Thursday, October 10, 2019

Old & New Drums: Ed Blackwell 90

Let's get back into the thing with two in a row about two drummers born ten years and one day apart.
You may remember back in January when this configuration first occured, with Kenny Clarke and Max Roach sharing the calendar.
Today's guy came to prominence as Ornette Coleman's drummer, and when I looked at his wiki page it lists about a million other LPs he anchors from the rear.
My favorites to feature him are those duet records with Don Cherry, which sound like the music of some far-flung indigenous tribe that doesn't technically exist.
It was those late 1950s/early 1960s platters with Ornette that really fucked up the world, though.
Nothing was ever the same after that stuff came down, and today's hero was a big part of why.
What's ironic is that his playing, for all the explosive and non-consonant aspects of the music, was never jagged or lacking in fluidity, even amidst the Free Jazz maelstrom sound of things falling apart.
He was born this day in 1929, and that means Ed Blackwell would have been 90 today, had he not passed away well over a quarter century ago.
I haven't forgotten him, and I'd go out on a limb and say that not many others attuned to this music have either. Nor will they anytime soon.
His last project, from 1991, is what we'll dip into to celebrate, courtesy of this tasty 75 minute jaunt taped at the always-topnotch Montreal Jazz Festival.
Ed Blackwell Project
Montreal Jazz Festival
Theatre du Nouveau Monde 
Montreal, Canada 

01 introduction
02 Mopti 
03 Pettiford Bridge
04 Beau Regard
05 Faces
06 Pentahouve
07 Mallet Song
08 Grandma's Shoes
09 Lito, Part I-III/FM outro

Total time: 1:15:30

Ed Blackwell- drums 
Carlos Ward - flute & alto saxophone 
Mark Helias - bass 
Ahmed Abdullah - trumpet 

sounds like an FM master cassette capture
slight clipping issues repaired, slightly retracked and gaps between tracks removed by EN, October 2019
I will return in a mere 24 hours with part two of the percussion discussion, featuring an even hundred for one of the bedrock players of our lifetimes.
Today, however, is the day to remember the legendary Ed Blackwell, another of the musical heavyweights upon which all else stands.--J.
10.10.1929 - 10.7.1992

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