Saturday, 10 June 2017

NDR Jazzworkshop 1977 with Philip Catherine

The first side of this 1977 release is given over to Buddy Rich and his Big Band, and I won't get into that.  The importance of this edition is of course the presence of the second side's Philip Catherine, the great Belgian guitarist whose works are mandatory for the fusion fan.  His two entries here are India and Les Sept Boules de Cristal, a track which appeared in the stunning, gorgeous opus 1979 Sleep My Love, one of my all-time favourite Euro-fusion records, maintaining a balance of meditative and ethereal beauty from beginning to the closing: an interpretation of an Arnold Schoenberg melody, which completely knocked me out when I first heard it.  Those were the days, right...  The other track from him, India, I haven't located yet where it's from originally though I'm sure it's somewhere, not that I have any desire to hear the original album version as it's one of those drony Eastern songs that remains stuck in one chord (and it's E I think to boot, the easiest of all on the guitar).  The album closes out with the United Jazz etc. (also mandatory listening for fusionauts) and our old hero Wolfgang Dauner playing the unfortunately chosen Bebop Rock (a Dauner composition).  But what a lineup-- with Eberhard Weber on bass, Albert Mangelsdorff, Ian Carr (Nucleus!), Volker Kriegel, and Charlie again on sax, you have a real European all-star band to close it out.

Here's Philip:

Who could ever forget the image of Tournesol surrounded by ball lightning?  I enjoyed rereading all the Tintins last summer with my sons, who became so briefly obsessed with his adventures we were forced to get every book in the series including the awful first one from Russia which I never finished and the incomplete last one which can be found online.  From the perspective of adulthood, we can see there is still nothing to compare with these adventures in terms of how thrilling they can be for a boy, with the perfect combination of exotic locales, courage, faithfulness to his friends and dog, and a lot of slapstick humour thrown in.


    As always, more to come...

  2. Thanks for this.

    I completely agree with your sentiments on "Sleep My Love". It's the kind of album that makes me wonder why there aren't more like it. Beauty is a rare thing I guess...

    Also Les Sept Boules de Cristal was the first Tintin album I got as a child and it remains the greatest to me. Only recently I (re)read all the Tintins too, including the ones (majority) I hadn't read as a kid.

  3. Wow! As I said, I reread them all last summer with my sons, like you said, along with the ones I missed back then, and with the hindsight of adulthood, I think that other than the moon explorer ones, the best are Tintin in Tibet due to its deep themes of friendship and loyalty (each character, incl. Milou, at some point risks their life to save a friend), and Bijoux de Castafiore, for its clever writing and humour. That last book being both my sons' favourite.

  4. Yes... we have pretty much the same favorites, but maybe those are the most popular Tintins anyway. The second moon book goes a bit over the top for me (unlike Lewis Carroll, to fetch far, Herge wasn't very good at combining logic and nonsense, I think). I also liked Le Crabe aux pinces d'or. (There, the nonsense works - being confined to dreams and hallucinations.)

  5. yes my Tintin tastes are quite conventional, as I saw when I read the wikipedia entry about Herge, the ones we mentioned are considered his masterpieces...

  6. Julian hi again i would like to ask you if it is possible to post one of these or both
    Thanks in advance!!!

    1. merge long distance is a recent release, here's merge exchange:

  7. Hi Julian.Request again please ,if you don't mind and you have.Mike Longo-Matrix and Talk with the Spirits. I was also brought up on a steady diet of TinTin.Great stuff.Lucky Luke too.:) Cheers.

  8. longo matrix (72)
    longo awakening (72)
    longo talk with the spirits (76)

    enjoy them