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Donald Ayler

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Album Review

Albert Ayler Quintet: Lost Performances 1966 Revisited

Read "Lost Performances 1966 Revisited" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

These works offer a compelling glimpse into the avant-garde jazz landscape of the mid-1960s via saxophonist Albert Ayler's furiously executed phrasings, coated with spiritual intent during his tour of northern Europe. Ayler's work during this period often encapsulated the raw, expressive power and unrestrained improvisational style that defined his music.Ayler's quintet, amid his collaboration with other musicians and group formats, is known for its unconventional approach to jazz, delivering a cacophony of passionate and free-form expressions. Expect an ...

Album Review

Albert Ayler: More Lost Performances Revisited

Read "More Lost Performances Revisited" reviewed by Chris May

A state-of-the-art sonic restoration of obscure but historically important Albert Ayler material by Switzerland's ezz-thetics label, which with its parent label, Hat Hut, has been creating an audiophile archive of Ayler recordings with the support of his estate since 1978. All too often, “more" in an album title means “Beware: barrel scraping in progress." Not in this case. More Lost Performances Revisited is primetime Ayler. The disc draws from three sources over a five-year timespan. The earliest ...

Album Review

Albert Ayler: At Slugs’ Saloon 1966 Revisited

Read "At Slugs’ Saloon 1966 Revisited" reviewed by Mark Corroto

With Albert Ayler it has seemingly always been “what If." What if he had survived that plunge to his death in the East River in 1970? Setting aside the question of whether he was murdered or committed suicide, how would he have altered the course of music if he lived beyond those 34 years? At the time of his passing he had fueled a revolution both in America and Europe for free jazz. Let's not fail to remember that his ...

Album Review

Albert Ayler Quintet: At Slugs’ Saloon 1966 Revisited

Read "At Slugs’ Saloon 1966 Revisited" reviewed by Chris May

There continues to be as much discussion about Albert Ayler's personality and motivations as there is about the music he left us. Was he a religious fundamentalist? Was he bi-polar? Was he an attention seeker? Was he some sort of leather fetishist? The evidence suggests Ayler may have been borderline bi-polar, but as for the other questions, the answer is a resounding “No." A clue to where Ayler was coming from, and where he was going to, ...

Album Review

Albert Ayler: La Cave Live-Cleveland 1966-Revisited

Read "La Cave Live-Cleveland 1966-Revisited" reviewed by Chris May

Cleveland club La Cave, a grungy cellar which could accommodate around two hundred people, opened as a folk venue in 1962, transitioned into rock mid-decade, and closed in 1969. Along the way, in amongst such counterculture flagbearers as the Velvet Underground and The Fugs, La Cave booked a few of the bad boys of so-called “new thing" jazz, among them tenor saxophonist Albert Ayler, a Cleveland hometown hero. The 2xCD La Cave Live-Cleveland 1966-Revisited comprises just over ...

Album Review

Albert Ayler Quintet: 1966: Berlin, Lörrach, Paris & Stockholm. Revisited

Read "1966: Berlin, Lörrach, Paris & Stockholm. Revisited" reviewed by Mark Corroto

It may sound odd to describe the music that Albert Ayler's quintet performs here as the musical equivalent of comfort food, but these sounds can be associated with security and nostalgia. They are a reminder of the spark ignited by this tenor saxophonist from Cleveland. Ayler, maybe more than any artist of his day, paved the way for free jazz by linking it to the music of New Orleans, African-American spirituals, marching bands, and national anthems. If no Ayler, then ...

Album Review

Albert Ayler: Albert Ayler 1965: Spirits Rejoice & Bells Revisited

Read "Albert Ayler 1965: Spirits Rejoice & Bells Revisited" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Being that 2020 is more than half a century since Albert Ayler (1936-70) recorded this music, the best way to approach might be through what the Zen Buddhists call Shoshin. Roughly translated as “beginner's mind," or the ability to experience things as if for the first time. Since we cannot transport ourselves back to 1965, taking a posture of readiness and being open to experience the revelatory nature of this music might be the best plan of attack.

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Performance / Tour

Angels, Devils and Haints/a Celebration of Albert and Donald Ayler

Angels, Devils and Haints/a Celebration of Albert and Donald Ayler

Source: All About Jazz

ANGELS, DEVILS AND HAINTS A celebration of Albert and Donald Ayler “In the year 2000, to celebrate the change of the century and the life and music of Albert Ayler, I organized a concert tour in France which featured four contra bassists and myself. This international bass quartet included Dominic Duval, Michael Bisio, Paul Rogers and Claude Tchamitian. In anticipation of the release on CJ Records of 2 volumes of music from that tour, and thanks to the ...


Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

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