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April 10 2014

On December 23, 1938, a German immigrant & jazz fan named Alfred Lion attended the celebrated Spirituals to Swing concert at Carnegie Hall. It was a life-changing evening for Lion who was awe-struck by two boogie pianists – Albert Ammons & Meade Lux Lewis. Two weeks later on January 6, 1939, Lion brought Ammons & Lewis into a recording studio in New York City and produced the very first session for Blue Note Records. Blue Note has since gone on to represent The Finest In Jazz, tracing the entire history of the music from Boogie Woogie, Hot Jazz and Swing, through Bebop, Hard Bop, Post Bop, Soul Jazz, Avant-Garde, and Fusion, and into Jazz’s numerous modern day incarnations. For Record Store Day on April 19 we’ll be reissuing those first sessions – Ammons’ “Boogie Woogie Stomp”/”Boogie Woogie Blues” & Lewis’ “Melancholy”/”Solitude” – as exclusive limited edition 12” vinyl in honor of Blue Note’s 75th Anniversary, right down to the original pink & black label (which was actually a printer’s error)! For more information please visit www.recordstoreday.com.

March 21 2014

Blue Note Records has signed acclaimed indie rock and soul outfit Vintage Trouble. The Los Angeles-based band will be entering the studio shortly to begin work on its Blue Note debut. Vintage Trouble will also be performing at numerous festivals in the coming months, including Bonnaroo.

March 18 2014

José James has announced a June 10 release date for his new album, While You Were Sleeping, his fifth studio album and his second album for Blue Note Records. While You Were Sleeping is the follow-up to his widely acclaimed R&B and jazz steeped No Beginning No End, and signals a new creative direction for the versatile singer-songwriter. That shift is heard in the rock edge of tracks like “EveryLittleThing” and “Anywhere U Go” and is evidenced in a change in José’s band which adds guitarist Brad Allen Williams to the stellar line-up of keyboardist Kris Bowers, bassist Solomon Dorsey and drummer Richard Spaven. The influence of Jimi Hendrix can be heard throughout the album as much as R&B forefathers like Al Green. Special guests on While You Were Sleeping include vocalist Becca Stevens who duets with James on her song “Dragon,” as well as trumpeter Takuya Kuroda who is featured on the cover of Green’s classic “Simply Beautiful” that closes the album.

March 17 2014

NEA Jazz Master Bobby Hutcherson makes his triumphant return to Blue Note Records, where the virtuoso vibraphonist started his career in the early ‘60s, with the superb album, Enjoy the View. The vibrant session is produced by Blue Note president Don Was and will be released on June 24 as a significant event in the label’s 75th anniversary yearlong celebration. Recorded by an all-star collective of saxophonist David Sanborn and organist Joey DeFrancesco, and featuring drummer Billy Hart, the Hutcherson-sparked group plays seven original compositions that range from cool, gentle grooves to fiery outbursts of exuberance. At heart, the album soars thanks to the divine musical alchemy among the performers—an assemblage of veteran artists who play at the top of their game.