Crossroads School in Santa Monica, is open to players of all levels. The faculty includes a stellar lineup of jazz artists, including Eskovitz, Charles Lloyd, Plas Johnson, Brandon Fields, Pete Christlieb, Buddy Collette, Kim Richmond and others. Among the clinics scheduled are "Ear Training," "Bebop," "Doubling," "Practice Regimen" and "Marketing Yourself." Enrollment is limited to 100 participants, and the cost is $170, which includes admission to a Saturday night concert by clinicians and a Sunday night student-faculty jam session. (Separate admission to the concerts, which are open to the public, is $20 for each program.) Info: (310) 446-1931, or on the World Wide Web at www.promote.net/jazzsax
Signings: Saxophonist Don Braden, whose 1992 debut album, "The Time Is Now" (Criss Cross), was included in the New York Times "10 Best Albums of the Year" list, has signed with RCA Victor. Currently the musical supervisor of the television sitcom "Cosby," Braden hopes to have his first RCA recording issued in midyear.
Chick Corea has allied his Stretch Records with the independent jazz label Concord Records. The signing coincides with Concord's aggressive new approach to artist development. "We share a common philosophy," Concord President Glenn Barros says. "We mutually believe in finding innovative artists and allowing them to freely create." Corea and partner Ron Moss plan to release five or six new projects this year, including the pianist's next recording, "Remembering Bud Powell."
Around Town: David Zasloff's eccentric mix of jazz, klezmer, Japanese shakuhachi music and who knows what else turns up at St. Mark's in Venice on Saturday at 9 p.m. . . . Bobby Matos and his Afro Cuban Jazz Ensemble make a one-night appearance at Catalina Bar & Grill on Monday night, followed by the Milt Jackson Quartet, Tuesday through Jan. 26. . . . The remarkable Brazilian guitarist Badi Assad, who manages to play her instrument, add percussive sounds with her mouth and hands, and sing, almost all at the same time, makes her Los Angeles debut at the North Hollywood Baked Potato on Sunday. Assad also performs at the Amazon Club in Sherman Oaks on Tuesday and Genghis Cohen in the Fairfax district on Thursday, with an in-store appearance at Rhino Records on Monday. . . . Alto saxophonist Sonny Fortune returns to the Jazz Bakery on Thursday for a three-night run. . . .
Free Music: The Vinnie Golia Quintet appears tonight in a free jazz concert at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 5:30 p.m. Info: (213) 857-6522. . . . Composer-arranger Joe Harnell performs on Saturday afternoon in a free concert at Pedrini Music in Alhambra, 1:30 p.m. Info: (213) 283-1932.