30 June 2008


Heres another magnificent frank Lowe concert, from the same period (1985) as his great soul note album ‘decision in paradise’.
The great trombonist and composer Grachan Moncur is also featured on this electrifying date.
Pretty sure the first few tracks are in fact Moncur compositions from the classic Blue Note album “some other stuff” ( I don’t have it with me so I can't confirm that with certainty).
Its great to hear the under recorded master Donald Rafael Garrett on double bass here.
(garrett was a multi instrumentalist and instrument maker who played clarinets , wood flutes ,and piano as well as being a monster bassist).

An electrifying gig.. though it has to be mentioned that most of the playing here is more in lowe’s freebop / modal bag , than some of his more all out free sessions.
For all that it's no less passionate and inspired.
Thanks to H., and the taper /seeder traders.

This show is in superb sound.

Frank Lowe Quartet
Waltham, Mass. (USA)
Brandeis University
April 11, 1985

Frank Lowe, ts, vocal
Grachan Moncur III, tb
Donald Garrett, b
Waren Benbow, dr

1) 12:35 u.t.
2) 10:36 u.t.
3) 08:45 I Didn´t Know What Time It Was
4) 13:27 u.t.
5) 11:58 Happy House
6) 06:04 A Foggy Day

Total Time: 64:19

29 June 2008

Rova Live - Unreleased Works from Live Recordings

The Rova Saxophone Quartet is a San Francisco-based saxophone quartet formed in October 1977 at the same time as their "less adventurous" but better known colleagues the World Saxophone Quartet. The name "Rova" is an acronym formed from the last initials of the founding members: Jon Raskin, Larry Ochs, Andrew Voigt and Bruce Ackley. 

Rova has become an important leader in the movement of genre-bending music that has its roots in post-bop free jazz, avant-rock, and 20th century new music as well as traditional and popular styles of Africa, Asia, Europe and the United States.[citation needed] While much of Rova's music is composed by its members, the group has also collaborated with and commissioned new works. Since its founding, Rova has released over two dozen recordings of original music.

 In noting Rova's role in developing the all-saxophone ensemble as "a regular and conceptually wide-ranging unit," The Penguin Guide to Jazz calls its music "a teeming cosmos of saxophone sounds" created by "deliberately eschewing conventional notions about swing [and] prodding at the boundaries of sound and space..." Likewise Jazz: The Rough Guide notes, "Highly inventive, eclectic and willing to experiment, Rova [is] arguably the most exciting of the saxophone quartets to emerge in the format's late '70s boom."

They have collaborated with many musicians and composers, including Terry Riley (Chanting the Light of Foresight), Fred Frith (Freedom in Fragments), Annie Gosfield, John Zorn and Alvin Curran.


[MP3, Flacs, scans AFTER EUROCUP]

Frank Lowe- Amsterdam july 20th 1977 ,FLAC and lame

Hers another atmospheric and very listenable aud from dime .
Frank Lowe has always been a favorite of mine, someone I listen to on an almost weekly basis.
Someone who in his lifetime (he died in 2003) was seriously under appreciated and recorded who had to struggle to survive and pay his medical bills to the bitter end.

The combination of Lowe and Butch Morris, from this vintage is blissful.
Great band .. Great gig … superior music.
Lowe at his most exploratory.
Anyone who likes this concert ought to check out the Paris based future/Marge release “tricks of the trade” one of the great concert releases of the day.
It can be bought here

Again many thanks to the tapers/ seeders /traders
BTW/ I have a couple of Lowe lps that have not yet seen the light of day which I shall conceivably share soon.

Frank Lowe Quartet

Amsterdam, Netherlands,
Bimhuis, 1977,
2. Set

Butch Morris,c
Frank Lowe,ts
Marten van Regteren Altena,b
Martin van Duynhoven,dr

1 Titel 11:08
2 Titel 5:14
3 Titel 9:02
4 Titel 10:24

Total Time: 35:49

Lineage: aud > cdr trade > flac > dime

Sound Rating: AUD A-


Air - Cologne (with Amiri Baraka),March 20, 1982 FLAC and lame

Here’s another all too rare air concert.
This is a collaboration with controversial radical African American nationalist poet Amiri Baraka formerly Leroi Jones , probably best known to jazz fans as the author of Black Dada Nihilisimus, performed on the New York Art quartets eponymous album on esp.
Baraka was initially friends with the beats whom he had come to know after moving to Greenwich Village in the late 50’s.
Baraka moved on, I think becoming increasingly disillusioned with their flabby romanticism and lack of specific political engagement.

I don’t know too much about Baraka ,other than a few basic facts, and of course some of the background to the explosive controversy that exploded in the headlines ( here in Australia) when Baraka lost his status as poet laureate of new jersey after publishing a poem titled “somebody blew up America’ about the events of sept 11 2001.

Anyhow this is a great concert, and Air are providing much more than mere support but are interacting fully with both Baraka and each other.
A great one … many thanks to JeffMorris for taping and seeding this show.

Lineage: CD on trade ( FM, unknown gen ) -> Extracted & converted to FLAC using EAC -> DIME
Disc 1

1. Zoodoo 04:29
2. Bad News 04:22
3. I Love Music 03:57
4. Against Bourgeois Art 06:04
5. Afro-American Lyric 05:43
6. Wailers 05:05
7. Am/Trak 10:37
8. Class Struggle In Music 12:01


Amiri Baraka - recitation
Henry Threadgill - reeds
Fred Hopkins - b
Steve McCall - dr


read Baraka's poems here

28 June 2008

Joe McPhee: Tenor

Joe McPhee: Tenor

1. Knox 8:29
2. Good-Bye Tom B 6:33
3. Sweet Dragon 5:31
4. Tenor 23:26

Recorded 1st and 2nd September 1976 at Michael Overhage's farmhouse in Switzerland (!)

Three HatHut records in, and McPhee is still their only artist on release, so what better way to celebrate than with a solo recording. The tracks were made available on CD later with an additional solo performance, but this is a rip of the original vinyl LP passed on to me by Dale.

These are the sleeve notes written by Allain-Rene Hardy, Jazz Magazine, Paris, in October 1976:
"This year is going to be the McPhee year...
McPhee vibrates let those that do not hear him clear their ears or throw away their blinkers that do not allow them to be moved...
There is no difficult music - there are only listeners that have been conditioned by the media:
pass it on!"

So I have!

Why we share and how we do it

In the comments of an earlier post Anonymous asked about the ethics of sharing, and how to upload some of his records to share with others if he decided to do so. I thought it would be useful for us to share a few comments on this issue. It took me some time to work out the best way, especially as I used a Mac, and most advice seems to be for PC users. I can organise things quite quickly now.

I've therefore kicked things off with a comment of my own.

27 June 2008

Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition - Live FM broadcast 1980

Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition
Left Bank Jazz Society
Famous Ballroom, Baltimore
May 4, 1980

Jazz Alive NPR FM Broadcast

01 Zoot Suite
02 One for Eric
03 Announcements
Jack DeJohnette-drums, percussion, melodica
Arthur Blythe-alto saxophone
Chico Freeman-tenor and soprano saxophone,bass clarinet
Peter Warren- bass, cello

Special Edition has been one of JDJ's projects that started out I think with an LP on the ECM label in 1979 entitled, not very originally, Special Edition. That album features David Murray on tenor/bass clarinet. This role seems to have rotated between him and Chico Freeman, who can be found on this recording, alongside the excellent Arthur Blythe who seems to have been a mainstay of the band. I don't know when their most recent gig took place.

This set features extended versions of JDJ's compositions that appeared on that first album, and very good they are too.

Sound quality is excellent. Thanks to taper and seeder.
MP3 and Flac links available in comments.

26 June 2008

Satoko Fujii - Carla Kihlstedt Duo

Tuesday, June 24
Freight and Salvage
1111 Addison Street (near San Pablo)
Berkeley, CA

Satoko Fujii - Carla Kihlstedt Duo
Satoko Fujii - piano
Carla Kihlstedt – violin

While the 2 hour concert was magnificent, I regret that I was not familiar with my new recording device (Tascam DR-1) and only 20 minutes was preserved... I'll know how to do it next time. The music posted here is fantastic..

22 June 2008

Ornette Coleman- crisis, ornette at twelve

een provided recently ,in the comments to ornettes paris concert ,links to the scandalously out of print crisis and ornette at twelve on impulse.

ripped at 320kbs
thanks een!!!

rnette At 12 / Ornette Coleman: Impulse! A9178

New York, June 16, 1968
Ornette Coleman(as,tp,vln), Dewey Redman(ts), Charlie Haden(b),
Denardo Coleman(d)

1. C.O.D
2. Rainbows
3. New York
4. Bells And Chimes

Crisis / Ornette Coleman: Impulse! A9187

Live, "New York University", March 22, 1969
Ornette Coleman(as,vln), Don Cherry(tp,indian-fl), Dewey Redman(ts),
Charlie Haden(b), Denardo Coleman(d)

1. Broken Shadows
2. Comme ll Faut
3. Song For Che
4. Trouble In East
5. Space Jungle

steve lacy- esthilacos ,live in lisbon 1972 FLAC , and LAME

here's an interesting ,generally fine and pretty free performance recorded by Lacy's regular group during a brief visit to Portugal in 1972.

this finds Irene Aebi sticking to cello throughout, as well as twiddling the knobs of a shortwave radio MEV style, steve Potts's playing is probably what makes this a treasure for me.
he's always good value and here he particularly tears it up.
the sound quality though very listenable is far from being pristine.
nice to hear a group version of cloudy, something lacy recorded to wondrous effect a few times , most notably on quark/emanems live at the chene noir from the same year.
this was broadcast on the portugese radio show cinqo minutas de jazz, and has also appeared on cd under that name.

this rip is taken from the 1996 strauss cd.. which appears to have been on the market for only a short time.
sorry about the lack of scans and notes.. my scanner is broken.



1/ Stations (Lacy) 6:00
2/ Chips, Moon, Dreams (Lacy) 12:42
3/ No Baby (Lacy) 8:29
4/ The Highway (Lacy) 10:32

Recorded live at Cinema Monumental, Lisbon, February 29, 1972

Steve Lacy: soprano; Steve Potts: alto; Irene Aebi: cello, radio transis-
tor on (1), harmonica on (2); Kent Carter: bass; Noel Mghie: drums, per-

???? - Sassetti-Guilda-da-Musica (Portugal), 11403001 (LP)
1996 - Strauss (Portugal), ST1087 (CD)

21 June 2008

Billy Bang at Kuumbwa Jazz Center FLAC MP3 pics

               Billy Bang Quartet


            Kuumbwa Jazz Center, Santa Cruz, CA

            November, 11,2004


Billy Bang - violin 

Muziki Roberson - piano

Todd Nicholson – bass

Darell Green - drums



            01   Yo, Ho Chi Minh is in the House              12:21

02    Mr Syms                                                    12:11

03    Moments for KIAMIA                                08:31

04   At Play in the Field of the Lord                09:41



My recording made with a Shure mic, Sony  DAT, edited w WavLab.

Lee Konitz Quartet (with Derek Bailey and Tony Oxley) Live recording 1966 Manchester UK

I've heard quite a bit of Bailey's work over the years, as well as seeing him in gigs in London in the late sixties, but I can't say that I've ever been a fan of his. I was surprised to see this recording pop up on dime. Knowing that there are quite a few devotees of his who visit this blog I thought I'd share it with you.



19-Mar 1966

Club 43,

Lee Konitz: as
Derek Bailey: g
Gavin Bryars: b
Tony Oxley: dr

1. Carvin' The Bird (08:27) cuts in
2. I Remember You (11:56) cuts in + out
3. Out Of Nowhere (11:22) cuts in

tt: 31:46

It's no surprise to hear Oxley on this as he has continued to play "straight" as well as free jazz throughout his career, but Bailey was a bit of a revelation to me. He sounds like a Barney Kessell or Wes Montgomery or many other jazz guitarists of the day, playing bebop ! As for Konitz, well he's as good as ever on this.

Please be warned that the sound quality is not good, even for a 1966 recording, so this is one for the enthusiasts. As it is a short recording, I'm posting in flac only (sound quality needs all the help it can get).

I'm sure some of you will know something of the history, but I gather they both hail from Sheffield. This was my home town in my teenage years (about the same time as they were trying to make it there, though I had no interest in jazz in those days). At that time Sheffield was a grimy steel city, a most unlikely place to try and establish free jazz. I can imagine they were thrown out of a few pubs trying to play that sort of stuff.

Link in comments.

20 June 2008

Peter Evans with the Totem Trio (Bruce Eisenbeil, Tom Blancarte, Andrew Drury) and others - Solo, Duo (Sparks), Trios and Quartets

Here is some remarkable contemporary free improvisation - these cats are definitely doing something different, largely led by the extraordinary trumpet of Peter Evans. I hope you enjoy this.

Totem, recorded 1st May, 2008 at Studio 15 of the Radio Suisse Romande.

Bruce Eisenbeil - electric & acoustic guitar
Tom Blancarte - bass
Andrew Drury - percussion


Peter Evans - trumpet

Invited Swiss musicians

Dragos Tara - bass
Laurent Brutin - clarinet
Benoît Moreau - piano
Jonas Kocher - accordion

01 Radio (14.10)
02 Solo - Peter Evans (tr) (11.46)
03 Radio (10.58)
04 Trio Totem - Bruce Eisenbeil (gtr), Tom Blancarte (b), Andrew Drury (perc) (25.17)
05 Radio
06 Duo Sparks - Peter Evans (tr), Tom Blancarte (b) (7.29)
07 Radio (0.52)
08 Quartet - Peter Evans (tr), Bruce Eisenbeil (gtr), Tom Blancarte (b), Andrew Drury (perc) (10.28)
09 Radio (8.34)
10 Trio - Laurent Brutin (cl), Peter Evans (tr), Andrew Drury (perc) (4.45)
11 Radio (0.59)
12 Trio - Benoît Moreau (p), Jonas Kocher (acc'n), Tom Blancarte (b) (4.43)
13 Radio (1.00)
14 Quartet - Laurent Brutin (cl), Bruce Eisenbeil (gtr), Dragos Tara (b), Andrew Drury (perc) (4.56)
15 Radio (0.38)
16 Trio - Peter Evans (tr), Jonas Kocher (acc'n), Dragos Tara (b) (5.13)
17 Radio (1.29)
18 Trio - Bruce Eisenbeil (gtr), Benoît Moreau (p), Tom Blancarte (b) (5.13)
19 Fin (0.05)

I've left the radio commentary and interviews in, not because they offer any particular insight into this music, but because they're quite funny.

19 June 2008

Mal Waldron Quartet live at Bim Huis ,Amsterdam oct 27 2001 , flac

Heres another great Waldron share by ZERO, Who believes we need to liven up!!
this is a stunning set featuring sean bergin , and arjen gorter musicians one associates more with the european avant /free scenes.
my feeling is that they are creatively inspiring waldron to take more chances, and include some of his more interesting tunes in the set list.

bergin here, tonally has more in comon with classic tenors like Hawkins ,and a later hard bop master Clifford Jordan than on some of his own projects, though clearly the influence has always been there.

those who love mal's tougher darker hued pieces based around funky driving ostinato patterns will have a ball.
for those in doubt ive uploaded my favourite track as an mp3 taster

many thanks to the original seeders/tapers / of this exellent fm broadcast.
and to ZERO
zero says'
"I uploaded the other Mal 2001 show a while ago but didn't want to add to your DL burden at that time. Then I proceeded to forget about it ...... until now. Details are below. Another knock-out from the same quartet."
Mal Waldron Quartet
Amsterdam, NL
October 27, 2001

CD 1: set 1
1. Judy 16:50
2. You 11:30
3. Hurray For Herbie 21:20

CD 2: set 2
4. Yesterdays 11:47
5. Soul Eyes 13:56
6. Jean Pierre 15:20
7. What It Is 11:10

Mal Waldron - piano
Sean Bergin - tenor sax
Arjen Gorter - bass
John Betsch - drums

the above photo was found on the web ,its by Samuel Nja Kwa


17 June 2008

David Murray Octet (with Jimmy Lyons) - Live NYC 1984

Prolific artist David Murray has frequently led octets consisting of many distinguished musicians.
This one intrigued me particularly because of the inclusion of Jimmy Lyons. I wasn't aware that he'd ever played with Murray, and found it interesting to hear Lyons in company with different musicians than those on his more well-known recordings.
This is a very polished performance. You'd think the guys performed together permanently. It must be tribute to Murray to bring such a band together and function so well. There's a particularly fine version of Murray's classic "Last of the Hipmen".
July 1984
Joe Papp's Public Theatre, New York

Olu Dara [Charles Jones III] (tpt, cornet)
Lawrence "Butch" Morris (cornet)
Dick Griffith (tb)
Jimmy Lyons (as)
David Murray (ts, bcl)
Anthony Davis (p)
Wilbur Morris (b)
Steve McCall (d)
1 Introduction 0:23
2 Ming (D. Murray) 4:32
3 Last of the Hipmen (D. Murray) 19:52
4 Home (D. Murray) 5:30
5 Dewey's Circle (D. Murray) 10:19
6 Choctaw Blues (D. Murray) 8:15
Broadcast in late 1984 on American Public Radio.

Thanks to plosin for seeding this on dime.
Flac and MP3 links in comments.

16 June 2008

Ornette Coleman- the paris concert 1966-71 FLAC & LAME

Heres another contribution from glmlr.

Definitely a set that ought to be better known and circulated..magnificently recorded for what I believe was basically an un authorised release..(glmlr disagrees with me here, my source is an only dimly remembered discographical note in an insert to one of ornettes artist house lp’s..and since I don’t have my records with me at this moment ,I cant actually confirm that suspicion)

It certainly has a disputed ..highly contended discographical provenence.

There seems a level of uncertainty about whether any of this set was recorded in 66 featuring izenzion and moffett, as opposed to haden and Blackwell.

Whatever its provenance, ultimately it’s the music which matters ..and this is a sonically relatively superb documentation of what must have been a stunning group live.

I recall having heard other live material by this group ,notably an lp boot released by French label musidisc in the early 70’s in very atrocious sound.. so its great to hear this again and a pristine rip too!!Perhaps at some point in time someone will see fit to share the scandalously neglected impulse records ‘crisis’ and ‘ornette at twelve’ which have been out of print for many years

The only constantly circulated discs by the quartet with redman ,and Blackwell seem to be the good but otherwise very slick and manicured records on blue note “new york is now” and ‘love call”

thanks glmlr

· Paris Concert / Ornette Coleman: Trio PA7169 (2LPs)· · Paris, February 12, 1966 & November 1971· Ornette Coleman(as,tp,vln), David Izenzon(b), Charles Moffett(d), Dewey Redman(ts),· Charlie Haden(b), Ed Blackwell(d)· ·

1. Second Fiction · 2. Summer-Thang · 3. Sihouette · 4. 14 Juillet (*)· 5. Fantasy 77 · 6. Reminiscence (*)· 7. All Day Affair (*)· · Note: (*) Izenzon, Moffett, February 12, 1966;Note: Redman, Haden, Blackwell, 1971, Only Japan IssuedDiscographical sourceshttp://cd-v.net:80/jazz/discography/ornette_d.html


15 June 2008

Julius Hemphill (mbari) Dogon A. D.

Julius Hemphill (mbari)
Dogon A. D.

mbari 5001 / Arista Freedom 1028

Recorded St Louis, Missouri in February 1972

Julius Hemphill (saxophone & flute)
Abdul K. Wadud (cello)
Baikida Yassen [Carroll] (trumpet)
Phillip Wilson (drums)

1. Dogon A.D. (Hemphill) 14:48
2. Rites (Hemphill) 8:20
3. The Painter (Hemphill) 14:56

Because I've had some material lined up for a few weeks and not had time to post, I thought I'd get a second item to you all while I'm sitting at my computer. I'm aware this record has actually been posted on a few blogs, including some associated with, or frequented by, the esteemed regulars here. However, there are three good reasons to post it again:

1. This is a totally amazing recording. It should be posted on every blog, given away to school children as part of their education, and honoured in an annual celebration of all that is great in the world.

2. I offer it here in better quality than most of the posts. It's also ripped from the original 1972 vinyl, and so I've also posted the original art work. It's actually a scan of a facsimile created by Dale when he passed on the recording to me, but it's good to see the original design.

3. And this time the post comes with a great essay from Dale celebrating the artists and his recording.

Over to you, Dale:

Julius Hemphill: Under Appreciated Composer, Saxophone Artist, and Man**

I started paying attention to Julius Hemphill when I heard Dogon AD. It was early in the ‘70s and “Dogon” immediately became one of my favorite records. Then Coon Bidness came along and I was bowled over AGAIN and pretty much hooked on Hemphill. This was an important step in my growing fondness for “free jazz” and creative music/sounds. Mainly I was beginning to “hear” AND to grasp the importance of Braxton, Taylor and others. But for me the impact of Hemphill’s music was a little different. It was at once abstract and radically evocative as well as sleek and antique sounding stuff - all curvy and bluesy and dashing. And, for me, at least, it was actually more accessible. Even so, it was improvised music that was hard to pin down. But, above all, I REALLY “dug” it; and I still do. Interestingly, these are records where I can still listen to and hear new elements and strands every time. From that time on I tried to get anything and everything where Julius was ANY part of the formula. And, at last, there was a fair amount of his work coming out. I think I got the Wildflower Series next. Then I scored copies of Roi Boye and Blue Boyé, both beautiful self produced Lps on the now obscure (and defunct) Mbari label. Finally, the World Saxophone Quartet (WSQ) stormed onto the scene in 1976-7. During this period I wasn’t aware of his connection with the Black Artist Group (BAG) in St Louis. If comments about this were included in the liner notes, I must’ve more or less ignored them. I loved his sound and his musical ideas so the history was not relevant for me at the time. I think I picked up that he was from Fort Worth: that was about it. Oh yeah, and I read someplace that Ornette Coleman was his cousin. That didn’t seem important then because I heard very little of Coleman’s searing oblique style in Hemphill.

What about Hemphill’s BAG experiences? Right up front I will admit that I am generally skeptical of the notion of “influences.” I am apt to think of it as the “antecedent trap” with a mesh just the “write” size for at least some academics on the prowl to grasp the creative process. Certainly there is a risk of over simplicity when you are trying to frame someone’s personal aesthetic evolution. In Hemphill’s case, from what I read and hear, we are dealing with a STRONG individual who was particularly intent on following his own muse. So circumspection is in order! Let’s just say I am fairly cautious about placing a great deal of stock in “selected” episodes of this particular artist’s life in order to gain insights. With innovators like Hemphill “salient” life experiences yield very little assistance in grasping his development.

So, in spite of some of my reservations concerning “antecedentism,” here are a few “facts” about Hemphill’s life and development. Hemphill grew up in Fort Worth Texas. He dabbled in clarinet in grade school and was eventually captivated by the gleam of his distant cousin Ornette Coleman’s alto saxophone. The neighborhood and his house were full of music. So he figured out fairly early on that he was going into music. And, in fact, he did eventually get a college degree. He went to a small black school, Lincoln Univ., in Jefferson City, MO. But he was often in trouble (for playing “street music” in the practice rooms!) And he was thrown out during his senior year for skipping classes to go hear Coltrane. It took him eleven years, with a stint in the military interrupting his efforts, to get his music degree. He later claimed that “I learned what I learned in school. The rest of it I learned in West Texas and on the south side in Dallas jumping up and down on the blues boy’s bandstands and the bebop band stands.” Gigs and jamming around were significant even while he was studying music in school. BUT I think the BAG experience was another matter. At school he had met and played with Oliver Lake, Hamiet Bluiett, Joseph Bowie and others. During his 3-4 year stint at BAG he played in many group permutations. He also was involved in developing community outreach and educational programs. And he was sort of a star to the organization. He was noted for amazing improvisations and was known as “the professor.” His cool demeanor and brimming talent led to his being elected the first chairman at BAG. I also think the leading role he was forced into meant he had to be involved in conceptualizing, writing, designing and realizing the NUMEROUS multimedia events. This was a major learning experience and became the practical foundations for his later work. Tim Berne in an interview observed some of these skills:

“For someone as far ahead of the game as Hemphill, you wonder what he might have achieved with a manager who knew what he had. His attention to detail was astonishing. He couldn't just play a gig. He had to build a whole new set of music stands or get the band to wear different outfits or use weird lighting. And no two concerts would contain the same material. He was always thinking how it looked and he'd make the guys wear certain things. He was just way ahead of everybody else in that regard. It really inspired me to find my own way. Not copy him but to get my own ideas."

It is kind of academic and speculative when you get into connecting all these facts retrospectively. So I tend to think of these observations as possible ways to see and think about his music. Maybe Hemphill’s aesthetic arc can be clarified by his connection with The Black Artists Group (BAG) and later on by examining his work with The World Saxophone Quartet (WSQ). On the other hand, it may not tell us very much. When you look at his interviews etc. it is clear that he thought of himself more broadly as a jazz/blues artist who wanted to mine the “voice of the culture,” by personally remolding it so it could be blended with drama, dance, poetry and the visual arts. He was out to make the tradition personal in order to express himself. To quote Hemphill himself on this matter: “The music is blues-driven...it is right out of neighborhoods...but I am not trapped by it because the tradition of the music is forward. Forward! It’s got to change or it will die” (From an interview ca. 1994 at the Smithsonian). To be sure the BAG experience was where he got together with the St. Louisans. And they DID grow. They were hungry and deeply inspired by each other to move their personal music and the "culture" forward.

I do have one further impression about Hemphill that I think is worth mentioning in this context. He was always a bit of an outsider. Here are comments by some of his friends:

“Julius was contrary...he could be cantankerous...but there was a playfulness in all that. But the main thing to remember about Julius is that he was a powerful creative force...and he was a major intellectual who could discuss and use anything” (mainly taken from discussions with Malenke Elliott)

When I consider all this, along with some other aspects of Hemphill and his music, it helps me to put in perspective his intermittent successes and setbacks. And, surprisingly, I think I can see through this lens that there was a kind of logic that moved him in the direction of more detailed composition toward the end of his life rather than staying with jamming and gigging. I think this course and his cantankerous and independent streak, contributed significantly to his parting with WSQ. He needed to compose a saxophone opera and to work with dancers and playwrites. To move the “culture” forward.

I only met Julius Hemphill one time. It was in a hotel room after a WSQ concert at the Portland Art Museum in Portland Oregon. I’d gone up with Malenke΄ and Arzinia Richardson (a bass player and Oliver Lake’s friend from St. Louis) and another acquaintance writer and DJ who had worked with Julius on some musical dramas. The “get together” was just to have a few drinks and to chit-chat. As far as I can remember Julius hardly said anything beyond a quick “hi” when we first arrived. He sat off in the corner and listened and watched. I learned later from Malenke΄ that Julius “hates chit-chat.” I hate it too. I wish the situation would have allowed us to get beyond chit-chat.

Now, just a little bit about Oliver Lake. I had heard Lake around 1975. He was playing live with his friend, Arzinia Richardson (an old BAG co-worker), at a health food restaurant, Mama’s Homefried Truck Stop in Eugene Oregon. In addition to alto saxophone Lake played some solos on wood flutes that he’d purchased locally. Oliver was astonishing on alto and the flute playing was flat out inspired. He had some Passin Thru Lps and posters with him so I grabbed a few for myself and friends. In a brief and nervous conversation after the concert I found out about his 1971 album “NTU: Point From Which Creation Begins.” He also mentioned BAG, which I wrote down; and then he showed me some of his poetry which I thought was REALLY bad! But I couldn’t tell this brilliant guy that I was deep into the small press “scene” and thought his writing was much too abstract and needed serious editing. You know, I was getting signatures and being sociable so I kind of nodded politely and said something like “Hey, Cool.” Then, in addition to the 5 LP Wildflower set (at Rivers’ Studio Rivbea), and early WSQ I found him appearing on several Charles “Bobo” Shaw and The Human Arts Ensemble albums. I also noted some important connections with Chicago’s better known Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) – especially Joseph and Lester Bowie. And somewhere in there I picked up on the work of John Carter who had been one of Hemhill’s teachers. Things were beginning to connect for me so I was increasingly inclined be a little more organized in my searches for music coming out of St. Louis.

At one point when I was passing thru Missouri I made some weak efforts to find BAG material in either record or book stores in East St. Louis. One kid behind the counter at a record store on the Eastside yelled to an older co-worker and they shook their heads in unison. It was as though BAG and its brave and creative proponents had evaporated. It was true - BAG really had disappeared - the artists left St Louis for places like NYC, Chicago and Europe - the core was gone.

It is relevant to point out that there was no “web” in the early to mid 70s (computer nerds were still learning about IBM ‘punch cards’). It would have been amazing to just “Google” a web site like the one at All About Jazz which has Benjamin Looker’s nice 2004 article on the “Poets of Action: The Saint Louis Black Artists' Group, 1968-1972 (Part 1-4)” at:
Check it out and look at Looker’s fine book Point From Which Creation Begins: The Black Artists' Group of St. Louis.

The above article and comments are based on Hemphill’s music, reading Benjamin Looker (noted above) and discussions with Malenke “Kenyata” Elliott (Playwright and one of the founders of the St Louis Black Artists Group –BAG). The Tim Berne quotes are from his web site:


Additional comments and MP3 download link for
“Dogon A D” come from the “Free Jazz Blog”


From the very first notes of this album, you know that something special is taking place. The cello of Abdul Wadud brings a repetitive theme, supported by some energetic drumming by Philip Wilson, with Hemphill and Baikida Carroll on sax and trumpet playing the main theme. After a minute or so Carroll drops away and Hemphill starts with a magical sax solo. Wadud and Wilson relentlessly continue with their hypnotic basis, sometimes only playing parts of it, yet keeping it implicitly present at all times. After about 13 minutes the piece changes and the contrapuntal interplay between the cello on the one hand and the sax and trumpet on the other hand leads to a climactic finale. "Dogon A.D." is phenomenal in the simplicity of its form and the power and creativity of its performance. "Rites", the second number, starts with strong interplay of the four band members, who quickly pursue their own lines without loosing focus of the whole. "Painter" brings Hemphill on flute. This CD is an absolute must for all jazz fans.

14 June 2008


David Murray (Quartet)
India Navigation IN 1032 and IN 1044
CD reissue IN 1032 CD

Recorded December 31 1977 live at the Lower Manhattan Ocean Club, NY
David Murray (ts, ss on 2), Lester Bowie (tp), Fred Hopkins (b), Phillip Wilson (d)

1. Nevada's Theme (David Murray) 11:23
2. Bechet's Bounce (David Murray) 7:32
3. Obe (Lawrence"Butch" Morris) 18:12
4. Let The Music Take You (David Murray) 3:36

1. For Walter Norris (Lawarence"Butch" Morris) 23:24
2. Santa Barbara And Crenshaw Follies (David Murray) 12:20
This post is a rip of a CD reissue of two LPs collecting together the music performed by a Murray led quartet at a Manhattan club on New Year's eve in 1977. You can almost smell the seafood in the club's name! It re-unites the rhythm section of Hopkins and Wilson from Murray's earlier India Navigation recording from eighteen months before, and adds Lester Bowie.

Bowie is the link between the three most powerful groupings of musicians who came together in New York in the late 1970s to transform the established free jazz movement into the new music scene. Bowie had been active in both St Lois and Chicago in the collectives that became BAG and AACM respectively, and here in New York he is one of the earliest to play with musicians, who like Murray had come from LA. Inspired by the Black Arts movement and the idea of musical collectives they had nurtured these ideas in major black communities in the US, but ultimately moved to new York, often after sojourns in Europe.

Bob Cummins was one of those jazz lovers and small-scale entrepreneurs who captured much of the vibrant energy of the scene on his India Navigation label in the 1970s. He seemed to earn his living as a lawyer, and spent it on recording live performances in the lofts and small venues, and then releasing the recordings. He died in September 2000 (http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9807E1DB1139F933A2575AC0A9669C8B63&sec=&spon=), but small bursts of CD reissues seem to appear from time to time. Not sure why and how, but I'm always glad of the opportunity to listen to more. This one seems to be out of print as far as I can tell. It was certainly hard to find a copy when it was first re-released.

I haven't got the original vinyl LPs, but the CD liner notes say there's nearly seven minutes taken off 'Santa Barbara And Crenshaw Follies', and by my calculations there's possibly over two minutes less on 'For Walter Norris' if the timings on LP and CD can be believed (they can't usually). The CD notes also talk about an unreleased track. many of these tracks were staples of Murray's repertoire, and you get the usual personal dedications, rich textures and sometimes inspired themes. I'm very fond of this recording. I hope you enjoy it too.

Sam Rivers Quartet (with Anthony Braxton) - Live San Francisco 1978

Following on from that great Circle recording that Tantris posted, here's another Braxton collaboration.

Sam Rivers Quartet with Anthony Braxton
Keystone Korner
San Francisco, CA
October 15, 1978

Sam Rivers ts,ss,fl,p
Anthony Braxton as
Joe Daley tba
Dave Holland b, clo
Thurman Barker d, perc

1 (fades out) [28:12]
2 (cuts in) [30:28]

Some high energy stuff from both reedsmen. Interesting to compare playing styles. Some great tuba work from Daley, almost makes Holland redundant.

I think I got this from bigozine a couple of years ago, so some of you will have it. My version is only at a modest 192 kbps, but I see it's just been seeded on dime, so there's where to go if you need an upgrade. It is a radio broadcast, one or two glitches in the recording. Thanks to original taper.
Link in comments.

12 June 2008

Anthony Braxton and the Italian Instabile Orchestra - Composition no.92 - Alto Adige Festival, Bolzano, June 2007

This was broadcast by RAI3 earlier this week, and I have not been able to stop listening to it, despite the distractions of Euro 2008. It's a performance of Composition no. 92, for Creative Orchestra, and probably some other pieces that I haven't yet been able to identify - your help here would be appreciated.

Excellent photos of the orchestra, and score, are available here and here.

It's good to see this piece - written in 1979 - being played with such sympathy almost three decades later. For me, this piece is essentially about music, and Braxton's response to 'tradition and the individual talent', in contrast with, say composition no. 356 posted here earlier - which I think is more an ontological study of the nature of consciousness, and hence perhaps one measure of how Braxton's music has evolved over this time.

Alto Adige Jazz Festival
Italian Instabile Orchestra con Anthony Braxton

Castel Mareccio, 25th Südtirol Jazzfestival Alto Adige
Bolzano, Italy
16th June 2007

01 Radio intro (5.29)
02 Composition no. 92 (+ ?) (67.59)
03 Radio outro (0.18)

source: RAI Radio3 > Yamaha HD1300 > CDR

Anthony Braxton - as, cond, comp
Carlo Actis Dato - ts, bars, bcl
Daniele Cavallanti - ts, bars
Eugenio Colombo - as, ss, fl
Gianluigi Trovesi - as, bcl
Pino Minafra - tp, flh
Alberto Mandarini - tp
Guido Mazzon - tp
Martin Mayes - cor
Lauro Rossi - tb
Giancarlo Schiaffini - tb, tuba
Sebi Tramontana - tb
Emanuele Parrini - vio
Paolo Damiani - b, cello
Giovanni Maier - b
Umberto Petrin - p
Vincenzo Mazzone - dr

9 June 2008

Circle - Hamburg, March 1971 - complete concert

From our friend glmlr comes this marvellous Circle concert from Hamburg in 1971, together with this detailed write-up;

Circle was a band born in a pressure-cooker. During its brief existence (roughly mid-70 / mid-71), it played with an anarchic flair and a reckless drive, rare for that time. Chick Corea and Dave Holland were coming off a 2-year stay with Miles Davis, in which they were his first ever full-time white band members, amid the Black Power era. Driven by Jack DeJohnette, they took the music more out than at any time in Miles' life. Said Corea, "We kept pushing and playing free, waiting for Miles to say something about it. He never did, so we pushed harder". Said Miles of Corea, "Just look at the guy. Music is pouring out of him".
In May 1969, this trio had been the core of Corea's raucous "Is" sessions", (thankfully reissued properly in 2002 on a Blue Note 2CD). Hard blowing, uninterrupted, free-form, open-ended improvisations and compositions. Then, enter drummer Barry Altschul, a master of pulse and miniaturized mayhem on his carefully tuned percussion. A man who could float 60's Paul Bley on the most delicate of gauze, yet drive a powerful free-jazz quartet with the most minuscule of sounds. In April 70, the trio of Corea, Holland and Altschul recorded "The Song of Singing", a studio session which still rings with a freshness and an inherent energy which refute its years. August 70, while Corea and Holland were still Miles' sidemen, enter Anthony Braxton. Wildcard. A man with a musical conception which threatened never to allow him to be anyone's sideman, and the inventor of a musically philosophical verbal jargon understood by few members of the human race. But Circle was a co-operative band, and the four members adapted fast. The music which happened in the studio suggested serious connections to the European avant-garde or the modern classical of the time, as much as free jazz. Live, anything could happen.
The recordings. Shamefully Blue Note has not issued on CD much of the band's first recorded session with Braxton, 21 August 70, (which appeared on the "Circulus" 2LP under Corea's name), whereas much of the October 70 session (originally issued as "Circling In" also under Corea's name) has appeared on the "Early Circle" CD. In January 71, the trio without Braxton recorded the superbly crisp "A.R.C." in a German studio. Mysteriously, two other Circle LP's were issued only in Japan, one a German concert of 28 November 70, the other a New York studio session from 17 March 71. An excerpt also exists of a heated concert given in Bergamo on 19 March 71.
Live performance was Circle's forte. The finest recorded evidence is the "Paris Concert" of 21 February 71, issued first as a 2LP, then 2CD, by ECM. A vivid, thorny, raw document of the band in full-flight, whether on standards such as Wayne Shorter's "Nefertiti" or on Holland's own intricate twinning of "Toy Room" and "Q&A". For those old enough to remember, in 1971 this was daring music.
Looking back, it was perhaps inevitable that this band would blow itself off the stage. Stories circulated of Corea breaking a glass onstage and rubbing the microphone into the shards, band-members taking to playing any instrument at random, Holland scraping the bass strings and his chest with the mic, much use of small percussion and, in the end, a sense of alienation took over. When the band finally ground to a halt, Corea said, "We were sending our audiences up the river… ". And thus the bubble burst.
But here's the band, very much alive and well in Hamburg in early March 1971, courtesy of NDR German radio. With humble thanks to the unknown recordist / source, may you enjoy.


Circle - Live at the Jazzhaus, Hamburg
3 or 4 or 5 March 1971
Anthony Braxton - alto saxophone, sopranino saxophone, clarinet, flute
Chick Corea - piano
Dave Holland - bass
Barry Altschul - drums, percussion

1. Composition 6A - 23:17 (Anthony Braxton)
2. Rhymes - 08:10 (Chick Corea)
3. Toy Room - 07:30 (Dave Holland)
4. Q & A - 11:04 (Dave Holland)
5. Composition 6I - 22:57 (Anthony Braxton)
6. Composition 6F - 10:25 (Anthony Braxton)
7. There Is No Greater Love - 25:03 (Marty Symes, Isham Jones)
Recorded and broadcast by NDR - Norddeutscher Rundfunk.
Discographical information from Circle Discography: http://www.jazzdiscography.com/Artists/Corea/circle-disc.htm

2 June 2008

Ethnic Heritage Ensemble - Cologne, May 1989

While you're waiting for the Circle concert to appear, here is something to continue the AACM theme that has been unfolding here recently - a beautiful concert lasting just under two hours.

Ethnic Heritage Ensemble
Stadtgarten, Cologne
8th May, 1989

Edward Wilkerson - as, ts, cl, bcl, perc, p
Joseph Bowie - tb, cga, perc
Kahil El'Zabar - sanza, dr, earth-dr, fl, perc, voc

1. - 14:21
2. - 18:59
3. - 11:26
4. - 24:06

5. - 12:46
6. - 07:15
7. - 18:49
8. - 11:08

I like the way this music pulses in repeated waves, hence the image. Many thanks to boldsouls, the seeder on dime, and source of much sublime music.

1 June 2008

Arthur Blythe- Bush Baby (adelphi lp ad5008) 1978 ,FLAC and lame

Heres a great one , given to me in person recently by our man in Melbourne "Serviceton"..
Unusual instrumentation makes this somewhat more austere perhaps than his contemporaneous output, very beautiful nonetheless.
.. a fabulous share which I had not heard..

a heartfelt thank you to serviceton..
Bush Baby

Arthur Blythe - Alto
Bob Stewart - Tuba
Ahkmed Abdullah - Conga

Side A

1. Mamie Lee
2. For Fats

Side B

3. Off The Top
4. Bush Baby

Rec NYC Dec 1977

Adelphi AD5008 (p) 1978

Ripped to both flac and lame 320