BOOK REViEW/ART/MUSiC: California Cool, Marsh & Callingham

This arrived this morning.

Having something of an orgy of Blue Note appreciation right now. And really loving it. This has put me in the mood to explore more jazz, esp of the ‘50s-through-‘70s era.

And not just the music, either. The whole shebang. Record cover design, clothes, and whatever else!

I’ve grouped the above black and white photos together in a way they’re not in the book. They’re all by William Claxton. Claxton also contributes an intro, and is the subject, in part, of ‘Clickin’ with Clax’, an intro by Leonard Feather.

Many of the covers features herein also feature is photography. Anyway, here are a few selections that I either love, or find intriguing.

I have quite a lot of the music represented here. But there’s also a lot – both in these selections – but even more so across the book as a whole, I haven’t heard. Exploring the visual side of these recordings can lead one into trying out the sounds.

This is a must for a framed bit of wall art!

David Stone Martin was a terrific artist. So much so that early Blue Note album covers are clearly indebted to his style.

Later it could be argued – altho’ Clax emphasises a different ‘West Coast’ tradition (both in terms of musical and visuals aesthetics) – the influence would flow the other way.

For me, another must have for our walls.

This final gallery of images, below, is to show that it wasn’t always super-cool and über hip. Altho’ maybe that was the feeling at the time? They are all – save one or two, perhaps? – good covers. Some fun, some more serious. But I’d argue this lot – esp’ Exploring The Future – haven’t aged as well as the stuff in the foregoing galleries.

And to finish? Another essential cover for the framed wall art category:

Love it!

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