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Charles Gayle/Giovani Barcella/Manolo Cabras: Live In Belgium

Read "Live In Belgium" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Picking up any recording by the saxophonist (sometimes pianist) Charles Gayle always reminds me of the quote by actress Bette Davis' from the the film All About Eve (1950). After downing her martini in one gulp, Davis walks away, turns, and announces “fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy ride." Not bumpy as in uneven or rutted here, but strident and earth-shaking music. Live In Belgium is no exception to that narrative. By now, the story ...


The Charles Gayle Trio: Look Up

Read "Look Up" reviewed by John Sharpe

Fire-breathing saxophonist Charles Gayle has had to wait a long time for his ESP-disk debut. Allegedly, there was a 1974 session in the can, but the label folded in its earlier incarnation, before it saw the light of day. But now, a 1994 live date from Santa Monica has been issued on the revived imprint. Recorded during the spell that saw issue of such titles as Consecration (Black Saint, 1993), Kingdom Come (Knitting Factory Works, 1994) and Testaments (Knitting Factory ...


Charles Gayle Trio: Streets

Read "Streets" reviewed by Jerry D'Souza

The cover of Streets shows saxophonist Charles Gayle in his titular clown persona, the look on his face conveying a multitude of emotion. And that is precisely what Gayle is all about--a musician who parlays love, joy, happiness, laughter and sadness into his music.Gayle packs a wallop in his playing. His approach drives a myriad shades, high registers dipping into soft contours, probing and dissolving into an all-out attack. The moment is defined in the instant, with surprise ...


Charles Gayle: Holiday Selection

Read "Charles Gayle: Holiday Selection" reviewed by Chris May

Downtown veteran, multi-instrumentalist Charles Gayle's style suits all sorts of situations. It works equally well as an irresistible morning wake-up call or an unusual choice of late night, post-coital soundtrack. Whether he is playing tenor saxophone or viola, once heard, Gayle is not quickly forgotten. With the holiday season upon us, the selection below is a great package to gift to in-laws. You may not see them often, but they are in your thoughts! ...


Charles Gayle: Live at Crescendo and Forgiveness

Read "Charles Gayle: Live at Crescendo and Forgiveness" reviewed by Jeff Stockton

By Any Means Live at Crescendo Ayler 2008 Charles Gyale Trio Forgiveness Not Two 2008

20 years ago Charles Gayle forged a reputation for iron chops, a relentless attack and Biblical fervor, a time when a 25-minute tune would have been considered the “short" one. In the intervening years as Gayle ...


Charles Gayle: Touchin' On Trane

Read "Touchin' On Trane" reviewed by Francis Lo Kee

A long time ago, there was an advertising line: “The Rolling Stones are not just a band; they are a way of life." That ad man was of course tapping into the old adage of jazz: if you don't live it, it won't come through your music. In the '90s, The New Thing of the '60s came back with tremendous energy and no one embodied that energy better than Charles Gayle. At almost 70 years old, he still plays with ...


Charles Gayle Trio: Forgiveness

Read "Forgiveness" reviewed by Mark Corroto

His story is familiar to many. Charles Gayle, the many times homeless saxophonist, plays his signature firebrand music and testifies to his religious faith in equal measure. Known for his tenor, he also plays the piano (an early instrument for him) with his unique style that is simultaneously old school and modern.

Here he is recorded in his familiar trio format playing live in Lodz, Poland in 2007. Gayle's playing partners are the frequent bassist Hilliard Greene and ...


Charles Gayle at the Red Rose Club, London

Read "Charles Gayle at the Red Rose Club, London" reviewed by John Sharpe

Charles Gayle, William Parker, Mark Sanders Red Rose Club London, England September 21, 2007

Charles Gayle was so keen to get started that he launched his opening salvo--a short repeated squeal of a motif--almost before drummer Mark Sanders had finished thanking promoters Birmingham Jazz for making this short English tour happen. Sanders' initiative had brought together free jazz legend Charles Gayle and long time collaborator, NYC bassist extraordinaire William Parker, to form a trio ...


Charles Gayle: Live At The Glenn Miller Cafe & Consider The Lilies...

Read "Charles Gayle: Live At The Glenn Miller Cafe & Consider The Lilies..." reviewed by Matthew Miller

Charles Gayle Live at Glenn Miller Cafe Ayler 2006 Charles Gayle Consider The Lillies... Clean Feed 2006

When 67-year old multi-instrumentalist Charles Gayle takes the stage, audiences brace for an onslaught. Melodic fragments from his saxophone swell into dramatic runs and trills, culminating in piercing shrieks and whistles, or the pounded ...


Charles Gayle: Time Zones & Live at the Glenn Miller Cafe

Read "Charles Gayle: Time Zones & Live at the Glenn Miller Cafe" reviewed by Rex  Butters

Two new releases illuminate for anyone with ears the genius of Charles Gayle. Another crucial release from Ayler Records, the Charles Gayle Trio's Live at Glenn Miller Cafe, spends a vibrant evening, recorded earlier this year, with Gayle on alto re-imagining such standards as “Giant Steps, and “What's New, as well as featuring a few highly original compositions. Tompkins Square records releases Time Zones, a collection of originals played by Gayle on solo piano guaranteed to drop the jaws of ...


Charles Gayle at Ortlieb's Jazzhaus in Philadelphia

Read "Charles Gayle at Ortlieb's Jazzhaus in Philadelphia" reviewed by Edward Zucker

Charles Gayle Ortlieb's Jazzhaus Philadelphia PA July 13, 2006

In the annals of jazz, Charles Gayle's story is unique. Gayle originally came to prominence as a free jazz tenor and alto saxophonist. In the early 1990s Gayle found religion. His concerts became sermon. Gayle would preach instead of playing his music. Eventually he became homeless, playing his sax on the streets of New York.

Fortunately Gayle rose like a phoenix, reinventing himself. ...


Charles Gayle: Always Reaching

Read "Charles Gayle: Always Reaching" reviewed by Rex  Butters

Charles Gayle's life and art must certainly inspire anyone choosing to look at it. A humble, articulate man who laughs easily, he's seen more than his share of hard times. Yet now, at 65, his creative arc takes the upswing as critics and audiences begin to catch up. A highly original saxophonist, Gayle resumed his piano studies in the last decade and has released his second collection of solo piano performances, Time Zones. At times playing with enough force and ...

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