Don McCaslin finally gets his time to shine. He’s been a full-time jazz musician for almost forty-five years and Tramp Records in Germany have decided to re-issue (?) McCaslin’s privately pressed tracks. It’s not often that I get to write about jazz and I guess that goes for Sly in general, and this is quite the pearl. You can still find McCaslin playing today at Severino’s Lounge in Aptos, California with his band The Amazing Jazz Geezers. McCaslin, prior to that, was a resident artist at a cafe in Santa Cruz but an earthquake in 1989 ruined it. After that, he and his band moved to the Warf House. After a bit of Googling, and a perusal through Discogs, it doesn’t appear that Don has any material released publicly; however, you’ll find his son has plenty. I can’t really add much, aside from saying that this will make you feel like you’re in the past outside soaking up the sun watching him play, like on that album cover. Listen to the album in full on the Bandcamp player below and see what you think of it. Cheers!


The Details

++$1000 AND MORE++ULTRA RARE++SOUGHT AFTER! The reason why labels work so hard to track down musicians to re-issue their privately released music is normally because the original records are very hard to find and very expensive. Demand within the 'collectors scene' is crucial. So what do we have here?

None of the adjectives mentioned above apply for the albums of Don McCaslin's Warmth. Born in Tacoma Washington in 1926, Don moved to the San Jose area during the first year of life. He took a few piano lessons as a child, but it was boogie woogie music that really inspired him. While attending San Jose State he formed a band which had piano, guitar, vibes, bass and drums. Following his graduation from college, Don played music on the weekends and worked as a high school English teacher for fifteen years. Then in 1970 he quit his teaching job and moved to Santa Cruz, making music his main pursuit. In 1971 he was invited to bring a jazz combo to play at a political rally. The event took place in the patio of the 19th century courthouse building, now called the Cooper House. The owner told Don that he was putting a sidewalk cafe there and invited him to play on opening day. Don ended up playing there until the 1989 earthquake ruined the beautiful old building.

Don and his fellow musicians were forced to move to the Warf House, a restaurant situated at the tip of the Capitola pier, and played there for 20 years. Today you can find Don's band The Amazing Jazz Geezers play at Severino's Lounge in Aptos, California. The Geezers are not necessarily "amazing" because of their musicianship. To become an "Amazing Jazz Geezer" one must merely be over 75 years of age, know over 1000 tunes written between 1935 and 1950, and still be able to play a full gig.

Regardless of rarity and demand, for Don McCaslin the time has come for representation and appreciation. Neither of Warmth original albums are considered to be sought after nor they sell for big money. Until now.

Key selling points:

- all songs appear on CD/digital for the very first-time
- the deluxe double-gatefold vinyl includes a full album download code
- the digital version contains 6 bonus tracks
released 22 June 2015

Price $17.74

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