Fire Music: When Jazz Speaks Out - Part 3

Ludovico Granvassu By

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As Martin Luther King put it in the opening address to the 1964 Berlin Jazz Festival, "Jazz speaks for life. The Blues tell the story of life's difficulties, and if you think for a moment, you will realize that they take the hardest realities of life and put them into music, only to come out with some new hope or sense of triumph. This is triumphant music. Modern jazz has continued in this tradition, singing the songs of a more complicated urban existence. When life itself offers no order and meaning, the musician creates an order and meaning from the sounds of the earth which flow through his instrument."

And so, with that in mind, we continue our exploration of socially engaged jazz in search of order and meaning in the complicated phase we're leaving, looking at how Max Roach and Abbey Lincoln, Charles Mingus, Archie Shepp, Lou Donaldson, Oscar Brown Jr., the Jamie Lidell & The Royal Pharoahs Cannonball Adderley, Ornette Coleman, Charlie Haden and Hank Jones found it in the past, how Gary Bartz continues finding it today with Maisha and how Alicia Hall Moran, Dominique Fils-Aimé, Jaimeo Brown and Uri Caine are keeping that flame alive.


  • Ben Allison "Mondo Jazz Theme (feat. Ted Nash & Pyeng Threadgill)" 0:00
  • Gary Bartz & Maisha "Uhuru Sasa" Night Dreamer Direct-To-Disc Sessions (Night Dreamer) 0:16
  • Host talks 3:40
  • Pharoahs "Freedom Road" Awakening (Ubiquity) 5:48
  • Host talks 11:35
  • Archie Shepp "Attica Blues" Attica Blues (Verve) 12:25
  • Lou Donaldson "If There's Hell Below (We're All Going to Go)" Cosmos (Blue Note) 17:07
  • Host talks 26:10
  • Cannonball Adderley Quintet "Why Am I Treated So Bad!" Why Am I Treated So Bad! (Capitol) 29:55
  • Uri Caine "Change" The Passion of Octavius Catto (816) 37:35
  • Max Roach "Freedom Day" We Insist! (Candid) 40:54
  • Host talks 46:53
  • Dominique Fils-Aimé "Birds" Nameless (Ensoul) 49:36
  • Alicia Hall Moran "I Am the Fire" Here Today (Yes) 53:14
  • Alicia Hall Moran "Gold" Here Today (Yes) 54:23
  • Alicia Hall Moran "Metal" Here Today (Yes) 56:01
  • Jaimeo Brown Transcendence "Be so Glad" Work Songs (Motema) 56:39
  • Oscar Brown Jr. "Work Song" Sin and Soul... and Then Some More (Columbia) 1:02:31
  • Host talks 1:05:11
  • Charles Mingus "Original Faubus Fables" Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus (Candid) 1:07:21
  • Hank Jones, Charlie Haden "We Shall Overcome" Steal Away (Verve) 1:16:15
  • Host talks 1:21:44
  • Ornette Coleman "Song for Che" Crisis (Impulse!) 1:23:10

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