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Nate Dorward

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Everything posted by Nate Dorward

  1. Yeah, the Dreyfus night is OK--just not really very typical of Petrucciani's work. Here's what I wrote about it a couple months back: Yeah I wish Petrucciani were still around--he was a fun player.
  2. I don't have the answer to your questions but I thought I'd point out there's one terrible error on the release. The first track of the Young/Ervin session is credited to Poindexter as, if memory serves, "Absotively Posalutely". It's not of course: it's a Larry Young tune--"Backup", later recorded on Into Somethin'.
  3. Hm, I'd thought the Dreyfus night disc was nice enough, but not outstanding. Anyway, for Petrucciani, a good start would be the live date at the Village Vanguard, I think simply called Live at the Village Vanguard, recorded for Concord in the early 1980s. The Lovano disc is a superb disc, though it's not very typical of Petrucciani's work elsewhere.
  4. Jim--if you want to read lots on Betty Carter's approach to bandleading & arranging, take a look at the many passages quoted from her former sidemen in Paul Berliner's Thinking in Jazz. (Carter & Barry Harris are the two music-mentor heros of the book.) Her band was of course a real boot camp for talented young players. That said, I find the most revealing thing in the book--& the point where I can see both the good things & the less good things about Carter's approach--is the anecdote of one pianist from her band (I'll quote this from memory rather than dig out the book): he was asked to play an instrumental number to open the set, so he & the other bandmembers picked "Remember", went up there & just played it--no arrangements worked out in advance, just a straightforward version of the tune. After the show Carter chewed them out: "I don't ever want to see you do that again." Because they had just got up there & played.
  5. Oh right, Steve Beresford. Haven't got much of his on disc, but he's a great inside-outside player, like Misha Mengelberg or Veryan Weston. It's Rosolino not Rosolini & yes, he's got a very identifiable sound/style! I should pick up more of his stuff--caught a bit of some of his 1970s work on the radio the other day & was struck how good it was. The only disc of his I have is the very good Free For All, which has a sad story to it (it was recorded in 1958 & the record company refused to release it despite Rosolino's pleas--it only appeared after his death). I like the soundtrack to She Must Be Seeing Things a lot, but god help us it's a horrible film--I actually tracked down a videotape at one point. One gets the impression from Zorn's liner notes that the other two films whose soundtracks are compiled on the disc are probably just as trashy. Sidenote: Art Ellefson, the tenor on #7, ended up settling in Canada; he has a not-bad disc on the Sackville label.
  6. OF the Clean Feed discs, I've mostly heard very good things. The one I have, Live at LX_Meskla, by the Lisbon Improvisation Players, is excellent. Despite the name of the band it's not "free improv" but free jazz in a tuneful Ornettish vein for the most part.
  7. C'mon, you can do better than a cheap put-down like that. Actually I'm fully prepared to recognize Carter's greatness, but that still doesn't mean I actually like listening to her work that much. -- Hm, I wouldn't put her together with Sheila Jordan, though--Jordan can sing a "good old depressing ballad" (as she once put it when I saw her) that'll knock you flat. Her idol, after all, is Billie Holiday.
  8. C'mon Jim, you can do better than that! Sorry, I shouldn't be fishing for one of your illuminating mini-essays on individual artists.... It's not that I don't get anything out of Carter--The Audience With... is a fine album, no question--but yeah, I find the mangling of tunes often very frustrating, & there's no chills-down-the-spine emotional directness to what she does. I got rid of Feed the Fire because I just couldn't take what she did to "Lover Man" for instance. I feel the same way about "Deep Night" on Audience.
  9. Christiern--here's one more person in your camp, anyway.
  10. Hmmmm.....listening to #4 I still don't have a secure ID on any of the players but Zorn. Thinking about the various NY-scene avant pianists....I'm pretty sure it's not Wayne Horvitz. It's a little lighter in touch, & I would guess Anthony Coleman (this is based on the first Sephardic Tinge disc, which I've heard). I'm still at a loss on the trumpeter, though. Not Douglas or Herb Robertson, I'm pretty sure. A pity, it's the trumpeter I liked most! I guess I'll wait for the official unveiling on this one. Re: #7: knowing it's a UK track (from one of the broader hints on this thread) I suppose it'd likely be Tubby Hayes on vibes (that's just a guess really) & Peter King on alto (that's a little firmer, as I know his work with Stan Tracey).
  11. Oh, right I Want to Live. I've never seen the whole film but I remember the opening scene well, having seen a clip of it. That means I got Mulligan & Rosolino right in my original guess. I think it was Art Farmer & Bud Shank on the front line, but I forget the rhythm section. Zorn, incidentally, covers "I Want to Live" on the 1st Naked City disc. Frank Rosolino was such a great player. As with Criss to some extent, the ugly end means that many jazzfans probably associate him more with the life than with the music. I'll give one more listen to #4 & see if I can nail the piano player but I don't think I can.
  12. Hm, I'll have to go back to some of Zorn's 1980s/early 1990s stuff; I just lost track when he started to get stuck on the same Masada stuff endlessly. Depressing to hear JZ turn the Masada songbook into loud Santana-style rock at Victoriaville last year, for instance. & I found the expanded version of The Big Gundown instructive for the contrast between the abrasive sonic archeology/Frankenstein logic of the original tracks, & the much more conventional "arrangements" offered by the new tracks--they're pleasant enough, but go against the grain of what made the original album so important. -- Playing bop/hard bop he can be quite good--I'm actually surprised people didn't spot him because though he's not associated with playing conventional jazz, he has an immediately identifiable tone (cartoony hard-bop alto)--& while I don't think he handles the changes on the cut you've put on the compilation with fluency, he sounds much better on the modal or blues-based tunes on the Lulu project & the Voodoo project (or on the Masada project for that matter). He sounds really good on "Minor Meeting" (Voodoo) for instance: I've always liked his solo & on the trading fours there. Zorn seems full of ideas on the disc--all his solos have a lot of meat.
  13. Two players who use the melodica regularly (& well) are Michael Moore (the saxophonist not bassist) & John Wolf Brennan. Hm, so I goofed on the Gordon i.d.! Ah well... But I'm sure it's Zorn on 4. No idea who the pianist on it is though. For my money Zorn's best stab at making it as a hardbopper is the Sonny Clark tribute disc on Black Saint, though--it's not bad at all. -- Nice to hear some informed discussion of the percussion rhythms on the various tracks, as that's easily my weakest point (shortly followed by melodica playing, obviously). In discussing any music in this area I usually end up just throwing up my hands & lumping everything together as "Latin", which I'm sure is enough to give anyone who knows something about the matter (e.g. Pete C) the willies.
  14. Hauser's on Koglmann's The Use of Memory, though I suppose Koglmann's an acquired taste..... A good disc, though pretty austere.
  15. Yeah that's the disc. One of the discs of the early 1960s, & probably "Round Midnight" would vie with "Tenderly" as the Dolphy solo that means most to me. I'm not crazy about the weird faux-concrete opening & close of the arrangement, but Dolphy's statement of the theme & improvisation are powerful enough to pin you against the wall. If anyone's curious, the 2nd "Epistrophy" I'd referred to was released on an ICP album under Misha Mengelberg's name. I haven't heard it, though I once held a copy in Ray's Jazz Shop & thought hard about it......
  16. Just thought of one other: if memory serves Dolphy's in the ensemble on that Atlantic disc with Schuller's "Variations on a Theme of Thelonious Monk" (an arrangement of "Criss Cross" built around Ornette Coleman as soloist).
  17. Lacy's gig with Monk wasn't 4 months, I'm pretty sure--I think it was 6 weeks. He's also in the ensemble on Big Band/Quartet though he doesn't get any solo space. Yes, I remember seeing that photo of Monk & Dolphy. A more interesting question: how many times did Dolphy record a Monk tune? There are two "Epistrophy"s on record plus a memorable "Round Midnight" with George Russell. Any others? Stuart Broomer tells me that Dave Baker told him that Monk told him (sorry for the chain of "tolds" but I might as well make the provenance of the anecdote clear) that that Russell/Dolphy recording of "Round Midnight" was his (Monk's) favourite cover version of any of his compositions. Dolphy of course did play with Bud Powell (on Mingus at Antibes).
  18. A strong 2nd (or is it 3rd) for the recommendation of Forces in Motion. One of the great documentary books in jazz. Incidentally a fari bit of the interview material is appended to the Leo release of the Coventry concert. It's fascinating, & yes you get to hear Mr B sing a solo (Warne Marsh's solo on "The Song Is You" from the Konitz/Giuffre disc). That said, I fully agree with Konitz's splenetic response to Braxton's Tristano/Marsh tribute album (when he was played "April" two or three years ago on a blindfold test for The Wire). A lot of sloppy, too-fast playing on that album. & in general I'm not keen on most of Braxton's standards playing--some of it's terribly verbose & messy (witness the Charlie Parker disc, which is quite charming really but has some appalling goofs on in, including a "Ko-Ko" where everyone seems hopelessly lost by the end of the track). But Braxton is an extraordinary musician in the right context.
  19. Incidentally did Warren ever record any other tunes of his own except that one piece--"Butch Walks" I think it was called--on the Sonny Clark disc?
  20. Here's what I wrote on a first spin without looking at any discussion so far. 1: Oh I don’t know, what do you say about this kind of sonic collage? It’s entertaining, but it’s not the kind of music I’m likely to go back to. The groaning, creaking overlay of sound at the end is a nice touch. 2: Rinky-dink big-band stuff, rather airless & cute. Oh, wait a sec, it’s a put-on I guess – now we’re headed south of the border. It’s still all very airless & cute, though I guess that’s the point. Worth hearing once. 3: OK, now some more riff-based big-band music, but this time the band punches it out like it means it. Aha, the percussion kicks in - a running theme on the compilation so far. Nice light-toned altoist, I should probably recognize him - presumably a West Coast player. If the fadeout was in the original rather than the work of the compiler, it’s a bit disappointing: the track seems barely to have gotten started before it’s over, & the altoist could have used more room. I thought the point of riff tunes was to spur soloists on? 4: The tune sounds like Mulligan but the treatment is out of Monk. Oh come on, you’re trying to slip John Zorn past us here. He doesn’t play all that well here though - is he really on top of the changes on the bridge, for instance? (An embarrassed trailing-off into silence at one point as he makes a wrong turn.) I like his sound & his licks, but he's a very bitty soloist. Can’t i.d. the trumpeter (who plays well) or pianist (plays okay). I’d be tempted to say it was Misha Mengelberg at the piano just because Zorn’s worked with him, but nah: Misha usually sounds a lot more devious & interesting than this. Nice light, swinging rhythm section, though. An OK track, & I could stand to hear more of the trumpeter's work. 5: A little compiler’s free-assocation: now we get Mulligan himself. Nice stuff. I don’t recognize the altoist, he sounds fine. Gerry himself. Got to be Frank Rosolino on the trombone, a really nice solo, making great use of space. Trumpeter’s fine. My one criticism here is that while I like Mulligan’s scoring I wish there was more space for the soloists, they seem crowded out. 6: More riff-based big band charts. Ugh, that’s some horrendous studio reverb. Some unusual dark tonalities here...& here’s what I initially thought was a ticking clock but which turns out to be more Latin percussion. This track started out like it would be interesting, & then by the end turned out to be not very interesting at all. 7: I know I know this bassist...who is it? More riff-based blues stuff. I should know this whole band, in fact. I see that baritone sax is a bit of a running theme on this compilation. Probably Pepper Adams: whoever it is, nice hard-driving solo. A little hysterical edge to the trumpet solo: good. It's a trumpeter I should know very well drawing a blank for whatever reason (Morgan?). The tenor sounds good, & I wish he’d got more than two choruses. Probably Harold Land, if the vibes are indeed Bobby Hutcherson. The bass solo suggests, hm...Richard Davis, I think. Phew, that’s some fast bass playing. A good track, if a bit frantic & compressed. Sounds almost like a sped-up version of a Nelson chart from Blues & the Abstract Truth. 8: More vibes, more bluesy riffs, more added percussion: yep, a lot of common threads running through this compilation. It’s OK, not a big reaction from me. The dinky piano at the end is a little odd, & I should be able to recognize the player from that but I can't for some reason. 9: Yow, that’s weird: old-fashioned Hodges alto on top of the percussion. Rats, it ended after only a minute, I could have used more. 10: George Adams? no, it’s David Murray on the tenor. Otherwise I have no idea what this is. S’alright, not my thing. 11: This is probably the point at which to confess that I’m probably the only person on the planet who didn’t like Buena Vista Social Club much. 12: I initially though this must be that James Carter Django tribute, but once the tenor solo kicked in it was obviously Dexter Gordon. Strange track, but I liked it. The recorded sound is odd, with the piano sounding like it's in a different room from the rest of the instruments. 13: Accordion, eh? Maybe Galliano, if we’re continuing the francophile theme from the last track. Ummmm, I don’t think this works at all - & I even like accordion! But, wait a minute, there’s some hot alto sax: OK, that’s a little more like it. Piano solo which largely keeps in the background so the percussion comes to the fore. 14: This reminds me of some of Zorn’s gentler Morricone settings. Nice stuff: I’ve no idea who this is but this the first track on the compilation I’ve really had a strong positive reaction to. Unlike a number of the other tracks, I feel that the track & the solos are just the right length for the mood & flow of the piece. 15: A slightly odd reverberant acoustic. Lovely opening, so full of space. An old-fashioned saxophone sound. Even stranger sound once the band comes in. I notice this compilation pays little attention to piano (mostly focussing on sax, vibes, accordion, percussion); I probably notice this jealously because I play piano.... There’s what sounds like a skip or bad edit at 3:14. After the opening this track does little for me. I’ve no idea who the players are. 16: A lot of sonic sludge buries some competent but unremarkable playing by all concerned. The least interesting track so far. 17: I know this one well. I’ve never heard the rest of the discs in this series, but have always liked this one. Truthfully, I’ve gone off him in recent years as he seems to have got stuck on endless recyclings of the same compositions in various formations, but this is one of the few of his albums I still play. 18: The alto sax sounds a little Zornlike but this is simply too brief to get much of a bead on anyone. A lovely track, pity it’s so brief. Another film cue? 19: Lazybones blues with a few twists, not bad. Marty Ehrlich. The trumpet is someone like Hugh Ragin, I don’t know. The piano solo’s a little spindly. A nice track, a good surprise ending too. 20: I have no idea! Ugh, the vocalist is (ahem) rather limited in his abilities. Good but not terribly remarkable solos. This was all stuff worth hearing, no duds except 16 & 20, but I think the only track I got a lot out of was #14.
  21. A friend of mine, Peter Manson, asks: Can anyone answer his question?
  22. I'd mostly say that Pelt was unfortunate in his choice of disc to pick up first--I hated The Infinite, which is I presume what he's talking about. Anything from Witness to Charms of the Night Sky to the Tiny Bells would have been a better place to start.
  23. Thanks for the info....yes, it's astonishing the guy's still around, to judge by the bio & the photos! -- The other Naim I've seen listed (don't have) wasn't solo but a disc with him accompanying an unfamiliar (to me) singer, Sabina Sciubba--anyone heard this? (I tend to be cautious about dates with singers, since if they don't click for me then they usually really get under my skin....) -- But that new solo disc on Naim sounds intriguing. There are, I should mention, two really nice solo pieces on None But the Lonely Heart besides the duos with Haden. Hm, so anyone know what's up with Alsut? Who runs it anyway?
  24. Jay Clayton.....the couple of times I've seen her it was fairly excruciating, actually. Nice voice, but no taste. Maybe in less indulgent settings (i.e. ones free of Jerry Granelli) she'd sound better. Recently was sent a promo of a Byard Lancaster disc, The Out Cry, which was so shockingly amateurish (complete with an out-of-tune bassist & clutzy drummer) that it left me really wondering what to think: is all his stuff that bad, or was he more of a force to be reckoned with way back?
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