everybodydigs#103 Woody Shaw – Blackstone Legacy

null

everybodydigs# is a series of posts about Jazz, Funk, Soul & R’n’b albums released from the 20s to the 90s, you can read a brief description/review and listen to a small preview (when it’s possible). everybodydigs# is like when someone tells you “hey you should listen to this album!” and nothing less, enjoy!

Blackstone Legacy is the first instance of Woody Shaw stepping into the position of bandleader in the recording studio, something long overdue at the time. With a handpicked ensemble, Shaw was given total creative freedom, and the result is a landmark. His intention was to portray various sociopolitical dramas then being played out, from the ghettos of his youth to the war in Vietnam. That intention is clear in the complex energy exchanged between the horns and in Lenny White’s driving, polyrhythmic drumming.

Compositions by Shaw, such as the title track, are alive with urgency and exploration. His trumpet is warm and fierce as ever and sparkles with all his influences, from Clifford Brown to Lee Morgan. Keyboards player George Cables contributes two fine tunes, “Think On Me” and “New World”; the latter builds from its slow, emotional intro into a funky, rock & roll energy, perfectly reflecting the charged political climate of the early ’70s. Blackstone Legacy was a bold step forward.

Personnel: Woody Shaw (trumpet); Bennie Maupin (flute, bass clarinet, tenor saxophone); Gary Bartz (soprano saxophone, alto saxophone); George Cables (piano, electric piano); Lenny White (drums).

Rappamelo’s favorite track:

sampleecious#18

null

sampleecious#: a post every Friday where i choose just one great track sampled for one or more other great tracks, also you can listen to (when it’s possible) a small preview on the video below, enjoy!

#18: “Been So Long” by Anita Baker from “Rapture” released in 1986 > sampled in > “Zatar” by Metal Fingers from “Special Herbs Vol.1 ” released in 2001.

null

everybodydigs#102 Pharoah Sanders – Thembi

null

everybodydigs# is a series of posts about Jazz, Funk, Soul & R’n’b albums released from the 20s to the 90s, you can read a brief description/review and listen to a small preview (when it’s possible). everybodydigs# is like when someone tells you “hey you should listen to this album!” and nothing less, enjoy!

Although introduced as a protégé of John Coltrane and touted by many as his heir apparent, reedman Pharoah Sanders quickly proved his own man. His shared interest in the “cosmic” music of Coltrane’s final period belies the fact that Sanders frequently plays with an unhurried sense of peace and satisfaction rarely found in his mentor’s music. His use of space, African and Asian motifs and instruments, and simple, repetitive melodies also pointed the way for jazz, rock, and new age musicians in the ’70s and ’80s, while his sometimes raucous use of harsh, shrieking runs influenced many of jazz’s most adventurous saxophonists.

The centerpiece of Karma is the marathon half-hour octet recording “The Creator Has a Master Plan.” Although the track features a warm vocal by Leon Thomas, its true feature artist for almost the entire length is Sanders, who carries the melody, feel, and improvisation firmly on his shoulders. All of Sanders’s key elements–Afro-centric spiritualism, sweeping use of mood from long, relaxed intervals to frenetic cacophony, and a deep sense of melody and rhythm–are in evidence. The album’s religious feeling is cemented by the album’s closer, “Colors,” which serves as a deeply felt invocation. –Fred Goodman

Personnel includes: Pharoah Sanders (tenor & soprano saxophones, alto flute, fife, bailophone, brass bell, bells, maracas, cow horn, percussion); Michael White (violin, percussion); Lonnie Liston Smith (bailophone, piano, electric piano, claves, ring cymbals, percussion, background vocals); Cecil McBee (bass, finger cymbals, percussion, sound effects); Clifford Jarvis (drums, maracas, bells, percussion); Roy Haynes (drums); Chief Bey, Majid Shabazz, Anthony Wiles, Nat Bettis (percussion); James Jordon (ring cymbals).

Rappamelo’s favorite track: