MPS is Most Promising Sound

The last time I entered an independent music store and asked if they had anything by George Duke in stock, the response I received was a very long, dull, blank stare followed by: “George who?” The same goes for the many of the Zappa alumni from the early to mid-70s. It’s as though they’ve been completely forgotten by the present music store owners and their databases. One cannot completely fault them, though, as much of the music from that period is out-of-print, or has never been issued on CD.

Luckily, a small German label, Promising Music, has gained access to a range of more than 400 titles of the MPS catalogue (which is owned by Universal Classics & Jazz, a division of Universal Music GmbH, Berlin/Germany). They have reissued Don ‘Sugarcane’ Harris‘s classic Sugar Cane’s Got The Blues and George Duke’s Faces In Reflection, (both of which I have already gleefully ordered) with intentions of reissuing other Duke classics such as ‘I Love the Blues, She Heard My Cry’, ‘Feel’, and ‘Liberated Fantasies’.

All promising music releases are as close to the vinyl original as a CD format can be.

  • All discs have black vinyl design (with a groove!)
  • All CDs are packaged in downsize replicas of original LP, incl inner sleeves
  • All CDs feature an extra booklet with legible reprints of liner notes and all original informations, as well as additional retrospective comments
  • The subtle re-mastering is trying to get as close as possible to the warmth of the vinyl originals

Until the CDs arrive, in particular the Sugarcane reissue, I can satisfy myself listening to the five RealAudio excerpts of Don ‘Sugarcane’ Harris available for free download here.

18 Responses to “MPS is Most Promising Sound”

  1. EH says:

    Hm. What sounds good EQ’d and mastered for vinyl doesn’t necessarily sound all that hot on CD. Just a thought.

  2. Roland says:

    Didn´t George Duke play in FZ band for a while, urbangrafitto? That might be a hint! 😉

  3. bernard says:

    Good to learn about that, Urban.
    It’s basically about jazzrock. A genre which proved to be rather unfertile in the medium & long term, however some of it was – according to my humble taste- truly good music.
    And they have even taken Don Cherry ( pocket trumpet) on board. He was great, his daughter Nenah, who’s much more popular than her father ever was, will have to eat a lot of carrots if she would endeavor to reach the same musical level & honesty.

    My guess,is that , no : I know that quite a lot of similar small labels exist & persist in Europe.

  4. urbangraffito says:

    A quote from EH:

    Hm. What sounds good EQ’d and mastered for vinyl doesn’t necessarily sound all that hot on CD. Just a thought.

    Given the recent developments in CD compression since the format first emerged in the 80s, I’m hopeful that the remastering of these classic albums will do them justice (it is a German label after all, known for high quality). But you do have a point, EH. Given my rabid appetite for music Zappa related, though, I am probably the perfect person to order these discs first (and let everyone else know how well they sound, or not). This won’t stop me from seeking them out on vinyl as well.

    A quote from Roland:

    Didn´t George Duke play in FZ band for a while, urbangrafitto? That might be a hint! 😉

    I’ve long since grown tired of educating music store owners on Zappa alumni. If it’s not in their database, it doesn’t exist for them, simple as that. Hint or no hint. Sad but true.

  5. bernard says:

    By the way. did you notice the performance GKs schedule ?

    Both cruises & academies.

  6. bernard says:

    Now again the advantages of border crossing. And possible results. How FZ & the like enabled many people to think differently. In various areas.

    I’m an economist. What I like the most is the post autistic economic network.

  7. Roland says:

    It´s “MusikProduktion Schwarzwald” and it will be wonderful. I downloaded some of G. Duke´s albums through a link from here (KUR), before Zappa´s widow made this site change into it´s latest outfit. I know his solo work for a long time and really love “I love the blues, she heard my cry”. So I hope for you urban, that the money it worth it. 😉

  8. Jamez says:

    George Duke albums are well worth purchasing. I’ve got about 5 or 6 on vinyl.

  9. Hugh says: