Saturday, March 07, 2020

The Keys ---> The Kingdom

You know I hate writing these, but there are some departures that need immediate notation, and some lives that, when they end, require immediate memorialization.
Hard to believe, but all four of the classic Coltrane group are gone now. Today's hero In Memoriam lasted the longest of them all. Their like shall not be seen again, I fear.
There's just no overstating what their music, and specifically the music of this man, meant in and to this world. Lives were changed forever by the sounds they made.
The story is well known. He was the harmonic underpinning that allowed the explosions of 'Trane the Father to make contextual sense.
Without him in that most Classic Quartet, it'd have been mostly just sheets of sound and fury, unmoored from comprehensibility and nowhere near as accessible as it was.
After he split from that band -- really, for all intents and purposes, the most important and transcendent in all Jazz history -- he made music on his own that was arguably its equal.
Full disclosure: I must have seen him play more times, at more different venues, than any other artist of the genre.
In 60+ years doing it, McCoy Tyner never failed to deliver the most spiritual sounds, and in the company of the very finest players.
Overall, this was one of the most distinguished and world-altering careers of any musician in American history right here.
He left us yesterday morning at the age of 81, so to honor him we are gonna go back to 1981 for this hour-and-change of his then-quintet onstage at the Philharmonie, as part of the Berlin Jazz Festival that year.
Look out for one of the first sightings of bass monster Avery Sharpe, and the scorching violin of the vastly undersung John Blake.
McCoy Tyner Quintet
Jazzfest Berlin
Berlin, Germany

01 Gudrun Endress announcement
02 La Habana Sol
03 McCoy Tyner announcement
04 Walk Spirit, Talk Spirit
05 McCoy Tyner announcement
06 It's You or No One
07 The Seeker

Total time: 1:04:28

McCoy Tyner - piano
John Blake, Jr. - violin
Joe Ford - alto & soprano saxophones, flute
Avery Sharpe - bass
Ronnie Burrage - drums

digital capture of a digital Kulturradio FM rebroadcast
spectral analysis goes to 20kHz; essentially a preFM quality capture
Obviously I hate doing the deaths so soon, and I prefer to wait for the person's next birthday or an anniversary of a show or whatnot.
This is a passing I can't let pass without commemoration, though.
We'll be back in 24 hours with the second of those two kickass guitar posts, as promised.
But today we gotta remember McCoy Tyner, not that he is at all forgettable or ever will be.
So please do pull down this extraordinary and incendiary performance, and give thanks to the Universe that of all the lifetimes you could have lived, you had the sense to be here in the right time to overlap with his.--J.
12.11.1938 - 3.6.2020