Good Music We Can Know

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Eastern Jazz Obsession: Ahmed Abdul-Malik- Jazz Sahara (1958)

Here's the 1958 debut-as-leader of Ahmed Abdul-Malik, an oud player and double bassist who's thrown down with Art Blakey, Coltrane, Odetta, and Thelonius Monk, among others. These are enormous East-meets-West jams, with a much harder emphasis on Middle East instrumentation and style than American jazz, and relatively little exotica-style musical tourism. For 1958, this was some pretty authentic shit, and this record was a first exposure to these types of sounds for many American listeners.

Besides Malik on the oud, this record also features a kanoon, a darabeka, and a duf, all used to beautiful effect. The more typical "jazz" sound only rarely makes an appearance, with the occasional swooping solo from sax-bopper Johnny Griffin really beefing up the supreme coolness of the whole affair. It's a lovely piece of work, and nicely aggressive.

I got this originally from Big Fat Satanist, a blog which is long since no more. I know Jazz Sahara is still floating around on other blogs and such, but I was swinging pretty hard to it tonight and thought I should drop it at my spot. Get it if you don't already got it.



Holly said...

This is quite lovely, thank you!

Thanks also for attributing the original poster. Good manners can never be overrated ;-)

Agustin said...

Nice blog, thanks for sharing all this info.

keep it up!

cheers from Argentina.

nicholab said...

i am happy to find this here, flash. just discovering malik these past few days. it would appear that i'm in good company....the best, even....

Holly said...

Group Hug! :-)

LukeWarmcop said...

Just discovered your beautiful blog looking for this album.

Thanks fer all of it.


Manou Emmanouil said...


Unknown said...

Your review is as savage as this music. Well done.