Compilation

It’s the weekend, time to relax and maybe go to a jazz gig.

Of course, if you’re a jazz musician, this may well be the time when you’re busier than on other days. But hey, we all need breaks and who better than jazz musicians to provide them?

Here are sixteen interludes at an average of two minutes each.

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Jazz is viewed by many as the music of freedom, of creativity and emotion, yet it arose out of the stench of slavery and bondage.

Americans are proud of their heritage, and many are happy to proclaim that it is the home of jazz.  On February 26, 1917 in Chicago, the Original Dixieland Jazz Band, an all-white band from New Orleans, recorded Dixie Jass Band One-Step, for the Victor Talking Machine Company having previously auditioned for, and been rejected by, Colombia.  One-Step was a dance; on the other side of the shellac 78rpm disc is Livery Stable Blues, a foxtrot.

The previous dance ‘craze’ was ragtime, itself a hotchpotch of influences.

The ‘light rag’ was based on a dance called the Cake Walk which was performed at minstrel shows. This dance was based on a dance called the Pride Walk performed by black plantation workers, descendants of African slaves. This dance in turn was a parody of dances performed by their masters.”

The entertainers in minstrel shows were blacked up white people. This ‘tradition’ lasted until the emergence of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s.

The genesis of jazz was among African slaves who retained something of their music culture as they were transported across the Atlantic. Once started, jazz soon circled the globe and reached Batavia just two years later, in 1919. Local senior high school students started their own bands using sheet music and a few 78rpm discs to forge their sounds.

In 1928, they were treated to a real American “negerband“, that of the orchestra of drummer Jack Carter*, whose sound was much better than their scratchy recordings. But that’s another story.

Jazz and African music have both since transcended regional and political borders. Just four of the musicians who head up my compilation are (or were) African-Americans, and Jimmy Dludlu is the only musician whose music has left Africa rather than vice versa. He is South African, as is Steve Eliovsson but whose only album was recorded for the ECM label in Germany while he was living in the States. (Jazz recorded in Africa deserves a separate compilation.)

The late Johnny Dankworth was a major figure in the post WWII British jazz scene, and a mentor to many of the UK’s finest, including John McLaughlin and the recently deceased Kenny Wheeler and John Taylor, who played in his various bands. Dankworth also travelled widely and played with the likes of Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman,and Oscar Peterson. His 1961 recording of Galt MacDermot’s African Waltz peaked at No.9 in the UK Singles Chart, and remained in the chart for 21 weeks.

Of the rest, few need an introduction to the Americans Jack DeJohnette and Bill Frisell. Bass player and cellist Lars Danielsson is Swedish – check your ECM and ACT album sleeve notes. Accordionist Régis Gizavo was born in Madagascar and guitarist Nguyên Lê in Vietnam, while bass player extraordinaire Krzysztof Scieranski is Polish.

Tracks
01. Jack DeJohnette w. Bill Frisell – Ode to South Africa
02. Johnny Dankworth Orchestra – African Waltz
03. Jimmy Dludlu – Afrocentric
04. Chico Freeman – Kings of Mali
05. Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus & Max Roach – Fleurette Africaine
06. Lars Danielsson – Africa
07. Régis Gizavo & Nguyên Lê – South Africa
08. Steve Eliovsson – Africa
09. Krzysztof Scieranski – African Cargo


* Jack Carter is seen and heard here singing Happy Feet in London two years later.)

ECM K – Z

If you haven’t yet downloaded ECM A – J – why not? Please do it now.


Check out the ECM discography, then wonder why there aren’t more famous names in these compilations.

The answer is simple: A-listers do not need IndoJazzia’s support.
Mind you, if we needed one to complete our alphabetical quest …

As we can’t find a U in ECM’s roster we’ve cheated: Ulf records for ACT, another German label with a consistency, roster and standards on a par with ECM,

Krakatau is not the Indonesian group lead by Dwiki Darmawan: they were a European group.

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KrakatauRural
Raoul Björkenheim: guitars, shekere
Jone Takamäki: tenor saxophone, krakaphone, toppophone, whirlpipe
Uffe Krokfors: acoustic bass
Alf Forsman: drums
Lande, Samuels, McCandless Duck In A Colorful Blanket (For Here)
Art Lande: piano
David Samuels: vibraphone
Paul McCandless: woodwinds
Misha AlperinTwilight Hour
Misha Alperin: piano
John Surman: baritone saxophone
Arkady Shilkloper: French horn, flugelhorn
Terje Gewelt: double-bass
Jon Christensen: drums
Hans-Kristian Kjos Sørensen: percussion
Norma WinstoneJust Sometimes
Norma Winstone: vocal
Glauco Venier: piano
Klaus Gesing: saxes and clarinet
OregonEcotopia
Trilok Gurtu: tabla, percussion
Paul McCandless: soprano saxophone,oboe
Glen Moore: bass
Ralph Towner: guitars, keyboards
Paolo Fresu & Daniele di BonaventuraKyrie Eleison
Paolo Fresu: trumpet, flugelhorn
Daniele di Bonaventura: bandoneon
QuercusThis Is Always
June Tabor: voice
Iain Ballamy: tenor saxophone
Huw Warren: piano
Rainer BrüninghausDie Flüsse Hinauf
Rainer Brüninghaus: piano
Kenny Wheeler: flugelhorn
Jon Christensen: drums
Brynjar Hoff: oboe
Sokratis SinopoulosEight Winds
Sokratis Sinopoulos: lyra
Yann Keerim: piano
Dimitris Tsekouras: bass
Dimitris Emanouil: drums
Tim Berne’s SnakeoilSon Of Not So Sure
Tim Berne: alto saxophone
Oscar Noriega: clarinet, bass clarinet
Matt Mitchell: piano, tack and Wurlitzer pianos
Ches Smith: drums, vibraphone, percussion.
Ulf WakeniusLiberetto
Ulf Wakenius: steel and nylon string guitars.
Vitous (Miroslav)Forthcoming
Miroslav Vitous: acoustic bass
Jan Garbarek: soprano & tenor saxophones
Wolfgang MuthspielEnding Music
Wolfgang Muthspiel: guitar
Brad Mehldau: piano
Ambrose Akinmusire: trumpet
Larry Grenadier: bass
Brian Blade: drums
X marks the empty spot
Y not?
Zakir HussainWater Girl
Zakir Hussain: tabla, percussion, voice
Hariprasad Chaurasia: flutes
John McLaughlin: acoustic guitar
Jan Garbarek: tenor and soprano saxophones

ECM A – J

The record label Edition of Contemporary Music – ECM for short – will be familiar to all jazz musicians worldwide. Here in Indonesia, Pat Metheny’s ECM albums were a major influence on guitarists. The late Riza Arshad cited ECM pianists Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea, John Taylor and Lyle Mays, as well as the Norwegian saxophonist Jan Garbarek, as being an influence on his music’s development.

Those are some of the best known artists on the label. A browse through the label’s discography demonstrates an incredible range of music: there’s not only jazz, but contemporary classical, the spoken word, ‘world music’, and much which is unclassifiable.

Each album is of the highest audio quality, with artwork and packaging to match, and demands to be treasured and listened to on a regular basis.

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Arild AndersenMain Man
Arild Andersen: acoustic bass
Ralph Towner: guitar

Nana Vasconcelos: percussion
Audun Kleive: snare drum.
Barre PhillipsA-i-a
Barre Phillips: acoustic bass
Terje Rypdal: guitar

Dieter Feichtner: synthesizer
Trilok Gurtu: tabla, percussion
Colin Vallon TrioTsunami
Colin Vallon: piano
Patrice Moret: bass

Julian Sartorius: drums
David DarlingDarkwood IV (Journey)
David Darling: cello
Eberhard WeberSilent For A While
Eberhard Weber: electric bass
First AvenueBand Seven
Denney Goodhew: alto saxophone, flute, bass clarinet
Eric Jensen: cello
James Knapp: trumpet, fluegelhorn, waterphone
GallerySoaring
David Samuels: vibraharp
Michael DiPasqua: drums, percussion
Paul McCandless: soprano saxophone, oboe, English horn
David Darling: cello
Ratzo Harris: bass
Harry Pepl, Herbert Joos, Jon ChristensenMore Far Out Than East
Harry Pepl: guitar, Roland midi guitar system, piano
Herbert Joos: fluegelhorn
Jon Christensen: drums
Iva BittovaFragments XI
Iva Bittovà: violin, voice
John ClarkSilver Rain Part III
John Clark: French horn
David Friedman: vibraharp, marimba
David Darling: cello
Jon Christensen: drums

ECM K-Z will be online soon …

Rice is the most important grain with regard to human nutrition and caloric intake, providing more than one-fifth of the calories consumed worldwide by humans. In fact, it is so important that this Wikipedia page has some 16, 631 words devoted to it.

It seems only natural then that there should also be many tracks in the IndoJazzia archives devoted to the grain. The first track is a 1969 pop song by the Lemon Pipers however, and is not about growing and eating it, but about the custom in America and elsewhere of throwing it over the heads of newly married couples as they emerge from exchanging their wedding vows. It’s not a wasteful action, though, as birds will soon descend and eat their fill.

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It’s the third day of the third month, so it’s time to march on with the monthly upload of topical tracks from IndoJazzia’s archives.

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01. Dave Brubeck – Three To Get Ready
02. Jim Hall – Three
03. Bill Frisell – Three
04. Andy Summers – Opus Three
05. Charles Mingus – Self-Portrait In Three Colours
06. Miroslav Vitous – Concerto In Three Parts
07. George Benson & Jack McDuff – The Three Day Thang
08. Keith Tippett Band – Three Minutes From An Afternoon In July
09. Riza Arshad – The Three
10. Slam Stewart w Errol Garner – Three Blind Mice
11. Michael Gibbs & Joachim Kühn – Three Angels
12. Neil Ardley – Three Poems
13. Yellowjackets w. Mike Stern – Three Circles
14. Joe Zawinul & The Zawinul Syndicate – Three Postcards
15. Weather Report – Three Clowns
16. Magnus Öström, Dan Berglund & Pat Metheny – Ballad Three Part 1 of 2

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.]

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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