king ubu

BFT 48 discussion - disc one

30 posts in this topic

So then, let the fun begin - I hope that most of the few who actually were interested in getting the download links will actually be able to post some comments!

I am more interested in getting some impressions about the music, rather than the guessing game. The theme of the disc may make it easy to do the guessing for a select few (but I think none of them watned my links) and difficult for most, but I won't say no more now...

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed and/or will enjoy playing the music I selected! It got a bit too much, possibly, but then I didn't have much time since my slot came quicker than planned, and also since I changed months with gnhrtg. Anyway, if I had more time, I wouldn't have been able to boil it down to 80 minutes but maybe to 120 or so, but then I thought why not share all of it and make it two full discs! So disc 1 is actually all commercially available material, while disc 2 consists of some live stuff, too (as you'll have noticed when you have played it, some in sub-par sound, but the track that sounds worst was in my opinion the most beautiful I had by that group).

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I've listened to it all twice through so far and am pretty sure I know nothing here except maybe just one tune so I won't bother with repeatedly saying that for each track.

1. This I quite like - simple tune of no particular merit but the performance seems rounded and has a certain earthy feel, with plenty of energy. Good start.

2. So this is it - the one tune I recognize (as does everyone else) and a fine performance. I thought the alto sounded just a bit "Criss-like" in attack sometimes but not suggesting for one moment that it's him (one of the most easily recognized altos). Another track I will be able to listen to more - doing well so far.

3. Raw - trumpet sounds pretty poor technically. Swings along in a slightly turgid sort of way. Strange that they tried to fade away at the end, without much success. Still quite like this but not as much.

I'll try a bit of Disk 2 now, just to start the ball rolling on both. Back here later.

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2. So this is it - the one tune I recognize (as does everyone else) and a fine performance. I thought the alto sounded just a bit "Criss-like" in attack sometimes but not suggesting for one moment that it's him (one of the most easily recognized altos). Another track I will be able to listen to more - doing well so far.

Not Criss, of course...

3. Raw - trumpet sounds pretty poor technically. Swings along in a slightly turgid sort of way. Strange that they tried to fade away at the end, without much success. Still quite like this but not as much.

I'll try a bit of Disk 2 now, just to start the ball rolling on both. Back here later.

Yup, you're right, trumpet is... precocious I guess? But I still like the raw energy of it! There's that moment where he clearly loses it, can't compete technically with what he hears/wants to play - a strong moment, somehow...

Thanks for jumping in so fast!

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hope to listen to these later today now that I've worked out how to open RAR files !!

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track 1. Echos of Randy Weston and Monk, nice stuff especially the piano. Alto no slouch either

track 2. reminds me of Art Pepper

track 3 hardbop. Roger Guerin?

track 7 Hi life style more references to Randy Weston

track8 , excellent no idea who

really nice compilation, strong African influence to many of the performances

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Having some fun with this and a positive id on something which makes a change for me!

Thanks and more impressions later

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OH HO HO HO!

1 Very odd spiky thing, which suddenly breaks out from a halting 6/8 into straight ahead swinging in four for the second part of each solo. Kind of interesting. Very nice trumpet player. Pianist sounds like he’s driving it. Monk? [second listen – yes this is probably Abdullah.]

2 “Body & soul” by an alto player. Might be Lee Konitz. Starts off a bit spiky, but halfway through bursts into melody! Then it falls off a bit. [second listen - this could be Kippie – not too sure.]

3 Modern big band thing. Very hard, metallic sound – even the piano a bit. Really don’t like the sound of this music. I particularly dislike the screechy, tinny trumpet player. [second listen – could be another Abdullah, not sure.]

4 Very nice relaxed groove set up by the piano, bass and drums. Don’t think I know this alto player. Ah, as it goes on, it’s Dolphy, I think, though I’ve heard very little of him. If it’s not Dolphy, it’s probably Steve Lacy, whom I’ve never heard before. I like the pianist a lot. Be interested to see who it is. This is an interesting and obviously very good piece with a lot of stuff going down, even if it mostly isn’t aimed in my direction. [second time around this sounds like Kippie again. Is this one I’ve got? Not sure; don’t think so. I think it may be a different pianist to the one he’s better known for playing with.]

5 I think I know this intro… “Memories of you”… I don’t know this recording. Cor… what a lovely alto player! (Now it’s gonna be Dolphy or Lacy, I just know it!!!) God, this guy is just KILLING me! Just up my street! Wonder if it’s Phil Woods. No, It’s Kippie Moketsi and it’s no wonder I thought I knew the intro.

6 Is that a harpsichord? This sounds to me a bit along the lines of Abdullah Ibrahim. But it isn’t one to which I’m immediately attracted, which is usually the case with his music. So I guess it’s some other South African band. Perhaps the alto player is Kippie.

7 Something else with a South African sound to it. Dudu Pukwana’s in there, by the sound of it. Is this Brotherhood of Breath? Not sure if he worked with that band. I have the feeling I have a recording of this tune by a more recent SA band.

8 Oh, I’ve got this. It’s the original version of the tune that gave Basil his nickname.

9 Another by the same band. “African sun”.

10 Another South African job, by the sound of it. I don’t think I’ve got this one, though :D Kwela flute and a very active bass player. Fuck, that bass player’s got some bleedin’ chops! Oh, is it a cello playing all that stuff? Yes, the bass player’s laying down the Mbaqanga rhythm and the cellist is racing all around his instrument. No idea who this is. Very interesting.

11 More from SA. Jonas Gwangwa on trombone? Kippie again? I’m going to go back to the first few tracks – maybe this whole BFT is from SA…

12 Something else from SA that I recognise. Yes, I do… now what? Oh yes, I was playing this a couple of weeks ago. The title track from his Elektra album.

13 More from SA. Oh, this is an old sounding biggish band. Could it be the Jazz Pioneers? Never heard them. Interesting that you get that Mbaqanga beat even back in the – what, forties? Early fifties? And of course, those Bantu harmonies run through all this stuff.

Ow! What a surprising selection Ubu!!!!! What a delight!

MG

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track 1. Echos of Randy Weston and Monk, nice stuff especially the piano. Alto no slouch either

track 2. reminds me of Art Pepper

track 3 hardbop. Roger Guerin?

track 7 Hi life style more references to Randy Weston

track8 , excellent no idea who

really nice compilation, strong African influence to many of the performances

Interesting comparison with Art Pepper there! Didn't occur to me before, but sort of makes sense...

#3 certainly is non-US players trying to play some hardbop...

#8 is a stone classic...

Having some fun with this and a positive id on something which makes a change for me!

Thanks and more impressions later

Hey, what positive ID? I'd like to know, if only by you dropping a hint or posting a link!

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OH HO HO HO!

Oh ho ho ho! I should have known and told you not to post until June 20th or so... almost spoiling the party there, Sir! But good to hear you're enjoying it!

1 Very odd spiky thing, which suddenly breaks out from a halting 6/8 into straight ahead swinging in four for the second part of each solo. Kind of interesting. Very nice trumpet player. Pianist sounds like he’s driving it. Monk? [second listen – yes this is probably Abdullah.]

Got it! I wonder can you guess more than the pianist?

2 “Body & soul” by an alto player. Might be Lee Konitz. Starts off a bit spiky, but halfway through bursts into melody! Then it falls off a bit. [second listen - this could be Kippie – not too sure.]

Of course "Body & Soul," yes... I just included this because it's sort of atypical since it's an ole standard - there's a reason for that, though...

3 Modern big band thing. Very hard, metallic sound – even the piano a bit. Really don’t like the sound of this music. I particularly dislike the screechy, tinny trumpet player. [second listen – could be another Abdullah, not sure.]

I find the trumpet player interesting - he's trying but he's not there yet. There's that spot in his solo where he has that idea (wants to go up) and simply doesn't pull it... an embarassing moment I'm sure, but also a strong moment, somehow. This came out on a collection of - as far as I know - previously unreleased music, it's pretty old, may be the reason for the weird sound. Not Abdulah, indeed... and not a big band, either, just a sextet...

4 Very nice relaxed groove set up by the piano, bass and drums. Don’t think I know this alto player. Ah, as it goes on, it’s Dolphy, I think, though I’ve heard very little of him. If it’s not Dolphy, it’s probably Steve Lacy, whom I’ve never heard before. I like the pianist a lot. Be interested to see who it is. This is an interesting and obviously very good piece with a lot of stuff going down, even if it mostly isn’t aimed in my direction. [second time around this sounds like Kippie again. Is this one I’ve got? Not sure; don’t think so. I think it may be a different pianist to the one he’s better known for playing with.]

This cut is one of my favourites! I've been unable so far to locate the CD reissue on which the album it comes from was included... it's tenor sax (Dolphy is in sound the closest you'll get to Parker, in lines the weirdest you'll get playing inside changes - whatever altered changes they may be... you need to check out some, even though it's not "aimed in your direction", as you put it! Same for Lacy - he played soprano [almost?] exclusively...)

5 I think I know this intro… “Memories of you”… I don’t know this recording. Cor… what a lovely alto player! (Now it’s gonna be Dolphy or Lacy, I just know it!!!) God, this guy is just KILLING me! Just up my street! Wonder if it’s Phil Woods. No, It’s Kippie Moketsi and it’s no wonder I thought I knew the intro.

Got it, again! One of my personal and sentimental favourites... yes, of course this guy is KILLING! :excited:

6 Is that a harpsichord? This sounds to me a bit along the lines of Abdullah Ibrahim. But it isn’t one to which I’m immediately attracted, which is usually the case with his music. So I guess it’s some other South African band. Perhaps the alto player is Kippie.

I don't know... sounds weird but seems to be a piano - I got several similar recordings with this sound and the liners giving piano...

PS: perhaps, perhaps, perhaps (do count...)

7 Something else with a South African sound to it. Dudu Pukwana’s in there, by the sound of it. Is this Brotherhood of Breath? Not sure if he worked with that band. I have the feeling I have a recording of this tune by a more recent SA band.

Not Dudu! I'd be very astounded if anyone (besides one of our local aliases) would know this... love the whole album! (Dudu did work with BoB, also with McGregor's first band, the "Blue Notes".)

8 Oh, I’ve got this. It’s the original version of the tune that gave Basil his nickname.

Yup - stone classic! Couldn't omit it and I love it! The alto solo ain't bad, either...

9 Another by the same band. “African sun”.

Sure, sure (same band as which one? To nitpick, not as #8...)

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OH HO HO HO!

oh ho ho ho - part two...

10 Another South African job, by the sound of it. I don’t think I’ve got this one, though :D Kwela flute and a very active bass player. Fuck, that bass player’s got some bleedin’ chops! Oh, is it a cello playing all that stuff? Yes, the bass player’s laying down the Mbaqanga rhythm and the cellist is racing all around his instrument. No idea who this is. Very interesting.

Effin chops - one of the greatest! Bleed they did indeed, alas... McGregor, Dudu, Feza... :(

11 More from SA. Jonas Gwangwa on trombone? Kippie again? I’m going to go back to the first few tracks – maybe this whole BFT is from SA…

'bone is from yurp, Kippie isn't here... yup yup, that's the theme... :tup

12 Something else from SA that I recognise. Yes, I do… now what? Oh yes, I was playing this a couple of weeks ago. The title track from his Elektra album.

Yeah! Another great favourite - in fact the LP of this was in constant play at my parents' home when I grew up and most likely played a pretty essential role in me getting drawn to jazz... one of my first concerts in the mid nineties when I was in high school (swiss equivalent of) was Ibrahim solo, playing (and singing on one or two occasions - his "Tuula Dubula" on those solo albums from around 1980 is magic! That evening he sang his Coltrane homage, though) in a beautiful church here in Zurich. Still a magic remembrance for me. Also I love the alto player who gets the most solo space on this album (he's terrific on "South Africa", also on "At Montreux" and "Zimbabwe", but "South Africa" - also done live in Montreux, btw - is my favourite of those).

13 More from SA. Oh, this is an old sounding biggish band. Could it be the Jazz Pioneers? Never heard them. Interesting that you get that Mbaqanga beat even back in the – what, forties? Early fifties? And of course, those Bantu harmonies run through all this stuff.

Much later... retro stuff by the band you mentioned, indeed. I took this from a sampler, haven't got any full album of them and am not sure I'd be interested, but this track is a good one. The closing tune the musicians played in the old district 6 days when they were too tired to play for the mobsters anymore...

Ow! What a surprising selection Ubu!!!!! What a delight!

sure is, ain't it! :g

Thanks for your great post, MG! Waiting eagerly for your opinion on disc two!

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9 Another by the same band. “African sun”.

Sure, sure (same band as which one? To nitpick, not as #8...)

Indeed - same band as "Memories of you". #8 is, I think, a later edition of the same band with completely different personnel, except the pianist.

MG

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OH HO HO HO!

Oh ho ho ho! I should have known and told you not to post until June 20th or so... almost spoiling the party there, Sir! But good to hear you're enjoying it!

Thought I was being fairly oblique. :bwallace:

MG

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9 Another by the same band. “African sun”.

Sure, sure (same band as which one? To nitpick, not as #8...)

Indeed - same band as "Memories of you". #8 is, I think, a later edition of the same band with completely different personnel, except the pianist.

MG

correct, professor!

I totally forgot for your encompassing love of african music... I thought there might be just one or two persons being able to pin down the occasional track and maybe a few more that recognize just one or two cuts, but this, I didn't expect! -_-

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9 Another by the same band. “African sun”.

Sure, sure (same band as which one? To nitpick, not as #8...)

Indeed - same band as "Memories of you". #8 is, I think, a later edition of the same band with completely different personnel, except the pianist.

MG

correct, professor!

I totally forgot for your encompassing love of african music... I thought there might be just one or two persons being able to pin down the occasional track and maybe a few more that recognize just one or two cuts, but this, I didn't expect! -_-

Not that it was wrong, Flurin, because Kippie DESERVES to be heard, but it was too much of a giveaway having a lot of tracks by the same band. You should go looking for CDs by Robbie, Basil, Barney, from that band and Ezra Ngcukana, not from that band. I think you'll enjoy them all.

Did Jim Sangrey get the links? HE'S the man should hear it!

MG

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I haven't been able to find anything by Coetzee, Rachabane or Jansen, alas... but I still wanted to share this music, even though the number of discs I picked it from was pretty small!

Sangrey got the links even though he didn't ask for them (as did 10 or 11 others - the whole BFT thing is fading away it seems so I just sent the links out to a few more, hoping some of them might join in, but had no reaction whatsoever to my spamming action...)

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I haven't been able to find anything by Coetzee, Rachabane or Jansen, alas... but I still wanted to share this music, even though the number of discs I picked it from was pretty small!

Sangrey got the links even though he didn't ask for them (as did 10 or 11 others - the whole BFT thing is fading away it seems so I just sent the links out to a few more, hoping some of them might join in, but had no reaction whatsoever to my spamming action...)

Well, you got one fan here. Also for the bonus disc, which I'm going to post about in a mo.

MG

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I liked the selections on your first discs, but could only guess that the theme for this first CD must have been the alto saxophone.

I did of course recognize Body and Soul and found some tracks that remind me of Lee Konitz and Jackie McLean, but as I understand most tracks are played by African musicians, these guesses must be wrong.

I'm anxious to learn the thru players for this selection, as it contains music that made me anxious !!

Keep swinging

Durium

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Glad to hear you enjoyed the disc! No Konitz or Jackie Mac here, and alto sax isn't the theme... there's some fine tenor in there, too (on #9, for instance, although there's an alto there as well...)

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Having some fun with this and a positive id on something which makes a change for me!

Thanks and more impressions later

Hey, what positive ID? I'd like to know, if only by you dropping a hint or posting a link!

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Glad you like it, Colin!

#7 is a rare one, there's another cut from the same album on this disc, by the way (but with a different line-up...)

#9 has been identified correctly by MG - it's the title track from "African Sun" (the KAZ or Camden disc).

As for #8 - the sound of the piano (that's how it goes on the CD info...) is indeed weird, but I have that sound on other SA recordings... don't know what it actually is, some weirdo harpsichord or an odd way of miking a weird piano...

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1. The playing sounds familiar to me, but I’m not able to guess who this is. I like the tune. This one isn’t very polished at all. The pianist reminds me of Randy Weston, but this is not him. Interesting time changes. No one really dominates the proceedings, but everyone does a very nice job with their parts. I really like what the pianist and horns add to the tune. Kind of a bizarre switch from the ensemble sections to the solos. Everything seems to change: the time, the feel, etc… A rough dropout about two minutes in. Is this from vinyl? The sound quality isn’t bad overall, so I’d guess this is something from the sixties, possibly into the early 1970’s. Not bad at all.

2. A nice version of an old standard. Not “pleasant,” as the altoist’s tone is sharp and the playing is fairly angular. Sort of what I would expect a hybrid of Lee Konitz and Art Pepper to sound like.

3. Not something I would want to listen to very often. The sound is fairly harsh and tinny, and the trumpet player gets more points for enthusiasm than for execution. His chops are still lacking a bit. This band has their heart in the right place but they could use some more time to develop.

4. A nice, relaxed groove, at least until the sax solos around 4 minutes in. I love how the band stays relaxed and casual even as the sax starts to get more and more animated. Some interesting tempo changes, too. Not a song that completely grabs me, even though I appreciate all of the individual contributions. It has sort of a Randy Weston or Abdullah Ibrahim “African Sun” vibe to it, although this band takes the tune and twists it around more than I would expect from Randy or Abdullah.

5. The piano is almost irrelevant, as the alto is so captivating. Fantastic playing! He has a great tone, and pours such soul into every note. No clue who this is, but this is a wonderful little solo masquerading as a duet. Very, very nice.

6. Is this a piano or a harpsichord? This is a really odd sounding piano, if it is one. I find the playing to be a bit inflexible and stilted. The sax has a nice tone, but this track isn't really grabbing me.

Edited by John B

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As I will be away next week and need to take care of some things before I leave, I doubt I will be able to post detailed comments, but just a few jots here to leave my general impression. Which is good. This is nice & lively stuff, some of it more high-life than jazz, some of it a bit "primitive" in theme or execution, and some of it too smooth to convey its deeper joy to me. Anyhow, my guess is that the theme is South African jazz with Ibrahim on several tracks and I think Dudu is there and the Blue Notes and Kippie and whom have you. Good and enjoyable disk all in all, so here's to hoping I do find the time to make some detailed comments soon.

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7. This playing on this tune is fairly ragged and not polished, but intentionally so, I would guess. I really like the ensemble playing. This reminds me of someone, but I’m not quite placing it. Sort of Brotherhood of Breath-ish, but I don’t believe this is them. A very nice tune.

8. Ok, I’ve heard this one before, but I’m not positive, off the top of my head, if it was this version. This is from one of the discs on KAZ / Camden, right? Such a great tune. The piano has that odd harpsichord-like sound again. Listening on headphones there is some fairly annoying panning from left to right that is somewhat distracting but doesn’t detract from the quality of the playing. This is one of my favorite songs on the test. (After going back and listening to this one more time I’m fairly certain this is on one of the discs you sent me. Based on track times I’ll guess this is track #5 off of this album. I’ll double check when I get home from work and have access to the KAZ discs.)

9. KAZ / Camden again. I know this song…the piano sounds more like a piano than on track #8. Same player, however. The sax tone is fairly rough, but it gives the tune a nice edge. I’m not recalling who the other players are, so I’m not positive this is the same band as #8. Same era, correct? Another fantastic tune that I always enjoy hearing. He has such a strong body of work and I really love this run of albums, in particular. This is the title track of this album.

10. Wow, what a performance by the bass player. This has to be Johnny Dyani, correct? No idea who is on the flute, and I’m not positive if there is a drummer or if that percussive sound comes from the bass? I think that is just the bass. Nice playing from the flute, but it is the bass that demands to be heard. So, so good. A fantastic, virtuoso performance.

Edited by John B

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Thanks a lot, John! Time for my reactions, now...

1. The playing sounds familiar to me, but I’m not able to guess who this is. I like the tune. This one isn’t very polished at all. The pianist reminds me of Randy Weston, but this is not him. Interesting time changes. No one really dominates the proceedings, but everyone does a very nice job with their parts. I really like what the pianist and horns add to the tune. Kind of a bizarre switch from the ensemble sections to the solos. Everything seems to change: the time, the feel, etc… A rough dropout about two minutes in. Is this from vinyl? The sound quality isn’t bad overall, so I’d guess this is something from the sixties, possibly into the early 1970’s. Not bad at all.

I have no clue about the editorial history of this - took it from a CD, but it's badly documented as usual with this stuff... it's from the late 50s, by the way. It's not Weston of course... but they both took their clues from the same group of people, I guess...

2. A nice version of an old standard. Not “pleasant,” as the altoist’s tone is sharp and the playing is fairly angular. Sort of what I would expect a hybrid of Lee Konitz and Art Pepper to sound like.

The altoist is what makes this special, of course... he's one of the recurring musicians on this test, a great, great musician that is much too little known...

3. Not something I would want to listen to very often. The sound is fairly harsh and tinny, and the trumpet player gets more points for enthusiasm than for execution. His chops are still lacking a bit. This band has their heart in the right place but they could use some more time to develop.

This is historical material again (#1-3 are), I think never before released until when the CD I took it from came out in the 90s. Formative years... the trumpet player got quite far (everybody, actually), but here his grasp definitely outreaches his technical abilities - yet still I love that moment where he clearly loses it...

4. A nice, relaxed groove, at least until the sax solos around 4 minutes in. I love how the band stays relaxed and casual even as the sax starts to get more and more animated. Some interesting tempo changes, too. Not a song that completely grabs me, even though I appreciate all of the individual contributions. It has sort of a Randy Weston or Abdullah Ibrahim “African Sun” vibe to it, although this band takes the tune and twists it around more than I would expect from Randy or Abdullah.

I love this one! Lifted it off a compilation and it's all I have by this tenor sax player and in fact this group of musicians - have the disc on spcecial order for two months now, but with no luck... it's neither Randy nor Dollar here - but we'll get to "African Sun" farther down the line, of course, as you shall have noticed by now ;)

5. The piano is almost irrelevant, as the alto is so captivating. Fantastic playing! He has a great tone, and pours such soul into every note. No clue who this is, but this is a wonderful little solo masquerading as a duet. Very, very nice.

Fantastic alto, sure... you ought to know this!

6. Is this a piano or a harpsichord? This is a really odd sounding piano, if it is one. I find the playing to be a bit inflexible and stilted. The sax has a nice tone, but this track isn't really grabbing me.

Hmmm, I liked this better than you, obviously - as far as I know (and as far as the crappy documentation on the CD goes), this is a piano - same for a few other tracks on my compilation...

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7. This playing on this tune is fairly ragged and not polished, but intentionally so, I would guess. I really like the ensemble playing. This reminds me of someone, but I’m not quite placing it. Sort of Brotherhood of Breath-ish, but I don’t believe this is them. A very nice tune.

Not BoB indeed - a lovely album I lifted this from (needle drop, but it's out on CD, too).

I just love this kind of lose slightly polyphonic ensemble playing!

8. Ok, I’ve heard this one before, but I’m not positive, off the top of my head, if it was this version. This is from one of the discs on KAZ / Camden, right? Such a great tune. The piano has that odd harpsichord-like sound again. Listening on headphones there is some fairly annoying panning from left to right that is somewhat distracting but doesn’t detract from the quality of the playing. This is one of my favorite songs on the test. (After going back and listening to this one more time I’m fairly certain this is on one of the discs you sent me. Based on track times I’ll guess this is track #5 off of this album. I’ll double check when I get home from work and have access to the KAZ discs.)

You're correct there :tup

Stone classic stuff, I love the tenor a lot here!

9. KAZ / Camden again. I know this song…the piano sounds more like a piano than on track #8. Same player, however. The sax tone is fairly rough, but it gives the tune a nice edge. I’m not recalling who the other players are, so I’m not positive this is the same band as #8. Same era, correct? Another fantastic tune that I always enjoy hearing. He has such a strong body of work and I really love this run of albums, in particular. This is the title track of this album.

Correct again, of course! Not the same player, though... rather the great alto again (he's not present on #8 - that's another good alto player there...)

10. Wow, what a performance by the bass player. This has to be Johnny Dyani, correct? No idea who is on the flute, and I’m not positive if there is a drummer or if that percussive sound comes from the bass? I think that is just the bass. Nice playing from the flute, but it is the bass that demands to be heard. So, so good. A fantastic, virtuoso performance.

Not Dyani, sorry.

This is an overdubbed solo performance, by the way - I haven't stated this before, but maybe someone gets the idea now? Makes it all the more awesome to know this was done by just one crazy guy! He can be heard in ensembles on disc 2, by the way...

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