Monday, November 06, 2023

Forest Flower Power


Charles Lloyd Quartet - The Call (Imke)

We'll kick off November -- and the second decade of this page! -- with someone I've meant to cover the whole time I've been at this.

This guy's been doing his thing for 60 years, so it's about time he got some love, and we'll hit him up with a fantastic vintage show taped 41 years ago.

He's known just as much for the Hall Of Fame players that got their start with him, as he is for the marvelous music he's produced over those six decades of multivarious excellence.

When his first burst of notoriety came in the mid 1960s, it was with a quartet where each member went on to some degree of success on their own.

Keith Jarrett became, well, Keith Jarrett. Jack DeJohnette became Jack DeJohnette, and went on to make great ECM records with Keith Jarrett.

The bass player, Cecil McBee, became one of the most in-demand cats on the scene, playing on more albums than I am gonna count up here.

Then, at the peak of his popularity and college crossover success, their leader changed direction.

As the Sixties turned to 1970, he stopped performing almost altogether and began making wild and weird albums -- a few where he played barely any saxophone at all! -- with pop royalty people like The Beach Boys.

Critics basically soiled their drawers and condemned him as a traitor to Jazz. He didn't care, and likely still doesn't. None of the critics could have made a living as a Jazz guy in 1971.

Eventually he evolved back to a more straightahead, conventional approach and signed to that ECM label I was mentioning.

One huge career renaissance and 40 years later, Charles Lloyd is still going strong well into his 80s.

This incredible concert -- rebroadcast on Kulturradio in Europe -- dates from the early 1980s when he started his comeback.

Charles Lloyd Quartet
Berliner Jazztage
Berlin, Germany

01 The Call (Imke)
02 Very Early
03 Third Floor Richard
04 Tone Poem
05 Wind In the Trees
06 Night Blooming Jasmine/Forest Flower

Total time: 1:37:59
disc break goes after Track 04

Charles Lloyd - tenor saxophone & flute
Michel Petrucciani - piano
Palle Danielsson - bass
Woody "Sonship" Theus - drums

digital capture of a digital RBB Kulturradio rebroadcast
627 MB FLAC/direct link

Speaking of badass, all-star quartets, it just doesn't get deeper than this quad combo, dang.

Look out for drum deity Sonship Theus, as well as piano lord Michel Petrucciani and bass stalwart Palle Danielsson in addition to Mr. Lloyd, as they supply 98 minutes of blissness.

I will return on the weekend with the next centennial, and it's a good one.

In the meantime, it's high time for you to praise the Lloyd!--J.