This week we sample some more new jazz, world, and classical jams. We begin with an improbable labor of love, a Lollywood (Pakistan’s version of Bollywood) group called The Sachal Ensemble that was mostly out of work due to the political situation in Lahore, the capital of Pakistan’s movie industry. The group members recall a visit to Lahore by Dizzy Gillespie (think jazz diplomacy of the U.S. State Dept, devised by Harlem senator Adam Clayton Powell back during the 1950’s cold war) and decide to get in touch with Wynton Marsalis. They end up being invited to Jazz at Lincoln Center to perform and this new album (and a film) is an outcome of that fateful trip. Wynton Marsalis squeezes a nice solo in.
We next check out an Eastern-sounding piece by saxophonist Kenny Garrett called “Persian Steps,” followed by Will Holland, better known as Quantic, with a track featuring reggae toaster U-Roy and Alice Russell, then a 1970’s Cape Verdean artist named Jose Casimiro plays something very different than what we know from the sad mornas and bubbly coladeiras of Cesaria Evora. Next comes Paul Simon, who has a new album out that’s been getting some nice spins on KCRW.
We change gears to hear three new classical releases. First, an early recording by the brilliant Argentine pianist Martha Argerich, only 19 years old at the time of this 1960 recording debut, then a beautiful minuet from Maurice Ravel, and finally an unusually fiery version of Scriabin’s Etude #1 by Italian pianist Vanessa Benelli Moselli.
We wrap it up with three new jazz albums: Jack Dejohnette has a new CD out featuring two scions of jazz greats – Ravi Coltrane and Matthew Garrison. They perform a haunting piece that Coltrane wrote after the Birmingham murders of 1963, “Alabama.” A track from tenor saxophonist J.D. Allen follows before we conclude with pianist Monika Herzig. She and the bunch of young female musicians on the recording are new to me, but her album really sparkles.
Rhythm Planet Playlist for 6/10/16:
- The Sachal Ensemble / “Blue Pepper (Far East Of The Blues)” (featuring Wynton Marsalis) / Song of Lahore / Universal Music Classics
- Kenny Garrett / “Persian Steps” / Do Your Dance / Mack Avenue Records
- Quantic / “A Life Worth Living” (featuring Alice Russell) / 1000 Watts (Quantic Presenta Flowering Inferno) / Tru Thoughts Ltd.
- Jose Casimiro / “Morti Sta Bidjacu” / Space Echo: The Mystery Behind the Sound of Cabo Verde Finally Revealed / Analog Africa
- Paul Simon / “The Werewolf “/ Stranger To Stranger / Concord Records
- Martha Argerich / “Mozart Piano Sonata #18 in D, K.576 – Allegro” / Early Recordings / Deutsche Grammophon
- Yuja Wang, Ray Chen,Lionel Bringuier and Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich / “Menuet from Le Tombeau de Couperin, M.68” / Ravel: Complete Orchestral Works / Deutsche Grammophon
- Vanessa Benelli Mosell / “Scriabin: 3 Pieces for Piano, Op. 2 – 1. Etude in C Sharp Minor” / Light / Decca London
- Jack Dejohnette, Matt Garrison, Ravi Coltrane / “Alabama” / In Movement / ECM
- J. D. Allen / “Lillie Mae Jones” / Americana / Savant
- Monika Herzig / “Plenty Of Nothing” / The Whole World in Her Hands / Whaling City Sound