Alexander Hawkins

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Everything posted by Alexander Hawkins

  1. Nice story! For anyone even remotely interested, I'd strongly recommend this biography of Mitropoulos, who was clearly a very special person as well as musician.
  2. Anthony Braxton Quartet Standards 2020

    One bit of trivia which none of us realised at the time, but which I discovered a couple of days after this gig...and beautifully fitting considering Anthony's love of Brubeck etc: I believe it's Eugene Wright and Joe Morello on the studio recording of the tune with Simon & Garfunkel!
  3. Anthony Braxton Quartet Standards 2020

    Perhaps because of my age, and because I'm not aware the Carol Burnett show was 'exported' over here, I was completely unaware of this tune, and it totally knocked me out...absolutely beautiful. Similarly with 'Where the Blue of the Night (Meets the Gold of the Day)' from elsewhere in the set - a total gem of a song which I have to confess I just didn't know...
  4. LF "Ethiopian Jazz" Recs

    I *think* there are two separate things, here. With the Heliocentrics, he was a guest soloist (although playing his own tunes) with that band. Primavera in the mid teens was Mulatu leading his own band (I played the Barcelona gig, but not the Glastonbury one, for instance). [Unless Mulatu also played Primavera with the Heliocentrics? Possible, I guess, although I'd imagine that the bookers might space out his appearances a little more...] Actually - the setlist of the two bands at one point were pretty similar (I subbed on a couple of the Heliocentrics shows), but the sounds of the bands were pretty different - the Helios were/are the more 'electric' of the two (e.g. Mulatu's band uses 'cello instead of electric guitar).
  5. LF "Ethiopian Jazz" Recs

    No particular reason to, but if you had to listen to just one of Mulatu's albums, I'd say this is probably 'the' classic: https://mulatuastatke.bandcamp.com/album/mulatu-of-ethiopia He rerecorded a number of his classics with a band called the Heliocentrics a few years back on a record called 'Inspiration Information'. It's an absolutely amazingly produced record: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZqVhPybzfVE - great sound, great playing. I've actually played in Mulatu's touring band for the last 11-12 years or so. The thing with Ellington was a State Department tour in the early 70s. I can't remember what they played together (he did tell me the story), but if the Covid travel regulations stay as they are at the moment, we have some gigs next month, so I'll ask. Interestingly, there is some thought that the concert was recorded for the radio, but the tapes are missing - I seem to remember someone saying that they were looking for them (unsurprisingly). [ I've only played on one of his records, but it does include this really great song featuring the totally incredible Fatoumata Diawara: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6q0ibCVBFGA] A couple of Mulatu-related tributaries: the Jim Jarmusch film 'Broken Flowers' features his music very heavily. And also, for hip hop fans, this is a Mulatu sample (the tune is 'Yegelle Tezeta'): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OMGd3mAfl-0 Agree with lots of the other recommendations here. Getatchew Merkurya - unbelievable tenor playing. He's also done some really interesting collaborations, including with The Ex. For singers, I agree - two of the iconic figures are Tilahoun Gessesse and Mahmoud Ahmed. And vol. 21 of Ethiopiques for sure - Emahoy's piano playing is absolutely stunning. And like others - I really like Hailu Mergia!
  6. Art Ensemble of Chicago

    Sorry if there's a discussion about this elsewhere - the computer I'm on is so slow, I don't dare do a search! I don't remember seeing anything. I'm really getting into the AEC at the moment. The stuff I have is A Jackson in Your House Message to Our Folks Live in Paris Live (Mandel Hall) Les Staunces a Sophie People in Sorrow Baptizum Fanfare for the Warriors and Urban Bushmen. I'm just keen for a general discussion of all things AEC! I'll doubtless learn a lot, since I'm relatively new to all of this music, so I'd also love to hear recommendations for what else I might try. The more I listen to any of these albums, the more I hear. Little details, big 'structural' things, humour, fascinating sounds, etc. The group clearly had an absolutely rampant imagination! A couple of more specific things - I wonder what it was like to see them live (who knows, I may yet get the chance, but I mean really when Lester Bowie was around and before Joseph Jarman's absence)? And the vocabulary...Sure, I get the English and French stuff...But other spoken passages, and the names of the tunes, etc. Is this just verbal colour? Or some language? I'm thinking about words like 'Odwalla', etc. That last point is really just a curiosity. None of it detracts from my complete fascination with, and enjoyment of, the music. Just wondered what anyone else thinks!
  7. Anthony Braxton Quartet Standards 2020

    That's a nice piece! I sometimes also point friends towards this compilation (available as a 'name your price' download), which offers a number of great 'ways in', depending on your starting preferences.
  8. Anthony Braxton

    I believe it was Compositions 418/419/420 at Oto those nights!
  9. Anthony Braxton

    Were you at those Cafe Oto gigs? I thought they were completely mind-blowing!
  10. Jeanne Lee - Conspiracy reissue, at last

    Amazing record!
  11. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Just stumbled across this looking for something else - but yes! He's really an incredible clarinettist/bass clarinettist...for the latter, he also plays on this one: https://babel-label.bandcamp.com/album/step-wide-step-deep (the same sextet as on Unit[e])!
  12. John Coltrane: Technician

    No problem! I'm pretty sure I've heard Threadgill cite Johnson too...
  13. John Coltrane: Technician

    Vernard Johnson! (http://www.paristransatlantic.com/magazine/interviews/butcher.html)
  14. British Big Bands and Large Ensembles

    Hmmm...could that have been JS's birthday celebration? If so, I think I played with him in a quartet the night after they did 'Tales of the Algonquin'...I've sadly never played that material, which is a shame, since it's amazing, I quite agree! On the subject of John Surman, he sounds absolutely incredible as the featured soloist on Mike Westbrook's 'Love and Understanding' with the Swedish Radio Jazz Group...
  15. Togetherness Music

    If anyone is interested, I have a new album out next week - although available now to preorder, and there are some copies out there already. It's called 'Togetherness Music', and is an extended composition for 16 musicians, featuring (among others) Evan Parker and the Riot Ensemble - an amazing UK-based contemporary music ensemble, who commissioned the work in its original form. There is a full personnel on the Intakt website, and it's available to buy there, or via the Intakt Bandcamp page (it comes in their great new cardboard sleeve). Liner notes by James Fei. Miraculously, there was a window here in the UK last summer where it was safe and legal for us to get together in the studio to work on this music, and I'm thrilled with the results, so please do consider checking it out if you're curious!
  16. Togetherness Music

    Oh great! But no - just a very happy coincidence that those dates all lined up!
  17. Togetherness Music

    Thanks! And yes...I know that feeling!
  18. Togetherness Music

    Wow - thank you! That's really interesting - the Convergence Quartet album? I hadn't thought of that...I need to relisten...fascinating!!!
  19. Togetherness Music

    Thanks so much for listening, Adrian! The Resonances and Rhapsodies session was really fun...one of my last trips abroad to play before the lockdown! (And in fact, we recorded the Dolphy concert only the week after R&R, if I remember correctly...)
  20. Togetherness Music

    I'll take it! I don't have the heart to look at the competition, which could even put me in the relegation zone.
  21. Togetherness Music

    That's really kind of you - thanks so much for listening!
  22. Joe Albany

    I've just in the last couple of weeks heard my first Joe Albany (apart, maybe, from a few tracks with Lester Young)... The Right Combination (with Warne Marsh) and Bird Lives (w/Art Davis and Roy Haynes) This is great stuff. The guy seems to be a true original. I marginally prefer his playing on the album with Warne Marsh, and was wondering if anyone had any recommendations of some more Joe Albany, whether as leader or sideman? And a subsidiary question - on The Right Combination, is there a drummer? I could swear there was, but the sleeve of my LP only lists ts/p/b. Thanks in advance!
  23. BBC4

    To be fair, I spend so much time listening in awe to Louis on those gigs that I sometimes forget *I* was there!
  24. BBC4

    I really enjoyed the programme too...some amazing playing from everyone. Sons of Kemet in particular I loved - live, they're really something. (Yes - Shabaka, Tom Skinner, and I are the same generation - although maybe Tom and I are a couple of years older? - so we've played on each others things, and indeed - Shabaka and I have also played together in Louis Moholo-Moholo's group)... I also saw that stream from Church of Sound, and agree - Nathaniel sounded phenomenal. Great gig!
  25. Anything Good To Say About Andre Vida???

    I don't know Andre too well at all, but did work with him in a large Braxton ensemble in Berlin last Autumn, and he seems like a fascinating guy...and a hell of a player. I really enjoy his work on the Braxton Tristano-school stuff...he also has some very extreme explorations of the saxophone. I feel like I've heard some amazing solo stuff, but can't quite place where/when just now! But anyway, as I say: IMHO he's fantastic throughout this: https://newbraxtonhouse.bandcamp.com/album/quintet-tristano-2014