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  1. Masahiko Satoh is still going strong. I've seen him several times this year, in a quartet with Kosuke Mine, in a duo with Masuo (who played with Sonny Rollins in the 70s) and playing standards with a bassist. His catalogue is enormous, including collaborations with singers ranging from Helen Merrill to Lauren Newton. This 3- page section is just from 1969 to 1996. Discography ( One more recent platter uses Japanese songs in an accessible way.
  2. African Jazz

    Here's an interesting obscurity. In 1968 French jazzman Jef Gilson flies to Madagascar, meets local musicians, plays and records, mostly Gilson's numbers, also a great version of the The Creator Has a Master Plan, no vocals to worry about. A few years later political trouble brings many of said musicians to exile in Paris. Gilson records several albums with them, live and in his own studio, in various formats. A few years on all musicians, save Gilson himself, decamp to funk, disco, etc. But while it lasted it was excellent, rawish jazz with a stew of percussion and some long work-outs on the traditional "valiha" (bamboo zither). A 4 disc package has been put together by the UK's Jazzman Records, who are experts at reviving the lost and forgotten and never-was-but-should-have-beens. There are some sound samples on their site.
  3. Bob Dylan corner

    Dylan knows his Robbie Burns too. That was duly noted by Neil Corcoran in his speech at St. Andrews University, Edinburgh, when Dylan was awarded an honorary degree in 2004. The chorus of his 1990s epic Highlands is a reworking of Burns' "My Heart's in the Highlands", though some observers (Michael Gray. Andrew Muir, me) would say Dylan has greatly improved on the insipid original. Burns was also a popular entertainer who could go from the sublime to the ridiculous in the blink of an eye. And talking of strange and wonderful Scotsmen - And from the indefensible 1970s -
  4. Bob Dylan corner

    Talking of Sandy Denny & Co...
  5. Bob Dylan corner

    Martin Carthy - another Dylan-loving British folkie - makes a similar point.
  6. Bob Dylan corner

    Interesting. The Fairports loved Dylan, Richard Thompson likewise. In fact R.T.'s favourite Dylan song is none other that "Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts." But then , what would he know? He's probably just a middle-brow.
  7. Bob Dylan corner

    Never just one answer to such questions, but possibly - Corruptible seed = crooked timber of humanity, its potential versus the ugly reality What "God" has and we want = perfection, the absolute, what Keats saw on the Grecian urn Hotel / McTell - a half-rhyme. All the previous verses are set in the past and end with a true rhyme. In the final verse the narrator is in the present, trying to make sense of history. To my ear the half-rhyme is a great instinctive touch, yoking together two fragments of the past and ending with a tinge of dissonance , rather than the sense of closure you'd get from a true rhyme. The past is not over. It's alive today.
  8. Bob Dylan corner

    Never easy to say because the guy expresses himself metaphorically, not factually. But I would guess his meanings include something like "blues sounds simple, but is complex with a high degree of musicality, also mixes many disparate elements that could only come together in the time and place it did, our ears have got accustomed to this stuff, but it is passing strange, stranger than you think, and carries an unimpeachable truth" Or to put it another way - Well, God is in His heaven And we all want what’s His But power and greed and corruptible seed Seem to be all that there is I’m gazing out the window Of the St. James Hotel And I know no one can sing the blues Like Blind Willie McTell
  9. Bob Dylan corner

    Robin Williamson loves Dylan. And Dylan appreciated ISB's October Song back in the mid-60s. Williamson's opinion of Tom T. Hall is not known.
  10. Bob Dylan corner

    What a relief we can carry on listening to Highway 61 Revisited now it has received the papal blessing from Mom's Mobley. But Blood on the Tracks has to go, unless you want to risk being designated a middlebrow...
  11. As I remember it Atkins does not interview Satoh or Togashi, but he does discuss their work at length - specifically in the context of the attempt to fuse jazz with traditional Japanese music and aesthetics of the 70s and later. Satoh's Randooga project and Togashi's solo work are given due recognition. Togashi's Spiritual Nature and Song For Myself have just been re-released on East Wind, by the way. Some of Satoh's less jazz-oriented work is discussed by post-punk British rocker Julian Cope in his "Japrock Sampler" book, which is mainly about early 70s rock, but also covers the 1960s exploits of Japanese avant gardeists , such as Yoko's first husband and John Cage pal, Toshi Ichiyanagi. It's a good read.
  12. Bob Dylan corner

    "Lenny Bruce was bad / He's the brother you never had." Thanks for the advice, but I think I'll take those Dylan lines over Phil Ochs' dirge.
  13. Book - Blue Nippon, by E. Taylor Atkins. History, with some interviews of contemporary musicians. Websites & recommendations -
  14. I'm not seeing the order button for this album on the site.