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Everything posted by mandrill

  1. How do you define genius , as it pertains to jazz?

    Poor Wynton. Can't catch a break. As for Shipp- I was listening to him playing on Third Ear Recitation and thought of Ravel of all things. Has anyone heard any of The Art Of Perelman-Shipp series issued by Leo? Here is an interesting overview. I think the author has a valid point whether it is worth listening to pure improvisational recordings more than once.
  2. Well put and eloquent article, if not of particularly great depth (but it’s written for New Yorker, not Downbeat). I enjoy reading Iverson’s “Do The Math” blog. As a scholar and disseminator of jazz tradition knowledge he is everything Wynton Marsalis is not. Ethan Iverson was a curator of Monk@100 celebration organized by Duke Performances in Durham, NC, that concluded yesterday. There were essentially two parts- J.D. Allen Trio with various guests the first week and Ethan Iverson Trio w/ Dave Williams on bass & Victor Lewis on drums with a guest saxophonist the second. In between there was two afternoons of free performances where four pianists covered the whole Monk's catalog, both solo and in duets. I attended the last show yesterday, were the sax player was Ravi Coltrane. It was a fairly orthodox interpretation of Monk’s Quartet from the 60’s, and enjoyable for what it was. Ethan Iverson gave a little introduction before each number and played Crepuscule with Nellie solo for the encore. The crowd was very enthusiastic. I also saw JD Allen Trio with Dave Douglas the week before and was rather disappointed, as they choose to use Monk’s music as blowing vehicles of sorts, raising temperature considerably but overcooking that particular goose in the process. Dave Douglas especially seemed to be out of Monk’s idiom (granted, he mentions in one of his interviews that he had little use for Monk’s music until fairly recently).
  3. Massimo Urbani - thoughts, recommendations?

    Is "sudden death by heroin" an oxymoron? Some wild-and-woolly playing by Urbani on this album, that I enjoy.
  4. Happy 90th Birthday Jimmy Heath

    Happy Birthday, indeed, Mr. Heath. Will play "On the Trail" tonight in your honor, sir. Which brings me to a question: who is the oldest of the known jazz musicians still living. Roy Haynes, perhaps? 92+ and was still performing up to the last year at least.
  5. Joe Lovano - General discussion

    That's my favorite album by Lovano- by far. I like his work with Paul Motian groups and on Steve Kuhn Coltrane tribute, and live album of duets with Hank Jones can be a pleasant late evening music, but most of his own projects leave me cold, for no discernible reason.
  6. Wynton Marsalis

    Doesn't surprise me at the least. Wynton is much more of a household name than Hank. With all the talk about Mobley on this and few similar forums (there aren't many), he'd still fit the definition of a cult artist- which is really puzzling, providing accessibility of his music and the fact that (including Mosaic set) pretty much his whole catalog is still in print. I just got Mosaic last week and thoroughly enjoy it. Wholeheartedly agree.
  7. Wynton Marsalis

    Providing you're still describing Godspelized, the drummer there is Susie Ibarra- a very different drummer from Elvin Jones indeed, really more of a percussionist than a drummer. As other great examples of her work, I'd highly recommend her Radiance album- trio w/ Charles Burnham on violin and Cooper-Moore on piano, and "Peach Orchard" of William Parker's In Order to Survive quartet.
  8. Wynton Marsalis

    I tend to agree with that assessment of Ware's sound, especially when one listens to his albums from 90's on DIW.
  9. Wynton Marsalis

    Ware, while rooted in 60's free jazz tradition, sounds very different from, say, late Coltrane or Pharoah or Shepp- neither he was trying to emulate any one of them. He learned the language and moved it into new, expanded territory. But to say one can't trace his sound to that time is, frankly, a puzzling statement. I'd take Ware over any of his counterparts from Euro Free improv just for sheer joy of listening for his flights, but, obviously, de gustibus non est disputandum.
  10. Wynton Marsalis

    You just proved my point- their music has evolved from their base of 60's free jazz to something fairly unique, while Wynton's has not and rather regressed. Nowadays he's more like a (self?)-appointed CEO of Jazz Inc (Lincoln Center, Dizzy Coca Cola, etc.). As a musician worthy attention to the music he's making, imho he can be safely discarded at this point.
  11. Wynton Marsalis

    Almost everything by William Parker, David S. Ware (alas, he's not with us anymore), Tim Berne, Joe McPhee- those are just some major names i'm getting from the top of my head- I can list many more. Obviously, the music has evolved and none of those sounds like an (almost) perfect copy of AEC or Ayler or Coleman and late Coltrane bands but you can still trace the lineage. And most of their music don't fall into free-for-all blowing sessions category. And then there are other artists who are pushing jazz in some interesting, if not exactly new, directions. Just a few examples: Jaimeo Brown- Transcendence (Motema) Eric Hofbauer Quartet- Prehistoric Jazz, Vol 1 & 2 Matana Roberts- Coin Coin Series. Then there are major stylists on their instruments like Dave Douglas, Bryan Lynch, Avishai Cohen (trumpet), JD Allen (sax), Jason Moran (piano), etc. All of this apparently flying below (or rather above) Wynton's radar, while he's busy rehashing classics from jazz "golden age" and with some racial bias to boot.
  12. Wynton Marsalis

    Kind of telling that for an artist who's been in a forefront of jazz for 30+ years, his best work is something he's done in the very beginning of his career. But even those albums are nothing special or innovating in a wider view- just an (almost) perfect copy of Miles 2nd quintet sound.
  13. Wynton Marsalis

    Frankly, I have little respect for all those late Coltrane & Ayler wannabes either. And I'd agree with you that for every genuine practitioner and developer of that style (David S. Ware, Joe McPhee, William Parker, Dennis Gonzalez, etc.) there are countless imitators, especially in Europe. And someone like Ken Vandermark would probably fit a definition of a curator in a Museum of Free Jazz, even that he's driven by the best intentions and the genuine love of that music. But: 1. That style of jazz is rather a fringe movement (many of current practitioners won't even consider it jazz and rather use "free improvisation" for the lack of better term). The reason those folks are not disparaged similarly is because they are not in a forefront, like Marsalis and not getting anywhere near his access to money and resources needed to grow and promote this music. Neither they have a mission to make jazz "great again" by looking at the past only. 2. To the best of my knowledge, none of those people disparage any other/older styles of jazz (unlike Marsalis, who at some point was openly hostile and made disparaging remarks about free jazz, fusion, etc., to make all those styles sound illegitimate in the jazz canon), they just for one reason or another choose to play in a different idiom. You be the judge. That's the closest I could find to Mats Gustafsson playing "straight ahead" jazz.
  14. Wynton Marsalis

    I think of it all as a shop, where Wynton and his disciples are specializing in painting very good copies of old masters paintings, for some weird reason thinking that's exactly what humanity needs. Anything beyond impressionists is anathema to them. They started emulating Renoir and Monet, but eventually that appeared too modern for them, so they went back in time and started making (almost) perfect copies of Dutch Masters and now trying at Caravaggio and Raphael. If market is right, they may even adjust their philosophy and start making copies of Picasso- (almost) perfect- but copies nevertheless. That is not what jazz is about though. So, his (arguably) impressive technical chops aside, he's always been just an imitator and very likely will remain as such. A curator and exhibit maker of expensive Madame Tussaud Jazz Museum.
  15. Wynton Marsalis

    Muddy Waters would like to disagree. But maybe those boys from England weren't white enough to get it right.
  16. Alvin Queen micro-corner

    One-off band with the late great Sal Nistico.
  17. If jazz albums only then:
  18. Abdullah Ibrahim- African Magic (Enja, 2002) Randy Weston- Ancient Future (Mutable, 2002) Stefano Bollani- Joy in Spite of Everything (ECM, 2014) Jason Moran- Black Stars (Blue Note, 2001) Yelena Eckemoff- Forget-Me-Not (L&H, 2011) Junko Moriya Orchestra- Groovin’ Forvard (Spice of Life 2009) Mike LeDonne - Speak (Cellar Live, 2013) Jessica Williams- Live at Yoshi’s (MAXJAZZ, 2004) Jessica Williams- Billy's Theme: A Tribute to Dr. Billy Taylor (Origin, 2006) Nik Bartsch- Ronin Live (ECM, 2011) I assume it's too late for Hod O'Brien and Gery Allen to be on this list, otherwise: Hod O'Brien- Live at Blues Alley- Vol 1-3 (Reservoir, 2005) Gery Allen- Grand River Crossings (Motown & Motor City Inspirations) (Motema, 2013)
  19. Two generations of kora players Just hope someone here gets this album while it sells for a song (I'm not the seller). It's so good it's worth a bit of proselytizing.
  20. Duke Performances are celebrating Monk centennial this fall with series of concerts. My picks so far are JD Allen Trio w/Dave Douglas & Ethan Iverson Trio w/Ravi Coltrane. Geri Allen were scheduled to perform there...
  21. Arthur Blythe R.I.P.

    You are correct. The live concert that was released as two LPs The Grip & Metamorphosis (later combined on one CD) was recorded in October of 1977, while Bush Baby, being his first studio session, recorded in December of that year.
  22. Louis Sclavis - recommendations please

    I like "Sources" (Atlas Trio) & "Silk & Salt Melodies" (same trio augmented by percussionist). Great music to listen to when I'm on the move (driving, walking, etc.)