On January 19, 1991, Janet Jackson’s hit single “Love Will Never Do (Without You)” reaches #1 on the Billboard singles chart. Making a guest appearance on trumpet is our main man, Herb Alpert. This would be Jackson’s fourth #1 hit, and was part of the Jimmy Jam/Terry Lewis produced album Rhythm Nation: 1814. Jam and Lewis would also produce Alpert’s album Keep Your Eye On Me for release in 1990.
Released in 1978, the Herb Alpert/Hugh Masekela album brought an entirely new sound to Alpert’s worldwide fans–a mix of funk, jazz and African stylings that was unlike anything he had ever recorded previously. One track that intrigued us was “Lobo,” penned by the great Brazilian composer Edu Lobo, whose tunes were featured on many A&M albums throughout the 60s and 70s. “Lobo” is originally the title track to Lobo’s 1976 album Limite das Aguas. Here it is!
Originals is a series of featured original or hit recordings which Herb Alpert would cover on his solo or Tijuana Brass albums. From the popular to the obscure, we’re digging to find you the best!
Today’s Original is a 1966 hit from the duo Peter & Gordon (Peter Asher and Gordon Waller), a British pop duo who were part of the British Invasion of the 60s, whose tune “A World Without Love” would top the charts internationally. Our featured Original, “Lady Godiva,” would peak at #6 US and sell over a million copies. Worldwide it became a #1 hit in Australia and Canada, and hit the Top 20 in other countries. In this case, the Tijuana Brass rendition (from the Sounds Like album) did not stray too far from the music hall style of the Peter & Gordon hit version.
In this new series, called Originals, we will take a quick look at the original or “hit” versions of songs which Herb Alpert would rearrange and include on his Tijuana Brass or solo albums. The fascinating part of looking at Alpert’s entire body of work is the widely diverse musical styles he would use as sources for his own recordings. From current pop hits to world music and even classical, you are bound to find a sample of these on his records.
We’re pleased to report that 26 Herb Alpert albums are available for download in high-resolution from both HDTracks and Acoustic Sounds. The Tidal streaming service also has CD-definition lossless FLAC downloads available as well from their store.
We have posted a simple guide to explain what high-resolution audio is, and for a future set of posts we will be explaining various means of playing these files, whether it be through a portable device, a network media player, or computer hardware and software.
While the meticulously mastered vinyl is probably the closest version to the studio tapes you’ll hear, the high-res digital comes awfully close. This is a chance to own studio-quality releases of these classic albums. If and when other online stores offer high-res downloads, we will let you know here first. For the very latest, you may want to check out our forum thread about the downloads.
We are preparing a set of “Official Reviews” of the entire Herb Alpert catalog in our forum. We will begin introducing these reviews over the coming weeks, starting with the brand-new-to-digital releases like Summertime, Coney Island and Main Event Live.
These will coincide with the rebuilding of our discography here on the tijuanabrass.com site. We have delayed our new discography due to the availability of the new remasters, so, we will have the latest information available as each new section launches. Check back often!
Good news for those of you who choose to stream your music. Today, the 25 new Herb Alpert remasters are available on the streaming services!
All of the newly remastered catalog has been spotted on Spotify, as well as Tidal‘s premium streaming service (which, we emphasize, is the only streaming service to offer these in uncompromised, lossless CD-quality audio). First-ever digital releases such as Summertime, You Smile–The Song Begins, Coney Island and Main Event Live (with Hugh Masekela) are all present and accounted for.
This is a great way to preview the new remasters while you save up your piggy bank funds to purchase these in the coming months! If you’ve had a chance to catch these on streaming, hop over to the forum and leave us a message!
Today is officially the street date for the remastered Herb Alpert titles to hit the download services.
Amazon is starting to list a handful, and iTunes has most of them listed today as well. HDTracks is also getting a trickle and so far, they appear to be the only source for the lossless versions of these albums. If you are unsure about the downloads being the new remasters, look for the Dec. 4, 2015 release date.
Notable inclusions include first-ever digital releases of the albums Summertime and Main Event Live.
We are currently revamping our new discography section, and will have links to all of these sources. Whether you prefer downloads, CDs, or vinyl, we will have all of the details for you! We will also be hosting “official reviews” of the new reissues, where we will all become reacquainted with our old favorites, while introducing new generations of listeners to these classic recordings.
Keep up with the latest: follow our forum thread for further, up to date release information as we receive it!
While the new Herb Alpert 180 gram vinyl reissues are easily found online at stores such as Amazon, we have found that the Barnes & Noble bookstore chain in the US is now stocking Herb’s titles on vinyl. Both Come Fly With Me and the Whipped Cream reissue are stocked at many B&N locations. Visit the B&N site to check stocks at your local stores, and reserve your copy for pickup. (Shipping is free on orders over $25, if you choose to order online instead.)
MusicDirect in the Chicagoland area also sells these, but you may want to call ahead to check stock. They can be ordered in very quickly if not in stock. They stock thousands of brand new 180 gram and audiophile pressings, along with audio hardware and record cleaning supplies.
There may be other brick and mortar retailers who carry these vinyl reissues. If you see any copies locally, please post in our forum thread. We would like to put together a listing of retailers that stock the vinyl versions of these records, for those who would rather pick one up in person rather than order one online.
Those of us wondering about the sound quality of the new Tijuana Brass reissues have some great news: the newly remastered Whipped Cream & Other Delights is a clear improvement over the Shout!Factory release from a decade ago. Listeners are greeted with a cleaner, more natural sound with better extension at the higher and lower ends of the frequency range.
So far, we have forum member feedback only for the CD version, but we will have a complete review of the vinyl version once our review copy finally arrives. We anticipate the whole series of reissues will be a winner. Stay tuned!
And in a fitting bit of trivia: the album’s lead-off track, “A Taste of Honey,” peaked at No. 7 on Billboard’s Hot 100 this week in 1965. 50 years later, the track is sounding better than ever!
Vinyl collectors have every reason to celebrate today: after decades of digital releases, two noteworthy Herb Alpert titles make their debut on vinyl today!
The groundbreaking classic Tijuana Brass album Whipped Cream & Other Delights has been reissued on 180 gram vinyl, mastered by Bernie Grundman, himself an alumni of A&M’s mastering studio.
In addition, Herb’s warmly received new album, Come Fly With Me, also sees its vinyl release today. Both are now available at your favorite vinyl outlet, and via Amazon; click the links above to check them out. Check back here soon, as the Tijuana Brass Christmas Album is due to be released in the coming weeks as well.
Once we receive our review copies, we will post our impressions here. Join our forum discussion.