The Octave Remastered Series — from Mack Avenue Music Group and Octave Music — continues with the release of That’s My Kick, available now. Featuring newly restored and expanded editions of classic Erroll Garner releases from the 1960s and 1970s, the series is a historic year-long, 12-album project that has received critical acclaim thus far. Utilizing the Plangent Process playback system for analog tape, these new transfers were remastered and, when needed, remixed by the GRAMMY® Award-winning Garner team. The subsequent series rollout features one album per month – That’s My Kick (available now), Up in Erroll’s Room, Feeling is Believing, Gemini, Magician, and Gershwin & Kern – through June 2020.
Produced by Peter Lockhart and Steve Rosenthal, the series continues Garner’s resurgence, following his return to the top of the Billboard Jazz chart with 2015’s GRAMMY® Award-nominated TheComplete Concert by the Sea, which was the first release from the Erroll Garner Jazz Project—a collective formed to curate Garner’s monumental archive. The Garner Project followed The Complete Concert by the Sea with the critically acclaimed, newly unearthed studio record Ready Take One in 2016, and the midnight concert album Nightconcert, which reached #1 on the iTunes and Amazon jazz charts upon its release in 2018.
The master tapes for all 12 albums in the series were transferred and restored using the Plangent playback system. Employing a wideband tape head, preamp and DSP package to capture and track the original recorder’s ultrasonic bias remnant, the Plangent Process removes the wow and flutter and FM/IM distortion from the recorded audio. This returns the listener to the original session experience, bringing to life Garner’s incomparable performances of his own compositions, as well as classic works from the jazz canon.
During his 40-year career, Garner published more than 200 compositions, the most famous of which, “Misty,” was ranked by ASCAP as the twelfth most popular song of the 20th century. Since 1954 no other song has been recorded by more jazz artists except Duke Ellington’s “Satin Doll.” In 1971, “Misty” was the centerpiece of jazz aficionado Clint Eastwood’s film Play Misty For Me. It has also been featured in numerous television shows (Cheers, Saturday Night Live, Magnum PI, The Muppet Show) and films (Oscar®nominated Silver Linings Playbook). A previously unreleased studio performance of “Misty” is included in the Octave Remastered Series, on the Gemini album.
The newly minted bonus tracks in the series are all Garner originals, eight of the twelve being previously unreleased compositions. “It’s truly shocking, and one of the greatest joys of this work, to find these fully realized tunes just sitting there on tape,” says Peter Lockhart, senior producer of the Octave Remastered Series.
One of the most prolific composers and performers in the history of jazz, as well as a courageous advocate for African-American empowerment and artistic freedom, Garner is a legend among jazz pianists. His unique approach melds bebop and swing influences into a unique, unrivaled mastery.
In addition to his brilliant keyboard artistry, Garner is also a notable figure in popular music history for the hard-won precedents he set for artistic freedom that still stand today. In 1959, because he had rights of approval on what was released, Garner successfully sued Columbia Records to remove an album they had released without his permission.
His victory was the first of its kind for any American artist in the music industry. Garner and his manager, Martha Glaser, subsequently founded and launched Octave Records, whose 12 releases make up the Octave Remastered Series.
Erroll Garner was a rare musician who was equally adored and respected by peers and devoted fans alike. He and his art were best summed up by the late trumpeter Clark Terry: “The man was complete. He could do it all.”