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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Roswell Rudd: The Incredible Honk

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There is a distinct sense of the celebration of his 75th year on this good earth as trombonist Roswell Rudd continues the journey through his singular musical universe on his superb The Incredible Honk. Criss-crossing the paths he took when he first reconnected with ethnomusicologist producer and soul mate Verna Gillis, Rudd undertakes a sonic sojourn from the heartland of America, through Cuba, Scotland, continental Europe, the Far East and West Africa, returning to his beloved Kerhonkson. His musical cohorts include: celebrated Cuban tres player David Oquendo, heard here on guitar and vocals; bluesy pianist Lafayette Harris; celestial vocalist Sunny ...

HIGHLY OPINIONATED

Roswell Rudd: The Musical Magus Turns 75

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"Years ago it would have seemed an impossible dream to get to record with this musical magus, but here we are... and what a thrill!" class="f-right s-img">--Charlie Kohlhase, From liner notes to Eventuality: The Charlie Kohlhase Quintet Plays the Music of Roswell Rudd (Nada, 2001)

I see him suddenly as if in a dream. His eyes are somewhat cynical, questioning and beautiful. Wrinkles of laughter pucker up at the edges, and he reminds me of my father. His smile disappears as the mouthpiece of his gleaming trombone meets his lips. Then, all I can see is ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Roswell Rudd: Trombone Tribe & The Light

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Roswell RuddTrombone TribeSunnyside2009 The Second ApproachThe LightSoLyd2009 The peripatetic, both geographically and musically, trombonist Roswell Rudd ranges far and wide on these two albums: a trombone-dominated romp involving five bands from two continents and a collaboration with a Russian improvising trio at a Moscow club. Trombone Tribe could well be called “The Joy of Trombone." Five tracks feature a sextet with Rudd, Steve Swell and Deborah Weisz (trombones), Bob Stewart (tuba), ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Roswell Rudd: Trombone Tribe

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The trombone is perhaps the only brass instrument that can--if well played--capture a devastating array of human emotions. It can be made to wail plaintively and growl menacingly. It can be played to sing and make extraordinary leaps of joy, even evoke hallelujahs and other spiritual epiphanies with breathtaking abandon. But it must be played with mastery and few do so better than Roswell Rudd, a musician and instrumentalist who consistently describes the sorrows and joys of human existence every time he picks up his trombone and plays. Moreover, every time Rudd plays he appears to connect the metaphorical dots ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Roswell Rudd: Keep Your Heart Right

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Ruby Braff once described a jazz combo as “conversation among friends." Venerated veteran trombonist Roswell Rudd rates prime candidacy for Mister Congeniality as he relaxes in witty repartee and pleasant banter with like-thinking colleagues: stalwart-yet-light-fingered pianist Lafayette Harris Jr., orotund bassist Brad Jones and singer Sunny Kim, a dew-dappled voice of reason and cheer. Rudd, self-styled curmudgeon of Kerhonkson (onomatopoeically Hudson Valley hamlet), grouses about being a frustrated singer, but in truth he's a one-man chorus on this set of his vigorous songs from a deep 40-year songbook, a few with lyrics by partner Verna Gillis. Rudd ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Roswell Rudd: New York Art Quartet & New York Eye and Ear Control

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New York Art Quartet New York Art Quartet ESP Disk 2008 Artist #2 Album Title #2 ESP Disk 2008

Trombonist Roswell Rudd seemed to enter jazz from the past and the future. Rudd worked in Greenwich Village Dixieland bands in the late '50s and it was there that he first became associated with Steve Lacy and Herbie Nichols, rapidly moving to the burgeoning avant-garde of the early '60s. He quickly emerged ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lacy / Roswell Rudd Quartet: Early And Late

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Steve Lacy (soprano saxophone) and Roswell Rudd (trombone) had a long and illustrious musical history together dating back to the 1950s playing in Dixieland ensembles. By the early 1960s, they were committed modernists and formed a quartet devoted (mostly) to the music of Monk; School Days, a 1963 live date released twelve years later on hatOLOGY was the only recorded evidence of this band. In the mid 1970s, they reunited for a set of Lacy originals on Trickles (Black Saint, 1976) and in the late 1990s recorded Monk's Dream (Verve, 2000). While they didn't record together that frequently, they always ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Steve Lacy/Roswell Rudd Quartet: Early And Late

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Steve Lacy/Roswell Rudd Quartet Early And Late Cuneiform Records 2007

You're off to a good start when a band is headed by two of the most distinctive musicians ever to grace our music, and this two-disc set proves that in abundance. It proves also that both saxophonist Steve Lacy and trombonist Roswell Rudd had a fascination for the music of Thelonious Monk and Herbie Nichols that lasted for decades. The way in which they managed to keep their interpretations of the material perpetually fresh is a wonder in itself.

The title of this set ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lacy - Roswell Rudd Quartet: Early and Late

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One of the greatest front lines in modern jazz, soprano saxophonist Steve Lacy and trombonist Roswell Rudd were a singular force. From their earliest forays in the 1950s, Lacy and Rudd performed together regularly but recorded infrequently. Besides a handful of Black Saint/Soul Note albums from the early 1980s, there are few documents of their many performances together.

Other than Trickles (Black Saint, 1976) and Monk's Dream (Verve, 2000), their vibrant piano-less quartet work remains largely undocumented. The only official record of their original 1960s quartet is the low fidelity live album, School Days (Hatology, 1963). Early and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Roswell Rudd: Blown Bone

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Trombonist and composer Roswell Rudd's third decade on the modern jazz scene showed listeners something more than a robust Archie Shepp sideman or a co-leader of the New York Art Quartet. For those accomplishments alone he would have been revered, but the '70s saw his palette expand into orchestral composition and varied long-form suites, as well as a burgeoning interest in African and Asian musics that has recently come into flower.

Originally released on a scarce Japanese Philips LP, Blown Bone captures Rudd and some of his regular cohorts in vibrant small and medium-sized groups performing the suite of the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Roswell Rudd / Mark Dresser: Airwalkers

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Airwalkers brings together two of contemporary music's finest improvisers, trombonist Roswell Rudd and bassist Mark Dresser, for an informal duo session. Trombone and bass may not be typical duo partners, but these two make a sympathetic and adventurous pair.

Roswell Rudd has experienced an array of musical situations most players will never dream of. A student of Herbie Nichols, a peer to Archie Shepp and Steve Lacy, and a world traveler who has recorded with musicians in Mongolia and Mali, Rudd has even dabbled with No Wave experimentalists Sonic Youth. The unifying factor is always the same; Rudd's ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Roswell Rudd: Blown Bone

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Recorded in March 1976 (with an unreleased interlude from 1967 added here) and only ever released in Japan in 1979, this album is a little lost gem. Unusually for an Emanem release, it features not free improv but straight-ahead jazz. This album is labelled “File under: Jazz (Free/Blues/Latin) --not a common designation for the label.

Central to the album's success are the quality of the band and the quality of Rudd's writing and arranging. The band brims over with talent; fortuitously, all the players were in New York City at the time. Probably most noteworthy is the reunion of Rudd ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Roswell Rudd and the Mongolian Buryat Band: Blue Mongol

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Cross-cultural fusions are not only common these days, they're de rigueur in some circles. It's always encouraging to see artists who are well-established and in their senior years throw caution to the wind and look for ways to keep their outlook fresh and invigorated.

Over the course of his seventy years, trombonist Roswell Rudd has worked in everything from straight-ahead jazz to Dixieland, although he's perhaps best known on the vanguard of the avant-garde. But in the early part of this decade he began looking for ways to blend his need for discovery with musicians from other cultures equally willing ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Roswell Rudd and the Mongolian Buryat Band: Blue Mongol

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Blue Mongol acquaints trombonist Roswell Rudd's unmatched tonal mastery with the musical traditions of Mongolia, resulting in the most culturally respectful, spiritually uplifting, and musically interesting release of the year. While the Mongolian Buryat Band's combined instrumental performances on bamboo flute, horse head bass and fiddle, dulcimer, lute, and zither are comparable to the best classically trained chamber ensemble, Battuvshin Baldantseren's throat singing and Badma Khanda's beautifully expressive vocals defy comparison. Although the band has aptly dubbed the music “trombolian, Blue Mongol consists primarily of traditional Mongolian pieces and music that Rudd composed specifically for this project. ...



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