14 August 2008

Circle - Gathering


Recorded in the studio in NYC 17th March 1971. 

Chick Corea, piano, flute, percussion

Anthony Braxton, alto, flute, sopranino, clarinet, contrabass-clarinet, percussion

Dave Holland, bass, cello, guitar, percussion

Barry Altschul, drums, kalimba, percussion.  

The second of two Circle releases which were inexplicably issued only in Japan, initially on vinyl and later on CD.  As before, if anyone can throw some light on why this music was never issued in Europe or the US, the information would be very welcome.  This rip is taken from the original Japanese vinyl, CBS Sony SOPL 20-XJ.  

The performance is a single two-sided composition credited to Corea alone, and if any listener can sense a line drawn between one man's composition and four men's improvisation, he's a better man than I.    The piece opens with much of the heat and intensity associated with the free jazz of 1971, with Altschul especially taking few prisoners, before the quartet veers off into extended flute and percussion workouts, a certain amount of navel-gazing and a question-mark of an ending.   Perhaps Corea's own words, from the liner notes, best sum the piece up:  "Our music is a focal point, constantly created anew, with each playing. … It is our opinion that creativity will play an important role (maybe the important role) in lifting our consciousness about ourselves and others. …  When we are alive in the fullest sense of the word, we are creating".  

Enjoy.  
 

glmlr 

25 comments:

Tantris said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
jason said...

thank you so much for these rare circle recordings. greatly appreciated.

here is a link to a great braxton interview from '71- http://www.archive.org/details/BraxtonAM1140

jazzme said...

If any one is interested there is a great rare Peter Kowald posting on follyfortoseewhat steve

1009 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
archer said...

brand new to me.

gratitude.

roberto t. said...

I remember reading in the Melody Maker (in my young years) a phrase from the then jazz critic in reviewing a trio LP of Corea, Holland and Altschul: "What the hell are they gonna do with Braxton?" . His wait (and ours) was up to the expectations. These few recordings are precious. By the way, does anybody remember the Mal Dean drawings in the Melody Maker that were really wonderful?

glmlr said...

Yes, Roberto, I remember that, and those! You've already guessed my age. Interestingly, after Circle, and after the "Conference of The Birds" sessions, Braxton was never again able to play either in a co-operative band, or as anyone else's sideman. He had by then painted himself into a permanent corner, as witnessed just last year in Italy when Cecil Taylor walked offstage from him in mid-concert.

lee said...

Thanks for all these amazing Circle recordings. With all the Return to Forever hype right now, it's easy to forget that Corea was once a force to be reckoned with.

kinabalu said...

Nice illustrations to these two Circle records, but they are not the actual covers, obviously. Should I post the covers here? Let me know ...

Tantris said...

Hi kinabulu - it would be great to see the original covers if you have them.

1009 said...

I'll second the request for covers. Right now I'm using the one from the Japanese reissue, under Corea's name ("Circle 2 - Gathering"). It's less-than-stunning, but must have done wonders for the fellow's ego.

cool-trane said...

hi glmlr,
Generally I agree with you, but even recently AB can play as a sideman: Check out his recordings with Kevin Norton or with the great Hungarian pianist Gyorgy Szabados.

Harvey Dog said...

Thank you for introducing me to these fantastic Circle recordings. New music to these ears!

John

Scrabble said...

I definitely have to disagree with this:

"and after the Conference of The Birds sessions, Braxton was never again able to play either in a co-operative band, or as anyone else's sideman"

Just off the top of my head, there's the fabulous Creative Music Studio live session with Corea and DeJohnette and the sideman date with Dave Brubeck.

Haven't heard the Joe Morris duets yet, but the grapevine is complimentary.

hulaboy said...

Thanks for the circular sounds!

Anonymous said...

Hi Kinabalu

Is it possible for you to uplaod the Cover/Back scans? I am looking for the Chick Corea Circle The Paris Concerts illustrations too.
If you can halep here would be great

ciao
ziggy

Anonymous said...

Hi

If we can have the Covbers/Tray scans would br nice isn't it ?

bye

j said...

FYI: there's a scan of the (great) cover here:

http://www.birkajazz.com/archive/otherCountries.htm

David Gore said...

There is trumpet/flugelhorn all over this recording. Does anyone know who is playing?

Ishmael said...

It's amazing to find this - I never knew it existed until now. Thank you for making this possible.

kinabalu said...

New links from cd release:

Mega

Adrive

Norm said...

THANK YOU!!!

DrEyescope said...

Thank you SO MUCH kinabalu!!

Javier Roz said...

Thanks kinabalu!!

DW said...

kinabalu, thank you!!