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Ornette Coleman

Early on in his career, alto saxophonist Ornette Coleman, recorded an album entitled, The Shape of Jazz To Come. It might have seemed like an expression of youthful arrogance - Coleman was 29 at the time - but actually, the title was prophetic. Coleman is the creator of a concept of music called "harmolodic," a musical form which is equally applicable as a life philosophy. The richness of harmolodics derives from the unique interaction between the players. Breaking out of the prison bars of rigid meters and conventional harmonic or structural expectations, harmolodic musicians improvise equally together in what Coleman calls compositional improvisation, while always keeping deeply in tune with the flow, direction and needs of their fellow players. In this process, harmony becomes melody becomes harmony. Ornette describes it as "Removing the caste system from sound." On a broader level, harmolodics equates with the freedom to be as you please, as long as you listen to others and work with them to develop your own individual harmony.

ARTICLE: RADIO

The Jazz Avant-Garde in the 1960s (1960 - 1966)

Read "The Jazz Avant-Garde in the 1960s (1960 - 1966)" reviewed by Russell Perry

Nurtured in the seminal recordings of Ornette Coleman and Cecil Taylor in the mid to late 1950s, the jazz avant—garde came into its own in the 1960s with their continuing creations, those of John Coltrane already featured in this program and those of next generation players, Joe Harriott and Albert Ayler. Defining statements of the free ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

John Coltrane Quartet: Impressions: Graz 1962

Read "Impressions: Graz 1962" reviewed by Mark Corroto

This live concert is a welcome excuse to go to your happy place. Sixty years after John Coltrane's quartet toured Europe, this radio broadcast with its excellent audio fidelity opens like a capsule. Both a time capsule and a seed capsule, one that continues to pollinate today's music. The year was 1962 and Coltrane ...

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

2019: Striking A Balance In Review, Part 2

Read "2019: Striking A Balance In Review, Part 2" reviewed by Henning Bolte

Part 1 | Part 2This is the second part of an article that looks back and reflects on experiences with live music in 2019. This part deals with a musician's legacy (Ornette Coleman) and continues with an examination of artistic developments and dynamics in the jazz field in a festival (Jazzfest Berlin) and related ...

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Vintage Dolphy

Read "Vintage Dolphy" reviewed by Duncan Heining

Vintage Dolphy appeared originally in 1986/7 on both vinyl and CD. Featuring recordings from three separate live performances from Eric Dolphy, two at Carnegie Hall, both with his own quartet and in two 'third stream' settings devised by Gunther Schuller, the album provided intriguing insights into Dolphy's improvisational skills and approach. Were this not enough, the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Jason Kao Hwang & Karl Berger: Conjure

Read "Conjure" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

There is an adventurer's appeal when two free thinkers just pick up mid-stream and let the river carry them. Without label or structure constraint, life-preservers and the chronic happenstance which bars so many back from reaching beyond themselves, music emerges shaded by emotional time, humor, awareness, and mutual respect for each other's untapped potential.

ARTICLE: PROFILES

The Very Singular Mr. Ran Blake

Read "The Very Singular Mr. Ran Blake" reviewed by Duncan Heining

There have been few American composers and musicians, with the ability to encapsulate their country's music in all its racial and ethnic complexity. We might perhaps point to Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Charles Ives and perhaps, in their own distaff ways, Harry Partch and Steve Reich. In jazz, their number is fewer still--Duke Ellington and George ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

John Abercrombie and Don Thompson: Yesterdays

Read "Yesterdays" reviewed by Don Phipps

The late John Abercrombie's outstanding and extensive recorded legacy includes two duet albums with fellow guitarist Ralph Towner, Sargasso Sea (ECM 2008) and Five Years Later (ECM, 2014), four Gateway trio albums (with bassist Dave Holland and drummer Jack DeJohnette), and three Baseline Trio albums (with bassist Hein Van de Geyn and drummer Joe LaBarbera).

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Bob Lanzetti: Snarky Guitars, Part 2

Read "Bob Lanzetti: Snarky Guitars, Part 2" reviewed by Mike Jacobs

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 For the second installment in our series on the guitarists of Snarky Puppy, we spoke with Bob Lanzetti. In addition to being the guitarist who logged the most miles with the band in its early days, he has also appeared on every recording SP has ever ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Adam Berenson: Every Beginning Is A Sequel

Read "Every Beginning Is A Sequel" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Pianist/keyboardist/composer Adam Berenson--across more than twenty recordings--offers incontrovertible evidence that talent surpasses an affinity for category. He is equally at home with jazz, electronica, blues, or a string quartet. On his previous , fully-acoustic album, Stringent and Sempiternal (Dream Works, 2019) Berenson went in an unusual direction (for him), covering works of Miles Davis, Bud Powell, ...


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