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The underlying theme in this episode appears to be ensembles of varying sizes and styles. From Sweden, trumpeter Goran Kajfes' quartet Tropique blends elements of groove, trance, improv, African with a Don Cherry on top in the new Into The Wild, while another quartet, the Wójciński/Szmańda Quartet from Poland, knocks down the walls of same-same with power balanced with spacy contemplation. You'll also hear trios of different plateaus: bassist Stephan Crump, saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock and pianist Cory Smythe, Wojciech Jachna-Grzegorz Tarwid-Albert Karch, also from Poland, and poet Yusef Komunyakaa with David Cieri and Mike Brown in a follow-up to White Dust . Chicago saxophonist Dustin Laurenzi assembled a talented band to honour the music of Moondog, while a large group of talented women close the show: Marilyn Mazur's Shamania. The sizes may vary, but the music is consistently large!
Goran Kajfeš Tropique "So Don" from Into The Wild (Head) 0:00
Host speaks 04:18
Goran Kajfeš Tropique "Floods" from Into the Wild (Head) 05:51
As a songwriter and vocalist, I love jazz for the experience of being in the center of intense creativity. It is the most potent form of music for keeping the artist and the audience in the 'now. Being in the moment is essential for humans, and we need help in learning how to do that. As a songwriter, I need the depth of musicality that jazz voicings can give my stories. My songs seem light and whimsical, but the message is not.
I met my main collaborator, Mark Fitzgibbon, at one of his gigs. I needed to do my first original album, and his playing was masterful, robust, and beautiful. At the time, I didn't realize how suited we were as a team. We're onto our 4rth album together.
My advice to new listeners is to listen to a really clear and simple version of a song so you can then hear what the musicians are doing and enjoy their creativity and musicality. Also, you have to see jazz live to appreciate it fully. You'll never feel it the same way listening to a CD or online. You need the vibration to go through your body to really get it!
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