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Bright Moments

Gabor Szabo

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any love?

i like those cti's :)

another life cut tragically short. :(

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His Gypsy 66 seemed to be very popular when it was new. I only have one album, Spellbinder, which I enjoy fairly often, mostly because it doesn't sound like any other album I own.

Szabo co-owned Skye Records with Gary McFarland and Cal Tjader as I recall.

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His Gypsy 66 seemed to be very popular when it was new. I only have one album, Spellbinder, which I enjoy fairly often, mostly because it doesn't sound like any other album I own.

Szabo co-owned Skye Records with Gary McFarland and Cal Tjader as I recall.

i just enjoted this one!!

szabo-f.jpg

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Big Gabor fan here. I'm a real sucker for any 60s jazz or pseudo-jazz that has an eastern/Indian element to it. Some of Chico Hamilton's 60s Impulse albums with Gabor sound like soundtracks for American International films about teenagers on Sunset Strip experimenting with hallucinogens.

That said, I don't like everything that Gabor did. All of his Impulse albums are great, but his Skye and CTI albums were hit or miss. 1969 is a very sleepy easy listening album, though it has a couple of good tracks. The CTI album I really like is Mizrab. The other CTI album sounds like Allman Brothers jams - at least it did after one single spin, before I unloaded it.

It's sad that the 3 musicians who formed Skye - Gabor, Gary, and Cal - all died young. All three are in heavy rotation on my turntable.

Edited by Teasing the Korean

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I'd start here...

Gabor Szabo- The Sorcerer

200618290.jpg

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I think his work with Chico Hamilton really holds up as a the work of a distinctive voice with a personal story to tell.

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I think his work with Chico Hamilton really holds up as a the work of a distinctive voice with a personal story to tell.

Yes, I would agree wholeheartedly with this assessment. Those albums are among the first jazz recordings that I heard and purchased back in the late 1960s. That was a hell of a band.

The guitar was my bridge to jazz. The first guys I heard were Wes Montgomery and Kenny Burrell. Szabo was in the "second wave" and I retain a great fondness for his playing. He was a very original stylist.

His Impulse! label releases varied all over the map. Gypsy '66 and The Sorcerer are my picks. Spellbinder has a wicked groove happening through most of the album despite some less-than-great material, "Bang, Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)" in particular; "My Foolish Heart" on this one is a definite heartbreaker - a beautiful ballad performance. At Monterey is nice too. That band with Jimmy Stewart on second guitar was happening. Even his most commercial albums had little gems of inspiration peeking out from amidst the schlock. Light My Fire and Wind, Sky & Diamonds are godawful when it comes to the overproduction and fake hipness quotient but Szabo still comes up with some nice solos. I'd skip these unless you can find used copies for a buck or less in a discount bin somewhere. :rolleyes:

Of the CTI albums, my favorite has always been Rambler. Hmmm... It's interesting that my favorite Bill Frisell album has the same title (it's Frisell's first for ECM.)

I've never heard the Skye or Blue Thumb label releases. I recently read that the two dates for Four Leaf Clover - Small World and Belsta River - have been reissued on one CD as In Stockholm. Although I've never heard these albums they look promising "on paper." The CD - natch - seems to be OOP. This collection appears to be available at the iTunes Store and here as MP3 downloads.

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I have Spellbinder and Belsta River and they're both outstanding. I'm going to track down some of the other recommendations in this thread.

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I love Gabor!

I totally missed out on him the first time around (the 60s, that is), but over the last few years I've acquired most of his recordings under his own name, and with Chico Hamilton, Gary McFarland and so on, and I've thoroughly enjoyed them. Most are LPs, as a lot have not been reissued on CD, but it has not been hard to find good copies of the LPs.

He is a true original, and I love his rather tart sound (hard to describe it in words really). He was consistently good.

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Reminds me of a day at a record store in Chicago circa 1968 - Customer asks for the new Gaber Sasbo record an the new one by Ditsy Gillipsy. These were 2 new Impulse releases IIRC.

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I remember liking this album with Bobby Womack when it came out, but not sure how well it holds up. Haven't heard it in a long time. It's pretty commersh but not in a bad way.
R-932697-1303723021.jpeg.jpg

 

A couple with Charles Lloyd were pretty good, too: "Of Course, Of Course" and the recent Resonance album "Manhattan Stories."
R-7008112-1431550797-4732.jpeg.jpg

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15 hours ago, JSngry said:

Hey, look - it's NEW Gabor Szabo!

http://www.globalmusicp.com/gabor-szabo.html

You'd think that they would've mentioned one word about Gabor Szabo(1) in the article.

I read a round table discussion with a bunch of jazz guitarists in Guitar Player magazine, and they were talking about their excesses, and Joe Pass mentioned his junk habit, but when it came to Gabor, he said his problem was with excessive sex. Actually it turned out that GS had a bad junk habit that eventually took his life. It wasn't a well known fact; even Larry Coryell told a story in his autobiography about the time that  he went to Gabor's place, and he thought it was a riot that he turned this old guy from Hungary on to pot. Little did he know...

I read an old Fillmore East program online for the Mothers of Invention concert there for the "Live at the Fillmore East" album in 1971, and they had a little blurb about each member of the band. Under the keyboard player Bob Harris' name, he said that he was most proud of the fact that he was playing in Gabor's group, just before he joined The Mothers. Harris was a lifetime junkie, jazz pianist, so the junk connection probably had something to do with him playing with Gabor. Zappa must have found out about Harris' habit, because he only lasted a few months with The MOI. I'd give anything to hear Harris with Gabor's group, but there are no recordings of that group.

Gabor represented the anti-Tal Farlow  style of jazz guitar, and he wanted jazz guitar to go in a completely different direction. My fave recordings of his were his astonishing version of My Foolish Heart, with only Richard Davis accompanying him, and some of the stuff with Gary McFarland, where GM would vocalize with his vibes.

 

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Dude could groove. Articulation! The way we would alternately snap notes off, let others ring out/sustain, even flirt with feedback. Not many other jazz guitarists of his generation explored the electric qualities of his instrument like he did. 

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I dig the Belsta River album and his playing with Charles Lloyd & Chico Hamilton on those albums. The story about how he was mad with George Benson for ripping him off is entertaining and enlightening. 

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The June edition of Jazzwise has an interview with Charles Lloyd where he explains the problems he experienced on tour with Gabor and Albert Stinson. 
 

Anthony

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It is clear that popsike was an influence on Gabor Szabo, based on his LP track listings; but I have wondered about the degree to which Gabor's earlier contributions to Chico Hamilton's albums influenced rock groups.  

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4 hours ago, Teasing the Korean said:

It is clear that popsike was an influence on Gabor Szabo, based on his LP track listings; but I have wondered about the degree to which Gabor's earlier contributions to Chico Hamilton's albums influenced rock groups.  

Santana used one of Gabor's tunes, "Gypsy Queen" on the Abraxas album, as a prelude to "Black Magic Woman". Unlike "Bad" Benson, there was no stiffing of Szabo by Santana.

You can hear clear influence of Szabo on the song, "I'm Reaching Out on All Sides" on the band "If's" first album, in the intro and on Terry Smith's guitar solo.

Robby Krieger of The Doors, Jorma Kaukonen ("White Rabbit") of Jefferson Airplane, and Jerry Garcia were all influenced by Szabo in the 60s.

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Refresh my memory (seriously), how did Benson stiff Szabo?

Just don't give me that "Breezin'" crap - it's a Bobby Womack song, and Szabo doesn't play anything like Benson on it, and vice-versa.  Did Szabot get a writer's credit on the original? No. should he have? Hell if I know. But he didn't.

Tommy Lee Puma gave Benson a better production, but how is that ripping off Szabo?

And I bet that Bobby Womack's not in the least bit bitter about any of it!

I dunno man, I love the cat's playing (at least his earlier stuff, at some point it sounds to me like he just got lost), but...sounds like maybe a pretty flawed person (as are we all) who did not at all have a good solid head for too much except addictions?

Tragic, sure, but hey, we all make our choices, and then we die.

 

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Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, sgcim said:

Santana used one of Gabor's tunes, "Gypsy Queen" on the Abraxas album, as a prelude to "Black Magic Woman". Unlike "Bad" Benson, there was no stiffing of Szabo by Santana.

You can hear clear influence of Szabo on the song, "I'm Reaching Out on All Sides" on the band "If's" first album, in the intro and on Terry Smith's guitar solo.

Robby Krieger of The Doors, Jorma Kaukonen ("White Rabbit") of Jefferson Airplane, and Jerry Garcia were all influenced by Szabo in the 60s.

Thanks.  

I guess what I was really trying to get at was this:  Gabor was covering seminal 1966 freakbeat/popsike records like "Paint it Black" and "Eight Miles High."  

I am wondering if some of those 1966 freakbeat/popsike acts like the Stones, Byrds, Yardbirds, et. al.  had been influenced by the hypnotic, eastern-tinged grooves heard on Chico Hamilton's LPs with Gabor from, say, 1962 to 1965.

In other words, was it all one big circular influence? Chico/Gabor influence freakbeat/popsike records that in turn influence Gabor?

Edited by Teasing the Korean

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51 minutes ago, Teasing the Korean said:

Thanks.  

I guess what I was really trying to get at was this:  Gabor was covering seminal 1966 freakbeat/popsike records like "Paint it Black" and "Eight Miles High."  

I am wondering if some of those 1966 freakbeat/popsike acts like the Stones, Byrds, Yardbirds, et. al.  had been influenced by the hypnotic, eastern-tinged grooves heard on Chico Hamilton's LPs with Gabor from, say, 1962 to 1965.

In other words, was it all one big circular influence? Chico/Gabor influence freakbeat/popsike records that in turn influence Gabor?

Or Mike Bloomfield. 

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Regarding Carlos Santana and Szabo -

You can hear a brief excerpt of Szabo’s arrangement of “Breezin” about 5 minutes and 5 seconds into the song “Let Us Go into the House of the Lord” (in the Carlos Santana/John McLaughlin album Love Devotion Surrender).

If I remember correctly, Santana performs a similar excerpt somewhere in “Free Form Funkafide Filth” (in the Carlos Santana & Buddy Miles! Live! album) and in a few other live recordings.

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15 hours ago, JSngry said:

Just don't give me that "Breezin'" crap - it's a Bobby Womack song, and Szabo doesn't play anything like Benson on it, and vice-versa.  Did Szabot get a writer's credit on the original? No. should he have? Hell if I know. But he didn't.

Tommy Lee Puma gave Benson a better production, but how is that ripping off Szabo?

And I bet that Bobby Womack's not in the least bit bitter about any of it!

Found this article which was interesting because I didn't know Womack played on Szabo's recording. Apparently he was mad at the lifting of his "style and arrangement" by Benson. 

https://www.elsewhere.co.nz/fromthevaults/4074/gabor-szabo-breezin-1969/

 

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