He is one of the most convincing and committed disciples of John Coltrane ever to come out of the UK. But these days hearing Alan Skidmore (a veteran of 77) is not that common a treat. Well, when better this summer on 17 July, dove tailing with the day that Coltrane died on in 1967, to hear Skid in a special 52nd memorial concert. Appearing with a quartet at Dalston club Cafe Oto plus special guest Ed Jones, Skidmore is no stranger to Oto having performed there a few years ago with Paul Dunmall. Tickets can be obtained here.
Boisterous and free spirited the clunky title is a homage to Ornette Coleman album To Whom Who Keeps A Record.
Pretty pared down throughout, drummer Gard Nilssen with bassist Petter Eldh and saxophonist André Roligheten have been playing together for years. The spirit of Albert Ayler is firmly to the fore as well but to be honest this is nothing as hardcore as the full Ayler experience.
Actually it is pretty accessible in a heritage free-jazz spirit and the three have real rapport ripping along merrily to chunky scraps of melody chased down by a throaty dose of the blues in a syncopated dash through a bunch of tunes unencumbered by keyboards or a guitar.
Prepare for a big change in the super talented bass guitarist here. Maybe it is John Patitucci producing, maybe it is a new much more mature sound but for whatever reason there is a lot less bombast, a lot more expressiveness and some great tunes all factored in.
Gwizdala has gathered a fine band around him on The Union [****] (issued on his own label Gwizmon Productions) with Clarence Penn on drums, Philip Dizack on trumpet, and Ruslan Sirota (who appeared with Gwizdala on the excellent Bob Reynolds album Quartet) on piano. On ‘The End of the Story’ there is a pared back almost-Steve Rodby Metheny-esque feel to the tender ballad and this track is at the heart of the album which relies for a lot of its best effects on a thoughtful, more meditative and less-is-more mentality. In a sea of music this is the kind of message in a bottle we all need that defies the odds to reach out and communicate. SG
Alice Zawadzki will have a new album called Within You Is A World Of Spring released this autumn, it has been announced. Five years since her debut China Lane, this new album according to issuing label Whirlwind “is about the tiny seed within every person that promises realisation, change, and rebirth.” Her band is completely different this time around, with Fred Thomas – piano, drums, Hammond, percussion, cello, double bass; Rob Luft – guitar; Misha Mullov-Abbado – double bass; Hyelim Kim – taegum; Simmy Singh – violin; Laura Senior – violin; Lucy Nolan – viola; and Peggy Nolan – cello joining the vocalist/violinist. Look for the album in October.
It is not often hip-hop spills into the pages of marlbank but hey this is just great, superstar rapper Nas on his previously unreleased track, ‘Jarreau of Rap (Skatt Attack),’ featuring Al Jarreau and trumpeter Keyon Harrold, best known for his work with Robert Glasper, which will be on Nas’ upcoming compilation, The Lost Tapes 2, to be released on 19 July via Mass Appeal and Def Jam. Jarreau’s treatment of Dave Brubeck’s ‘(Round, Round, Round) Blue Rondo à la Turk’ is the core sample on the song.
In their sixtieth year Ronnie’s has pulled off another plum booking with the rare visit by one of the greatest saxophonists, with a two-night visit by the hippie jazz legend Charles Lloyd on 1-2 August now confirmed. I cannot think of the last time the Forest Flower icon played any UK club because usually he confines his visits to big concert halls. Interesting band, a quintet that includes guitar hotshot Julian Lage, he is bringing with him too. Here’s the link for more details and tickets.