Founded in 1952, the Flamingo in Wardour Street played host to both the cream of visiting US jazz musicians and also the emerging British talent. It is the latter on which Ember Jazz Originals will focus primarily. During the Fifties, Flamingo founder Jeffrey Kruger built up his interests in music publishing and also facilitated recordings of some of his favourite artists, initially placing them with established outlets including the Tempo label. Then in 1960, the first British jazz releases appeared on his own Ember label, both reissues of material previously placed elsewhere, and releases of entirely new repertoire.
The London Jazz Quartet album was recorded in May 1959 and first released on Tempo. A year later it was reissued on Ember with new artwork, incorporating the striking “swirl” graphic, which would be a feature of many Ember jazz sleeves. The project leader, drummer Tony Crombie, had previously been associated with big bands, so this quartet recording was quite a departure for him, and one that saw him collaborating with eminent British musicians Tubby Hayes, Alan Branscome and Jack Fallon. It’s a testament to the quartet’s proficiency and agility that, while Fallon sticks to bass throughout, the rest cover ten instruments between them. Crombie contributes the majority of the atmospheric tunes, which also include compositions by Tony Kinsey, Alan Clare and Bill Le Sage.
This reissue, mastered from stereo tapes, is housed in the original Ember sleeve, while the booklet reproduces the original Ember sleeve notes and labels, plus the sleeve to the earlier Tempo release.
- Copper On The Beat (London Jazz Quartet)
- Slick Riff (London Jazz Quartet)
- Sadie’s Song (London Jazz Quartet)
- The Toff (London Jazz Quartet)
- Wait And See (London Jazz Quartet)
- Lakeland (London Jazz Quartet)
- Big Ben Bounce (London Jazz Quartet)
- London Lament (London Jazz Quartet)
- Cheekie Chappie (London Jazz Quartet)
- The Baron’s Blues (London Jazz Quartet)
- Fishin’ The Blues (London Jazz Quartet)
- Mirage (London Jazz Quartet)
- Autumn In Cuba (London Jazz Quartet)
- Let Nature Take Its Course (London Jazz Quartet)