Friday 29 December 2023

Rafael Rabello in 3 (Tributo a Garoto, Sete Cordas, and interpreta Radames Gnattali)

Some information here discogged:

Brazilian guitarist (7 strings guitar), arranger and composer (1962 - 1995). Brother of singer Amélia Rabello and cavaquinho player Luciana Rabello. He started his professional career in 1976 as guitarist with "Os Carioquinhas", with his sister Luciana and Paulo Alves. Later he changed from 6-strings guitar to 7-strings, influenced by Dino 7 Cordas,
In 1978 the band split-up and in 1979 he formed Camerata Carioca, with members from Os Carioquinhas plus Luís Otávio Braga on guitar.
He also started to work as session man, playing in more than 400 recordings. During the 1980s and 1990s he was considered one of the best acoustic guitar players in the world and played with many famous artists, such as Tom Jobim, Ney Matogrosso, Paulo Moura and Paco de Lucia.

The style is almost excruciatingly perfected and professional with an amazingly gentle touch and impressive exactitude. We have a mixture as you might expect of more tropical sounds with chamber classical guitar playing. The music reminds me a lot of the Brazilian guitarist I raved about earlier called Geraissati posted back there.

From the 1982 Tributo album, Enigmatico is just perfectly played:

From Interpreta in 1987, Braziliana 13:

In short some really lovely music here to discover.

Tuesday 26 December 2023

Jerzy Gorka Artkiestra, 2018, limited time only


He was the drummer in the Golem band from the last post. Amazingly his album is almost as good as the other one. It does have a discogs page, this time, here.

Consider the opener:

Subsequently on the title track, note the opening amped up tritone-playing string mellotron or imitation thereof (?) like Watcher of the Skies, leading into a nice doomy synth riff that explores more interesting dissonance before finishing off with some classic KC style (Larks Tongue) guitar arpeggios:

Thanks to everyone who helped, finding this on youtube, downloading, etc. 

What a joy to find this one too. I recommend folks purchase the cd!

Sunday 24 December 2023

A wonderful Xmas present, 1997 Golem


Will prog wonders never cease? 

Unfortunately due to the commonness of the word Golem it's almost impossible to search for information, and I draw a blank on discogs although I'm pretty sure it must be in there somewhere.

Right from the start you'll fall off your chair here.  It starts out like this with a track translated as Nasty Guy, appropriately enough:

I love the fake (digital) string keyboards, which reminds of so much later symphonic fusion like Russian Horizont's Summer in Town, so many Germanic bands of course, but the layering of a thick electric guitar riff with dissonances on top is just like heaven for me. 

Bez odjazdu [Without Departure] features all the hallmarks of progressive music with arpeggiated riffs full of dissonance, abrupt figures and melodies, changes in keys and rhythm, you get the point:

From a commenter (many thanks):

GOLEM is an interesting but little known group from Andrychów (Poland), playing progressive rock - one of the oldest and overall best bands of the 1980s in Poland.

Przemyslaw Rams - guitar

Piotr Rupik - keyboards

Wlodzimierz Marczak - bass

Jerzy Gorka - drums

Friday 22 December 2023

Guitar Worshop in Rio, 1991


Here in Rio as expected we have the light tropical salsa etc. styles of music and very little of the fusion that excites me so much. On the other hand, compositions are very strong here and there. The amazing Ulisses Rocha with his Yasei no Kaze:

I don't normally like that rhythm because it's so cliched from the Brazilian jazz I got tired of way back when in a past lifetime, but here the composition is very good and dare I say it quite catchy.

I'll get back to this artist a bit later.

Wednesday 20 December 2023

Guitar Workshop in Toyko, 1989

Back to Tokyo here with information to be found here. Overall, not the most impressive released from the set (or rather the franchise as they say in Hollywood stupidly) but of note the last track, Musician (not an easy life) is a cover version, beautifully done I might add, from the 1976 Silver one-off LP (posted here this past spring), which is a shock that it would find its way here with a spectacular orchestral arrangement and performed by a Japanese fusion guitarist (namely, this guy, Sahashi):

I love the way they added so many ideas to what is really a gorgeous song.

Monday 18 December 2023

Guitar Workshop in Hawai'i, 1989


A total change in direction for this one with the more tropical Hawaiian sounds featured, mostly misses but some hits, as in Kapono Beaner's Girls with the Golden Tans, a title which so makes me want to go back on holidays somewhere warm:

Saturday 16 December 2023

Guitar Work Shop Vol. 3, Direct to Disc, 1980


I guess this one (with info here) was the most disappointing for me with nothing too special to hold onto.

The first track is Yamagishi's Bagoon:

Thursday 14 December 2023

Requested Tomas Band Vol. 1 Andersen, from Japan 1976


Information (scant) here. Here's a true rarity which was pointed out to us by Destroyer... it's mostly basic big band and/or fusion jazz with female vocals, but relatively well done, super professionally played, and interesting. And best of all ultra rare of course. Now you can listen without worrying about the hundred dollar price tag of the vinyl or the complications of getting it delivered from East Asia.

Track 6 [ 海 ] has such a nice progressive feeling to it although the track doesn't develop as creatively or originally as it promised to:

For the more upbeat funky side of the band, the next track [サッド・トーマス]-- meaning?:

Wednesday 13 December 2023

Guitar Workshop (Work Shop) Part 1, the already posted albums

A compiled database of the series, likely incomplete however, can be found here. Note that the two words Work and Shop are kept apart in some releases, despite the usual English convention. 

The first album was the LA one because it featured Buzzy Feiten, although it was a bit disappointing, it's here. For the multiple Watanabe packages the first one appeared here, and then recently for J. Yamagishi there were posts here.

As you probably realize, there were great tracks here and there on all these albums. I'll get to the remainder that are available next. On the first one the standout of course was K. Watanabe, with the wonderful funky fusion sounds, a bit of late 70s George Benson which is always a good thing of course, for ex. on Neptune:

Of course Vol. 2 the follow up was more disappointing, but there was Rhythm Road by Omura which oddly enough was different from the version on the 1979 LP:

Monday 11 December 2023

Remainder of Theo Jorgensmann (In Time, Live at Birdland, Laterna Magica, Deep Blue Lake)


Some more from him, good and bad, of note the last album is quite good, Deep Blue Lake:

Friday 8 December 2023

Back to Theo Jorgensmann with the Clarinet Summit in You Better Fly Away 1980


It's a series, as you can see discogged here.

Info for this one:

Clarinet Summit, You Better Fly Away - 1979 live baden baden (with aldo romano & gianluigi trovesi)

live in New Jazz Meeting Baden-Baden Nov. 1979, record released in 1980, no re-issues exist), produced by Joachim Berendt.

Featured clarinet players (also doubling on bass & contrabass cls + Romanian flute: 

John Carter, Perry Robinson, Theo Jörgensmann, Bernd Konrad, Ernst-Ludwig Petrowsky, Gianluigi Trovesi

Backing band: Didier Lockwood (vl), Eje Thelin (tb), Stan Tracey (p), J-F Jenny-Clark & Kai Kanthak (b), Aldo Romano & Günter Sommer (d).

Although one would expect regular contemporary jazz with overlong improvisations bordering on the tedious and mentally / physically taxing like a 2-week long holter monitor checking your heart rhythm, the music is actually quite interesting, shockingly creative and well composed. Note the great violinist Didier Lockwood is on here too.

Consider just the opener / title track:

Truly a much underrated album here, along with the Go Ahead Clarinet from earlier. Very well composed music.

Wednesday 6 December 2023

Another one from K. Akiyama, 1982's Zoomin'


Here's one more from him that was missing. In the end I really enjoyed his work (placed here) and find it tragic he is so unknown. This one is less exemplary, having less of the high-energy fusion and really original songwriting compared to its predecessor.  The track called Dawn starts off so auspiciously but is not developed in as progressive a manner as one would have hoped:

Monday 4 December 2023

Back to the Theo Jorgensmann Quartet with Straightout (1977) and Song of Bowaje (1981)

What an incredible cover for Bowaje! Very similar to the preceding posts.

From Straightout, Call and Response:

Friday 1 December 2023

Sigi Schwab and Percussion Academia in Silversand

Less impressive than the preceding posts, back to the contemporary style guitar based jazz from Germany we're heard so often here. Title track:

Information from this grouping here, who did 3 albums back in the day.

Wednesday 29 November 2023

More Japanese fusion with Kazumasa Akiyama in 3 albums

This summary is not available. Please click here to view the post.

Monday 27 November 2023

Dieter Reith's Join Us 1979 by request

I posted the Love and Fantasy album here which I thought was magnificent. His discogs bio is quite extensive:

Dieter Reith (February 25, 1938 - April 1, 2020) was a German jazz pianist, organist, arranger, and composer. Born in Mainz, Germany, he embarked on his musical journey at an early age, commencing piano lessons in 1945. His dedication to music led him to the jazz scene, where he made a notable impact. After completing his education, which included studies in musicology and experimental physics, he joined the SWF Big Band in 1961, becoming its pianist until 1971. Reith's talent and versatility also led him to serve as the organist for Peter Herbolzheimer's Rhythm Combination & Brass from 1970 to 1976.

In 1973, Dieter Reith relocated to Stuttgart, where he played a pivotal role in directing the SWR Big Band and the SWR Radio Orchestra for various productions. He was not only a prolific musician but also an accomplished arranger, contributing his skills to numerous TV projects, radio productions, and recording sessions. One of his notable achievements was his work on the television show "Verstehen Sie Spaß?" where he conducted the accompanying SWR Big Band from 1980 to 2002.

Throughout his career, Reith collaborated with a distinguished array of jazz luminaries, including Stan Getz, Jean-Luc Ponty, Art Farmer, Frank Rosolino, Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen, Kenny Clarke, Philip Catherine, Benny Bailey, Slide Hampton, Maynard Ferguson, Toots Thielemans, and Herb Geller. Dieter Reith's contributions to jazz and music continue to be celebrated, and he left an enduring legacy in the world of music. He passed away on April 1, 2020, in Stuttgart, Germany, but his musical influence lives on.

On the whole this is a bit more disappointing, more generic, less composed, than the other effort posted long ago. For ex., the title track which starts it off:

Saturday 25 November 2023

Makoto Matsushita in 4 albums

From discogs:

Japanese multi-instrumentalist, composer, producer, lyricist and vocalist.
Born November 16, 1955.

In these albums he presents his commercial pop side with vocal tracks, quite different from the roughly contemporaneous Paradigm Shift which he had compositional credits on and which were far more in the progressive direction.  From the first 1981 album, First Light, the track called Sunset gives you an idea and the whole album, despite the genre or style descriptions all over the place on discogs, has neither jazz-funk nor prog rock on it:

That first album is without a doubt the strongest.

The track called Recollection from the later album called Visions documents how he moved into the ambient new agey electronic sphere later on:

Wednesday 22 November 2023

S. Nakamura next in in Paradigm Shift, in 3 albums (1985 to 1989)

Not much info on the discogs page here.  The genre / style for the first ST album is described as "Electronic, Rock, Ambient, Synth-pop, Abstract, AOR" in reality, it's progressive fusion with electronic additions throughout, similar perhaps to the later 1980s Omura albums just posted, or the later Kazumi Watanabe albums like To Chi Ka or even old favourite Fukamachi in his 80s cartoon or video game related phase, like on Queen Emereldus

There is a nice alternation between more high energy dissonant King Crimson-derived riffing and gentler piano pieces, for ex. consider this sample from the first album called Nostalgia which let's admit it is almost as good as material by our great master Jun Fukamachi, especially with the application of synth elements on top of acoustic piano:


Incidentally note that the composer is the keyboardist called Makoto Matsushita.

Here and there we also encounter vocal tracks with some pop or commercial leanings, understandably.

Actually all 3 of the releases are worth hearing with only a little dip in quality for the last one which came in 1989.  

The second album has the lovely title of "The Rain Child and the River King" sounding a bit like a fairy tale. But again on discogs the genre description sounds totally mixed up.

The track inappropriately called The Naked Girl with the Fever Drum really blew me away and hopefully yourself too, that descending chromatic riff and the furious fast energy they employ in slamming it out is just mindboggling, as well note the middle passage with the KC-like spacey sounds:

From the third and last, it's obvious they take music composition seriously from the track called "Etude #1, Water Lily:"

Monday 20 November 2023

Satoshi Nakamura and Splaash, 1979


Another band with K. Omura in it, another smooth fusion release. Discogged here.

Regarding S. Nakamura:

Saxophone & keyboard player / producer / arranger. Guest musician with the Japanese group Paradigm Shift. Born 16 September 1954 in Saitama, Japan.

Like the preceding post, very smooth and accessible stuff for what it's worth, only one LP from this grouping from 1979.

Sample track, One of a kind: