Two of guitarist Wes Montgomery's brothers, Buddy (vibes) and Monk (bass), formed the easy listening bop aggregation The Mastersounds in 1957 with pianist Richie Crabtree and drummer Benny Barth.
The quartet was popular only for a relatively short time, recording 10 albums in four years, for World Pacific, Pacific Jazz and Fantasy, before breaking up in 1961. Today they are remembered primarily for their link to Wes Montgomery.
The Mastersounds were overshadowed by the similarly formatted and vastly more successful Modern Jazz Quartet. As well, the music of the Mastersounds really seemed more suitable for background listening than something to be savored and remembered.
Swinging with the Mastersounds (Fantasy, 1961) was one of the last studio recordings by the group. It was mainly a collection of standards in the quartet's usual laid back style. To promote the LP Fantasy issued a 45 single with severely truncated versions of two of the tracks -- Golden Earrings and I Could Write a Book.
On the LP Golden Earrings ran for almost 10 minutes. Below you can listen to the short version that radio DJs received.
Swinging with the Mastersounds has received at least two CD releases -- as a standalone album and combined with another Fantasy LP, A Date with the Mastersounds, on a two-on-one disc titled simply The Mastersounds.
Both CD releases are out of print, although copies of the one pictured above can be purchased cheaply through Amazon. Swinging with the Mastersounds is not available as a download.
Here's the Gershwin tune Somebody Loves Me, from the 1959 World Pacific LP The Mastersounds in Concert.