CTI Records
Founded1967 (1967)
FounderCreed Taylor
Distributor(s)Sony (US), King Records (Japan)
Country of originU.S.
LocationNew York City

CTI Records (Creed Taylor Incorporated) is a jazz record label founded in 1967 by Creed Taylor. CTI was a subsidiary of A&M before becoming independent in 1970. Its first album was A Day in the Life by guitarist Wes Montgomery in 1967. The final release, by the CTI Jazz All-Star Band, was recorded live at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 2009, and released in November 2010 on multiple formats: CD, DVD and Blu-ray.

Its roster included George Benson, Ron Carter, Eumir Deodato, Astrud Gilberto, Freddie Hubbard, Bob James, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Hubert Laws, Stanley Turrentine, and Walter Wanderley.


Don Sebesky created many of the arrangements for CTI and its subsidiary labels. He was later joined by Bob James and then David Matthews in the mid-1970s. Taylor used Van Gelder Studio in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, with Rudy Van Gelder engineering nearly all sessions until the later years of the label. Sessions included Ron Carter, Eric Gale, Herbie Hancock, Bob James, Richard Tee, Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Steve Gadd, Idris Muhammad, and Harvey Mason.

CTI was commercially successful with certain albums well-received by critics. CTI's best-selling album was Deodato's Prelude, which reached No. 3 on the US Billboard albums chart in 1973. A single from the album, "Also Sprach Zarathustra (2001)", peaked at No. 2 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and No. 7 in the UK. Other successful singles were Bob James' "Feel Like Making Love" and "Westchester Lady", Idris Muhammad's "Could Heaven Ever Be Like This", and Esther Phillips' "What a Diff'rence a Day Makes", a disco hit.

Successful album releases included Grover Washington, Jr.'s Mister Magic and Feels So Good (both reaching No. 10 in 1975), Esther Phillips' What a Diff'rence a Day Makes (reaching No. 32 in 1975), and Bob James' BJ4 (reaching No. 38 in 1977).

Taylor's productions for CTI helped to establish smooth jazz as a commercially viable musical genre. CTI also became known for its striking album sleeve designs, most of them with images by photographer Pete Turner.[1][2]

After founding CTI as a jazz label for A & M Records in 1967, Taylor decided to go independent three years later. The company had several subsidiary labels. Kudu Records was established in 1971 and concentrated on soul jazz with albums by Joe Beck, Hank Crawford, Grant Green, Idris Muhammad, Esther Phillips, Johnny "Hammond" Smith, Dr. Lonnie Smith, and Grover Washington Jr. Salvation Records released 10 albums during its existence, including music by Airto, Roland Hanna, Faith Howard, New York Jazz Quartet, Johnny "Hammond" Smith, and Gábor Szabó[3] Greenestreet (which released albums by Jack Wilkins, Claudio Roditi, Les McCann) and Three Brothers (with recordings by The Clams, Lou Christie, Duke Jones, and Cassandra Morgan).

A switch to Motown Records for distribution was to end in difficulties in 1977, with legal and financial problems eventually leading to the label filing for bankruptcy in 1978. CTI, though, remained active until 1984, releasing studio albums by Ray Barretto, Urszula Dudziak, Jim Hall, Roland Hanna, Nina Simone, and the all-star studio band Fuse One

Taylor restructured CTI in 1989, resuming his association with Van Gelder and Turner in June 1989 when recording the all-star session for Rhythmstick, an ambitious album released on vinyl, CD, VHS, and LaserDisc in 1990. Many young musicians were signed to the label, such as Charles Fambrough, Jim Beard, Ted Rosenthal, Bill O'Connell, Donald Harrison, Steve Laury, and Jurgen Friedrich, as well as veteran guitarist Larry Coryell, who collaborated with arranger Don Sebesky on the best-selling Fallen Angel album, which reached No. 18 in the Billboard Top Contemporary Jazz Albums Chart in 1993.[4]

CTI's post-A&M Records catalog (albums released between 1970 and 1979) is owned by Sony and distributed by Masterworks Jazz in the USA. King Records handles the rights for exclusive distribution in Japan. Grover Washington, Jr.'s Kudu albums have been re-issued by Motown and its MoJazz imprint as part of Universal Classics & Jazz. Bob James owns the four albums he recorded for CTI (now managed by Evolution Music Group under license from Tappan Zee, James' record label). Seawind also owns their back catalog of CTI releases. CTI's A&M-subsidiary releases are distributed by Verve, a division of Universal Music Group.

In 2009, Taylor produced a reissue series of twenty CTI titles remastered by Van Gelder for release on SHM-CD format in Japan. New liner notes were provided by Ira Gitler, Arnaldo DeSouteiro, and Doug Payne. Other reissue series came out in December 2013 (including forty titles released on Blu-spec CD format) and in December 2017 with another forty titles on the CTI 50th Anniversary Collection.


3000 Series

The albums comprising the CTI 3000 Series were produced by Creed Taylor between 1967 and 1970 and issued by A&M with a "CTI" logo on the front cover.

Catalog number (mono) Catalog number (stereo) Artist Title
SP 3000 Various Artists Audio Master Plus Series Sampler Volume 1
LP 2001 SP 3001 Wes Montgomery A Day in the Life
LP 2002 SP 3002 Antonio Carlos Jobim Wave
LP 2003 SP 3003 Herbie Mann Glory of Love
LP 2004 SP 3004 Tamba 4 We and the Sea
SP 3005 Nat Adderley You, Baby
SP 3006 Wes Montgomery Down Here on the Ground
SP 3007 Artie Butler Have You Met Miss Jones?
SP 3008 Kai Winding and J. J. Johnson Israel
SP 3009 Soul Flutes Trust in Me
SP 3010 Richard Barbary Soul Machine
SP 3011 Tamiko Jones I’ll Be Anything for You
SP 3012 Wes Montgomery Road Song
SP 3013 Tamba 4 Samba Blim
SP 3014 George Benson Shape of Things to Come
SP 3015 Paul Desmond Summertime
SP 3016 Kai Winding and J. J. Johnson Betwixt & Between
SP 3017 Nat Adderley Calling Out Loud
SP 3018 Walter Wanderley When It Was Done
SP 3019 Milton Nascimento Courage
SP 3020 George Benson Tell It Like It Is
SP 6-3021 Various Artists Audio Master Plus Series Audio Sampler, Vol. 2
SP 3022 Walter Wanderley Moondreams
SP 3023 Quincy Jones Walking in Space
SP 3024 Paul Desmond From the Hot Afternoon
SP 3025 George Benson I Got a Woman and Some Blues
SP 3026 Hubert Laws Unissued
SP 3027 Kai Winding and J. J. Johnson Stonebone (Originally only issued in Japan; Re-issued as 2020 Record Store Day pressing in Red Vinyl)
SP 3028 George Benson The Other Side of Abbey Road
SP 3030 Quincy Jones Gula Matari
SP 3031 Antonio Carlos Jobim Tide

1000 Series

In 1970, Creed Taylor established CTI independently of A&M and issued the first five releases as the 1000 Series which had a green record label. The 1000 Series featured artists working outside of the jazz genre.

Catalog number Artist Title
CTI 1001 Kathy McCord Kathy McCord
CTI 1002 Hubert Laws Crying Song
CTI 1003 Flow Flow
CTI 1004 Dave Frishberg Oklahoma Toad
CTI 1005 Fats Theus Black Out

6000 series

The albums in the CTI 6000 series were released between 1970 and 1976 and featured an orange CTI label with black print,[5] but Quadraphonic issues featured a red label variant. Later albums in the 6000 series were distributed by Motown and are designated by the addition of an S1 to the catalog number.

Catalog number Artist Title
CTI 6000 Hubert Laws Crying Song (Reissue of CTI 1002)
CTI 6001 Freddie Hubbard Red Clay
CTI 6002 Antonio Carlos Jobim Stone Flower
CTI 6003 Joe Farrell Joe Farrell Quartet
CTI 6004 Bill Evans Montreux II
CTI 6005 Stanley Turrentine Sugar
CTI 6006 Hubert Laws Afro-Classic
CTI 6007 Freddie Hubbard Straight Life
CTI 6008 Astrud Gilberto Gilberto with Turrentine
CTI 6009 George Benson Beyond the Blue Horizon
CTI 6010 Stanley Turrentine Salt Song
CTI 6011 Kenny Burrell God Bless the Child
CTI 6012 Hubert Laws The Rite of Spring
CTI 6013 Freddie Hubbard First Light
CTI 6014 Joe Farrell Outback
CTI 6015 George Benson White Rabbit
CTI 6016 Randy Weston Blue Moses
CTI 6017 Stanley Turrentine with Milt Jackson Cherry
CTI 6018 Freddie Hubbard Sky Dive
CTI 6019 Jackie and Roy Time & Love
CTI 6020 Airto Free
CTI 6021 Deodato Prelude
CTI 6022 Hubert Laws Morning Star
CTI 6023 Joe Farrell Moon Germs
CTI 6024 Milt Jackson Sunflower
CTI 6025 Hubert Laws Carnegie Hall
CTI 6026 Gábor Szabó Mizrab
CTI 6027 Ron Carter Blues Farm
CTI 6028 Airto Fingers
CTI 6029 Deodato Deodato 2
CTI 6030 Stanley Turrentine Don't Mess with Mister T.
CTI 6031/32 Don Sebesky Giant Box
CTI 6033 George Benson Body Talk
CTI 6034 Joe Farrell Penny Arcade
CTI 6035 Gábor Szabó Rambler
CTI 6036 Freddie Hubbard Keep Your Soul Together
CTI 6037 Ron Carter All Blues
CTI 6038 Milt Jackson with Hubert Laws Goodbye
CTI 6039 Paul Desmond featuring Gábor Szabó Skylark
CTI 6040 Jackie Cain & Roy Kral A Wilder Alias
CTI 6041 Deodato/Airto In Concert
CTI 6042S1 Joe Farrell Upon This Rock
CTI 6043S1 Bob James One
CTI 6044S1 Freddie Hubbard/Stanley Turrentine Freddie Hubbard/Stanley Turrentine in Concert Volume One
CTI 6045S1 George Benson Bad Benson
CTI 6046S1 Milt Jackson Olinga
CTI 6047S1 Freddie Hubbard The Baddest Hubbard
CTI 6048S1 Stanley Turrentine The Baddest Turrentine
CTI 6049S1 Herbie Hancock/Freddie Hubbard/Stanley Turrentine In Concert Volume Two
CTI 6050S1 Chet Baker She Was Too Good to Me
CTI 6051S1 Ron Carter Spanish Blue
CTI 6052S1 Stanley Turrentine The Sugar Man
CTI 6053S1 Joe Farrell Canned Funk
CTI 6054S1 Gerry Mulligan / Chet Baker Carnegie Hall Concert Volume 1
CTI 6055S1 Gerry Mulligan / Chet Baker Carnegie Hall Concert Volume 2
CTI 6056S1 Freddie Hubbard Polar AC
CTI 6057S1 Bob James Two
CTI 6058S1 Hubert Laws The Chicago Theme
CTI 6059S1 Paul Desmond Pure Desmond
CTI 6060S1 Jim Hall Concierto
CTI 6061S1 Don Sebesky The Rape of El Morro
CTI 6062 George Benson Good King Bad
CTI 6063 Bob James Three
CTI 6064 Ron Carter Yellow & Green
CTI 6065 Hubert Laws Then There Was Light: In the Beginning Vol. 1
CTI 6066 Hubert Laws Then There Was Light: In the Beginning Vol. 2
CTI 6067 Joe Farrell Song of the Wind (Reissue of CTI 6003)
CTI 6068 Allan Holdsworth Velvet Darkness
CTI 6069 George Benson and Joe Farrell Benson & Farrell
CTI 6072S1 George Benson In Concert-Carnegie Hall

CTI Twofer series

The albums in the CTI Twofer series were double albums released between 1972 and 1974,.[6]

Catalog number Artist Title
CTX 3+3 Hubert Laws In the Beginning
CTX 2+2 CTI All-Stars (George Benson, Freddie Hubbard, Hubert Laws, Stanley Turrentine, Hank Crawford, Johnny Hammond, Ron Carter, Billy Cobham, Airto) California Concert - The Hollywood Palladium

5000 Series

The 5000 Series was introduced in 1975 as a series of popular music recordings and consist of eight issued albums.[7] Only a handful in this series were produced by Creed Taylor; outside producers handled the rest, like Harvey Mason producing Seawind's albums and David Grusin and Larry Rosen producing Patti Austin's second album. The first releases features a "P.S." (which stood for "Pop Series") inside the familiar CTI logo.

Catalog number Artist Title
CTI 5000 Lalo Schifrin Black Widow
CTI 5001 Patti Austin End of a Rainbow
CTI 5002 Seawind Seawind
CTI 5003 Lalo Schifrin Towering Toccata
CTI 5004 John Blair We Belong Together
CTI 5005 David Matthews Dune
CTI 5006 Patti Austin Havana Candy
CTI 5007 Seawind Window of a Child

7000 Series

The 7000 Series continued the numbering sequence from the 6000 Series after it ended its distribution deal with Motown.

Catalog number Artist Title
CTI 7070 Urbie Green The Fox
CTI 7071 Hubert Laws The San Francisco Concert
CTI 7073 Art Farmer Crawl Space
CTI 7074 Bob James BJ4
CTI 7075 Jeremy Steig Firefly
CTI 7076 Various Artists CTI Summer Jazz at the Hollywood Bowl - Live One
CTI 7077 Various Artists CTI Summer Jazz at the Hollywood Bowl - Live Two
CTI 7078 Various Artists CTI Summer Jazz at the Hollywood Bowl - Live Three
CTI 7079 Urbie Green with Grover Washington, Jr. and David Matthews' Big Band Señor Blues
CTI 7080 Art Farmer with Yusef Lateef and David Matthews' Big Band Something You Got
CTI 7081 Deodato 2001 (Reissue of CTI 6021)
CTI 7082 Yusef Lateef Autophysiopsychic
CTI 7083 Art Farmer / Jim Hall Big Blues
CTI 7084 Nina Simone Baltimore
CTI 7085 George Benson Space
CTI 7086 Patti Austin Live at the Bottom Line
CTI 7087 Art Farmer with Joe Henderson Yama (Only issued in Japan)
CTI 7088 Yusef Lateef In a Temple Garden
CTI 7089 Art Farmer Live in Tokyo

8000 Series

The 8000 series was launched in the late-1970s. Its purpose was to reissue previous CTI and Kudu albums.[8] In some instances original album titles were changed, and artwork was also altered, with releases originally issued in gatefold album covers now reduced to single sleeves.

Catalog number Artist Title
CTI 8000 Airto Free (later reissued as Return to Forever) (Reissue of CTI 6020)
CTI 8001 Ron Carter Blues Farm (Reissue of CTI 6027)
CTI 8002 Joe Beck Beck & Sanborn (Reissue of KU-21 as Beck)
CTI 8003 Joe Farrell Moon Germs (Reissue of CTI 6023)
CTI 8004 Milt Jackson Sunflower (Reissue of CTI 6024)
CTI 8005 Joe Farrell Outback (Reissue of CTI 6014)
CTI 8006 Stanley Turrentine Sugar (Reissue of CTI 6005)
CTI 8007 George Benson Beyond the Blue Horizon (Reissue of CTI 6009)
CTI 8008 Stanley Turrentine Salt Song (Reissue of CTI 6010)
CTI 8009 George Benson White Rabbit (Reissue of CTI 6015)
CTI 8010 Stanley Turrentine Cherry (Reissue of CTI 6017)
CTI 8011 Stanley Turrentine Don't Mess With Mister T. (Reissue of CTI 6030)
CTI 8012 Jim Hall Concierto (Reissue of CTI 6060S1)
CTI 8013 Airto Virgin Land (Reissue of SAL 701)
CTI 8014 George Benson Take Five (Reissue of CTI 6045S1 as Bad Benson)
CTI 8015 Hubert Laws The Chicago Theme (Reissue of CTI 6058S1)
CTI 8016 Freddie Hubbard Red Clay (Reissue of CTI 6001)
CTI 8017 Freddie Hubbard First Light (Reissue of CTI 6013)
CTI 8018 unissued unissued
CTI 8019 Hubert Laws Afro-Classic (Reissue of CTI 6006)
CTI 8020 Hubert Laws The Rite of Spring (Reissue of CTI 6012)
CTI 8021 Deodato Prelude (Reissue of CTI 6021)
CTI 8022 Freddie Hubbard Straight Life (Reissue of CTI 6007)
CTI 8023 unissued unissued
CTI 8024 unissued unissued
CTI 8025 Deodato Deodato 2 (Reissue of CTI 6029)
CTI 8026 unissued unissued
CTI 8027 unissued unissued
CTI 8028 Deodato/Airto In Concert (Reissue of CTI 6041)
CTI 8029 Hubert Laws Morning Star (Reissue of CTI 6022)
CTI 8030 George Benson Cast Your Fate to the Wind (Reissue of CTI 6062 as Good King Bad)
CTI 8031 George Benson Summertime (Reissue of CTI 6072S1 as In Concert-Carnegie Hall)

9000 Series

The 9000 Series was started in 1980 and was distributed by CBS Records but maintained its independence (except for Patti Austin's Body Language album which carried a CBS-style look and catalog number) The series started with the classic orange label (used since the 6000 Series) but by 1981 switched to a white label with a new logo design, though in 1983, for George Benson's archive release Pacific Fire it had a silver label.

Catalog number Artist Title
CTI 9000 Art Farmer with Joe Henderson Yama (The USA release of CTI 7087)
JZ 36503 Patti Austin Body Language (Originally slated for CTI 9001)
CTI 9002 Ray Barretto La Cuna
CTI 9003 Fuse One Fuse One
CTI 9004 Nina Simone Baltimore (Planned reissue of CTI 7084, but never released)
CTI 9006 Fuse One Silk
CTI 9007 Chet Baker, Jim Hall, Hubert Laws Studio Trieste
CTI 9008 Roland Hanna Gershwin Carmichael Cats
CTI 9009 Patti Austin In My Life
CTI 9010 George Benson Pacific Fire


The Kudu label was started by Creed Taylor in July 1971 and specialized in soul jazz, releasing 39 albums from 1971 to 1979.[9] Kudu is considered CTI's sister label.

Catalog number Artist Title
KU-01 Johnny Hammond Breakout
KU-02 Lonnie Smith Mama Wailer
KU-03 Grover Washington, Jr. Inner City Blues
KU-04 Johnny Hammond Wild Horses Rock Steady
KU-05 Esther Phillips From a Whisper to a Scream
KU-06 Hank Crawford Help Me Make it Through the Night
KU-07 Grover Washington, Jr. All the King's Horses
KU-08 Hank Crawford We Got a Good Thing Going
KU-09 Esther Phillips Alone Again, Naturally
KU-10 Johnny Hammond The Prophet
KU-11 Eric Gale Forecast
KU-12 Grover Washington, Jr. Soul Box Vol. 1
KU-13 Grover Washington, Jr. Soul Box Vol. 2
KU-14 Esther Phillips Black-Eyed Blues
KU-15 Hank Crawford Wildflower
KU-16 Johnny Hammond Higher Ground
KU-17 Idris Muhammad Power of Soul
KU-18 Esther Phillips Performance
KU-19 Hank Crawford Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing
KU-20 Grover Washington, Jr. Mister Magic
KU-21 Joe Beck Beck
KU-22 Phil Upchurch and Tennyson Stephens Upchurch/Tennyson
KU-23 Esther Philips with Joe Beck What a Diff'rence a Day Makes
KU-24 Grover Washington, Jr. Feels So Good
KU-25 Ron Carter Anything Goes
KU-26 Hank Crawford I Hear a Symphony
KU-27 Idris Muhammad House of the Rising Sun
KU-28 Esther Philips with Joe Beck For All We Know
KU-29 Grant Green The Main Attraction
KU-30 David Matthews with Whirlwind Shoogie Wanna Boogie
KU-31 Esther Philips Capricorn Princess
KU-32S1 Grover Washington, Jr. A Secret Place
KU-33S1 Hank Crawford Hank Crawford's Back
KU-34S1 Idris Muhammad Turn This Mutha Out
KU-35S1 Hank Crawford Tico Rico
KU-3637M2 Grover Washington, Jr. Live at The Bijou
KU-38 Idris Muhammad Boogie to the Top
KU-39 Hank Crawford Cajun Sunrise


Salvation Records was a CTI subsidiary originally intended for gospel albums but after releasing one album by the B. C. & M. Choir and laying fallow for two years the label was revived for a handful of jazz and R&B releases.[10] While Creed Taylor did produce the B. C. & M. Choir album, outside producers would handle the other releases.

Catalog number Artist Title
SAL 700 B. C. & M. Choir Hello Sunshine
SAL 701 Airto Virgin Land
SAL 702 Johnny Hammond Gambler's Life
SAL 703 The New York Jazz Quartet In Concert in Japan
SAL 704S1 Gábor Szabó Macho

Three Brothers label

Three Brothers Records was a short-lived subsidiary of CTI named after Creed Taylor's sons (Creed Jr., John, and Blake). It had a few single releases and issued one album by Lou Christie.

Catalog number Artist Title
THB 2000 Lou Christie Lou Christie


  1. ^ Feature on CTI Records at dougpayne.com
  2. ^ Pete Turner: Album Covers (Part 2), Jazzwax, April 9, 2008.
  3. ^ Salvation Records discography
  4. ^ "jazzitude.com". Archived from the original on August 11, 2004. Retrieved July 31, 2004.
  5. ^ Edwards, D. & Callahan, M. CTI Albums discography accessed February 3, 2012
  6. ^ CTI Records Catalog: 6000 series - album index accessed November 14, 2019
  7. ^ Payne D. CTI 5000 Series accessed February 28, 2012
  8. ^ "Cti Records: 8000 Series".
  9. ^ Payne D. Kudu Records Discography accessed February 6, 2012
  10. ^ Payne, D. CTI Records - Salvation Label av=ccesse February 21, 2012