The Hilversum Session by Albert Ayler is one of those legendary recordings in free jazz. It was recorded in a Netherlands radio studio in front of a small invited audience, at the end of the Ayler Quartet's European tour on November 9, 1964. The band -- Ayler, Don Cherry, Gary Peacock, and Sunny Murray -- had been playing Ayler's tunes for months and were uncanny in their ability to hear one another and improvise together at that point. It was also the last time the group would record together under Ayler's name as a quartet, and they went out at a peak. The recording itself remained unissued until 1980 when it appeared on an LP on …(amg)
04 Infant Happiness
06 No Name
Billy Bang (born William Vincent Walker; September 20, 1947 – April 11, 2011) was an American free jazz violinist and composer.
2. Valve No.10
3. September 23rd
4. Improvisation For Four
5. Bien-Hoa Blues
6. Holiday For Flowers
7. Lonnie's Lament
Another great, forgotten jazz session, now nearly impossible to find. In 1988, Billy Bang traveled to Italy on the eve of a new European tour with his current quartet, laying down seven tracks for an album which would serve as a shadow tribute album to John Coltrane. A slow, dirge-like rendition of Coltrane's "Lonnie's Lament" closes out the record, while "September 23rd" (Coltrane's birth date) is a spoken poem weaving the titles of numerous Coltrane songs around a few musical quotes. Truth be known, this is the least compelling track on the album, but it's far from awful. Bang has a fierce attack on violin, so much so in fact that he might be more properly considered a "fiddle" player. He's a gifted musician, and yet there's also a wonderful backwoods quality to his sound. Frank Lowe, recently deceased, offers a compellingly original style on tenor saxophone, unmistakeably "new," yet also deeply connected to the past, especially old pre-bop masters like Coleman Hawkins and Ben Webster. His smooth, thoughtful tone is a wonderful contrast to Bang's nimble scratch. Bassist Sirone is an unjustly forgotten, musical player, and Dennis Charles' drumming is a casebook study of jazz interaction. Memorable themes, intense yet never overwhelming soloing, spiritually positive and endlessly creative - this is a great album. Track it down. -Jason Gubbels
5.0 out of 5 stars
Billy Bang-- violin, compositions
Frank Lowe-- tenor sax
Denis Charles -- drums
This set, made in 2007, is the last studio recording Joe Zawinul worked on before his death. It places the great Austrian pianist/composer in front of a mixed-genre chamber orchestra led by young Estonian classical conductor Kristjan Jarvi, and concentrates on the music of Zawinul's later years with his Syndicate, rather than the more famous two-decade reign of Weather Report. The dressing of jazz, improv or fusion ideas in classical music's graceful robes often does few favours to any of the contributing genres, but this is an exception: sustaining the Syndicate's headlong energies while enhancing passing melodic ideas that the erudite Zawinul would sometimes casually toss out. As well as being a composer of enduring themes, Zawinul was one of the great spontaneous creators of the short fill or linking motif, and Jarvi picks those up and burnishes them with everything from flutes and oboes to contrabassoons, while driving drum-patterns and basslines surge along beneath – and Zawinul's talkative vocoder adds his characteristic asides. The folk-dancing energy of Bimoya sets the vibe humming, Syndicate singer Sabine Kabongo supplies spinechilling chants, the Eastern melodies of Sultan are strengthened by the strings, and The Peasant is an ingenious combination of strings, Indian percussion and deep brass. It's a fitting enrichment of Zawinul's magic, by players who clearly appreciate it.
The New York based Absolute Ensemble, conductor Kristjan Järvi, is and 18-piece electro-acoustic ensemble that fuses classical, jazz, rock and funk. Charles Mingus, Miles Davis and Jimi Hendrix have found a place on the bill with Bach, Stravinsky and Schoenberg and the works of new composers whom the band is often the first to promote. They have also performed works by the Beatles, Frank Zappa, John Adams and Michael Daugherty.
«The late Ahmed Abdul-Malik was one of the first musicians to integrate non-Western musical elements into jazz. Best known to jazz listeners as a bassist with Thelonious Monk, Randy Weston, Coleman Hawkins, and many others, he made a few records as a leader, with this one being his most exotic and also the hardest to find. The Brooklyn native was of Sudanese descent; in addition to playing bass on this interesting blend of Middle Eastern instruments with those from the world of jazz, he also plays oud, the forerunner to the lute. The musicians on Malik's eight originals vary from track to track. On the mournful "La Ibky (Don't Cry)," Malik's oud shares the spotlight with a tenor sax (either Benny Golson or Johnny Griffin) plus trumpeter Lee Morgan. "Rooh (The Soul)" features the 72-string kanoon (which is sort of a brittle sounding and much smaller harp) played by Ahmed Yetman, along with Malik's arco bass and the droning violin of Naim Karacand. The Middle Eastern instruments are absent during "Searchin'," which is sort of a hard bop vehicle featuring trombonist Curtis Fuller and Jerome Richardson on flute, along with the tenor sax. "Takseem (Solo)" omits the jazz instruments; the slowness of the variations of the music and rather piercing vocal make it harder for Western ears to comprehend. Not a release of interest to everyone but, for the most part, this fusion of vastly different styles of music is quite enjoyable; it's obvious from the start that the musicians were enjoying themselves as it was recorded. This long out print LP will be difficult to locate.» (AMG)
01 E-Lail (The Night) 02 La Ilbky (Don't Cry) 03 Takseem (Solo) 04 Searchin' 05 Isma'a (Listen) 06 Rooh (The Soul) 07 Mahawara 08 El Ghada [The Jungle]
Ahmed Abdul-Malik Bass, Oud Bilal Abdurrahman Darabeka Curtis Fuller Trombone Benny Golson Sax (Tenor) Johnny Griffin Sax (Tenor) Mike Hamway Darabeka Al Harewood Drums Naim Karacand Violin Lee Morgan Trumpet Jerome Richardson Flute Ahmed Yetman Kanun
"Music is your own experience, your own thoughts, your wisdom. If you don't live it, it won't come out your horn. They teach you there's a boundary line to music. But, man, there's no boundary line to art." - CHARLIE PARKER