The Maynard Ferguson Discography: The 1960s

The dawning of the 1960s saw Ferguson securely ensconsed in New York with a tight working band and a modicum of work. However, as the musical winds changed over the 1960s, those financial opportunities began to dry up.

Following the conclusion of his Roulette contract, Ferguson recorded a pair of very strong albums in 1963 for the Cameo label. William Lee's bio of MF (pp 103) quotes a 2/25/1965 Down Beat magazine headline announcing that "Maynard Ferguson 'Gets Away From It All' - Breaks Up Band." Lee also states that MF "mapped a schedule of seven albums for Time-Mainstream records with various sized groups," although he only appears to have recorded three albums of original material.

Ferguson would leave the US in 1967 in search of spiritual direction, musical opportunity, and relief from tax problems with the IRS. After a pilgrimage to India, Ferguson freelanced around Europe, producing a smattering of recordings with different organizations on obscure labels.

In late 1968, Ferguson signed a contract with CBS Records that would later get picked up by Columbia in the US and lead to a series of commercially-successful crossover recordings in the next decade.

Maynard Ferguson
15 March 1960: New York, NY

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
16 March 1960: New York, NY

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Maynard Ferguson
22 March 1960: New York, NY

Personnel

Ed Sullivan Show, Season 12, Episode 46 (television)
14 August 1960 (air date, recorded in March?): New York, NY

www.tv.com

Maynard Ferguson
11 October 1960: New York, NY

First session for the album Let's Face the Music and Dance, a third (and, mercifully, final) collection of functional charts from the band's dance music book.

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
12 October 1960: New York, NY

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Maynard Ferguson
14 October 1960: New York, NY

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Maynard Ferguson
20 October 1960: New York, NY

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Chris Connor
5 December 1960: New York, NY

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Chris Connor
14 December 1960: New York, NY

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Maynard Ferguson
21 December 1960: New York, NY

Personnel

Sascha Burland
Sometime in 1961: New York, NY

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Chris Connor
January or June 1961: New York, NY

Sessons for the album. Harkins (1976, 19) is unclear on the exact dates. These may have been part of a flurry of 1961 sessions that Maynard rushed through to finish out his Roulette contract.

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
20 January 1961: New York, NY

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Chris Connor
23 January 1961: New York, NY

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Maynard Ferguson
June 1961: New York, NY

Tapes for this session are lost. Blue Birdland and Her Face were to appear on the unreleased Roulette EP RJB-9. He Can't Swing and Rock Me to Sleep are listed on the jacket of but are not actually on the disk. Uncertain personnel.

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
20 June 1961: New York, NY

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Maynard Ferguson
21 June 1961: New York, NY

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Maynard Ferguson
December 1961: New York, NY

This covers multiple sessions on uncertain dates in late 1961 and early 1962 that were used to hurredly fulfill the terms of the Roulette contract so the band could begin recording for the Cameo/Parkway label (Primack 1992, 12). Ferguson's final session for Roulette was in March 1962, although Roulette continued to release the material over the next few years under titles like Maynard '63 and Maynard '64.

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
Early 1962: New York, NY

More sessions on uncertain dates used to finish out the Roulette contract.

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Maynard Ferguson
March 1962: New York, NY

A final cluster of sessions on uncertain dates used to finish out MF's Roulette contract.

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Maynard Ferguson
27 March 1963: Fine Recording Studios, Queens, NY

First of two sessions for The New Sound of Maynard Ferguson. The date and location is from Wikipedia and is presumably from the liner notes.

www.preservationsound.com

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
28 March 1963: Fine Recording Studios, Queens, NY

Second of two sessions for The New Sound of Maynard Ferguson. The date and location is from Wikipedia and is presumably from the liner notes. The actual recording dates for the Naked City and Anthony and Cleopatra singles are uncertain. and Harkins (pp 29) places them in one of New Sound... sessions.

Personnel

Parade (CBC) (television)
Sometime in 1963: Toronto, Ontario, Canada?

Date assumed is 1963 because songs are from the 1963 album The New Sound of Maynard Ferguson released in April.

Maynard Ferguson
29 August 1963: Fine Recording Studios, Queens, NY

First of two sessions for the Come Blow Your Horn album. The date and location is from Wikipedia and is presumably from the liner notes.

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
4 September 1963: Fine Recording Studios, Queens, NY

Second of two sessions for the Come Blow Your Horn album.

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
September 1964: New York, NY

Sessions for MF's first album for Mainstream, Color Him Wild.

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Maynard Ferguson
Early 1965: New York, NY

Sessions for the Blues Roar album

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
1965: New York, NY

Sessions for the Maynard Ferguson Sextet album

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Maynard Ferguson
May 3 and 5, 1967: Bell Sound Studios, New York, NY

Sessions for the Ridin' High album, a one-off recording for the tiny, long-forgotten Enterprise label during the commercial nadir of jazz in the United States. This is a poorly-documented oddity in the MF catalog. Harkins (pp 30) gives the date as 1967 while Lee (pp 106) places it in 1966. The Wounded Bird CD release gives no date. Kurt Finchum got these dates from Dr. Tom Herb. MF audibly struggles with his chops throughout a collection that attempts to incorporate then-contemporary styles with little success. Willie Maiden's lovely arrangement of Alfie was salvaged in later live performances. A difficult recording to listen to, although it is proof that MF was mortal.

www.mftourdates.net

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
14 May 1967: Montreal, Quebec, Canada

First of two Radio Canada International broadcast from the Canadian Pavillion during Expo '67. Harkins (pp 31) dates this as 14 May while Lee (pp 109) dates this 19 May.

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
8 June 1967: Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Second of two Radio Canada International broadcasts from the Canadian Pavillion during Expo '67. Harkins (pp. 31) lists this as June 8 while Finchum lists it as June 9.

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Maynard Ferguson
December 1967: Baden-Baden, Germany

Harkins (pp 31) places these session(s) in late 1969, but Lee (pp 112) and Finchum place them in December 1967. The 1967 date makes more sense in the chronology of Ferguson's signing with CBS in November of 1968 and subsequent recording of the Ballad Style... album. Lee indicates that the album was not actually released until 1970, which may have led Harkins to assume a 1969 recording date.

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Maynard Ferguson and the Top Brass
April 24, 1968: BBC Radio 1 Jazz Club Broadcast, London, England

www.youtube.com

genome.ch.bbc.co.uk

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Gustav Brom
November 1968: Prague

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Maynard Ferguson
1969: Radio Broadcast, Playhouse Theatre, Manchester, England

Fairly good quality air check with no audience. Although the person who posted this on YouTube dates it from 1969, Finchum guesses it is late 1968 based on the personnel. MF redeems the problematic performances Ridin' High album with a couple of excellent renditions of charts from that album (Alfie, Meet a Cheetah), as well as Don Menza's sprawling Italian Sweet.

www.youtube.com

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
22 March 1969: Italy

Bootleg concert recording

Personnel

Vic Lewis
6 June 1969: England

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson
November 11, 1969: Konzerthaus, Vienna, Austria

Television broadcast. Incomplete personnel from MF's interstitial announcements.

news.allaboutjazz.com

www.youtube.com

Personnel

Maynard Ferguson with the Keith Mansfield Orchestra
4 - 6 December 1969: Olympic Studios, London, England

Sessions for The Ballad Style of Maynard Ferguson

www.mftourdates.net

Next: The Maynard Ferguson Discography: The 1970s