Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Sun Ra & The Arkestra|
Sun Ra Arkestra Meets Salah Ragab in Egypt
Genres: World Music, Jazz, Pop
The real gems of this prized reissue from Leo Records's Golden Years vault imprint are two previously unreleased tracks. The first features Sun Ra and his Arkestra on an 18-minute "Watusa" from 1984, and the second feature... more »
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The real gems of this prized reissue from Leo Records's Golden Years vault imprint are two previously unreleased tracks. The first features Sun Ra and his Arkestra on an 18-minute "Watusa" from 1984, and the second features a 13-minute piece by Saleh Ragab's Cairo Free Jazz Ensemble, "Music for Angela Davis," from 1971. It's no surprise Sun Ra loved going to Egypt, what with all the astro-mythology he used in the Arkestra. This love shows brightly on "Egypt Strut" and "Dawn," two Ragab tunes played by Ra's band with the Egyptian percussionist sitting in. The early 1980s were a creatively thriving time for Sun Ra, and the band sounds tight, with a weave of percussion backing their every move. "Watusa" sounds like a bootleg, thin in audio but thrilling in execution. It's an unvarnished beauty. As for "Music for Angela Davis," it departs from the other Ragab pieces (there are three others on the CD) in that it's furiously triggered, full of heavy percussion, voices rambling over the top in spots, and tearing horns. For Sun Ra fans, this is a must. --Andrew Bartlett
Two Artists, Very Special Performances
Mr. Richard D. Coreno | Berea, Ohio USA | 09/01/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Bolstered by two previously unreleased numbers, this is truly a collaborative effort by a pair of artists who respect each other and were striving to achieve a special soundscape in their January 1984 performances at the Il Capo Jazz Club in Cairo, Egypt.
The CD chronicles the efforts of Sun Ra and Salah Ragab, with the latter playing percussion with the Arkestra, which has three numbers; Egypt Strut, Dawn, Watusa. Ragab is featured on four songs with the Cairo Jazz Band and Cairo Free Jazz Ensemble.
It is the unreleased numbers on the vinyl edition - Watusa, Music for Angels Davis (1971) - that are absolutely captivating and are the essence of what Sun Ra and Ragab were conveying to the audience; the power of music through timeless explorations of the soul.
This is two artists in very special performances that meant so much then, retain the beauty now and will only grow in stature in the future.