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Weather Report: Black Market


Joe G
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I have loved "Black Market" since it first came out. It's a real trancy cooker! (Some house and trance shows a Weather Report influence - unknown to most young listeners, of course.)

"Black Market" was an excellent follow-up to "Tale Spinnin'", which is far and away my favorite Weather Report set, partly because Alphonso Johnson is such a funky bassist. It doesn't get better than these two albums.

What superb muscians Joe Zawinul and Wayne Shorter are! For my money, their work is the best thing since the late 60s.

The group lost my interest afer "Black Market". Although Jaco was a brilliant technician, his onstage antics were obnoxious at times.

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How representative is this particular band on the LIVE AND UNRELEASED set?

I think that some of the cuts on that album hint at the power of their live shows. Of course, when you were in the room, the volume was higher and the experience was more powerfully in your face.

Back then, many jazz shows were loud, powerful, and wild. Live jazz wasn't so genteel and tasteful like it often is now.

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I saw WR live 7-8 times over the course of their lifespan, and I saw Wayne "draw blood" more than once. That band live...even the bullshit wasn't really bullshit, if you know what I mean...masturbation, yeah, sometimes (mostly Jaco, imo), but never bullshit.

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Fun to see this thread revived...I've been on a bit of a WR binge lately, re-listening to albums I've listened to dozens dozens of times but never tire of. Besides really liking the music, I have sentimental attachment to WR - Heavy Weather was my start into jazz- really got into the great sax playing, eventually realized Wayne Shorter had had quite a career prior to WR, starting exploring that and then was off & runnin into the Blue Note catalog..

I decided I had to have the definitive versions and tracked down SACDs of Black Market and Mysterious Traveler (paid a pretty penny for 'em) to add to the Heavy Weather SACD I picked up for a song a few years ago. The sonic improvement was worth it to me, especially for Black Market. (With the advent of Blu-ray, now is a great time to get into an SACD/CD/DVD-A/DVD-V multi-format player for a great price...)

And I would agree about Tale Spinnin if for some sad reason I could only have one WR session, that would be it. I picked up Sweetnighter much more recently, and now consider it right up there with the other four favorites previously mentioned.

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Coming late to the party as I just stumbled on this discussion.I'm a huge WR fan from the very beginning and wanted to steer you guys to Wolfgang's Vault for some great concert recordings from the 73 Sweetnighter tour.Wolfgang is Bill Graham and the site has an amazing amount of original taped concerts from his venues and some others.Not a whole lot of jazz of course,but 2 lengthy and pretty well recorded shows of WR.Streams for free.

http://www.wolfgangsvault.com/weather-report/

I'd also like to recommend the new "Absolute Zawinul" record.Joe worked on this collaboration with the Absolute Ensemble right up to his death and it's great.Here's a link with info:

http://www.schott-music.com/shop/Audio_CDs/1000122/show,250111.html

Edited by hbeejay
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Just got Al's copy of Live in Tokyo in the mail (Thanks!) and looking forward to spinning it and starting to give this band a proper assessment. It wasn't until a few years ago that I could accept "plugging in" with respect to jazz and improvised music.

There are some really cool videos of WR + Euro heavies like John Surman, Alan Skidmore and Eje Thelin floating around You Tube. Supposedly an audio-only document also exists, but you didn't hear it from me...

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Just got Al's copy of Live in Tokyo in the mail (Thanks!) and looking forward to spinning it and starting to give this band a proper assessment. It wasn't until a few years ago that I could accept "plugging in" with respect to jazz and improvised music.

There are some really cool videos of WR + Euro heavies like John Surman, Alan Skidmore and Eje Thelin floating around You Tube. Supposedly an audio-only document also exists, but you didn't hear it from me...

Yes, there's a fairly long (almost 2 hr) concert from Berlin, September of 1971. Highly recommended, especially for the multi-horn arrangement on "Dr. Honoris Causa".

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