April 2, 1943 – February 19, 2017

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1969. Elementary Guitar Solo #5
1975. 11th House (at The Village Gate on November 10th 1975, streamed from Gordon Skene’s site Past Daily.)
1979. Mediterranean Sundance (w. Paco De Lucia, John McLaughlin)
1985. I Want You (Zakir Hussain’s Peshkar)

1994. Solar (Coryell – Vitous 4tet)
2004. Tricycles (w. Paul Wertico & Marc Egan)
2011. The Night Has a Thousand Eyes (w. Kenny Drew, Jr.)

….and a tenuous link to Javanese gamelan.

A Bolero Dancer – Antonio Cabral Bejarano,1842

There can be few music lovers who are not familiar with Maurice Ravel and his Boléro. It is one of his most famous works, originally written as a ballet score commissioned by Ida Rubinstein, but now usually played as a concert piece. It was originally called Fandango but has rhythmic similarities with the Spanish dance form as described in this article, a genre of slow-tempo Latin music and its associated dance.

So where, you may be asking, does Javanese gamelan enter the picture? Eva Gauthier spent a few years in Java studying the music before the outbreak of the first World War in 2014 when she returned to New York. A mezzo-soprano, she included a few Javanese songs in her mainly classical (Ravel, Stravinsky et al) performance repertoire, and later, in 1923, was the first singer of jazz music in a concert hall. She loaned her Javanese notebooks to Maurice Ravel, her favourite composer, who had been enamoured with gamelan since the 1889 Exposition Universelle de Paris,

(You will find a compilation of Jazz for Eva Gauthier here.)

That connection from 1923 is all that’s needed to offer you this compilation of jazz versions of Ravel’s classic composition. It also seems perfectly obvious to start with the recording by Jacques Louissier, who is better known for his trio’s jazz interpretations of Bach.

The Half Quartet Jazz Duo’s very unique version was found on YouTube, whereas I have the jazz-fusion album by Toto Blanke’s Electric Circus. Jacob Karlson, on the other hand is besotted with Ravel, and the version you’ll hear comes from his album Piano Improvisations Inspired By Ravel.

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Mood Indigo was composed by Duke Ellington and Barney Bigard for a radio broadcast in October 1930, and was originally titled Dreamy Blues.

It was “the first tune I ever wrote specially for microphone transmission,” Ellington recalled. “The next day wads of mail came in raving about the new tune, so Irving Mills put a lyric to it.”

And it was renamed …

… and became a jazz standard….

… which has been played and sung to the present day by, among others …

01. Duke Ellington & His Orchestra – Mood Indigo (1930)
02. Garland Wilson – Mood Indigo (1933)
03. Thelonius Monk – Mood Indigo (1955)
04. Sidney Bechet – Mood Indigo
05. Frank Sinatra – Mood Indigo (1955)
06. Ella Fitzgerald – Mood Indigo (1957)
07. Nina Simone – Mood Indigo (1957)
08. Louis Armstrong – Mood Indigo (1970)
09. David Grisman & Martin Taylor – Mood Indigo (1995)
10. Preservation Hall Jazz Band – Mood Indigo

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[Note: I can’t date the Sidney Bechet or the Preservation Hall Jazz Band versions.]

In Indonesia there are some figures that without a lot of showy talk have contributed to the rise of a dynamic Indonesian jazz scene. Riza Arshad is widely recognised for his time, creativity, efforts and devotion to that cause.

A professional musician from the age of 15, Riza later pioneered many activities, such as workshops and curated evenings that gave room to the younger generation of jazz musicians to come to the fore. He worked tirelessly motivating them to create their own compositions and arrangements so that their music brought a special Indonesian colour to jazz music, not only here, but also worldwide.

A constant in his career has been the band which he founded in 1992, simakDialog. Constantly evolving, the group released seven albums, and played in countries as varied as Nepal and the USA. Local and international music critics and writers were universal in their praise.

Riza Arshad, our friend, teacher, and ‘brother in jazz’ passed away on Friday, January 13, 2017.

Companions in the music world and various media have been working together to organise a tribute evening called ‘Simak Dialog: Riza Arshad Berkarya‘. This event will be held on Wednesday February 22, 2017, at Gedung Kesenian (Jakarta Arts Building) in Pasar Baru.

Performers:
•  simakDialog (Tohpati, Indro Hardjodikoro, Azfansadra Karim, Budhy Haryono, Adhitya Pratama, Endang Ramdan, Erlan Suwardana, Cucu Kurnia, Sri Hanuraga, Rudy Zulkarnaen, Mian Tiara)
•  W/H/A/T (Sri Hanuraga, Sandy Winarta, Indrawan Tjhin)
•  Tuslah (Sri Hanuraga, Azfansadra Karim, Elfa Zulham Syah)
•  Trio Gitar (Oele Pattiselanno, Dewa Budjana, Gerald Situmorang)
•  Trioscapes (Aksan Sjuman, Yance Manusama, David Manuhutu, Dony Koeswinarno)
•  Serambi Jazz Kolektiv (Mery Kasiman, Irsa Destiwi, Gerald Situmorang, Arnanado Putra, Rahel Pradika, Iwan Paul, Indra Bayu Rusady, Nicolaus Edwin, Ivan Nestorman)
•  Kroncong Tenggara (Ubiet, Dian HP, Dimawan Krisnowo Adji, Dony Koeswinarno, Jalu Pratidina, Adi Darmawan, Arief Suseno, Maryono)
•  Indra Lesmana Reborn (Indra Lesmana, AS Mates, Aksan Sjuman, Arief Setiadi, Iwang Gumiwan, Dewa Budjana)
MCs: Widyasena Sumadio & Otti Jamalus

If you’ve been to a mall recently you’ll already know that today is Valentine’s Day. So, what better excuse to put together different versions of the well known standard My Funny Valentine?


Wikipedia has this: My Funny Valentine is a show tune from the 1937 Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart musical Babes in Arms in which it was introduced by former child star Mitzi Green. The song became a popular jazz standard, appearing on over 1300 albums performed by over 600 artists.

In 2015 it was announced that the Gerry Mulligan quartet featuring Chet Baker’s version of the song was inducted into the Library of Congress’s National Recording Registry for the song’s “cultural, artistic and/or historical significance to American society and the nation’s audio legacy“.

IndoJazzia has inducted the version of the song by the Gerry Mulligan quartet featuring Chet Baker, as well as Chet Baker’s version of the song on his album Chet Baker Sings into our compilation because they’re both good..As are the other dozen by, and in alphabetical order, Ben Webster & Teddy Wilson, Bill Evans & Jim Hall, Enrico Rava Quintet w. Pat Metheny, Frank Sinatra, Gary Burton, George Shearing, Lenny Breau, Mick Goodrick & Joe Diorio, Pat Metheny & Nils Landgren, Radka Toneff & Steve Dobrogosz, Shirley Horn, and Viktoria Tolstoy w. Esbjörn Svensson Trio.

To be honest, we think … nay, we know … that listening to fourteen versions of the same sentimental song is overkill. So why not download them all, choose your favourite version and sing along with one of them, either to your sweetheart or yourself.

My Funny Valentine
Sweet comic valentine
You make me smile with my heart
Your looks are laughable
Unphotographable
Yet you’re my favorite work of art

Is your figure less than Greek?
Is your mouth a little weak?
When you open it to speak
Are you smart?

But don’t change a hair for me
Not if you care for me
Stay little valentine, stay
Each day is Valentines Day

Happy smooching one and all.

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It was on Saturday afternoon here in IndoJazzia Towers that we came across this web page, The title 10 Thelonious Monk Tunes You Need To Know got us reflecting: do we know them, or the further ten mentioned?

The article is addressed to jazz musicians, which we are not. But we are jazz groupies, and, yes, we do know the tunes.

We could have put together a selection of tunes as first recorded by Monk, but we figured versions played by other musicians would be more interesting because they perhaps know them as well.

And these are them, and tomorrow is a Monk Monday.

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01. Esbjörn Svensson Trio – I Mean You
02. Helge Schneider – Misterioso
03. Larry Coryell w. Paul Wertico & Marc Egan – Well You Needn’t
04. Steve Lacy & Charlie Rouse – Ask Me Now
05. Andy Summers – Think Of One
06. Marc Johnson & Gary Burton – Monk’s Dream
07. Sri Hanuraga – Four In One
08. John Beasley – Skippy
09. Terry Adams & Friends – In Walked Bud
10. Avishai Cohen & Nitai Hershkovits – Criss Cross
+ Carla Bley – Mister Misterioso

Thelonious Monk, piano, Charlie Rouse, tenor sax, Larry Gales, bass, Ben Riley, drums
Recorded in Norway 1966

Note re #7:, Sri ‘Aga’ Hanuraga, is the only Indonesian in the compilation. Just over two years ago, with Tuslah, the group with the sadly recently deceased Riza Arshad, Adra Karim and Elfa Zulham, he played an evening of Monk’s music @America here in Jakarta. The gig review is here.

Today is the second day of February, the second month of the year, so here are two compilations of jazz tracks from IndoJazzia’s archives which celebrate 2.

Old 2s
01. Fletcher Henderson – My Papa Doesn’t Two-Time No Time
02. Billie Holiday – Mandy Is Two
03. Fats Waller – Two Sleepy People
04. Lester Young – Tea For Two
05. Toots Thielemans – Cocktails For Two
06. Ahmad Jamal – Tempo for Two
07. King Cole Trio – Loan Me Two Till Tuesday
08. Mark Murphy – We Two (Nos Dois)
09. Lambert, Hendricks & Ross – Two for the Blues
10. Tubby Hayes Orchestra – Sonnymoon For Two

New 2s
01. Avishai Cohen – Two Roses
02. Mike Taylor Trio – Two Autumns
03. The Printmakers – Two Grey Rooms
04. Paul Motian – Two Women from Padua
05. DeJohnette, Coltrane, Garrison – Two Jimmys
06. Delta Saxophone Quartet & Gwilym Simcock – Two Hands
07. Emile Parisien Quintet w, Joachim Kuhn – Balladibiza II
08. Kenny Wheeler & John Taylor – Sketch No. 2

Today is the first day of the Year of the Red Rooster in the Chinese Horoscope.

In Indonesia, Imlek is much more than a cultural celebration because the New Order’s assimilationist rhetoric still has a strong influence. The silent majority are abandoning the pluralism implicit in the country’s constitution.

However, jazz is non-partisan; hence this compilation.

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01. Memphis Minnie – If You See My Rooster
02. Neil Cowley Trio – Rooster Was A Witness
03. Teddy Wilson – Chinatown, My Chinatown
04. Dave Barbour – China Boy
05. Andy Summers & Robert Fripp – China-Yellow Leader
06. Steps Ahead – All The Tea In China
07. Dennis Rea – Kan Hai De Re Zi (Days by the Sea)
08. Art Lande – Celestial Guests, Many Chinas
09. Mark Isham – Many Chinas
10. Howlin’ Wolf – Little Red Rooster

Some six million women around the world marched last Saturday to protest the election of the misogynist man-child Trump as the 45th president of the USA. They were right to do so, not only because of his popularity among the Stepford Wives, but also for his singular insecurity which has closed his mind to diversity and and his threats to close borders.

Yesterday he signed an executive order banning international NGOs from providing abortion services or offering information about abortions if they receive US funding.

IndoJazzia stands by women who demand the right to choose, to demonstrate their individual talents rather than being demonised because of their gender, and who regret the need to proclaim that Womens’ Lives Matter.

Here endeth the sermon, and now for some music.

Having already posted a compilation of women song interpreters, this time the focus is on women who’ve mastered their instruments, and who prefer to not sing.

Carla Bley, now 80, is one of the most prominent composer/performers in modern jazz. Although she hates to sing, her daughter Karen Mantler doesn’t. Susanne Abbuehl interprets a track from the 1971 Carla Bley-Paul Haines opus Escalator Over The Hill.

Katrina Krimsky is 79, and has a very varied music background, having associated with many other composers including David Rosenboom, Jon Hassell, Terry Riley, and La Monte Young. Stella Malu (Shy Stella in English?) is from her 1994 ECM album with British saxophonist Trevor Watts.

Annette Peacock is “a preternaturally talented composer, ear-boggling singer, intuitive multi-instrumentalist, vocal manipulation innovator and pioneering synthesizer early adopter.” The Marilyn Crispell track is from Annette Peacock’s 1964–1969 catalogue of compositions: Marilyn is the pianist, Paul Motian the drummer, and Annette’s ex-husband Gary is the bassist.

The Danish percussionist Marilyn Mazur may be better known from her years with Miles Davis and the Jan Garbarek group. However, she has since toured with her own group of Scandinavian musicians, all group leaders in their own right.

Rita Marcotulli is an Italian pianist-composer who has played with, among many others, Pat Metheny, Chet Baker, Enrico Rava, Kenny Wheeler, Billy Cobham and Peter Erskine. For this track she is paired with accordionist Luciano Biondini.

Mette Henriette Rølvåg is a young (27) Norwegian saxophonist who demonstrates on her debut album that she will take jazz to hitherto unrecognised regions.

Carla Bley has (almost) the last word, and IndoJazzia hopes that she, and all musicians, receive whatever royalties she/they are due.

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01.
Carla Bley – I Hate To Sing
02. Karen Mantler – Life is Sheep
03. Susanne Abbuehl – A.I.R. (All India Radio)
04. Katrina Krimsky – Stella Malu
05. Marilyn Crispell – Butterflies That I Feel Inside Me
06. Marilyn Mazur – Back To Dreamfog Mountain
07. Rita Marcotulli & Luciano Biondini La Strada Invisibile
08. Mette Henriette – Wind On Rocks
09. Carla Bley – Copyright Royalties

Holly Bowling improvises the works of Phish.

Minor footnote: after divorcing Carla Bley in 1967, pianist Paul Bley married Annette Peacock.