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  Music Reviews - Jazz Impressions Of Black Orpheus/Cast Your Fate to the Wind (SACD)

      Date posted: March 20, 2004

Cast your Fate to the Wind

Jazz Impressions Of Black Orpheus/
Cast Your Fate To The Wind
Vince Guaraldi Trio: Vince Guaraldi, piano;
Monte Budwig, bass; Colin Bailey, drums
Analogue Productions SACD/CD Stereo
CARJ-6089:SA (Fantasy 3337 LP)

      Ah, the memories of being a college DJ, playing those Ahmad Jamal and Vince Guaraldi seduction tunes, interlaced with a little folk music, Johnny Mathis, and so on. Cast Your Fate To The Wind was a huge hit on most charts in the pre-Beatles era, and the album that carried it was originally titled Jazz Impressions Of Black Orpheus, until the single hit the charts.

      An indication of how far out of nowhere this album came is that it was recorded in a studio at San Francisco’s NPR FM station, KQED, in 1962. They obviously had a good space and excellent microphones, as well as a very competent, but unheralded, recording engineer. The station, with its TV counterpart, has gone on to become a major NPR/PBS program producer, as well as a pioneer in HDTV production.

      Even in the new century, this album sounds great on SACD. I directly compared it to the MFSL LP reissue, and the SACD wins on sheer transparency in Doug Sax’s all-tube transfer from the 15 IPS analog masters at The Mastering Lab. A/D conversion was with Ed Meitner’s EMM Labs DSD converter.

     It’s too bad Concord didn’t go to KQED for some of their sessions, because the sound is amazingly clean and vibrant.

      Guaraldiļæ½s playing, with this terrific combo, really stands the test of time, with the bubbly rhythms of Alma-Ville also a standout, along with the atmospheric music from the film Black Orpheus. This disc is a must-own for anyone from my era.

     Andrew Marshall

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