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Joe Chambers

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While there are various Joe Chambers threads on this board, I couldn't find a dedicated thread in the "Artists" forum. And Joe Chambers is definitely an artist. He's one of those drummers* that elevates any session he's on. Archie Shepp's Fire Music comes immediately to mind — without Chambers on that record ... it just wouldn't be the same. (Yes, J.C. Moses is on one track.) Joe Chambers also has incredible flexibility — he sounds good with Wayne Shorter, Chet Baker, Woody Shaw, Jimmy Giuffre too.

*And it should of course be noted that he's a composer!

What are your favorite sideman appearances? Favorite leader dates? Who here has heard Chambers live?

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As a sideman, his appearance on Chick Corea's 'Tones for Joan's Bones' is an eternal favourite. The way he is driving the band colors that album. Another superb date with Corea is Bobby Hutcherson's 'Total Eclipse'. He wrote several good tunes for the Hutcherson/Land group; my favorite is 'Ungano'. 

 

Edited by Daniel A

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Like everyone else on the date — Chambers is integral to my favorite Wayne Shorter leader-date, Etcetera — and his efforts there are a little more ‘visible’, since it’s just a quartet.

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I have the privilege of knowing Joe personally, we talk on the phone periodically although it has been a little bit. I always pick his brain a little on all the history, he is one of the last eyewitnesses to the Golden era of Blue Note.

One of my all-time favorite composers. It is amazing that this seems so overlooked. His music is brilliant.

Joe would love to get back out there gigging, but a challenge these days of course. He turns 80 in June.

We have talked about doing an oral history of some sort. I would need help setting this up, especially in terms of equipment.

Bertrand.

 

 

3 minutes ago, Rooster_Ties said:

Like everyone else on the date — Chambers is integral to my favorite Wayne Shorter leader-date, Etcetera — and his efforts there are a little more ‘visible’, since it’s just a quartet.

That record changed my life.

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10 minutes ago, bertrand said:

That record (Etcetera) changed my life.

Do expound!

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Love his BN work.  His drumming on Tyrone Washington's "Natural Essence" especially hits me.

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There are many platter mirroring his art .... for example his recordings with Tommy Flanagan and Reggie Workman as "Super Jazz Trio" ....

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Joe is in so many of my records. I feel ashamed to say he really wasn’t on my radar up till quite recently. Really ashamed for he as such a significant style and leaves such a trademark on the music. I also love his compositions.

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A fantastic drummer and many here will know that the kind a drummer plays is most important for me. He is on many of my favourite albums. Many of them on BN from the 60s. Fantastic ! 

The funny thing ist, as a highschool boy first I didn´t know his name (don´t forget most BN was OOP then and most of the LA-2LP series were older stuff. So the very FIRST time I saw his name and HEARD him was on Charlie Ratzer "In Search of the Ghost". Charlie Ratzer (here "Karl") is my favourite austrian star on guitar and in the 70´s he worked in the States and had came back to Austria in the late 70´s (I even had some occasions to play with him then). 

So my first listening of Joe Chambers on drums was on that Charlie Ratzer album with some of the hottest NY players of that time....

By the way, if I remember right, Joe Chambers is also on Mingus´ "Three Worlds of Drums", kinda heaven on earth for me as a drums-lover....Richmond, Gadd, Chambers....right ?

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That second side of Hutcherson's 'Components' and under his own name, 'Almoravid'.

Edited by mjazzg

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I especially love his compositions, many of which neatly fit into my beloved Twilight Zone Jazz subgenre.

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How do you define that "Twilight Zone" sub-genre again?  Moody and eerie?  Perhaps some 60's Grachan Moncur?

 

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I collected and very much enjoyed his leader dates, The Almoravid, New World and Mirrors, as well as Double Exposure where he co-leads with Larry Young.  Wikipedia is showing me that I missed quite a few, will have to catch up.  My choice for a sideman date is Dialogue with Bobby Hutcherson.

 

Edited by randyhersom

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Double Exposure is great!

It's also Larry's last date. He passed not long after that recording.

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This is the album I mentioned before: 

Charly (Karl) Ratzer had formed the band in 1977: With Jeremy Steig, Eddie Gomez, Joe Chambers and Ray Mantilla, that means "Fast company", really . ...

Herunterladen (3).jpg

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Joe Chambers is a really interesting drummer.  Thoughtful, can play both in and out.  I wonder why he hasn't recorded more often.  Maybe his being an educator limited his performing time.

Here, I'll trot out my one and only Joe Chambers story.  I was a young kid working in a jazz record store in Manhattan in 1978 or so.  This was when the digital craze just started (recording in digital but releasing on vinyl).  There were almost no digital albums available in the U.S.  Denon Japan recorded many albums for the Japanese market, and these were being imported into the U.S.  One was Joe Chambers Plays Piano.  I was behind the register one day, and Joe Chambers walks up to me with this album.  He introduces himself, then says "Who did you buy this album from?  This is not licensed to be sold in this country!  You're not allowed to sell this album!"  I'm just going "hamana, hamana, hamana, I don't know sir."  He kept asking, but I had nothing to tell him.  Eventually he walked out.

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13 minutes ago, mjzee said:

Joe Chambers is a really interesting drummer.  Thoughtful, can play both in and out.  I wonder why he hasn't recorded more often.  Maybe his being an educator limited his performing time.

Here, I'll trot out my one and only Joe Chambers story.  I was a young kid working in a jazz record store in Manhattan in 1978 or so.  This was when the digital craze just started (recording in digital but releasing on vinyl).  There were almost no digital albums available in the U.S.  Denon Japan recorded many albums for the Japanese market, and these were being imported into the U.S.  One was Joe Chambers Plays Piano.  I was behind the register one day, and Joe Chambers walks up to me with this album.  He introduces himself, then says "Who did you buy this album from?  This is not licensed to be sold in this country!  You're not allowed to sell this album!"  I'm just going "hamana, hamana, hamana, I don't know sir."  He kept asking, but I had nothing to tell him.  Eventually he walked out.

Did he pull a Sue Mingus and take the record with him? :)

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I bought that record last year-ish. It's really pretty good!

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37 minutes ago, bresna said:

Did he pull a Sue Mingus and take the record with him? :)

No, I think he walked out empty handed.  I had a similar uncomfortable situation with Mel Lewis a few years later, in the video tape department.  Sony released maybe 10 titles on Betamax (beta only, no VHS).  They were pretty good; I remember one was an Alberta Hunter.  Another was a Mel Lewis title.  One day Mel confronts me in the store: "Sony doesn't have the rights to release this!  Where did you get this?"  What could I tell him?  Read the fine print on the back, it's a legitimate Sony release, take it up with them.

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On 2/13/2022 at 10:14 AM, mjazzg said:

That second side of Hutcherson's 'Components' and under his own name, 'Almoravid'.

This. Blew me away to the point I listen to the second half more than the first. 

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For all I may-know, surely drummer..: Joe Chambers has been here in Italy few times,. The first with the Max Roach ''M 'Boom - percussion'' in Alassio,. Then here with the Great..: Kenny Burrell,. -DVD- Kenny Burrell .,cht.,4t Live at  ^.Blue Bird.^ Jazz Club 1997,t.,49*'.in Nizza Monferrato Italy,+, Joe Chambers .,dr +,Massimo Faraò .,p  +,Aldo Zunino .,cb ,,-
 ,

-  xx  -

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Joe will be performing at the Clifford Brown Jazz Festival in Wilmington, Delaware on 6/15.

Bertrand.

 

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Click here to see Joe Chambers in 1969 (as part of the Bobby Hutcherson-Harold Land group).

At 28:42 into the video, Joe solos.

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more from Molde!

I think I have the audio of that concert somewhere.

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On 6/4/2022 at 2:07 PM, Late said:

Click here to see Joe Chambers in 1969 (as part of the Bobby Hutcherson-Harold Land group).

At 28:42 into the video, Joe solos.

Woahh!!!

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