Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
French version of the big band legend's classic 1970 album that's currently out of print in the U.S.. Arranged & conducted by Oliver Nelson. Digipak with a booklet which contains information on the release and black & whit... more »
French version of the big band legend's classic 1970 album that's currently out of print in the U.S.. Arranged & conducted by Oliver Nelson. Digipak with a booklet which contains information on the release and black & white photos. Remastered. 2000 release.
........Basie trades his Captain's cap for outepaceways-wear
Peppino | 03/09/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Many times , especially in the "jazz unfriendly" mid-late 60s, jazz musicians/record producers mined the lowest common denominator of pop musics flotsam, and produced stunningly BAD musics!
When this recording was first released, I had only fears of the worst-- Count Basie allies with the great jazz arranger/saxophonist Oliver Nelson?? ..And with the swinging Basie band doing , not the POP hits of the day, but compositions by the "New guard", inluding Pharoah Sanders and avant atonal wildman, Albert Ayler!The results, in my estimation, were STUNNING!I've never been in the Basie swing camp, I came up listening to Miles ,Trane, Wes, Blue Note/Prestige, etc etc etc as far as jazz goes, and while I appreciate Basie, the "flag waving " blues based big band sound wasnt "my bag". I actually usually avoid it.The miracle of this recording was the marriage of the fertile mind of Oliver Nelson,arranger extraordinaire, and Basie's openminded approach to these "new" sounds,resulting in a recording that could EASILY be mistaken for one of the later SUN RA recordings.( where Le Sonny Ra payed equal attention to the "spaceways" and to his original big band swing origins with Fletcher henderson, et al).There are 2 blues(KC style Basie alla way), and a "Flag waver " on this cd,very "in the tradition"-- but the real GEMS are ;---"Love Flower", the Albert Ayler tune done as quasi-bolero style, with an UNBELIEVEAble nice alto solo from Oliver Nelson. Nelson was bobbing & weaving between consonance and dissonance(didnt Jackie McLean have it right when he called it "A Fickle Sonance", hehehe!).An IMPASSIONED solo, and the centerpiece of the cd for me. ------Equally marvelling in Pharoah Sander's "Japan", with its opening parallell fifths signaling (quite stereotypically/humorously) "the oriente"--the song blows out into a gutbucket big band romp of SUN RASIAN proportions!!
Basie himself "picks out"(how else did he solo??) all the right notes, in a staggering , stuttering counterpoint to the immense wall of percussions, Basie's solo veers in the way of "Jobim via Monk"(to say, minimalist, but EVERY NOTE "means" something, no waste, no waste...), ...GLORIOUS! The middle tracks , after a perfunctory reading of GABOR SZABO's "Gypsy Queen"(forever immortalized by carlos Santana's screaming rock interperetation), are percussion driven exotica, the same stuff your new "Lounge music" fans devour--not immortal musics, but very very enjoyable! Hubert Laws flute/piccolo is ala Eric Dolphy throughout.All in all, if you are a SUN RA, Mingus,Oliver Nelson, Gil Evans "fanzinno", this cd is for you!
Basie fanatics BEWARE, unless you've an open mind, this aint "April in Paris"(my fave basie tune), it is more "Summer on Saturn"!!!! (smiles!)HAt's off, Count "B" for the vision, courage and good humor to make this music, and always for Oliver nelson, an unsung Jazz "hero"............I am VERY VERY glad this was issued as a cd!"