Face of the Bass

Loft Jazz Recommendations

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Great LP but I'd actually file it among the then-burgeoning New Haven creative music scene.

Maybe so, but was Michael Gregory not on the Wildflowers comp, perhaps there was some cross-polinisation going on?

In the spirit of the OP's enquiry maybe you could elaborate?

Well, New Haven and NYC aren't too far from one another... a number of New Haven cats played at the New York Musicians' Festival, so sure there was regional cross-pollination. And Gregory is an especially interesting character because he got into the Black Rock thing in the '80s with a group called Signal, which played in NY (and elsewhere). But Clarity is a very New Haven LP, even if it's not CMIF-related. (CMIF = New Haven musicians collective, Creative Musicians' Improvisers Forum)

That's interesting. How does the approach differ between New Haven music, and music one might have encountered in a NYC loft. I have a few Michael Gregory/Oliver Lake albums, and also a very lovely - almost folk/jazz Lp, with a lot of singing. A very interesting musician indeed. Who I believe has started playing publically again recently. He was a bit of a mystery man from this far away actually. And a very talented guitarist/improvisor.

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Should we also include Verna Gillis's Soundscape?

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Yes indeed. Soundscape was definitely part of the loft scene.

Edited by paul secor

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ecc67f6ffc47.jpg

Great LP but I'd actually file it among the then-burgeoning New Haven creative music scene.

Maybe so, but was Michael Gregory not on the Wildflowers comp, perhaps there was some cross-polinisation going on?

In the spirit of the OP's enquiry maybe you could elaborate?

Well, New Haven and NYC aren't too far from one another... a number of New Haven cats played at the New York Musicians' Festival, so sure there was regional cross-pollination. And Gregory is an especially interesting character because he got into the Black Rock thing in the '80s with a group called Signal, which played in NY (and elsewhere). But Clarity is a very New Haven LP, even if it's not CMIF-related. (CMIF = New Haven musicians collective, Creative Musicians' Improvisers Forum)

That's interesting. How does the approach differ between New Haven music, and music one might have encountered in a NYC loft. I have a few Michael Gregory/Oliver Lake albums, and also a very lovely - almost folk/jazz Lp, with a lot of singing. A very interesting musician indeed. Who I believe has started playing publically again recently. He was a bit of a mystery man from this far away actually. And a very talented guitarist/improvisor.

Okay, the caveat being that the NYC lofts and the New Haven scene had a variety of musical approaches going on within them and that I am a bit young to have experienced it in the flesh, Leo Smith was an ex-AACMer living in New Haven and brought his particular sonic approach to a crew of young, like-minded New Haven musicians. The splintering of the AACM between Chicago and New York in the 70s certainly affected the lofts greatly so that leaderless ensembles developed with a more spacious approach to improvisation that I'd say was a far cry from the energy music of the '60s (though there were obviously holdouts). Egalitarian roles, little instruments and self-reliant spaces and musicians' organizations seemed to flourish more in New York at that time, and I think it is in great part due to the influx of Chicagoans. The New Haven scene was removed a bit from NYC and with Smith a kind of guru for those guys, a more studied granularity emerged in those musicians' work. Keep in mind that later Braxton collaborators like Gerry Hemingway and Ray Anderson were part of the New Haven scene, and Braxton paid frequent visits to town. This New Haven music is something I'm very interested in and researching as time allows.

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More traditional styles found their way into the loft scene also:

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There was a thread on this topic over on the Jazzcorner forum from a decade or so ago that served as a nice source of recommendations for me at the time.

Find it here: Loft Scene, on Record

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There was a thread on this topic over on the Jazzcorner forum from a decade or so ago that served as a nice source of recommendations for me at the time.

Find it here: Loft Scene, on Record

Some good info there for sure. Reminded me that Sunrise Studio had some fascinating stuff happening during that period as well, centering on the activities of Mike Mahaffay, Michael Moss, Dave Liebman, Richie Beirach and others.

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Speaking of Arthur Blythe, as Jeff indirectly was, this is a damn fine pre-Columbia side with the mighty-fine Bob Stewart & the you-don't-miss-a-drummer-becuase-he-IS-a-drummer- DUH!!!! Ahkmed Abdullah.

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As good as many/most of the Columbia albums were, Blythe's real, for lack of a better term, "buzz-worthy" music came before. This Adelphi side is sweet.

I don't think there's much lost on Lennox Avenue Breakdown and Illusions. LAB sounds 'very' organic to me. Can you also elaborate perhaps?

"Production", mostly. Felt to me more like the music was being "presented" than "happening".

Nothing wrong with that, it just seemed different to me at the time. Probably unavoidable.

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Speaking of Arthur Blythe, as Jeff indirectly was, this is a damn fine pre-Columbia side with the mighty-fine Bob Stewart & the you-don't-miss-a-drummer-becuase-he-IS-a-drummer- DUH!!!! Ahkmed Abdullah.

bb+fr.jpg

bb+bk.jpg

As good as many/most of the Columbia albums were, Blythe's real, for lack of a better term, "buzz-worthy" music came before. This Adelphi side is sweet.

I don't think there's much lost on Lennox Avenue Breakdown and Illusions. LAB sounds 'very' organic to me. Can you also elaborate perhaps?

"Production", mostly. Felt to me more like the music was being "presented" than "happening".

Nothing wrong with that, it just seemed different to me at the time. Probably unavoidable.

True from my perspective, Kept the Adelphi and none of the Columbias.

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Speaking of Arthur Blythe, as Jeff indirectly was, this is a damn fine pre-Columbia side with the mighty-fine Bob Stewart & the you-don't-miss-a-drummer-becuase-he-IS-a-drummer- DUH!!!! Ahkmed Abdullah.

bb+fr.jpg

bb+bk.jpg

As good as many/most of the Columbia albums were, Blythe's real, for lack of a better term, "buzz-worthy" music came before. This Adelphi side is sweet.

I don't think there's much lost on Lennox Avenue Breakdown and Illusions. LAB sounds 'very' organic to me. Can you also elaborate perhaps?

"Production", mostly. Felt to me more like the music was being "presented" than "happening".

Nothing wrong with that, it just seemed different to me at the time. Probably unavoidable.

True from my perspective, Kept the Adelphi and none of the Columbias.

This seems to be a characteristic comment about many of the Columbias. Is this big label syndrome and/ or the role of their producers "guiding" the musicians........?

Edited by TedR

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To answer a question from another thread, one thing I've learned here is that everybody hears things differently. As much as I like the Arthur Blythe Adelphi album, Illusions on Columbia is by far my favorite Blythe record - it floors me every time I spin it. And I like most of the other Columbias, too, although many are certainly open to the criticism of being too-carefully-produced or contrived.

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Illusions is awesome.

The sun went down on this thread too fast.

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Illusions is awesome.

The sun went down on this thread too fast.

But not before I bought Wildflowers and Illusions on the back of it.

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First member not having heard Charles Tyler's Saga of the Outlaws to contact me at nessarecords@charter.com gets a free copy.

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First member not having heard Charles Tyler's Saga of the Outlaws to contact me at nessarecords@charter.com gets a free copy.

Great record.

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First member not having heard Charles Tyler's Saga of the Outlaws to contact me at nessarecords@charter.com gets a free copy.

Great record.

Hell, yeah! Somebody needs to jump on that.

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How are Blythe's India Navigation albums? Never heard those.

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How are Blythe's India Navigation albums? Never heard those.

They're very good and both available on a single CD. I'm old enough to remember when a new India Navigation LP appearing in the shops was a big event.....those were the days.

I've just had a look on Amazon and see that it goes for big bucks now. Looks like another one to put on your "I'll have when I can get it for a decent price" list, Hans.

Edited by Head Man

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With most India Navigation titles the LPs tend to be both cheaper and much easier to find.

Of course, I said "most" ...

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cooper_jero_unpredict_101b.jpg

Edited by mjzee

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With most India Navigation titles the LPs tend to be both cheaper and much easier to find.

Of course, I said "most" ...

Yeah, their sound-art/minimalism titles would be the exception.

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ecc67f6ffc47.jpg

Great LP but I'd actually file it among the then-burgeoning New Haven creative music scene.

Maybe so, but was Michael Gregory not on the Wildflowers comp, perhaps there was some cross-polinisation going on?

In the spirit of the OP's enquiry maybe you could elaborate?

Well, New Haven and NYC aren't too far from one another... a number of New Haven cats played at the New York Musicians' Festival, so sure there was regional cross-pollination. And Gregory is an especially interesting character because he got into the Black Rock thing in the '80s with a group called Signal, which played in NY (and elsewhere). But Clarity is a very New Haven LP, even if it's not CMIF-related. (CMIF = New Haven musicians collective, Creative Musicians' Improvisers Forum)

That's interesting. How does the approach differ between New Haven music, and music one might have encountered in a NYC loft. I have a few Michael Gregory/Oliver Lake albums, and also a very lovely - almost folk/jazz Lp, with a lot of singing. A very interesting musician indeed. Who I believe has started playing publically again recently. He was a bit of a mystery man from this far away actually. And a very talented guitarist/improvisor.

Okay, the caveat being that the NYC lofts and the New Haven scene had a variety of musical approaches going on within them and that I am a bit young to have experienced it in the flesh, Leo Smith was an ex-AACMer living in New Haven and brought his particular sonic approach to a crew of young, like-minded New Haven musicians. The splintering of the AACM between Chicago and New York in the 70s certainly affected the lofts greatly so that leaderless ensembles developed with a more spacious approach to improvisation that I'd say was a far cry from the energy music of the '60s (though there were obviously holdouts). Egalitarian roles, little instruments and self-reliant spaces and musicians' organizations seemed to flourish more in New York at that time, and I think it is in great part due to the influx of Chicagoans. The New Haven scene was removed a bit from NYC and with Smith a kind of guru for those guys, a more studied granularity emerged in those musicians' work. Keep in mind that later Braxton collaborators like Gerry Hemingway and Ray Anderson were part of the New Haven scene, and Braxton paid frequent visits to town. This New Haven music is something I'm very interested in and researching as time allows.

That's very interesting. Look forward to reading the research one day.

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Ditto.

If I had to make the distinction between NY & the New Haven scene, I might say that while the former is fairly gritty city loft music, the latter is more like living room music. I imagine the stuff being recorded at someone's house, though of course little of it was.

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