The Best CD I ever bought!


22/11/18 -

I have to say, I personally am very pleased to see Jim Swinnerton has Dave Donohoe on board at his next jazz event with the Jazzaholics. As far as I am concerned, Dave has been hidden away too long this last few years in his Castle Douglas residence. Not only is Dave a fine trombone player and a real nice man, his CD, with guest Lucian Barbarin, in my view, is the best I have ever purchased by any British band. I play it often. I suggest he brings some along with him on Thursday November 6th. That's if he has any left that is ! I foresee a really big turnout at this one. -

Norman Gibson.

If you cannot see the player above, click below to download
Just a Closer Walk With Thee from the CD,  "West End Blues"

26/11/18 -

Re Norman Gibson's comment (22/11) - I bow to no person in my admiration for Dave Donohoe but I'm not sure I can agree about the CD, will need to play it as I haven't for some time! Of course the devil is in the detail, I don't know how many CD's Norman Gibson has purchased? My initial reaction was to put forward Barry Martyn's LP with Sammy Rimington, on the Swift Label but that was an LP not a CD. -

Fraser McCombe

27/11/18 -

In answer to Fraser's letter. My preferred liking for DD's CD was compared to others by bands resident in this country. As Barry Martyn has spent most of his playing life in NOLA and Los Angeles, I wouldn't have included him without a regular UK band. Same goes for Whammy Sammy, some of whose earlier CDs I have, with perhaps the best version of Lewis's 'Burgundy Street'. Although I do feel new kid on the block Ewan Bleach could better it. Just YouTube Ewan's 'If You See My Mother' to get my drift. As for how many recordings I have, the answer is 'too many', with most now on my external hard drive. A 'Fred Cull' is perhaps on the horizon ! By the way, in 1967, when the Barry Martyn Swift LP recording was made, I had moved on to Rocking and Rolling !

Norman Gibson

27/11/18 -

Re Fraser McCombe's comment (26/11) about Norman Gibson's comment (22/11): Norman is absolutely correct: Fraser cannot possibly disagree with Norman's opinion that it IS the best British band CD HE has bought. Can't disagree with that. We all have our own opinions as to which is the best CD we have bought and nobody can argue against that! -

Jon Critchley

28/11/18 -

Jon Critchley is, of course correct, it is impossible to argue with Norman's choice, simply because it is HIS choice.

I do disagree with his decision to exclude Barry Martyn from consideration though, Barry didn't move to Los Angeles until November 1972 and up until then had a regular British band. I proposed the Swift LP as I know that Barry regarded it highly.

I was idling the day away thinking what CD I really thought was the best and I think I have decided it was BCD377 JOHN HANDY WITH BARRY MARTYN'S BAND or perhaps BCD38 Barry Martyn PLAYS SAM MORGAN & ARMAND PIRON.

Other CD's for consideration (apart from a raft of Martyn ones) might be George Lewis with Ken Colyer, Wendell Brunious with Donohoe, Chris Barber with Martyn, Alton Purnell with John Defferary, KTV with New Iberia etc etc.

Hopefully your readers will give us their choices.

Fraser McCombe


Isn't it just amazing how a simple statement can get expanded, and taken wildly out of context, in such a short space of time. Let's go back to my original letter to News Page.

1/ As I am very pleased that Garstang Jazz Club is proving a success. I showed pleasure in Dave Donohoe being there on Thursday next week.

2/ I obviously haven't purchased, or even heard, every CD by all British bands. I just mentioned Dave's CD as it was my favourite of those I did buy.

3/ I have no Barry Martyn CDs. I would not wish to offend Barry, I was buying R & R records when he had his band in the UK. I will ask my Alexa to find me some tracks on Spotify.

4/ Now a raft of 'off shore' artist/band CDs have entered the conflict !!! I have another British CD , which is a pride of my collection, but as it was a privately produced disc, never released, by the Rae Brothers, and given to me by Davy, it would not have been eligible.

5/ Same applies to many CDs given to me by bands I put on stage while promoting jazz evenings over 14 years.

Thank you to Jon Critchley for seeing my original piece in it's simplicity, I will, of course, follow the 'Discussion Page' , someone might mention my favourite singer ( blues shouter actually ! ) of all time - 'Little' Jimmy Rushing ! I trust Fred that this debate helps give you some release from the recent sadness of reporting the passings of so many trusted servants of jazz.

Regards Norman Gibson


Dear Fred

I was hoping that some readers might have widened the debate and posted some new ideas of their best CD. Instead I seem to stand accused of some arcane trickery,

"4/  Now a raft of 'off shore' artist/band CDs have entered the conflict !!!

How is John Handy any more off shore than Lucien Barbarin?

Fraser McCombe

29/11/18 -

Not often that I get involved in discussions on the site, but I have to say that my favourite CD that I ever bought (from Smiley's in Kendal), has to be "The Guv'nor (1959-1961)  issued on a Philips CD.  Back in the late 1980's I picked it up thinking, 'I used to love this band and this kind of music', and my mind went back to the reel to reel tapes a work colleague lent me to listen to back in 1959. The ones I enjoyed most, amongst others, were Ken Colyer & Chris Barber. Fast forward 30 years and I was back in the fold, listening to traditional jazz because I went back to Smiley's later and bought more Ken Colyer recordings on Lake records which were just beginning to appear. People have differing views on Ken Colyer, but I can honestly say that without him, this page, and the site, wouldn't even be here!

Fred Burnett

30/11/18 -

Thanks Fred for the link to the Barry Martyn music on Spotify, I'll have a listen later, I hadn't got around to asking 'Alexa'. As for Fraser's latest comment, the British band was Dave Donohoe's, and yes, it was nice that Lucian was guesting on it. I hope that Fraser will get along to Jim's Garstang Jazz next Thursday when we can get acquainted. He doesn't need to wear a red carnation, he'll find me doing my volunteer job selling the all important raffle tickets.

Norman  Gibson

01/12/18 -

I wonder whether any of your contributors might suggest recordings by Tubby Hayes, Alex Welsh, Andy Sheppard or Loose Tubes? Would works originally recorded on vinyl be eligible? I could not possibly suggest “my best”, as often my favourite recording is the one that I’ve listened to most recently. If asked to offer my top ten I would surely include the CD “McJazz and Friends” by Sandy Brown and Al Fairweather - a wonderful advertisement for British jazz.

Harmoniously, John Muskett



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