Jump to content

Essential John Gilmore?


Recommended Posts

Well, the crazy think about Gilmore is that, discounting the 1957 Blue Note session that he co-led with Clifford Jordan, Gilmore never made a recording under his own name. How does that even happen, even for a self-effacing player who obviously shied away from the spotlight? Fascinating musician and a unique voice -- Trane said in an interview he was a direct influence on "Chasin' the Trane." Lots of dark mysteries in Gilmore's sound, rhythm, note choices, articulation, and texture.

Two quartet records (saxophone plus rhythm) where he gets a lot of space and to which I return frequently:

Pete LaRoca's  "Turkish Women at the Bath" (1967). Quartet with Chick Corea on piano and Walter Book on bass

Paul Bley's "Turning Point," quartet with Peacock and Motian (1964)..

Edited by Mark Stryker
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 minutes ago, Mark Stryker said:

Yes, should've added Hill's "Andrew!" and "Compulsion" to my short list. I also like the Freddie Hubbard record, "The Artistry of Freddie Hubbard," for hearing Gilmore with a more mainstream rhythm section.

Seriously, though, does anyone know why he never recorded as a leader?  

JSangry mentioned them above.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i think that his soloing on Sun Ra's Cosmos album is very strong. My favorite Gilmore soloing from that album is on "Jazz From an Unknown Planet." I also think that his soloing on tenor saxophone and clarinet on the 2 LP live album Unity is uniformly excellent. I think that his soloing is outstanding on the 1950s live tracks from Budland in Chicago on The Eternal Myth Revealed Vol. 1 

Edited by Hot Ptah
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Such an underrated tenor. He is one of my absolute favorites which makes it even harder to cope with the fact he has no recordings as a leader and that small group recordings are pretty scarce. 

anyway I don’t have much to add. The Hill’s, the Hubbard, the Hope. It’s all highly recommended.

what about the unreleased stuff? Wasn’t there some Blue Note records that were still not released? Don’t know if that was under his own name?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The two 1978 Horo double-LP’s of the Sun Ra Quartet (with Michael Ray, and Luqman Ali on percussion) - are pretty stunning. Track down this material, by hook or crook, however you can.

New Steps was available ~8 years ago on a superb grey-market silver-disc CD (with fine liners even), Unfortunately Other Voices Other Blues hasn’t seen any similar sort of CD release, but there was a grey-market 3LP are issue of both double LP’s together (iirc), I forget the title - no idea of quality, but it’s probably pretty good I’d think.

I have that boot CD of New Steps, and Also an original LP set of OVOB that I got back in college, part of a set of ~35 Arkestra albums I bought as a bundle for $150 (including several Saturns) - a lucky find, to be sure.

All this Horo quartet material is pretty stunning (all of it studio recordings) - and important for the Gilmore quotient, but especially also for the Michael Ray (imho).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can tell I don’t do downloads, because I forgot to even look earlier. Here’s the two Horo quartet double LP’s, legit (far as I know).



I think we’re quite fortunate that there’s even this much quartet material, fairly ‘outside’ - but not crazily so (which is just like I like it).

Did this quartet play live any? I vaguely seem to remember a live release of some sort, which (iirc), was further out than I could get very much into (or was I just imagining this quartet playing live?).

Maybe Media Dream or Disco 3000? Those titles are jumping in my head. Something I had at one point, but parted with (apparently).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...