Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for readers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

178

Don Pullen: Mosaic Select

By

Sign in to view read count
Don Pullen, with his heart firmly rooted in gospel, bop and blues, and with his hands grasping on to free-form dissonance, was one of the very last truly original jazz pianists. He found a musical soulmate in tenor George Adams, who was similarly blessed with a unique tone: one foot in with the Texas tenors and the other falling through an elevator shaft. The Don Pullen/George Adams Quartet of the '80s became one of the last great and original bands. Three quarters of the group came from the last Mingus band (drummer Dannie Richmond being the third); they created a unique sound that went deeper than Mingus' roots and was more avant-garde and abstract than even their ex-boss dared to go. Mosaic's limited edition set brings their two best collaborations, along with an interesting pair of piano trios.

Breakthrough and Song Everlasting are filled with moments of glorious rapture. From the sure-footed optimism of "Mr. Smoothie" to the contemplative "Sing Me a Song Everlasting," this band is capable of going in any direction, or many directions at once. Pullen, with his patented swirling glissandos, makes the head spin with his dizzying forays. The only thing keeping him from completely flying off into oblivion is his incessant left hand firmly rooted in gospel and swing. On "The Necessary Blues," the band plays bop, stride, and Monk with astonishing celerity, and their effortless, jaw-dropping technique comes off like a fast-forward newsreel history of jazz.

The remaining discs consist of Pullen working in pair of different trio settings. The first one, with superstars Tony Williams (drums) and Gary Peacock (bass), is a bit of a mixed bag. Some of the songs, such as the joyous "Jana's Delight" and the dramatic "At the Café Centrale," come off quite well. The title tune is a bit cloying in its attempt to out-Monk Monk, and "Reap the Whirlwind" overdoes it, sounding more like someone whirling a rope through the air for seven minutes than creating music.

The second trio, with bassist James Genus and drummer Lewis Nash, is a bit more accessible, presenting the funky "Andre's Ups and Downs" and evocative "The Dancer," with Pullen displaying his talent for combining accessibility and abstraction. This musically creative and challenging set takes the listeners where they've been before, deeper than they'd been before, and finally to where they've never been.


Track Listing: CD1: 1. Mr. Smoothie (A) (6:04); 2. Just Foolin' Around (A) (6:19); 3. Song From The Old Country (A) (8:11); 4. We've Been Here All The Time (A) (9:09); 5. A Time For Sobriety (A) (9:42); 6. The Necessary Blues (or Thank You Very Much, Mr. Monk) (A) (13:33); 7. Sun Watchers (B) (5:43); 8. Serenade To Sariah (B) (7:35); 9. 1529 Gunn Street (For Johnny Holloway) (B) (6:14).
CD2: 1. Warm Up (B) (9:50); 2. Sing Me A Song Everlasting (For EBU and Hamiet Bluiett) (B) (10:30); 3. Another Reason To Celebrate (B) (8:44); 4. Jana's Delight (C) (5:56); 5. Once Upon A Time (C) (5:47); 6. Warriors (C) (6:45); 7. New Beginnings (C) (6:20); 8. At The Caf

Personnel: (A) George Adams, tenor sax; Don Pullen, piano; Cameron Brown, bass; Dannie Richmond, drums. (B) George Adams, tenor sax; Don Pullen, piano; Cameron Brown, bass; Dannie Richmond, drums. (C) Don Pullen, piano; Gary Peacock, bass; Tony Williams, drums. (D) Don Pullen, piano; James Genus, bass; Lewis Nash, drums.

Title: Mosaic Select | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Mosaic Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Warning: include(/data/websites/jazznearyou.com/www/html/templates/calendar/cal_related_cached.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home/websites/allaboutjazz.com/www/html/content/article.php on line 68

Warning: include(): Failed opening '/data/websites/jazznearyou.com/www/html/templates/calendar/cal_related_cached.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/usr/lib/php5:/data/websites/allaboutjazz.com/www/html:/usr/share/php') in /home/websites/allaboutjazz.com/www/html/content/article.php on line 68

More Articles

Read Flaneur CD/LP/Track Review Flaneur
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: January 16, 2018
Read D'Agala CD/LP/Track Review D'Agala
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 16, 2018
Read Vertical CD/LP/Track Review Vertical
by Don Phipps
Published: January 16, 2018
Read In Stride CD/LP/Track Review In Stride
by Geno Thackara
Published: January 16, 2018
Read Solid Gold CD/LP/Track Review Solid Gold
by Jack Bowers
Published: January 15, 2018
Read Ts'iibil Chaaltun CD/LP/Track Review Ts'iibil Chaaltun
by Don Phipps
Published: January 15, 2018
Read "Rev" CD/LP/Track Review Rev
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 17, 2017
Read "Luck Child" CD/LP/Track Review Luck Child
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 16, 2017
Read "Recent Developments" CD/LP/Track Review Recent Developments
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 26, 2017
Read "Rush" CD/LP/Track Review Rush
by Chris Mosey
Published: December 30, 2017
Read "Not This Time" CD/LP/Track Review Not This Time
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: March 5, 2017
Read "Rekihndled" CD/LP/Track Review Rekihndled
by Doug Collette
Published: April 8, 2017