All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

2

Joe Morris: Graffiti In Two Parts

John Sharpe By

Sign in to view read count
One of the main talking points regarding Graffiti In Two Parts, and perhaps the reason this session from 1985 has finally seen the light of day, must be the participation of the erstwhile pianist Lowell Davidson. After studying biochemistry at Harvard University, he moved to New York and played with Ornette Coleman who urged the ESP Disk label to record him. If the pianist is known at all, it is for the obscure but acclaimed Lowell Davidson Trio (ESP Disk, 1965) with bassist Gary Peacock and drummer Milford Graves. Davidson (who also played drums in an early lineup of The New York Art Quartet, as well as aluminum double bass, and organ), died of tuberculosis in 1990 at the age of 49. No other recordings of this mysterious figure have surfaced until now.

Guitarist Joe Morris, who befriended Davidson in Boston where the pair began working together in 1981, organized this performance, for which he also recruited violinist Malcolm Goldstein and cornetist Butch Morris. Davidson performs on drums (a loose collection of instruments rather than a conventional kit) for the first half of the concert, and on aluminum acoustic bass for the second. His approach to both is unconventional, mirrored by the other members of Morris' impromptu quartet, which delivers an American equivalent of European free improvisation, eschewing overt idiomatic references. So while Morris' styling on guitar and banjouke has its origins in West African string instrument music, the end result is very different: an asymmetric melodic percussiveness which matches Davidson's lurching knocks and rattles on drums.

Remarkable for its individuals' selflessness, the program is a low-key, undemonstrative affair. "Graffiti—Part 1" comprises a litany of indeterminate scratches, taps and clatters, moving in sudden layered bursts offering no hint of rhythm or melody. Relationships between the four remain oblique, resolutely avoiding any form of resolution. "Part 2" is more animated, with the cornetist and violinist asserting themselves through sustained brass tones and string glissandi. On bass, Davidson creates darkly bowed undercurrents, which entwine with Goldstein's abrasive violin. Passages of drifting lyrical abstraction, punctuated by off-kilter percussive noises, provide depth to proceedings, but otherwise it's an enigmatic encounter in which Davidson remains elusive.

Track Listing: Graffiti - Part 1; Graffiti - Part 2; Tag.

Personnel: Joe Morris: guitar, banjouke; Lowell Davidson: drums, aluminum acoustic bass; Malcolm Goldstein: violin; Lawrence D. "Butch" Morris: cornet.

Title: Graffiti In Two Parts | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Rogue Art

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
In Pictures
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Shock Axis

Shock Axis

Relative Pitch Records
2016

buy
Balance

Balance

Clean Feed Records
2014

buy
Plymouth

Plymouth

RareNoiseRecords
2014

buy
 

Part And Parcel

Kedar Entertainment Group
2013

buy

Related Articles

Read Oscar Peterson Plays CD/LP/Track Review
Oscar Peterson Plays
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 23, 2018
Read State Of The Baritone Volume 2 CD/LP/Track Review
State Of The Baritone Volume 2
by Mark Corroto
Published: April 23, 2018
Read Listening To Pictures (Pentimento Volume one) CD/LP/Track Review
Listening To Pictures (Pentimento Volume one)
by Chris May
Published: April 23, 2018
Read Friends & Family CD/LP/Track Review
Friends & Family
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 23, 2018
Read Northern Migrations CD/LP/Track Review
Northern Migrations
by Ian Patterson
Published: April 22, 2018
Read Egregore CD/LP/Track Review
Egregore
by John Eyles
Published: April 22, 2018
Read "I Speilvendthet" CD/LP/Track Review I Speilvendthet
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 9, 2017
Read "Town And Country" CD/LP/Track Review Town And Country
by Jerome Wilson
Published: June 21, 2017
Read "Sunshine In My Head" CD/LP/Track Review Sunshine In My Head
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 14, 2018
Read "Trickster" CD/LP/Track Review Trickster
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: May 11, 2017
Read "Can't Get Started" CD/LP/Track Review Can't Get Started
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: August 24, 2017
Read "Marching Song Volumes 1 & 2 Plus Bonus Tracks" CD/LP/Track Review Marching Song Volumes 1 & 2 Plus Bonus Tracks
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 31, 2017