149

Don Cherry: Symphony for Improvisors

By

Sign in to view read count
Don Cherry: Symphony for Improvisors
It is gratifying to read A.B. Spelling's original liner notes for Don Cherry's 1966 recording Symphony for Improvisers, the first sentence of which begins "The New Music is no longer new and goes on to point out the developments over the preceding ten years. Free jazz is still a powerful draw for musicians and still inspires indifference at best from most listeners. Perhaps this newly remastered CD from a high point of the genre's history will reel in a few new converts.

The recording quality is, as you'd expect, impeccable—and in addtiion to Spellman's original notes we have further enlightenment from Rudy Van Gelder, who provides valuable insight into the music itself. The title is a bit misleading, suggesting much more intricate music played by a much larger group than is the case. It's really a small (though top notch) band mostly blowing free over rudimentary forms. The biggest marvel about it, aside from some of the inspired playing, is its seamless movement from one piece to the next and how lightly, yet sometimes emphatically, the composed music coexists with the improvised.

Cherry's writing here is still redolent of the influence of Ornette Coleman, but otherwise he stepped out of the big man's shadow and assumed the mantle of leader with confidence and strength, assembling a strong group that includes Pharoah Sanders, Gato Barbieri, Henry Grimes, Karl Berger, Jean-François Jenny-Clark, and the titanic Ed Blackwell, who gives the sometimes raucous music the rhythmic underpinnings found in all great jazz. Cherry's trumpet playing is also at it's best: loose, lyrical and hair-raising at times.

Track Listing

Symphony for Improvisers: Symphony for Improvisers/Nu Creative Love/Wha; Manhattan Cry: Manhattan Cry/Lunatic/Sparkle Plenty/Om Nu.

Personnel

Gato Barbieri: tenor saxophone; Karl Berger: piano, vibraphone; Ed Blackwell: drums; Don Cherry: trumpet, cornet; Henry Grimes: bass; Jean-Fran

Album information

Title: Symphony for Improvisors | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Blue Note Records

Post a comment about this album

Tags

View events near New York City
Jazz Near New York City
Events Guide | Venue Guide | Get App | More...

Shop Amazon

More

Read Live at Vitellos
Live at Vitellos
Michael Wolff
Read This Bitter Earth
This Bitter Earth
Veronica Swift
Read Vegetables
Vegetables
Lina Allemano Four
Read Streams
Streams
Yuma Uesaka and Marilyn Crispell

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.