Jazz Related Soundtracks

Jazz music community with review and forums

The jazz soundtrack genre at JMA is for artists who compose soundtracks with a strong jazz element. These artists may also work in other genres, but its their jazz soundtrack work that is of most interest to the jazz fan. Some good examples of jazz soundtrack composers are Quincey Jones, Henry Mancini and Isaac Hayes.

jazz related soundtracks top albums

Showing only albums and live's | Based on members ratings & JMA custom algorithm | 24 hours caching

CURTIS MAYFIELD Superfly Album Cover Superfly
CURTIS MAYFIELD
4.85 | 6 ratings
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THE SEATBELTS Cowboy Bebop Album Cover Cowboy Bebop
THE SEATBELTS
4.95 | 3 ratings
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JANKO NILOVIĆ Rythmes Contemporains (aka Giant) Album Cover Rythmes Contemporains (aka Giant)
JANKO NILOVIĆ
4.98 | 2 ratings
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ISAAC HAYES Shaft Album Cover Shaft
ISAAC HAYES
4.46 | 7 ratings
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THE ART ENSEMBLE OF CHICAGO Bande Sonore Originale Du Film Bande Sonore Originale Du Film "Les Stances À Sophie"
THE ART ENSEMBLE OF CHICAGO
4.46 | 7 ratings
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JOHN ZORN Film Works XIII : 2002 Volume Three - Invitation To A Suicide Album Cover Film Works XIII : 2002 Volume Three - Invitation To A Suicide
JOHN ZORN
4.75 | 2 ratings
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HERBIE HANCOCK Death Wish (OST) Album Cover Death Wish (OST)
HERBIE HANCOCK
4.26 | 8 ratings
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WILLIE COLÓN El Baquiné de Angelitos Negros Album Cover El Baquiné de Angelitos Negros
WILLIE COLÓN
4.50 | 2 ratings
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ARILD ANDERSEN Electra Album Cover Electra
ARILD ANDERSEN
4.50 | 2 ratings
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EARTH WIND & FIRE That's the Way of the World Album Cover That's the Way of the World
EARTH WIND & FIRE
4.24 | 6 ratings
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JOHN ZORN Spillane Album Cover Spillane
JOHN ZORN
4.20 | 5 ratings
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LALO SCHIFRIN Towering Toccata Album Cover Towering Toccata
LALO SCHIFRIN
4.25 | 2 ratings
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This list is in progress since the site is new. We invite all logged in members to use the "quick rating" widget (stars bellow album covers) or post full reviews to increase the weight of your rating in the global average value (see FAQ for more details). Enjoy JMA!

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Blue World
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JOHN COLTRANE
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The Other Side Of The Wind
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MICHEL LEGRAND
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jazz related soundtracks Music Reviews

PHILLIP JOHNSTON The Adventures of Prince Achmed

Album · 2018 · Jazz Related Soundtracks
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kev rowland
Johnston has long been pursuing his own brand of avant garde jazz, but this is the first time I have come across him outside of his band The Microscopic Septet (whose 2017 Cuneiform album ‘Been Up So Long’ is simply superb). A few years ago I was fortunate enough to attend a special showing of ‘Suspiria’ where Goblin performed the soundtrack live in front of the audience, and this album is a similar construct, in that it contains the music Johnston composed as a soundtrack for ‘The Adventures of Prince Achmed’, a 1926 silent silhouette animation that is a landmark in cinema history – the world’s first feature-length animated film. To breathe Reiniger’s silhouettes to life, Johnston composed a continuous score of 65 minutes of music to be performed live with the film by a quartet of soprano sax, trombone, and two keyboards, against a pre-recorded track of samples, loops and live drums. For this recording, the music is performed by Johnston (soprano saxophone) with Australian musicians James Greening (trombone), Alister Spence (organ, keyboards), Casey Golden (organ, keyboards), and Nic Cecire (drums), and broken by the composer into twelve individual tracks.

This is a complex album, one that needs close attention paid to it as the musicians embrace themes which may or may not be repeated, going off in tangents to the original, with trombone often playing a heavy bass part to contrast against the sax. The keyboards and drums are often in the background, with the brass taking centre stage. It is an album the definitely requires repeated listening, as the first time I felt there were certain passages and sections which were passing me by, all of which made far more sense the more time I allowed myself with the album. Well worth investigating, I just hope that Johnston will feel fit at some point to pop over the ditch from Australia and have some performances of this with the film here in New Zealand, as it would be well worth attending.

ROSE ROYCE Car Wash (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

Album · 1976 · Jazz Related Soundtracks
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js
Those who seek obscure funk jazz tracks and rare groove know that soundtracks from 70s African-American movies can sometimes be plentiful in exotic jazzy instrumentals. The movie “Car Wash” was a huge hit in the 70s, and is still popular to this day, but it seems much of its brilliant soundtrack has been overlooked. The main hits from the movie, including the title track, are all well known, but what a lot of people are missing is that this double album is loaded with excellent instrumentals. The main players here are the then brand new RnB group Rose Royce, famous Motown producer Norman Whitfield and guest guitarist Wah Wah Watson, who some may know from his work with Herbie Hancock. As the story goes, Whitfield was working with Royce on their new album when he got the call to do the soundtrack to a new movie that was bound to be big as it boasted the huge drawing power of both Richard Pryor and George Carlin. Whitfield decided the best thing to do was just take the work he had started with Royse and make that the soundtrack to the movie.

The handful of RnB pop tunes that Whitfield crafted for the album are all good, and they reflect his work with The Temptations, but the jazz and rare groove fans will want to check out the plentiful instrumentals. The hard charging funk of “Mid Day DJ Theme” and “Righteous Rhythm” are tops, and you can hear all of Wah Wah Watson’s signature guitar riffs, the same ones he used to build Herbie’s “Hang Up Your Hang Ups”. “Crying” is laid back space groove and “Sunrise” sounds like a modern nu jazz cut with its repeating minimal riffs. Really, everything on here is gold and all of it has that classic mid-70s funk sound that can’t be faked.

EARTH WIND & FIRE That's the Way of the World

Album · 1975 · Jazz Related Soundtracks
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js
Although as the 80s dragged on, they eventually became a talented, yet sometimes bland pop group, this was not how Earth Wind and Fire started. Many would be surprised to know that the roots of this group go back to Chicago’s avant-garde AACM, and their first album was the soundtrack to the outsider classic, “Sweet Sweetback’s Badass Song”, on which EW&F played furious psychedelic fusion in the style of Herbie’s Sextet. After this rather obscure beginning, founder Maurice White decided to keep the creativity intact, but also aim for some radio play too. With all this in mind, EW&F grew to be a powerhouse in the world of RnB, fusion, rock and pop during the 70s, and many would agree that they hit their first major peak with the 1975 studio masterpiece, “That’s the Way of the World”.

In the mid 70s, no other RnB or rock band carried as much pure talent as EW&F, their horn section could outplay many jazzers, their rhythm section could hold their own against WAR, Santanna or Weather Report, vocally they took arrangements to new heights in harmony and range, and finally, their compositions were modern, complex and way ahead of the field. Throughout the 70s, EW&F’s compositional approach was more influential on fusion artists than most other jazz artists. All through “That’s the Way”, EW&F tops driving syncopated African rhythms with floating abstract harmonies that recall Ellington and Debussy.

Almost every song on here is a classic, with only one sore thumb, the rather cliché ballad, “All About Love”. Modernist ballads with soaring harmonies were EW&F’s trademark, so its hard to understand how this less than stellar cut made the grade, but its all made up when it is followed by a short and attractively bizarre synth instrumental. For fans who already like this album, you need to check out the album “Gratitude”, on which the band plays these songs live and takes their mix of Ellington, Beatles, Stevie Wonder and Ohio Players, to new levels. As mentioned earlier, as the 80s dragged into the 90s and beyond, EW&F, much like their musical compadres Chicago and Genesis, became more wind and earth, and much less fire.

THE SEATBELTS Cowboy Bebop No Disc

Album · 1998 · Jazz Related Soundtracks
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dreadpirateroberts
While the first soundtrack to the TV series 'Cowboy Bebop' focuses mostly on hard bop, sizzling tempos and big band, the second OST 'No Disc' sees the Seatbelts perform across a wider range of genres and move away from mostly performing jazz.

There's still some big band, swing and even lounge in there for traditional jazz fans perhaps, but there's also forays into bluegrass, heavy metal and pop. This isn't a drawback, necessarily, but if you're looking for the kind of jazz found on the first OST you won't see much here on 'No Disc'.

Still, tracks like the beautiful 'Elm' and haunting 'Green Bird' are worth collecting and 'Gateway' does echo that bigger sound. 'Forever Broke' too has some great slide guitar. (Still, check it out if you're a fan of the series.)

THE SEATBELTS Cowboy Bebop

Album · 1998 · Jazz Related Soundtracks
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dreadpirateroberts
Hands down the best soundtrack to any animated series - but more importantly, what's it actually sound like?

Well, for my money 'progressive big band' is the perfect genre for this album. The pieces range from hard bop to Latin-influenced jazz to spacey sax ballads or bittersweet, sparsely accompanied pieces like 'Waltz for Zizi.'

Composer and pianist Yoko Kanno has brought together a sharp band in the Seatbelts and they hit hard with thunderous opener 'Tank!' - a charging blast of hard bop but with that Latin touch via the percussion bringing it something extra. A scorching alto solo from Masato Honda tops everything off too.

There's a good dose of stylistic variation on the album (though not as much as with their other releases) and it should keep fans of big band and hard bop interested from start to finish.

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Artists with Jazz Related Soundtracks release(s)

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