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Art Ensemble "live in Paris" (is it actually Paris?)


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I'm wondering if the so called Paris concert (originally released by BYG Japan in 1974) is actually the 1970 "Chateauvallon" concert (Aug 13)

The Lord Discography lists it so (with quintet - Moye added) while the liner notes to the Charly CD lists the date as October 5, 1969 (quartet)

Any AEC buffs able to clear this up for me?

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To answer the initial query (and speaking from memory), I believe the video consists of the first half-hour of the 1970 gig (ie disc 2 of Live in Paris).  It's a wonderful video, which captures the fluidity and concentration of the Ensemble at its best, and the visuals add something substantial to the audio version.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Wonderful video.

It's "Bon voyage" which was originally issued on the "Live part 2" album (BYG Japan/Toho YX-2041). This is indeed the Châteauvallon performance of August 13, 1970 (their last European concert before returning to the US, which probably explains why this improvisation was called "Bon Voyage").

The original Japanese records (the second one is "Live Part 1", BYG/Toho YX-2040, containing "Oh Strange") have only Japanese notes, but I can't find any mention of Paris or the October 1969 date. The back cover (both part 1 and part 2) credits "quintet + fontella bass". 

I guess the confusion results from sloppy reissues.




Edited by corto maltese
edit for typo
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Well, I've listened to "Live part 1" ("Oh Strange") again last night and I'm pretty sure it's the quintet playing, with Don Moye. And Fontella is definitely there too. 

I suspect the 1970 Chateauvallon performance of "Oh Strange" was issued on the original Japanese BYG, but has been replaced at some point by an earlier recording (probably the 1969 Paris concert) by the quartet and without Fontella.

I don't have any of the "Live in Paris" editions to check, but I would be grateful if someone could confirm (or correct) this.


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Yes, she is on both "Oh Strange" (the BYG "Live part 1") and "Bon Voyage" (BYG "Live part 2").

But according to Discogs and several online discographies, the "Oh Strange" performance on the first record of "Live in Paris" (which is supposed to be a reissue of the two BYG albums) is by the quartet without Moye and Fontella. This would mean that, while the second record of "Live in Paris" is indeed the "Bon Voyage" performance in Châteauvallon that was originally issued on the BYG "Live part 2", the first record is not a reissue of "Live part 1" but a completely different performance (another time, another place, another line-up, so probably even not "Oh Strange"...). 

That's why I was wondering if the credits or liner notes of one of the "Live in Paris" issues could help... 


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I pulled out the Affinity 2-fer last night and gave it a spin.  I haven’t listened to that recording in a very long time.  I didn't remember that it’s mono…

 Bon Voyage is definitely the quintet plus Fontella.  Moye is prominent and Fontella does her bit on side 2.

I remember being under the impression…again from years ago…that “Oh Strange” was a quartet side and thus presumably from 1969 per Chuck’s post.  I’m no longer so sure.  There’s no prominent trap drum set and I don’t hear Fontella but, on side B, there are a couple of places where drum licks…in one case seemingly played on a tympani or some other low pitched drum…appear to be played by a drummer as opposed to the percussion effects that the quartet produced.  There’s also some of Roscoe’s bass sax in the mix, something I associate with the quintet.  OTOH, at one point Roscoe improvises on a melody that I associate with the quartet…is it “Erika”?  Beautiful melody…

 Then there’s this footnote in the AEC discography by Eddy Janssens and Hugo Decraen (fn # 69, displayed on page 80).

 “Again their exists a controversy with respect to the place and dat of recording. Lindenmaier suggests that these recordings might have taken place in Paris on October 5th or November 8th 1969.  Also the sleeve notes of theAffinity re-issue give October 5th 1969 as possibility.  We used here the data provided by Dutilh and Goddet in their AEC-discography (Jazz Hot, 1978). Recent Laurent Goddet confirmed again that these sessions have been recorded at Chateauvallon during August 1970.  The sessions were also broadcasted by France Musique during which it was clearly stated that they were recorded in 1970 at the Chateauvallon festival.”

 To complicate matters, there’s a cd on the Jazz Music Yesterday label, JMY 1008-2, “Eda Wobu”, which says it was recorded in Paris on October 5, 1969.  It’s one 48 minute track of the same title.  The personnel given is the quartet and the photo on the cover is from a quartet studio session, FWIW.  I haven’t listened to that in a very long time as well.  Will give it a turn and look for evidence of “Oh Strange” anywhere in the mix, though notoriously faulty memory tells me that it’s not the same performance.

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