Friday, February 18, 2011
Spiritual Jazz Obsession: Don Cherry (& Jazz Composer's Orchestra)- Relativity Suite (1973)
I would have thought I'd have posted more Don Cherry by this point. Alongside Archie Shepp and Alice Coltrane, Cherry is one of my favorites of the spiritual/free jazz scene. The clamor of free jazz, with Cherry, is always (well, often) organized for maximum emotional depth and musical diversity, using world-influenced patterns to attain a sense of consciousness-raising, either through meditative repetition or expansive soulfulness. He's also a wonderfully intuitive soloer, a truly inspired assembler and leader of ensembles, and he's not afraid to use vocals. I love him.
Here's a great slice of Cherry, in full World-Jazz mode. Featuring Indian karnatic singing, tamboura, a ching, Indian-sounding strings (not unlike some of what Alice Coltrane does with strings, albeit a bit smaller in scale), Cherry's floating cornet lines-- and generally employing the kind of Eastern/African/Asian influences one might expect from mid-70s Cherry. The whole thing rolls along beautifully, especially in its first half, at times challenging and at others completely meditative-- until the final selection, anyway, a gonzo marching brass tune entitled "March of the Hobbits."
This is wonderfully dynamic, exploratory work, highly recommended for Cherry fans. (For Cherry beginners, I'd recommend starting out with the excellent Eternal Rhythm, which is my favorite, but this would do well also.)
RELATIVITY SUITE (192)
Gigantic thanks to Brewing Luminous, from whom I attained this. Go there for your jazz desires.