200

David S. Ware: Shakti

Mark Corroto By

Sign in to view read count
David S. Ware: Shakti The path an original voice must take in jazz this century is quite different from that of 50 years ago. Gone are the big labels and covers of TIME magazine. The 'big names' in jazz are institutionalized at universities and Lincoln Center, making records with Willie Nelson and playing covers of Nirvana pop songs.



But all is not lost. The revolution is just not televised in the mainstream. Small artisan labels like AUM Fidelity keep the flame burning with releases like the latest from David S. Ware and his reconstituted quartet. Gone are pianist Matthew Shipp and drummer Guillermo E. Brown. Joining Ware and bassist William Parker are guitarist Joe Morris and drummer Warren Smith. The drummer, born in 1934, has been behind the kit for everyone from Sam Rivers, Aretha Franklin, Van Morrison and Bill Cole to Harry Partch. He supplies, along with Parker, a most solid platform for this recording. For his part, Joe Morris' guitar differs from Shipp's piano in his choice single note runs over the pianist huge chords.

Ware's career has taken him from early work with Cecil Taylor and Andrew Cyrille and recordings on Japan's DIW and Sweden's Silkheart records to a short stint at Columbia. He has always produced solid sessions, playing music that is seemingly larger than life. Shakti is Ware's twenty-third release as a leader and fourth for AUM.



With a recording like Shakti, it's sometimes not possible to take the entire recording in no matter how much distance is taken. Ware's voice, like that of Coltrane, can be at times daunting. Like Coltrane he has explored the outer reaches, done ballad sessions, and on Shakti sets his sights on India. The spiritual side of this record cannot be denied. The title track (in three parts) may be his A Love Supreme (Impulse!, 1964), transporting through distinct sections that raise the spiritual and the sanctified. Focusing on Ware's delivery—part Albert Ayler, part Sonny Rollins—should not mean neglecting Parker's energy. His firm hand on timekeeping deserves a separate spin just to focus on the colors his playing invents.



The ballad "Reflections" is a showcase for Smith's brushwork, playing opposite Ware's husky tone. His constant sweep of energy first propels Ware and later, Morris. "Namah" is a highlight, opening with Ware's kalimba before he picks up his saxophone to play some breathtakingly immaculate notes. This purity along with his capacity to present a very coherent sound throughout, makes for a very satisfying record.


Track Listing: Crossing Samsara; Nataraj; Reflection; Namah; Antidromic; Shakti: Durga, Devi, Kali.

Personnel: David S. Ware: tenor saxophone, kalimba; Joe Morris: guitar, percussion; William Parker: bass; Warren Smith: drums.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: AUM Fidelity | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Transparent Water CD/LP/Track Review Transparent Water
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Billows Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Love Dance CD/LP/Track Review Love Dance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Honest Woman CD/LP/Track Review Honest Woman
by James Nadal
Published: February 20, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read "Back To Your Heart" CD/LP/Track Review Back To Your Heart
by Jeff Winbush
Published: January 13, 2017
Read "Hawniyaz" CD/LP/Track Review Hawniyaz
by Karl Ackermann
Published: August 1, 2016
Read "Beatbox Sax" CD/LP/Track Review Beatbox Sax
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 18, 2016
Read "Kronix" CD/LP/Track Review Kronix
by Glenn Astarita
Published: March 27, 2016
Read "Rise Of Orion" CD/LP/Track Review Rise Of Orion
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 1, 2016
Read "Hatch and Host" CD/LP/Track Review Hatch and Host
by Ian Patterson
Published: February 25, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!