Reviews that mention Ahmed Abdullah

February 1, 2015

Frank Lowe Quartet

Out Loud
Triple Point Records TPR 209

Don Pullen

Richard’s Tune

Delmark/Sackville CD2-3008

Derek Bailey/Joëlle Léandre/George Lewis/Evan Parker

Dunois 1982

Fou Records FR-CD 06

Steve Lacy

Cycles (1976-80)

Emanem 5205

Ted Daniel’s Energy Module

Energy Module

NoBusiness Records NBCD 72/73

Something In The Air: Revolutionary Records Redux

By Ken Waxman

About 40 years on, so-called Free Jazz and Free Music from the late sixties, seventies and early eighties, doesn’t sound so revolutionary any more. The idea of improvising without chord structures or fixed rhythm has gradually seeped into most players’ consciousness, with the genre(s) now accepted as particular methods for improvisation along with Bop, Dixieland and Fusion. Historical perspective also means that many sessions originally recorded during that period are now being released. Some are reissues, usually with additional music added; others are newly unearthed tapes being issued for the first time. The best discs offer up formerly experimental sounds whose outstanding musicianship is more of a lure than nostalgia. MORE

November 8, 2013

The Group

Live
No Business Records NBCD 50

Melodic Art-Tet

Eponymous

NoBusiness Records NBCD 56

By Ken Waxman

Although according to detractors, all free-jazz sessions sound alike, these high-quality dates from 1974 and 1986 put a lie to that supposition. Both also suggest why the music was never popular. Each CD shares trumpeter Ahmed Abdullah and features all stars. 1974’s Melodic Art-Tet included reedist Charles Brackeen, drummer Roger Blank, bassist William Parker and percussionist Tony Waters (Ramadan Mumeen). 1986’s The Group was saxophonist Marion Brown, violinist Billy Bang, bassists Sirone or Fred Hopkins plus drummer Andrew Cyrille. MORE

November 8, 2013

Melodic Art-Tet

Eponymous
NoBusiness Records NBCD 56

The Group

Live

No Business Records NBCD 50

By Ken Waxman

Although according to detractors, all free-jazz sessions sound alike, these high-quality dates from 1974 and 1986 put a lie to that supposition. Both also suggest why the music was never popular. Each CD shares trumpeter Ahmed Abdullah and features all stars. 1974’s Melodic Art-Tet included reedist Charles Brackeen, drummer Roger Blank, bassist William Parker and percussionist Tony Waters (Ramadan Mumeen). 1986’s The Group was saxophonist Marion Brown, violinist Billy Bang, bassists Sirone or Fred Hopkins plus drummer Andrew Cyrille. MORE

January 16, 2006

AHMED ABDULLAH’S EBONIC TONES

Tara’s Song
TUM CD009

KAHIL EL’ZABAR'S RITUAL TRIO/BILLY BANG
Live At The River East Art Center
Delmark DE-566

Recorded in different cities seven months apart, these CDs are connected by the presence of violinist Billy Bang and a profound respect for all variations of Black improvised music.

In addition to two originals by Brooklyn-based trumpeter Ahmed Abdullah, Tara’s Song is a compendium of hip heads from Thelonious Monk, Ornette Coleman, Sun Ra and others. In many ways a showcase for the percussion implements of Chicago’s Kahil El’Zabar, Live At The River East Art Center, takes its inspiration from the drummer’s twin influences, Pan-Africanism and the city’s Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM). MORE

April 18, 2005

AHMED ABDULLAH’S DISPERSIONS OF THE SPIRIT OF RA

Traveling The Spaceways
Planet Arts Recordings 100324

Hagiography constantly becomes more prevalent in jazz as the number of venerated figures grows and their time of prominence recedes. Almost from its first recordings, the music featured sessions idolizing past heroes, but over the past 20 years the practice has almost kept pace with Hollywood biopics.

How then can you distinguish between a meaningful tribute, which includes this CD, and slapdash homage? Well, for a start, it helps if the protagonist has some real association with the honored figure, as trumpeter Ahmed Abdullah did, being part of various Sun Ra Arkestras over a 20 year period. More generically the venerator should offers more than a replay of the honoree’s sounds, bringing something unique and original to the project. Abdullah has done that as well. He and tenor saxophonist Salim Washington have created new arrangements of familiar and obscure Ra material and have appended to it has stronger singers plus dramatic recitations by poet Louis Reyes Rivera MORE