The John Harle Collection | Sospiro Noir SOSJHC100120

The John Harle Collection

£53.06 £47.66

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Label: Sospiro Noir

Cat No: SOSJHC100120

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 20

Release Date: 30th October 2020



John Harle (saxophone)


John Harle (saxophone)


The Coronavirus lockdown has been a challenging time for many artists. Most have learned to embrace new technology and profess to have made use of their time creatively. However, few can make claim to producing an astonishing twenty-album collection in just 5 months, but composer, saxophonist, record producer and educator John Harle, did just that.

John Harle needs no introduction. With such a jaw-droppingly prolific biography it’s almost easier to say what he hasn’t done, than what he has. He’s released so many albums that he’s lost count (well over 80) and has written music covering a gamut of genres including opera, modern jazz, saxophone concertos, film scores, classical music and even lounge. He’s been musical director and producer for a raft of big names including Elvis Costello, Marc Almond, Herbie Hancock and Sir Harrison Birtwistle, and was artistic advisor and producer to Sir Paul McCartney for six years. He’s also responsible for the theme to BBC1’s Silent Witness, which is still being used after 20 years.

The John Harle Collection is a 20-volume set of music that straddles his illustrious career from 1977-2016 spanning multiple musical disciplines - as both player and composer - in classical, jazz and pop with an array of collaborators. The collection has been tirelessly curated by Harle himself. It is deeply personal and has become what he refers to as something of a “sonic autobiography”.

Since the beginning of his career, Harle has collected recordings of all his live and studio performances. So, sifting through hundreds of recordings on multitrack analogue tape, 1/4-inch analogue - even cassette - alongside digital formats such as DAT, DA8 and old WAVs, to compile a 20-CD collection proved a monumental challenge, but one that he’s risen to with gusto. Most, but not all, of the material is unreleased; some new, some vintage, some studio, some live - a sort of ‘alternative discography’.

As Harle explains, “Abandoned strands of music are actually the most autobiographical for most musicians - pieces or demos left unfinished that leave traces of ideas and themes that occupy us for a lifetime, and reappear in successful work when the time is right.”

John Harle and Sospiro Records will donate all the proceeds they receive from the sale of digital albums/singles and CD collections to to the Help Musicians Coronavirus Financial Hardship Fund Phase 2.


CD 1
1. Samba Triste
2. Sultry Sunset (live)
3. Star-Crossed Lovers (live)
4. Night Waltz
5. Barcelona
6. You Must Meet My Wife
7. In a Sentimental Mood
8. Sonata Movement 1 (live)
9. Children’s Songs 1
10. Children’s Songs 2
11. Children’s Songs 3

CD 2
1. Laura
2. Cavatina
3. ’Round Midnight
4. Anyone Home
5. I’ll Remember April
6. Gymnopedie 1
7. Gymnopedie 2
8. Gymnopedie 3
9. Lush Life
10. Taxi Driver

CD 3
1. Concerto: I-II Introduzione - Allegro (live)
2. Concerto: III (live)
3. Concerto: IV (live)
4. Lost and Found
5. Taxi Driver A Night Piece (live)
6. Saxo-Rhapsody (live)
7. Ballad (live)
8. Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Trumpet: I Allegro burlesco (live)
2. Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Trumpet: II Adagio (live)
3. Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Trumpet: III Vivacissimo (live)

CD 4
1. Sonata: I Allegro (live)
2. Sonata: II Allegretto (live)
3. Sonata: III Allegretto - Presto (live)
4. Sonate: I Allegro (live)
5. Sonate: II (live)
6. Sonate III: Allegro Moderato (live)
7. Sequenza IXb (live)
8. In a Hall of Mirrors (live)
9. Improvisation 1 (live)
10. Sonata: I With vigor (live)
11. Sonnet (live)
12. Backings (live)
13. Pan (live)

CD 5
1. Histoire du Tango: I Bordel 1900 (live)
2. Histoire du Tango: II Cafe 1930 (live)
4. Histoire du Tango: III Nightclub 1960 (live)
5. Histoire du Tango: IV Concert d’Aujourd’hui (live)
6. Acordeon de Roto Corazan (live)
7. Quatour: I Allegro non troppo (live)
8. Quatour: II Andante poco largo (live)
9. Quatour: III Allegro energico (live)
10. Threepenny Oper: I Ouverture (live)
11. Threepenny Opera: II Tango-Ballade (live)
12. Threepenny Opera: III Polly’s Song (live)
13. Threepenny Opera: IV Ballad of the Good Life - Ballad of Mac the Knife - Chorale (live)
14. Nuages (live)

CD 6
1. The Emperor Quartet: I (live)
2. Quatour: II Gaguenardise (live)
3. Quatour: II Cantilene (live)
4. Quatour: III Serenade Comique (live)
5. Foursquare (live)
6. Quatour: I Allegro non troppo (live)
7. Quatour: II Andante poco largo (live)
8. Quatour: III Allegro energico (live)
9. Fridiof Kennings (live)
10. Five Melodies for Four Saxophones doubling Seven More (live)

CD 7
1. Diversions: I Gusty (live)
2. Diversions: II Blowing Blue (live)
3. Diversions: III Sea Breeze (live)
4. Cache-Cache (live)
5. Quatour: I Ouverture Brilliante (live)
6. Quatour: II Doloroso (live)
7. Quatour: III Spirituoso (live)
8. Quatour: III Andante and Presto (live)
9. Quatour: I Gaguenardise (live)
10. Quatour: II Cantilene (live)
11. Quatour: III Serenade Comique (live)
12. Consortium (live)
13. Weep No More (live)
14. Flying Birds (live)
15. Quartet: I Allegro moderato (live)
16. Quartet: II Scherzo - Allegro moderato (live)
17. Quartet: III Adagio Molto (live)
18. Quartet: IV Alla Marcia, con spirito (live)
19. Quartet: I Conversation (live)
20. Quartet: II Meditation (live)
21. Quartet: III Soliloque (live)
22. The Poacher (live)

CD 8
1. Vespers (live)
2. Sederunt (live)
3. The Saxophone Mass (live)
4. Tre Pezzi No.1 (live)
5. The Train (live)
6. Saron Cadora (live)
7. La Santa Espina (live)
8. The Moscow Express (live)
9. Coltrane (live)
10. The Status Quo (live)

CD 9
1. Procession
2. Frank and Alice Go Boating
3. The Interludes
4. Alice’s Party
5. Leviathan (live)
6. The Death of Dr Schoen
7. Memory and Imagination
8. Veruschka
9. Three Secrets from the Abyss: 1. With quiet simplicity but intense introspection
10. Three Secrets from the Abyss: 2. With quiet simplicity but unutterable sadness
11. Three Secrets from the Abyss: 3. With quiet simplicity but profound longing
12. Arcadia: Invocation Procession and Meditation
13. Arcadia: Evolution and Dedication

CD 10
1. Black Bottom
2. Berlin Tango
3. The Stock Exchange Song
4. The Love Market
5. Berlinermusik
6. Baby in der Bar (extracts)
7. The Ballad of Marie Sanders
8. Four Hollywood Elegies
9. To Those Born Later
10. Lonely House

CD 11
1. Shipbuilding (live)
2. Spring-Heeled Jack
3. No-one to Say Goodnight To
4. Flow My Teares (live)
5. My Fair Lady
6. Without Love (live)
7. Angel Eyes
8. The Vampire of Highgate
9. The Rocky Road (live)

CD 12
1. Las Vegas Tango (live)
2. Alice’s Party (live)
3. Children’s Songs (live)
4. Landscaper (live)
5. Cornfield
6. Me Old China
7. London Blues
8. Coming Out
9. Surf Boy
10. Elegy for Trane (live)
11. Swing Theory

CD 13
1. Silent Witness Theme - Danny L Harle remix
2. Higher Love
3. God Looking for a Good Time
4. Keys
5. Henmania
6. Countdown Machine for prepared pianos and electronics
7. Innocent (after Francis Bacon’s Study after Velazquez’s Portrait of Pope Innocent X)
8. Foaming at the Mouth
9. Electric Ethnology
10. The Little Death Machine for Saxophone Quartet and Tape

CD 14
1. Silent Witness Theme (Silencium)
2. The Bicycle of Marcel Duchamp
3. Beverley Hills
4. Vaudeville Boy
5. Bedlam Blonde
6. Summer in the Forest
7. A Man and a Woman
8. Hockney
9. Fresh Flowers
10. Time is not an Illusion
11. Odyssey
12. The Shadow of your Smile
13. Theme from Mame
14. Pandora’s Box (Charleston)
15. Pandora’s Box (The Death of Dr Schoen)
16. Entracte
17. Find Your Heart
18. The Grand Canyon/The Bradford Bomb
19. Judas
20. The Thames Barrier
21. Titan
22. The Scrabble Game

CD 15
1. The Disposition of the Rooms
2. The Stele of all the Measures
3. Garches
4. Refrains
5. The Power of Limits
6. Ikon
7. Hermes
8. Sinfonia Jubilate
9. Kingdom
10. Wings
11. Orpheus
12. Legion
13. Marcha del Circo
14. Three Musicians
15. Mandolin and Guitar
16. Pulcinella
17. Voyager (live)
18. Moccasin Trail

CD 16
1. Byrd on a Bryre
2. The Three Ravens
3. The Three Ravens
3. Syrinx (live)
4. Main Diable La
5. Chanterai pour mon Courage
6. The Limits of Knowledge
7. Flow my Teares (live)
8. Three Folksongs from the County of Csik (live)
9. Tales from the Nursery
10. You must get a Tune First (live)
11. Georgie (live)
12. Dancing Doll (live)
13. The Pretty Ploughboy (live)
14. The Black Velvet Band (live)
15. Outdoor Polka (live)

CD 17
1. The Gypsy Piper
2. Durham Jail
3. Jamie’s Lament
4. Hey Up and Away
5. Cumcleugh Ghyll
6. The Sound of Deep Waters
7. The Gypsy Piper 2
8. The Sound of Deep Waters (reprise)
9. The Black Act
10. Away Boys Away
11. Fetch the Man Away
12. The River is Dark
13. Hawthorn
14. The Ballad of Jamie Allan

CD 18
1. The Jet-Set
2. Club Taboo
3. Havana Girl
4. Special Blend
5. Intel
6. Touching Velvet
7. Sidecar
8. Arm in Arm
9. The Bicycle of Marcel Duchamp
10. The Stereo Lounge
11. Club Class
12. Hanky Panky
13. Chavvy Cha-Cha
14. Costa del Crime
15. Mister Gimlet
16. Coming Out
17. Cornfield
18. London Blues
19. Swing Theory

CD 19
1. Flying
2. Chase the Train
3. Sputnik
4. When that I was and a little tiny boy
5. Condor
6. Prophet of God
7. Matthew’s Song
8. The Modular
9. Instinct
10. Flying - Mile-High Club mix
11. Rising Light
12. Pinocolada

CD 20
1. The Golden Demon: Episode 1
2. The Golden Demon: Episode 2
3. The Golden Demon: Episode 3
4. The Golden Demon: Episode 4
5. The Golden Demon: Episode 5

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