Getting into jazz eight months ago was without a doubt one of the greatest choices I have ever made. It really opened the door to a world of new genres, ideas, and concepts musically that I had not even remotely entertained. After listening to Kind of Blue, Headhunters, and A Love Supreme, I was fortunate to find Coleman Hawkins. Truth be told, I do not really know how I stumbled upon this record. I learned about Hawkins in class alongside Lester Young, and I felt that I should check how some of his work. After listening to this album over ten times, I knew I had to get it on vinyl. I was not disappointed with this repress at all.
Turntable: Technics SL-1200 MK2 with stock rubber mat. Below the rubber mat is a 120 gram record to increase the height of the record on top of the mat.
Cartridge: Shure M97XE tracking at 1.85 grams with the stabilizer down during playback.
Preamp- ART DJ PREII
Mixer: Behringer Xenyx 802 Mixer
Headphones: Audio Technica ATH M50 S
Discogs Link To My Pressing:Coleman Hawkins Encounters Ben Webster
I took my turntable to Kevin at KAB USA, and he was able to help me fix a skipping issue that I was having as a result, I increased the tracking force of my cartridge and removed my audio interface from the chain. It was creating an unnecessary ground loop that I was able to circumvent through using my mixer.
The first moments of the record are magical because I can hear someone talking faintly in the background. I’ve listened to this album in FLAC and have heard it in a lossless medium, yet even in those versions, I didn’t hear the talking in the background no matter how hard I tried. The bass frequencies in this record are great, yet they are not overbearing in the slightest. The highs really cut through the mix throughout the entire album. “La Rosita”, my favorite track off of the album, swoons me even more on vinyl than it did digitally. The main melody is extremely warm sounding and it’s absolutely gorgeous. The album as a whole is quite warm, I will admit that, but that is apparent even in every studio recording that I have found. I found that the hi-hats were also a bit more apparent in this mix of the album.
Both Hawkins and Webster did a fantastic job on this album, and I find it quite relaxing. This is definitely one of those albums that you sit down with a nice glass of wine or whiskey and just enjoy for the smoothness and velvety tone.