World of Jazz – 1st March 2012

Well chuffed that I have reached 700 followers on Mixcloud and that last weeks show hit 447 listens at the time of writing. Interesting that the more traditional end of the jazz market (1950s, 1960s Bop and Hard Bop) are the most popular programmes – although any plays of Miles or Trane tend to pull in the listeners. Anyway this week is another mixed bag mostly concentrating on later years….. click here to listen

1 Bobby Watson Last Chance To Groove Post Motown Bop
2 Enrico Rava Tears for Neda Tribe
3 Freddie Hubbard Uncle Albert-Admiral Halsey First Light
4 Joe Lovano Where Hawks Fly Landmarks
5 John Hicks Soul Eyes Naima’s Love Song
6 Matthew Halsall The End of Dukkha On The Go
7 Stanley Cowell Stella By Starlight Close to You Alone
8  Arthur Blythe Spirits in the Fields Metamorphosis/The Grip : In Concert
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World of Jazz – 8th December 2011

On this show

  • Paul Chambers –  Just for Love – Whims of Chambers (1956) Mr PCs debut as a leader with a great band including JohnColtrane on tenor, trumpeter Donald Byrd, guitarist Kenny Burrell, pianist Horace Silver and drummer Philly Joe Jones
  • Eyvind Kang – Forest Sama’i – The Narrow Garden (2012) A sneak preview of Eyvind’s newest album which is released early next year. A fascinating mixture of jazz, world and classical music.
  • Stanley Turrentine – Meat Wave – Easy Walker (1969) A small-group soul-jazz session from Stanley Turrentine, backed by a rhythm section of pianist McCoy Tyner, drummer Mickey Roker, and bassist Bob Cranshaw.
  • Julian and Roman Wasserfuhr – Fade A Little – Upgraded in Gothenberg (2009) the new two new wunderkind brothers of German jazz in fine fettle on this ACT release. The line-up is Julian Wasserfuhr – trumpet, Roman Wasserfuhr – piano, Lars Danielsson – bass, cello and Anders Kjellberg – drums
  • Eric Dolphy – It’s Magic – Far Cry (1960) – Dolphy in transition between his Parkeresque early career and the later and freer side of this work. Booker Little and Jaki Byard add great value to the session.
  • Enrico Pieranunzi with Marc Johnson and Joey Baron – Nefertiti – The Chant of Time (1997) The italian piano master in fine company.
  • Tina Brooks – Up Tights Creek – True Blue (1960)Brooks is teamed with the young trumpeter Freddie Hubbard (on one of his earliest sessions), pianistDuke Jordan, bassist Sam Jones, and drummer Art Taylor for a set dominated by Brooks’ originals.
  • Sam Rivers – Detour Ahead – A New Conception (1966) the name of the album refers to Rivers’ ingenious interpretations of standards. The band includes pianist Hal Galper, bassist Herbert Lewis, and drummer Steve Ellington.
  • Julian and Roman Wasserfuhr – Twinkle Eyes – Gravity (2011) from their latest album this time with Wolfgang Haffner on the drums.
  • Enrico Rava – Amnesia – Tribe (2011) arguably this latest album is one of his strongest – in the band are Enrico Rava: trumpet; Gianluca Petrella: trombone; Giovanni Guidi: piano; Gabriele Evangelista: double bass; Fabrizio Sferra: drums and Giacomo Ancillotto: guitar.
  • Enrico Pieranunzi – It Speaks For Itself – Night Gone By(2003) – with Marc Johnson again but this time with the late great Paul Motian on the drums.

to listen to the show click on the link below

World of Jazz – 22nd September 2011

On this show :

  • Lee Morgan – CTA – Candy (1957) – A 19 year old Morgan demonstrating his flair and virtuosity even at such an early age. A great reading of Jimmy Heath’s bop standard.
  • Dave Douglas – Unison – The Infinite (2002) – Douglas  in a Miles Davis mood on this  the first album by his then New Quintet.  He focuses on the era marked by Miles’ departure from post-bop and entrance into fusion, around 1968 and 1969. Douglas gives us his reading of a Bjork song.
  • Tonbruket – Balloons – Dig It To The End (2011) the second album from Dan Berglund post-EST. A more rock oriented feel to this one and the band coming more to the fore. Interesting textures to this very modern album.
  • Charles Lloyd with Maria Farantouri – Requiem – Athens Concert (2011) –  a double live disc with the legendary Greek contralto Maria Farantouri. The tune “Requiem” is a jazz number with lyrics by the famed writer/lyricist Agathi Dimitrouka.
  • Mathias Eick – Skala – Skala  (2011) – Norwegian trumpeter/multi-instrumentalist Eick is an  ambient-leaning jazz musician. He has performed with a variety of name players and is a member of the Trondheim Jazz Orchestra and the progressive jazz/electronic ensemble Jaga Jazzist.
  • Enrico Rava – Count Dracula – New York Days (2009) typical ECM fayre with great support from Larry Grenadier and Paul Motian.
  • Skalpel – Konfusion – Konfusion (2005) Skalpel are Marcin Cichy and Igor Pudlo DJs/producers from Wroclaw, Poland. This is  their second album for Ninja Tune and it’s a  darker  journey into the roots of Eastern European jazz and breaks than their previous releases.
  • Mulatu Astatke – The Way To Nice – Mulatu Steps Ahead (2010) this recent  album is very different from his work with the Heliocentrics (some of whom do feature here), or with the Either/Orchestra — it centres around a  laid-back groove that looks at music from two viewpoints — the Western and the Ethiopian.
  • Lee Konitz  & Warne Marsh – Donna Lee – Lee Konitz with Warne Marsh (1955/2005) On this 50th Anniversary reissue Konitz and Marsh lead a  strong group that  includes pianist Sal Mosca, guitarist Billy Bauer, bassist Oscar Pettiford and drummer Kenny Clarke.
  • Jamaaladeen Tacuma – For the love of Ornette Fort Worth Funk Stomp Movement 3 – For the love of Ornette (2011)  Though led and largely written by electric-bassist Tacuma, this is basically a new Ornette Coleman recording. It’s an octet studio session recorded  last year, with Coleman playing alto alongside the UK’s Tony Kofi on tenor, and Wolfgang Puschnig on flute.
To listen in – click the link

World of Jazz – John Abercrombie Special

John Abercrombie’s ability to merge various jazz forms through his fluid and laid back technique has made him one of the most influential acoustic and electric guitarists of the music; his recordings for ECM  clearly demonstrate great writing in a “chamber jazz” style which draws upon a range of contemporary improvised music; his approach is   jazz-based, but he also touches on  folk, rock as well as both  Eastern and Western music. This show picks up on some of the highlights of his career:

1 Gateway – Unshielded Desire – Gateway : Abercrombie was one of the stars of ECM in its early days. His playing on this trio set with bassist Dave Holland and drummer Jack DeJohnette is both sophisticated and replete with intense rock elements. The trio have made three albums together under the Gateway name over the years all of which are required listening.

2 Enrico Rava – By The Sea –  The Pilgrim and the Stars : Enrico Rava’s debut for ECM in 1975 in great company with  Abercrombie, bassist Palle Danielsson, and drummer Jon Christensen.

3 Kenny Wheeler – 34 in the afternoon – Deer Wan : a  classic ECM release which finds Wheeler with  Jan Garbarek on tenor and soprano, plus the Gateway trio of Abercrombie,  Holland, and  DeJohnette.

4 John Abercrombie – Bright Rain – Animato : for this 1990 album with Vince Mendoza and Jon Christensen Abercrombie offered a different direction for the ECM label, with electronic and synthesizer based compositions – a huge stylistic leap for the lable.

5 John Abercrombie – Dolorosa – While We Were Young : intense and exploratory music from Abercrombie with Mark Wall and Adam Nussbaum, unique  and a landmark fusion album of the 1990s.

6 John Abercrombie – Just In Time – Open Land : the same trio as the above some five years later with trumpeter Kenny Wheeler, the tenor of  Joe Lovano, and violinist Mark Feldman.  One of his best albums in my opinion.

7 The Impossible Gentlemen – Laugh Lines – The Impossible Gentlemen : and talking of Nussbaum getting right up to date with the fantastic new album with Gwilym Simcock, Salford’s very own Mike Walker, and completing the legendary rhythm section – Steve Swallow. This album is out on Basho on June 6th and I will be playing more of this in the run up to their gig at the Bridgewater Hall on 21st June.

8 John Abercrombie – String Thing –  Cat N Mouse : from 2002 and the first of three great albums with Mark Feldman, Joey Baron and Marc Johnson.

9 John Abercrombie – Jack and Betty – Class Trip : two years later and the quartet that promised much on the Cat N Mouse album delivered again and more so with Class Trip. Virtuoso performances with stunning improvisation make this a classic album.

10 John Abercrombie – Epilogue – The Third Quartet : this reading of Bill Evans Epilogue is breathtakingly good and demonstrates the almost uncanny interplay that these four musicians developed over these three albums.

11 John Abercrombie – Wait ’til you see her – Wait ’til you see her : Thomas Morgan replaces Marc Johnson for the most recent release from Abercrombie.

To listen to the show click on the link below:

World of Jazz – 6th January 2010

The usual mix of jazz from around the world including:

The Jadid Ensemble – a “world music” band from Manchester who manage to meld flamenco with Turkish and Arabic music with a smidgen of jazz to create a relaxed and compelling sound.

Paulo Fresu – a handful of tunes featuring Paulo’s work with Ralph Towner, Carla Bley and Enrico Rava.  This italian trumpeter builds on Miles Davis’s sound from the 1950s and he has been extremely productive with over 130 albums in his discography.

Ahmad Jamal – a great player who did not achieve much commercial recognition – an innovator and minimalist who Miles Davis (him again!) counted as one his main influencers.

Horace Tapscott  – another great writer who did not make it onto the main jazz stage – highly regarded by his peers.

Johnny Dyani – a great bass player and composer whose music combines  South African folk heritage with Ornette Coleman’s free bop and elements of avant-garde jazz.

Don Grolnick – a subtle and rather underrated pianist throughout his career, but his flexibility and talents were well known to his fellow musicians.

Roland Kirk – some might argue he is the most exciting saxophone soloist in jazz history,  a post-modernist before that phrase even existed. A master at  mixing and matching elements from jazz  history, with memorable results.