The JJ Johnson Quintet - JJ in Person - #fivedollarjazz - This seems like a “duh” comment, but one of the big epiphanies I’ve had while on my five-dollar-jazz journey is that the quality of a record — inclusive of the music, the artwork, the pressing quality, etc. — has far less to do with cost than scarcity relative to demand. Yes, Econ 101. Sure, quality plays a big role on the demand side, and there are plenty of scarce but terrible records that remain cheap. But given we are dealing with a finite universe of used jazz records, sometimes it’s more the number of available records on the market than any other factor that dictates price. I bring this up, because it can be used to your advantage. Major labels like Columbia pressed a ton more records than small labels like Prestige and Blue Note, but in many cases still managed to present groups with as much artistic talent as on the smaller labels — and also put out a product with great art, liner notes, and excellent pressing quality (this is a 6-eye mono). Take this group for example. JJ Johnson leads a quintet that’s includes Nat Adderley, Tommy Flanagan, Tootie Heath and Wilbur Little. You have arguably the greatest trombone player in jazz history backed up by some of the most solid side-men from the era. What ensues is an excellent live recording that has especially exceptional performances from Johnson and Adderley. Nat might in fact steal the show here. The whole album is great but the renditions of Walkin’ and Misterioso are what stand out for me. Highly recommended.