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The Blue Notes and the Brotherhood of Breath - Marching to a Different Drum

Read "The Blue Notes and the Brotherhood of Breath - Marching to a Different Drum" reviewed by Duncan Heining

Early one August morning in 1964, seven people crossed the border by train passing from South Africa into Mozambique. It was an unusual group of people--five black men, one white man and one white woman. Any “mixing of the races" was, of course, immediately suspicious in apartheid South Africa. The six men--Louis Moholo, Chris McGregor, Dudu Pukwana, Johnny Dyani and Nikele Moyake--made up The Blue Notes. South Africa's only multi-racial jazz group was ostensibly travelling via Mozambique to Paris and ...

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Brotherhood of Breath: Bremen to Bridgwater

Read "Bremen to Bridgwater" reviewed by Jerry D'Souza

Back in the times when apartheid was a festering wound in South Africa, several musicians felt the scabrous effects of that putrid policy. Some left their homeland for the opportunity to express their feelings and to expose the instigators of the great divide. Some stayed behind and defied the dictates. Chris McGregor was among the latter, getting together a racially mixed band working with musicians from the townships despite government harassment. McGregor and his band of the time, the Blue ...

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Brotherhood of Breath: Bremen to Bridgewater

Read "Bremen to Bridgewater" reviewed by Rex  Butters

Chris McGregor's Brotherhood of Breath rampaged through the British free jazz scene of the late '60s and early '70s, a loose big band/free orchestra built around a core South African unit that emigrated to London in 1966. They anticipated the African jazz boom of the '80s, and their ability to drop smart big band riffs through free soloing gave them lively hard swinging excursions with musicians like Evan Parker, Gary Windo, Dudu Pukwana, Nick Evans, and Elton Dean taking these ...

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Brotherhood of Breath: Travelling Somewhere

Read "Travelling Somewhere" reviewed by Andrey Henkin

Jazz is, despite unnamed documentaries claiming the contrary, an international art form; A genre that sacrifices egos and politics for a larger purpose. Musicians play together, despite the racial and international conflicts of the time, purely for the experience and joy of creating music. Some of these meetings and collaborations become much more than just sessions. They profoundly influence the participants’ future work as well the larger musical tapestry. Miles Davis' “Bitches Brew" is one of these: a synthesis of ...


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